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Malevon
08-01-2008, 05:40
I just read the Imperial Infantryman's Uplifting Primer, and was highly entertained. The whole section analyzing the Xenos threat is downplaying all the strengths of the Xenos. It infers that although orks may look muscular, they have less muscle density and are therefore actually much weaker than the average man. There is a picture of a Genestealer with the "puny claws" and "short limbs," while the text beside it describes Genestealers and slow, sluggish and easily sent into a panic. The collected captions on the depictions of Eldar goes something like this:

ELDAR TECHNOLOGY IS ANTIQUATED -- ELDAR CRAFTSMANSHIP IS INFERIOR TO OUR OWN -- THE ELDAR ARE WEAK AND IMPURE -- ELDAR WARRIORS ARE COWARDS! -- THE ELDAR PREFER TO ATTACK FROM AFAR
The tau are depicted as nearly blind and easily frightened by fire or loud noises; it asserts that Pathfinders are the runts of the Fire Caste who desert at the first opportunity, and that Battlesuit armour can be easily dispatched with a lasgun. Vespids apparently can be tricked into revealing themselves by setting out a bowl of sweet liquids! These are just a few examples, but I think you get the idea.

This is all very well and good for morale, convincing the soldiers that the human is naturally the perfect being in the galaxy, and makes for a very entertaining read, but wouldn't this sort of backfire the first time a guardsman actually sees combat against one of these Xenos? When he first discovers that Genestealers are neither sluggish nor puny, that he cannot overpower an ork unarmed, and that he can't scare away the tau with a torch and a yell? Wouldn't this damage morale in the long run?

I realize it's just a book meant to be enjoyable, but this isn't the first time I've seen Imperial leadership trying to convince the public that Xenos are all weaklings and cowards. Thoughts?

Epicenter
08-01-2008, 06:34
It's very much WW1 and WW2 propaganda. If you read the kinds of stuff handed out and shown to the public in those world wars, in particular WW2 about the Japanese by the Allies, it's all very much like that. In fact, the Tau having a very "Japanese" feel to them to GW, the Tau section in the Primer is very much a wry bit of humor about that sort of thing - especially the not being able to see as well as whites and so on.

The Imperium want their troops in good morale. Hatred and contempt of their enemies is much more important than knowledge or facts - putting such resources into the hands of soldiers is just a recipe for trouble. This isn't a new concept - armies practice such "policing" of information right up the present day. Certainly IG veterans will be like, "That primer garbage? Throw it away" - but typically stuff like this is read by soldiers who've never seen combat as training manuals in basic training and on voyages to their first posting. Most soldiers rarely read such materials in the field. Since it also serves as a sort of holy text, troops probably wouldn't throw it away, but I'm betting once troops get into the field, the parts with the prayers would be well-thumbed through.

If the pattern is anything like WW1 and WW2, field officers would get materials about the enemy that is very different from that which the rank-and-file get, while still not entirely free of propaganda, would have a much more accurate assessment of enemy capacities and tactics. It would have been great if GW released the Uplifting Primer alongside a "Officer's Field Manual" so readers could contrast the two.

Malevon
08-01-2008, 06:39
Well there is the "For Officer's Eyes Only" section at the back. Earlier in the book it details the state of the art spacecraft of the Imperial Navy and how safe warp travel is and how navigators are never wrong, but in the back there is a section for officers (this primer having been issued to an officer apparently) with instructions to shoot any soldiers exhibiting certain symptoms in while warp travel.

They actually told Americans in WWII that the Japanese had inferior eyesight? That's kind of funny and disgusting at the same time.

Baltar
08-01-2008, 07:44
15 Hours shows that your average field trooper isn't stupid: after his first encounter with an alien, he pretty much knows that most of what is in the Primer is made up.

People in 40k are still people. They aren't as easily lied to or deceived as many people seem to believe.

The result is often disillusionment with the chain of command and the Imperium.

But the Imperium needs its lies, and in its own way, needs to believe its lies.

jma037
08-01-2008, 09:00
As a soldier. No one really believe what the brass tell you. The soldiers have their own believes and supersistions. trust me. As a new recruit. you will believe what the older soldier tell you, much more then what you read in a booklet. if you read it at all.

Burnthem
08-01-2008, 09:27
15 Hours shows that your average field trooper isn't stupid: after his first encounter with an alien, he pretty much knows that most of what is in the Primer is made up.

People in 40k are still people. They aren't as easily lied to or deceived as many people seem to believe.

