This chapter, which reads more like an episode out of a history book, talks of Napoleon crossing the river Niemen, with his Polish soldiers. The horrific story of the Polish soldiers, all keen to do their heroic swim, so they can look good in front of Napoleon, to me, only backs up the influence that one man can, in fact, have on the lives of others.
But anyway . . .
You can also read it from the point of view that it’s quite a ruthless army that is heading to take over Moscow, and that things are going to be a lot more desperate than they were six years ago . . .