World War: CASUALTIES: Unmurderous War

The most extraordinary thing about World War II is not its speed, not its extent, not its tactical scope — but its relative unmurderousness. Last week Britain revealed that in the first 21 months of the war only 18,627 members of the Army, Navy and R.A.F. had been killed in action.

Almost twice as many civilians had been killed in air raids (35,756),* and more than ten times as many soldiers were killed in a similar period in World War I.

A breakdown of casualties showed that relative to the number of men employed in the three services the Army was...

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