MHM 72 – September 2016

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The September issue of Military History Monthly, the British military history magazine, is now on sale.

In this issue we cover:

The Spanish-American War, 1898

Fred Chiaventone assesses the war’s causes and its course, while Patrick Boniface provides a detailed analysis of the conflict’s trigger: the blowing up of the USS Maine.


– Background
– Map
– USS Maine
– Battles

The Batavians: a Roman military elite
MHM Editor Neil Faulkner explores the history of one of the world’s most formidable contingents of shock troops.

The Darker Side of Victory: Wellington’s medical service at Waterloo
Mick Crumplin takes us into the grisly world of Napoleonic-era treatment of casualties.

Regiment: The First Special Service Force in the Italian Campaign of WWII
Patrick Mercer recalls the achievements of an elite American-Canadian special-forces unit.

Also in this issue: Behind the Image; War Culture; War Composers; War on Film; Book of the Month; Book Reviews; Museum Review; Event Listings; Competitions; and much more.

From the editor

Neil Faulkner
MHM Editor Dr Neil Faulkner

The colonial wars of the half-century before the First World War often pitted small European expeditionary forces against pre-modern native armies like the Zulus or the Dervishes. Occasionally, they involved clashes between European regulars and European settlers; the two Boer Wars are obvious examples. Direct clashes between rival imperial powers, however, were rare.

Such was the Spanish American War of 1898, the subject of our special this time. It was a struggle between the Old World and the New, between a declining European empire and an emerging global colossus – between, that is, Spain, defending old colonies in South-East Asia and the Caribbean, and the United States, beginning to carve out a role in the wider world at the end of a century dominated by westward expansion.

US military historian Fred Chiaventone analyses the causes and the conduct of the war, while naval historian Patrick Boniface takes a close look at the trigger, the mysterious explosion that destroyed the USS Maine in Havana Harbour on 2 February 1898.

Then we take a sideways look at Waterloo, with Mick Crumplin’s survey of the grisly business of tending to the casualties (55,000 of them in an area of about four square miles) – complete with contemporary illustrations of amputation techniques that are not for the squeamish!

Patrick Mercer continues our Regiment series with a close look at the First Special Service Force in the Italian Campaign of WWII, and then we have an in-house piece on the Batavians, the amphibious warfare specialists and elite auxiliary shock troops of the Roman Imperial Army in the 1st century AD.