Remembering The Men Who Said NO!

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  • #29199
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    VWVW

    The exact number of men who said ‘NO‘ and refused to be conscripted into the 1914 -18 war in Britain is unknown. Most records have been destroyed. Until recently, based on an estimate made in 1922, 16,000 men has been the generally accepted figure.

    These men and their supporters, often mothers, wives and girlfriends, came from all walks of life. Resting the siren voice of the military that ensnared hundreds of thousand of their compatriots their reasons for resisting varied as did the intensity of their belief and commitment to it. As a consequence and the vagrancy of the Tribunal system some spend years, often in solitary confinement, in goals around the country while at the other extreme many put on a uniform but refused to carry guns or undertake work that directly contributed to the war effort – calibrations not always easy to achieve. In between men struggled to explain to themselves as much as to others the meaning of the extraordinary situation they found themselves in. To be trained to kill is surely extraordinary enough but then to be ordered by force of law to sail across the channel and kill total strangers is surely even more incredible. Perhaps more extraordinary is that so many succumbed to taking part in this massacre. The states coersive power and men’s obedience to it are still urgent qustions of our time.

    Our aim here is to record aspects of these men’s lives and contribute to a better understanding of the resistance and objections to that war. Just as importantly we want to mark the stand these men took and remember the courage it took to stand against the crown in a time of war. A similar courage is required of us today as militarisation, the very thing the war (The War To End All Wars) was ostensibly fought against, is growing and creeping into civilian society.

    Never trust anybody who is too sophisticated to own a rubber chicken.

    #29201
    Forum Admin
    anticapitalistaanticapitalista

    Thanks for this post VM.

    The hypocrisy of generals, politicians and royalty presenting themselves as peacemakers sickens me.

    Philosophers have interpreted the world in many ways; the point is to change it.

    #29202
    Member
    AvatarNoman01

    Couldn’t agree with you more, if we put as much effort into helping each other as we do fighting with each other we would truly have a better world.

    #29205
    Member
    VWVW

    The hypocrisy of generals, politicians and royalty presenting themselves as peacemakers sickens me.

    Me too, after all who created the first concentration camps? Perfidious Albion, that’s who!

    A followup article “The forgotten story of Remembrance Day”

    James Cox, president of the International Union of Ex-Service Men, said at the time: ‘The whole thing is a mockery, and it is sheer hypocrisy to ask the discharged men to take part in what is officially termed “Joy Day”, while the widows and dependents of his fallen comrades are housed in hovels and exist in a state of semi-starvation.’

    Of course, back then, at least they had hovels, which can’t always be said for 21st century Britain

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by VW.
    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by VW.

    Never trust anybody who is too sophisticated to own a rubber chicken.

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