Sunny evening, 6 June 2018

Monday, 14 February 2011

Monday 14 February

Happy Valentines Day to all.

We started fair, but ended wet today. Went out for an amble around the harbour, but as I turned onto North Beach Street, a leaden grey sky and an icy blast heralded the onset of a period of rain.

Today, I looked into the sad stories of the soldiers from the First World War who were executed under the Army Act, for military misdeeds. These included desertion, abandoning the post, cast away of arms - and malingering. It has taken a very, very long time before it was recognised that most of the 306 British soldiers shot at dawn were casualties and victims of the war, as much as the other hundreds of thousands who died between 1914 and 1921. The Canadians recognised this in 2001, the British followed suit in 2006.

There are no men from Lewis who are recognised as having suffered this fate. In this post on my Pentland Road blog, I tell the story of at least one Lewisman who was executed. 

This is the memorial, in Alrewas, England, for those who were shot at dawn.


  1. I read Somme not too long ago, forget the author, and there was a lot of punishment of the shell shocked soldier, they really went after any kind of attempt to stop going to the front calling it malingering. That war was so terrible because of the human life lost, that it seems so bad now they were not able to accept a soldier so impaired from battle he could not go any more!
    I can see the photograph header on my computer. New chrome google browser maybe. I am glad. I always look forward to seeing your header photos.

  2. Thank God we have more enlightened views these days. Many were shot as an "example" to other troops what would happen to them. However, it was a terrible thing and although they have now been pardoned so to speak it does nothing to ease the grief of families whose relatives met such an end.