|Forum Home > The Firing Squad. > The Unforgiven.|
Not surprisingly, the subject has raised a few comments. There are many out there who, like me, had the opportunity of spending many years with their grandparents, and listening to the stories of the Great War. Some of them were unpleasent, and rarely talked about, others however, were. The main seam of opinion, was the shame deserters and cowards bought to the Regiment, tainting the hard won battle honours with a stain that time could never erase. Lord knows what many would be thinking today, given that in 2006, these men were pardoned for their sins, and now rest among the true fallen warriors of battle. Warriors, I have been reminded, who fell facing the enemy, not skulking behind the lines or hiding in the hedgerows. Warriors, who lie in the many scattered Military Cemeteries across the fields of comflict. Warriors, who lie side by side with their comrades, as the brave who perished have always done. Warriors, who now have to share a last resting place with those who refused to do a duty they had sworn to. Most who read this, will have someone in their family, who sacrificed his life for freedom. There are today, 306 commemorative stakes at the Nation Memorial to these men, and although almost a hundred years have passed, there are many who still believe they would have been better forgotten. Unless someone can convince me otherwise, and my family have a relatives name carved into the Menin Gate Memorial, I have to agree.
Oh, and I will take the opportunaty to dispel a Myth someone has raised about the age of the supposedly youngest to be shot. Abraham Beviston has been listed, and quoted many times as being just 16 years old when he was executed for desertion in March,1916. For the record, he was born in Poland, sometime around 1896, his family moving to England some time before 1911. That makes him 20 years old at least when he faced a firing squad. Which of course puts a slightly different light on the subject.
A wonderful thing is work, I could watch it all day. ( See my Blog entry )
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