In World War I's third year, the erudite French general Broulard wants his men to seize the "Ant Hill" from the Germans. General Mireau says he will sacrifice his own men to heighten his reputation. Colonel Dax leads the charge, but the results are surprisingly bad. After that, Mireau convinces himself that the loss of "Ant Hill" was due to cowardice of his men, and decides to have three of the men be executed as an example. Colonel Dax, taking a role of a defense attorney, decides to defend the three men.