Essay on Review of the Forgotten Soldier

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Many people question if Guy Sajer, author of The Forgotten Soldier, is an actual person or only a fictitious character. In fact, Guy Sajer in not a nom de plume. He was born as Guy Monminoux in Paris on 13 January 1927. At the ripe young age of 16, while living in Alsace, he joined the German army. Hoping to conceal his French descent, Guy enlisted under his mother's maiden name-Sajer. After the war Guy returned to France where he became a well known cartoonist, publishing comic books on World War II under the pen name Dimitri.

The Forgotten Soldier is not a book concerning the tactics and strategy of the German Wehrmacht during the Second World War. Nor does it analyze Nazi ideology and philosophy. Instead, it describes the
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Although he isn't part of an infantry combat unit, his duty is no light task. In the first chapter, the reality of war sets in for Sajer. While aboard a train traveling towards Minsk (the Eastern Front) the German newcomers encountered a horrifying sight while passing an adjacent train; Russian prisoners piled there dead comrades to act as a human shield from Russian winter winds. Whereas this is a hideous thing for a teenager to encounter, it was only the beginning of a hellish nightmare on the Eastern front.

After a terrible struggle through the Russian winter, Sajer volunteers for the elite Gross Deutschland infantry division. Before his departure unto the infantry, however, he receives a two weeks leave. During this period he travels back to Berlin where he falls in love with Paula whom he promises to marry. However, Sajer comments, "But the war prevented me from keeping my word, and the peace made it lose all its value." He realized the only glimmer of hope that the war produced was quickly destroyed by the war, just as everything else.

After his brief vacation in Berlin, Sajer returns to the Eastern Front to face his worst challenges yet. He and his comrades relentlessly evade Soviet T-34 tanks and constant air raids. The Germans must also suffer a food and supply shortage while constant engagements with the Russians while they are attempting to retreat. Eventually, while trying to escape the Russian…

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