Even though it’s only been in the 20th century that women have been admitted to the military forces of western nations, they have been fighting and assisting in campaigns since ancient times. BBC Broadcaster Rosalind Miles and Gulf War reporter Robin Cross have compiled biographical essays of women in war which fills a gap in military history by describing the women who led, rebelled, comforted, healed, supported, spied and even disguised themselves as men in the name of a warring cause. From the well-known Boudicca and Joan of Arc to the lesser known samurai Tomoe Gozen and Colonel Martha McSally, the first woman to command a USAF combat squadron, the essays describe wartime efforts by women as heroic as men’s, but less renowned. The authors provide balance to these heroines by also including a chapter of essays on women of darker metal, like German war criminal Irma Grese and the US Army Private Lynndie England. The essays are short, to the point and mostly very objective, and should be a good source for any military history buff or students researching the role of women in combat.


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