& Bullets

Musings on the worlds of aviation, military and international affairs.


With reviews of books that cover these topics


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Brize 2010 Reds 3

By psmiddy, Feb 7 2019 09:47AM

I visited the Imperial War Museum North recently. Stunning location, next to the so-called ‘Media City’. As one might expect there are some very interesting artefacts on display, and the diaries, letters, reports, etc are understandably skewed towards those from soldiers, sailors and airmen with Northern connections. Likewise there are some interesting photos of the damage that Manchester suffered in the Blitz.

The architect, Daniel Libeskind (appropriately enough born in Lodz – the Polish ghettos get good coverage), has created a striking building. However the display area is effectively only a single storey, and is not that extensive. I wonder whether the IWM would have been better advised to spend more of their construction budget on display space rather than fancy (and non-functional) architecture.

The displays and layout reflect the PC nature of modern museum creators. Of the 6 so-called ‘silos’ (i.e. self-contained display spaces with a single theme), one is devoted to women and war, another to the contribution of the Commonwealth. Yet Op Herrick (the war in Afghanistan) merits only half a display case!

The result is the museum lacks the authority of its Kennington parent.

By psmiddy, Jan 26 2019 01:13AM

I have a stack to post soon. In the meantime I have just finished a novel by Nevil Shute - Pastoral. This was recommended to me by an eminent writer, whom I happened to meet recently. She was right - I did enjoy it. The book is a romance set in WW2 between a bomber pilot and a WAAF oficer at his station. It has a great period feel, and tugs suitably at the heartstrings.

By psmiddy, Jan 2 2019 05:18PM

Escape Artist by Peter Monteath. We all need a bit of escapism, escpecially as this potentially grim year starts. In this book there is quite of bit of Boys' Own stuff, as well as being brought down to earth by Nazi horrors. Review is here.