The result is often disillusionment with the chain of command and the Imperium.

But the Imperium needs its lies, and in its own way, needs to believe its lies.

Although i agree with what you say, i suggest thats the last time you ever take anything from 15 Hours as canon and/or seriously :D

GundamMecha
08-01-2008, 10:03
Propaganda is often for the public at large rather than the soliders on the front.

If you look at WW2 propaganda say in the Soviet Union it created the image of the mighty red army and the strength of the USSR, even during the darkest days of Stalingrad the propaganda machine ran at full speed.

Propaganda is largely to foster the romantic idea of the army and army service and to give hope to the people, most of which will never see the enemies that the Imperium describe.

I see it that these primers would be given to grunts when they join to develop similar images and beliefs in the Imperial Guard.

Don't forget that your average guardsman is going to die a horrible death the moment that he discovers that the genestealer does not infact have puny claws. So wether he was lied to or not is irrelevant.

Baltar
08-01-2008, 11:20
Although i agree with what you say, i suggest thats the last time you ever take anything from 15 Hours as canon and/or seriously :D

I don't see why 15 Hours would be objectionable. It is BL, and therefore canon.

6M2
08-01-2008, 11:22
The please remember Imperial Guardsmen have a very short life expectancy. At least this way they feel like they have a chance. Although one wonders at the effect of propaganda on attrition.

"Hey look guys, Genestealers!"
"Wow, those claws are bigger than in the book."
SPLORCH!
"GRAWWWWW-OH-THE-PAIN-WHYYYYYYYY!?"

"Well I've read these Orks are quite weak..."
"I've read that too."
"I'm sure we can take them... FOR THE EMPEROR, CHARGE!"
SPLORCH!
"GRAWWWWW-OH-THE-PAIN-WHYYYYYYYY!?"

Yeah, lets face it, the Empire was not built on empowering its citizens with knowledge.

Tonberry
08-01-2008, 11:27
This is all very well and good for morale, convincing the soldiers that the human is naturally the perfect being in the galaxy, and makes for a very entertaining read, but wouldn't this sort of backfire the first time a guardsman actually sees combat against one of these Xenos? When he first discovers that Genestealers are neither sluggish nor puny, that he cannot overpower an ork unarmed, and that he can't scare away the tau with a torch and a yell? Wouldn't this damage morale in the long run?

As long as it boosts the Guardsmens morale enough for them to try and charge Genestealers and Orks, that's all that matters. When they realise they were lied to and are promptly ripped into small pieces...who's left to complain?

Quentin
08-01-2008, 12:48
Is it just me, or does anyone else think that perhaps the [Officers Only!] page was meant to be an in-universe "misprint"? The page itself is upside down.

I've loved reading both the Primer and the Munitorum Manual. Very informative, in it's own way, and quite humorous. An Officer's Field Manual would be a great addition to the manual "mini-series".

Zelnik
08-01-2008, 14:21
yeah the descriptions of the tau are hilarious.

"Hey frank, according to the manual, these xeno's can't see to well, we should be fine!"
"yeah, i-"
*FOOM*
"Hey frank, you know the sarge doesn't like us removing our heads before a battle."

imperial_scholar
08-01-2008, 14:36
I think if your couped up inside a star ship for months on end re-breathing the same air and generally have nothing to do... if you were literate you'd read the same stuff over and over again (especially if you think it would save your life). If you read something for months on end that said 'your going to die to tyrannid claws' or 'The Tau have expert shots' or 'Vespids like to ambush and are ferocious' you'd be pretty stressed before battle.

The reason why propaganda is released in such a way that its to simply 'raise spirits'. If you think this is going to be a cake walk... then you'll be very relaxed and sharp when you reach the battle field. Once you see the reality though; like others have said.... it's probably too late.

Burnthem
08-01-2008, 19:44
I don't see why 15 Hours would be objectionable. It is BL, and therefore canon.

No. No. No. No.

Just because its BL doesnt mean its anywhere near correct, alot of books seem to not have been proof-read at all, they're just churned out fast as possible to make a quick buck for GW (hence the term 'Mass Market Paperback', look on Amazon)

Even if 15 Hours was accurate, its such a poorly written book that anything from it should automatically be considered incorrect anyway :D

Mechanicus
08-01-2008, 19:54
Correct? That's up to you. But they are canon.

legio mortis
08-01-2008, 20:23
The please remember Imperial Guardsmen have a very short life expectancy. At least this way they feel like they have a chance. Although one wonders at the effect of propaganda on attrition.

