Thats statement holds if you look at the opening stages of WW2. Dumped out of France, with a panic evacuation turned into a gloriuos achievement for morale purposes. (I am n ot knocking what was achieved at Dunkirk or the efforts of the people involved)
Not really dpcw. The BEF of 1940 was highly trained (but poorly equipped) and contained no conscripts that I can think of. The let down was caused by the capitulation of the Belgians and the collapse of the French. What can you do when you suddenly find both flanks in the air? Anyway, the statement addresses the whole war so does not hold true. Unless you read the Guardian that is.
The lack of equipment and collapse of supporting nations meant that "Compared to other wars, the British Army fared poorly, and was constantly humbled by enemy actions."
No mention of the performance of the soldiers themselves, the usual tale of excellent soldiers making do with poor or inadequate equipment.
oops, the Guardian bit should have read 'one' not 'you' â it wasn't aimed at you dpcw.
In spite of losing at Arras, Hazebrouck, Comines, Cassel etc I still don't think we were 'humbled'. Even the boxheads didn't think that and said so in their radio broadcasts. Armoured divisions that were meant to slice through lightly armed infantry battalions in a matter of hours were being fairly consistently delayed by them for two or three days at a time. But whichever way you view the Battle of France, the statement still isn't justified when you consider the whole war...which it does.
Looks like one of those polls you get on other military history forums: "what was the best WW2 army?". Results invariably put the Brits near the bottom and the Germans at the top. German-worshippers seem to forget that they started with all the aces - then lost...
All those who point to UK's trail of defeat 1939-42, plus the fairly poor tactical success afterwards, seem to miss a major point: the Germans and Japanese had each spent about ten years training and indoctrinating a generation of 8-10 year olds into being those stormtroopers of 1939/41. UK, on the other hand, had been in its eternal position of defence poverty and clusterfcuk preparation - but the poor old Toms held on and held on through all the bad years, until weapons procurement and training had caught up and they were able field a victorious army. Methinks such dogged strength in the face of overwhelming adversity means the British army has never really had anything to be ashamed of.