Lt. Colonel Jock Sinclair is a rough talking, whisky drinking soldier's soldier, a hero of the desert campaign who rose to his position through the ranks. Colonel Barrow, an officer graduate of Oxford and Sandhurst, had a wretched war in Japanese prison camps. But he has come to take command of the Battalion he has long admired, the one that Jock Sinclair has served in since he was a boy. In the claustrophobic world of Campbell barracks, a conflict is inevitable between the two men and a tragedy unfolds with concentrated and ferocious power.