Letter: Island illusions

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The Independent Online
Island illusions

Sir: The conviction that civilians were not involved in war until the Second World War (Bryan Appleyard, "What me? I'm off to lunch", 4 July) is an illusion of an island race, given to sending its soldiers overseas to fight.

Those who write military history are not too interested in rape, pillage and the sacking of cities, but the war in, say, Bosnia would have seemed quite familiar to Hannibal and Sweden's conquering Gustavus Adolphus.

KATHARINE WHITEHORN

London NW3

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