The thousand yard stare

South Africans in WW1. This is face of defeat, fatigue and war – this time from the Battle of the Menin Road Ridge. This German prisoner of war was captured in the attack on Vampire Farm by Scottish and South African troops near Potijze on the 20th September 1917.  This photograph of his expression shows his emotional and physical state of mind, it’s a phenomenon known to soldiers as “the thousand yard stare,” and it is a condition brought about by the extreme stressors of combat.

Image copyright Imperial War Museum

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