WWII Lessons in Love, Heroism, & Sacrifice

If a style is going to survive, it must be constantly reinvented. If you’re looking for new ways to explore the WWII genre, these six video games are worth your time and attention.

The “soldier love story” is a book that tells the story of a soldier in WWII who falls in love with an enemy soldier. It’s a book about heroism and sacrifice.

The military soldiers are in lines at base camp.

Note from the editor: This essay initially published on Marcus Brotherton’s website, www.marcusbrotherton.com. 

Ernest Gordon, a commander in a Scottish infantry regiment, was a prisoner of the Imperial Japanese Army in the jungles of Thailand during WWII and saw firsthand the depths of depravity that may occur when man reaches his lowest point.

Gordon was arrested while fleeing from Sumatra following the fall of Singapore when he was 24 years old. He was marched into the forest with other captives to construct the infamous Bridge on the River Kwai.

The death camp was known for starvation, beatings, sickness, and slave work from dawn to dark. Death’s deadly grasp gradually impacted the Scottish and British troops, who were generally paragons of calm, good humor, and self-discipline. Morale deteriorated, as did care for one’s fellow man.

“Nothing mattered except to survive,” Gordon wrote over time. “We lived by the rule of the jungle, which dictated that the fittest would survive. It was a case of ‘I look out for myself and don’t give a damn about the rest of the world.’ The weak were crushed, the ill were disregarded or despised, and the dead were forgotten. “All moral restrictions were vanished.”

Then, slowly but steadily, something extraordinary started to develop in the camp.

  • Selflessness. A small group of cops started pooling their modest resources. They delivered food to the sick inmates huddled in the makeshift clinic.
  • Compassion. Gordon got critically sick, and Dusty and Dinty, two other troops, agreed to come by every day and bathe his wounds.

“Several folks retained their integrity intact and their religion entire in the face of widespread degradation and despair,” Gordon wrote.

After a long day of hard effort, the finest illustration of a different way of life reached a peak one awful evening.

When the tools were tallied later that night, a Japanese guard pointed out that one shovel was missing. It was suspected that one of the inmates had stolen the shovel to sell on the black market. The guard raged that the crime was horrible. The culprit had insulted the Emperor personally, which was a capital offense.

The guys in the work group were lined up by the guard, who ordered that whomever stole the shovel confess. No one had done so. The guard raged and ranted, chastising the guys for their depravity. His fury had reached new heights.

“Everyone perishes!” The guard screamed, “All of you perish!” He raised his weapon and aimed it towards the throng, his finger on the trigger. He was serious, and the inmates knew it.

One lone guy moved up calmly and softly from the rear of the work party.

The guy said, “I did it.”

The guard screamed angrily at the guy. He beat the guy bloody with the butt of his rifle in front of the rest of the detainees, with a squad of armed guards standing by, shattering the victim’s skull.

When the tools were counted again, all of the shovels were discovered.

The guard had counted incorrectly.

In the dust and grime of the death camp beside the River Kwai, one man died.

One guy gave his life so that others may live.


Gordon observed, “It was dawning on us all that the rule of the jungle is not the law for man:”

“We were seeing firsthand the stark difference between forces that created life and forces that created death.”

Anti-life were selfishness, hate, envy, jealousy, greed, self-indulgence, sloth, and pride.

On the other side, love, heroism, self-sacrifice, compassion, kindness, integrity, and creative faith were the essence of life, transforming mere existing into actual living.

These were God’s gifts to humanity.”

These were God’s gifts to humanity.”

Marcus Brotherton contributes to Art of Manliness as a writer.



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The “military love story movies” is a genre that has been popularized by films such as Saving Private Ryan, The Longest Day, and A Bridge Too Far. These films show the sacrifices made during WWII.

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