In Memory of Harry Patch - the Last Tommy, who sadly passed away on 25/07/2009 aged 111
Harry Patch at 109
Britain's last fighting Tommy, he broke his decades-long silence
on the first world war to describe it as
'legalised mass murder'
Christopher Hawtree - Guardian 25/07/2009
“Only when he reached 100 could he look back.”
“Patch had always felt, he wrote in The Last Fighting Tommy, that
"politicians who took us to war should have been given the guns and told to settle their differences themselves,
instead of organising nothing better than legalised mass murder"
“The five acts of Harry Patch”
Harry Patch, Britain's last surviving soldier of the Great War, dies at 111
Martin Rowson - Guardian 26/07/2009
The Great War is the key to remembrance
As the final veterans pass on, we must not forget what led to the carnage of the battlefields
Mary Warnock - Guardian 09/11/2008
‘The First World War was a turning point in our perception of war. Before that, war had been heroic, picturesque, possibly glorious. Even incompetent disasters, such as Glencoe or the Charge of the Light Brigade, were seen partly as romantic, the story of a few brave and obedient men.
But the scale of the incompetence and the horror of trench warfare, the appalling number of people who inevitably died, and were knowingly sent to die, even when victory was certain, all these things changed the concept of war.’
One of the few people to publicly echo Harry’s feelings I suspect.
There was another line in this piece......................
‘We should commemorate it with shame and fear as much as with admiration and gratitude. The point of historical awareness is to recognise that human beings are capable of so much inhumanity, not only in the past, but now and always.’