Quite a common misconception. It really varies wherever they go.

As to the Primer, I doubt that the soldiers will beleive by the time they are in combat. The older soldiers would put them straight.

Progena
08-01-2008, 20:41
I especially liked the part where the Guardsmen are told to hold their breath, start swimming and wait for resque if case they're sucked into space.

The US Army actually made a training video during WW2 instructing recruits to keep on going if they heard a German MG42 machine Gun fire, because: "It might sound scary, but its bark is worse than its bite!". Of course the MG42 (direct predeccessor to the MG3 which is still in use today) was the fastest firing, most lethal and advanced machine gun employed in the war and could shred a man in seconds.

Propaganda is everywhere, not only in the 41st millenium.

CELS
08-01-2008, 20:51
The propaganda in the Imperial Infantryman's Uplifting Primer isn't meant to help the soldiers when they get to the frontline. It's meant to make it easier getting them to the frontline. It's easier to convince 100,000 Guardsmen to get in their Chimera and meet intergalactic monsters when they're told that the opposition will be light. By the time they realise just how deep they're standing in excrement, well... that's when their training should kick in. If not, well, then at least there's more Guardsmen where they came from :)

As for just ignoring the Primer and throwing it away; failure to produce it at the request of an Imperial officer is punishable by death. In other words; like it or not, you'd better keep that thing pretty damn close to your chest :D

legio mortis
08-01-2008, 21:02
As for just ignoring the Primer and throwing it away; failure to produce it at the request of an Imperial officer is punishable by death. In other words; like it or not, you'd better keep that thing pretty damn close to your chest :D
True, but the primer is full of seemingly beareaucratic nonsense and regulations. I wouldn't expect for half of the stuff in there to actually be inforced.

The Anarchist
08-01-2008, 21:15
I don't see why 15 Hours would be objectionable. It is BL, and therefore canon.

So you take the work of C. S Fricking Gotto as cannon, this is a SAD SAD day for GW :cries: lets please judge the work of each other on its merits, not the fact it was printed by BL.

As for Imperial propoganda, they couldn't exactly write the truth. i mean would read something like this;

Tau they're small three fingered blue guys, they can shoot the nose off your face at 500 meters, and thats not even their sharp shooters. they also have big suits, about as well armoured as a space marine, but better armed....

The Tyranids; these guys are all faster than a angry snake, armed with guns that fire bugs to eat you, and claws so sharpe they will slice you arm off if you get within 10 feet. on the bright side they come in many pretty colours, so just unleash the artist within.

Orks; the simple stuff; they are big, green and stronger than your average ogryn. the places to aim on these guys is...well just shoot them till you run out of ammo, and hope that it stays down. btw its never gaurnteed they will stay dead so hope you got lucky.

its not exactly uplifting stuff is it?

a good recruit will read all the stuff on weapon mantinance, chain of commands and the considered the rest prepackaged fire wood curtesy of the adeptus ministorum.

Shrapnel
08-01-2008, 21:22
True, but the primer is full of seemingly beareaucratic nonsense and regulations. I wouldn't expect for half of the stuff in there to actually be inforced.
You have been found guilty under article 712/45 "lack of respect toward sanctioned training materials".
You are sentenced to starvation for two weeks.

Adra
08-01-2008, 21:27
The fact is humanity needs these young boys and girls to get on their ships and die for their Emperor and thats the end of that. If it takes a lie to save mankind then so be it.

legio mortis
08-01-2008, 21:31
You have been found guilty under article 712/45 "lack of respect toward sanctioned training materials".
You are sentenced to starvation for two weeks.
Yes, but what commander would actually reinforce this? It's morale breaking stuff. In the fiction, there are numerous examples of these rules getting broken, yet nobody does anything about it. Really, much of this really just seems like hot air.

swordwind
08-01-2008, 21:44
Its more morale breaking for the troops to be wandering around doing their own thing. When you can sit down and discuss it in a committee, running up that hill under heavy fire and taking that bunker complex isn't such a good idea. A boltgun pressed against your skull is all the motivation you need to start running. Even a seemingly pointless rule is there for a reason.

The Anarchist
08-01-2008, 22:04
Yes, but what commander would actually reinforce this? It's morale breaking stuff. In the fiction, there are numerous examples of these rules getting broken, yet nobody does anything about it. Really, much of this really just seems like hot air.

from experience in the reala rmy you will always get over blowen (often younger officers) enforcing rules, no matter how stupid, so they can use their power. however a good officer, or more experienced officer normaly knows the rules that he can enforce, and the other rules he should enforce. theya re often very differnt things. in a universe like 40k, the nepotism and perchesed officer ranks in the services mean that many officers will feel little conection with their troops, and so be inclinded to sue their power if they want to.

