Monday, 15 October 2018

Menin Falls

Tuesday 15th October 1918

For most of this war the Menin Road has been a byword for suffering, terror and death. It is the road running east from Ypres towards the town of Menin, the road which cuts the Ypres salient into two - the salient consisted of the area north of the Menin Road and the area south of it. It was the axis of advance for the Germans towards Ypres in 1914 and 1915 and the axis of Second Army's attack in 1917. Menin itself, a comparatively trivial little town, assumed an aspect almost rivalling that of Shangri-la - a place which was thought to exist, though no soldier had ever seen it - a place which, if reached, would signal happiness and a rest for toil. Today Menin has been reached and, indeed, captured, the enemy having evacuated it. The town of Comines has also fallen into Second Army's hands. And, while the toil will continue for a while yet, there is a palpable sense that this is yet another sign that it will not, now be prolonged.

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