General Sir Ivor Maxse
Commander, 18th Division
faith in the ability and not merely enthusiasm of the New
Army recruits was in direct contradiction to the attitude
of most commanders on the Somme. This lead in great part
to the successes of the 18th throughout the offensive...
system in the Division is to tell subordinates as much as
possible of impending operations long before they occur...It
is better to risk information leaking out through captured
prisoners than to run the greater risk of ordering infantry
over the parapet unacquainted with what they are expected
to do or where they are to go."
took into our confidence the 64 section* commanders of all
battalions, gave them the reason for their positions in
our forming up trenches and drilled them to move from their
positions direct to their objectives in the enemy's lines.
Thus all ranks started with some idea of what they were
to do, a conviction that their pals also knew what to do
and a complete absence of any fear of being left in the
lurch by them."
section is 14 men and (usually) a Lance Corporal who is
directly responsible for them.