DartzIRL
08-01-2008, 22:24
I believe there's a word for Emperor Bothering RAWer's in the 40k universe...

It's "Commissar"

Fortunately, most of the bad ones don't last much the first time they show their backs to their men in the front line.

The vast majority of the Imperial Guard would probably read it, and wonder why they were even having to fight such an inferior enemy, or why it would require three regiments to do so. If they don't, well, they make good cannon fodder them ones...

They're people, not idiots... If they get passed their first battles, they'll soon learn that the primer is really more 'Guidelines' than actual rules.

Rhamag
08-01-2008, 22:26
So you take the work of C. S Fricking Gotto as cannon, this is a SAD SAD day for GW :cries: lets please judge the work of each other on its merits, not the fact it was printed by BL.

15 Hours was not written by C S Goto. It is by Mitchell Scanlon. So I take it you haven't actually read it, but are qualified to comment on the content? Okay... And like the man above says, it does not matter in the slightest whether you like the book or not, it is published by GW and is therefore canon. And BL and GW have said this themselves. It doesn't matter if it contradicts previously published material. All can be truth, and all can be lies, or both. At the same time. Whatever.

Khaine's Messenger
08-01-2008, 23:29
I don't see why 15 Hours would be objectionable.

Nor do I. Quite a lot of 40k fiction, going back for years before Fifteen Hours was even a twinkle in its author's word processor, covers pretty much the same territory, stark pessimism and all, and some of those same "tactics" would be used even when the Imperium was winning. The short story set in the same besieged city makes the local and interplanetary command elements look even more bizarrely insane, but there you are....

As for rules being broken? In Fifteen Hours, that was happening (if I recall correctly) because officers of line regiments generally died in action and got replaced by noncommissioned officers receiving field promotions. The only safe aristocrat officers were the ones staying very far away from their own men.

As to the IIUP? Power of positive thinking. :D

Londinium
08-01-2008, 23:35
Is it just me, or does anyone else think that perhaps the [Officers Only!] page was meant to be an in-universe "misprint"? The page itself is upside down.

I've loved reading both the Primer and the Munitorum Manual. Very informative, in it's own way, and quite humorous. An Officer's Field Manual would be a great addition to the manual "mini-series".

Yeah it's meant to be in-universe, the idea being that your average guardsman wouldn't think about turning the book upside down to read that part, so the information will remain safe and classified for officers only.

Malevon
09-01-2008, 02:05
Does the Munitorum one have similar content, or is it all just technical stuff and procedure about Imperial equipment? That was the part of the primer I liked least...

I would agree with the school of thought that, like it or not, Black Library stuff is canon. It might not all be good, but it is official.

Chaplain of Chaos
09-01-2008, 02:38
I just love the idea of some guardsmen opening the book upside down one day and saying "Hey... wait a minute".

Drogmir
09-01-2008, 02:48
I found it funny that almost everything a guardsmen did he has to say litanies and prayers beforehand.

By the time he gets around to firing his weapon he'd be dead.

MadDogMike
09-01-2008, 04:20
I found it funny that almost everything a guardsmen did he has to say litanies and prayers beforehand.

By the time he gets around to firing his weapon he'd be dead.

The Litany of Stealth and particularly the Litany of Vacuum were great (especially being told to hold your breath and say the latter if sucked into space; the illustration was hillarious).

Just wish I could find the Photoshop I saw of that one section in the book labelled "Do not write in under penalty of death" that had a stick figure of a Commissar drawn in going "Blah, blah, blah" - and the rest of the page coated in blood :D.

Drogmir
09-01-2008, 05:34
The Litany of Stealth and particularly the Litany of Vacuum were great (especially being told to hold your breath and say the latter if sucked into space; the illustration was hillarious).

Just wish I could find the Photoshop I saw of that one section in the book labelled "Do not write in under penalty of death" that had a stick figure of a Commissar drawn in going "Blah, blah, blah" - and the rest of the page coated in blood :D.

Something like this? :D

http://img216.imageshack.us/img216/66/ig2km4.th.jpg (http://img216.imageshack.us/my.php?image=ig2km4.jpg)

Tehkonrad
09-01-2008, 06:43
I think that IIUP is actually a feindishly disguised piece of body armour

ztwee
09-01-2008, 08:34
I've read the IIUP a few month ago and I remember seeing Chaos Propaganda inside.

