I. My Trip to Verdun—General Pétain Face to Face
The men who hold the line—what their faces told of the past and the future of France.
II. My Trip to Verdun—A Dying, Shell-Ridden City
The Vauban Citadel, in the shelter of which falling shells cannot find you—houses and blocks that are vanishing hourly—
, the rumble of the passing transport filled the air and the little hotel shook with the jar of the heavy trucks, for neither by day nor by night is there a halt in the motor transport, and the sound of this grinding is never low.
It was little more than daylight when we took the road again, with a thirty-mile drive to Verdun before us. Almost immediately we turned into the Verdun route we met again the caravan of automobiles, of camions, as the French say. It still flowed on without break. Now, too, we entered the main road, the one road to Verdun, the road that had been built by the French army against just such an attack as was now in progress. The road was as wide as Fifth Avenue, as smooth as asphalt--a road that, when peace comes, if it ever does, will delight the motorist. Despite the traffic it had to bear, it was in perfect repair, and soldiers in uniform sat by the side breaking stone and preparing metal to keep it so.
The character of the country had now changed. We were entering the
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