I can't remember the page, but I pretty sure the is a quote attributed to Huron Blackheart. The quote is written in the end of a page.

It's something about the strong being stronger alone.

Critias
09-01-2008, 11:33
Guys, enough with the "they're still people, they're not idiots" comments -- remember that, for the vast and overwhelming majority of the history of the species, people have been idiots. I include the present day, in fact, despite the tremendous strides towards freedom from ignorance the internet (as a for instance) has allowed humanity to take, look at how it's normally used (video gaming and porn).

People are stupid. The media really does still tell most people exactly what to think, and they eat it up and obey. A lie repeated often enough becomes truth. The bulk of humanity on this planet right now is every bit as stupid and impressionable as the IG in 40k would need to be to "fall for" the Primer (if it wasn't a tongue-in-cheek piece of satire, anyways).

I think you're giving the common citizen, and the common young Guardsman, in the 40k universe a little too much credit. Like some other posters have said, it wasn't all that long ago governments in real life were churning out the stuff the Uplifting Primer is poking fun at -- and it worked just fine! One of the recurring themes of the 40k universe is that folks are more backwards-thinking and trusting of authority than we are today... so why is it so hard to believe the less ridiculous sections of the Primer might be taken seriously?

In real life, it's when a nation is overtly challenged by dangerous enemies that people are the most likely to draw together, believe whatever they're spoon-fed, and do as they're told "for their own good." After a tragedy, stupid laws get passed (it's a recurring pattern in lawmaking). So imagine living in the 40k universe, where there are very, very, real monsters preying on humanity from without and within, capable of acts that make 9/11 or Columbine (or anything else that's caused knee-jerk legislation in recent American history) look like tea parties.

Yeah, people are gonna believe what they're told. And yeah, "what they're told" had better be some pretty good news. :)

CELS
09-01-2008, 12:23
Are you saying porn is stupid? :eyebrows:

Anyway, I agree with the basic sentiment of your post, Critias. One of the most typical biases that are apparent in Black Library novels, but much more often fan-written fiction, is the projection of personal ideals and experiences upon the characters in the fictional Warhammer 40,000 universe. Far too often, the characters are portrayed as white males who reject tyranny and oppression, believe in democracy and humanitarianism, reject zealous religion and aristocracy and basically taking sips of cafe au lait while reflecting on the possibility that maybe humanity isn't so wonderful after all. The heroes of the Imperium just aren't like us, people. It's a very different place and a very different time... ;)

SpaceLanceCorporal
09-01-2008, 12:36
It seems pretty obvious that if the "primer" described xenos as being nigh-invincible nightmares against which the standard Guardsmen doens't have a chance, it wouldn't be very "uplifting" now would it?

Iracundus
09-01-2008, 12:40
One of the enemy factions in Dark Heresy's scenarios (on their webpage) is what modern people might empathize with: the Logicians. Believing in the power of science and rationality over superstition, and original technological research and advancement, they want to restore mankind to the level of the Dark Age of Technology.

Of course in the scenario itself, the adversary is your stereotypical mad scientist. However that doesn't actually mean the faction itself can't have more reasonable even enlightened sounding members.

However in the era of 40K, these 20th/21st century attitudes are monstrous and heretical. It is an age of faith and superstition, not science and rational understanding. It is an age where human blood, sweat, and muscle is used instead of relying on advanced machinery. "Research" is more treasure hunting and archaelogical digging rather than modern scientific research. This sort of non-modern worldview is what many people have trouble accepting or incorporating into their own personal fluff. While you might get some occasional liberal open minded people in the 40K universe, they are few, isolated, and likely keep very quiet in order to avoid attracting too much attention. The only ones likely to be able to make any sort of progress with such views are Recongregationist Inquisitors.

Axel
09-01-2008, 12:50
I don't see why 15 Hours would be objectionable. It is BL, and therefore canon.

15 Hours, just as the Uplifting Primer, should not be taken at face value :-)

Both are BL...

Hector
09-01-2008, 13:29
Does anyone remember that other propaganda machine during the Eye of Terror and Medusa campaigns, Inquisitor Radio? I seem to remember it had a confessional with a Cardinal.

As for the Primer, providing you were never asked to hand yours over, I bet it would be the best free toilet paper the Imperium had ever made.

Critias
09-01-2008, 14:31
I do apologize if I came off heavy-handed during my earlier post (I didn't mean to, but it was towards the end of my shift and I get a little grouchy by then) -- but it's a sticking point that some people, including Black Library authors, just can't seem to soak up.

40k is no sci fi.

It's the Dark Ages (and all the worst aspects of them), in space. ;)

Johnnyfrej
16-01-2008, 05:25
I just read the Imperial Infantryman's Uplifting Primer, and was highly entertained. The whole section analyzing the Xenos threat is downplaying all the strengths of the Xenos. It infers that although orks may look muscular, they have less muscle density and are therefore actually much weaker than the average man. There is a picture of a Genestealer with the "puny claws" and "short limbs," while the text beside it describes Genestealers and slow, sluggish and easily sent into a panic. The collected captions on the depictions of Eldar goes something like this:

The tau are depicted as nearly blind and easily frightened by fire or loud noises; it asserts that Pathfinders are the runts of the Fire Caste who desert at the first opportunity, and that Battlesuit armour can be easily dispatched with a lasgun. Vespids apparently can be tricked into revealing themselves by setting out a bowl of sweet liquids! These are just a few examples, but I think you get the idea.

This is all very well and good for morale, convincing the soldiers that the human is naturally the perfect being in the galaxy, and makes for a very entertaining read, but wouldn't this sort of backfire the first time a guardsman actually sees combat against one of these Xenos? When he first discovers that Genestealers are neither sluggish nor puny, that he cannot overpower an ork unarmed, and that he can't scare away the tau with a torch and a yell? Wouldn't this damage morale in the long run?

I realize it's just a book meant to be enjoyable, but this isn't the first time I've seen Imperial leadership trying to convince the public that Xenos are all weaklings and cowards. Thoughts?

You forgot the article where it says in case of hull breach on a ship you should hold your nose and try to swim back inside the spaceship and wait for rescue. Later on in the major's section it says never try to attempt a rescue because the odds of surviving are almost none.

Sidri
16-01-2008, 06:57
Your know - there was a saying (quite old one) - "there is no such thing as atheist in bunker"

It is great to think how are humans of 41 millenium stupid and superstitious... Try thinking the same under constant bombardment from things that should not exist and at the same time be aware of possible charge from that freaky giants in blood-soaked armour...

We should also remember the fact of faith - it is far more powerful than today... Pious and zealous fellow MAY be saved in deep space... There is a story how a guy survived a strike of plasma cannon (big one - from the ship)...

And besides even if top brass may send thousands to death they are still vulnerable - their enemies may remember one day that this great victory was not a victory at all - just a bloodbath...

And to aliens - propaganda just exaggerates and diminish several facts... And it needs to make guardsman to fight, to turn them into weapon... Those who survive long enough don't give a damn about this book (well except prayers may be) and have their own opinion on enemies. But for rookies it may have some value... So primer+stories of vets = more or less ready soldier...

Brother Siccarius
16-01-2008, 17:34
I just read the Imperial Infantryman's Uplifting Primer, and was highly entertained. The whole section analyzing the Xenos threat is downplaying all the strengths of the Xenos. It infers that although orks may look muscular, they have less muscle density and are therefore actually much weaker than the average man. There is a picture of a Genestealer with the "puny claws" and "short limbs," while the text beside it describes Genestealers and slow, sluggish and easily sent into a panic. The collected captions on the depictions of Eldar goes something like this:

The tau are depicted as nearly blind and easily frightened by fire or loud noises; it asserts that Pathfinders are the runts of the Fire Caste who desert at the first opportunity, and that Battlesuit armour can be easily dispatched with a lasgun. Vespids apparently can be tricked into revealing themselves by setting out a bowl of sweet liquids! These are just a few examples, but I think you get the idea.

This is all very well and good for morale, convincing the soldiers that the human is naturally the perfect being in the galaxy, and makes for a very entertaining read, but wouldn't this sort of backfire the first time a guardsman actually sees combat against one of these Xenos? When he first discovers that Genestealers are neither sluggish nor puny, that he cannot overpower an ork unarmed, and that he can't scare away the tau with a torch and a yell? Wouldn't this damage morale in the long run?

I realize it's just a book meant to be enjoyable, but this isn't the first time I've seen Imperial leadership trying to convince the public that Xenos are all weaklings and cowards. Thoughts?

The main point of the book is in the title, it's supposed to uplift the infantryman, not tell them the truth, you do that and they end up going batshite and revolting against the imperium.