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"Conshies"
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Richie
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Joined: 21 Dec 2013
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Location: South Wales

PostPosted: Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:52 pm    Post subject:  Reply with quote

Jim wrote:
Yet isn't the right to say "No, I do not support war and I will do nothing to aid it" a perfectly acceptable position, whether one agrees with it or not?


In a war that has not seen the mobilsation of an entire nation state yes.

The Falklands, Iraq, Afgan wars, all of these wars it has (certainly the last two) been perfectly acceptable for people against warfare of any sort to state that and have demos/marches etc in favour of peace.

WW1 was a time of national mobilsation, so no, there are jobs to do and if your religious/political beliefs are such that you feel you cannot or should not fight then, you should at least try and find some way to help, be that through essential work at home or the medical corps abroad, the "aint' my problem, I don't believe in killing" line, to me at least, seems a cop out, its an attempt to play the "I'm special" card whilst other people do make sacrifices.

WW1 & 2 are extreme examples of warfare in that they saw national mobilisations and saw much sacrifice, the CO's certainly appear to want to be treated special, to avoid having to make sacrifices and ironically suffered as a result, but I think that the extreme CO's, the ones who wished to not do anything, were in the wrong
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Jim
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 12:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm thinking of some of the Clydeside radicals in WWI, who refused to work on the shipyards for political, rather than religious reasons.
They were forced to go to work - by armed troops - and their leaders imprisoned (though popular resentment and strike action resulted in Lloyd George capitulating and letting them go.
Google "John McLean".
If a person's views are so opposite of the government (which he had no vote in electing),  are they not justified in refusing to aid that government in its' effort?
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Farmer Geddon
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 12:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Were the CO's rejecting fighting on religious grounds?

Or just because they didn't want to be killed?

There is overwhelming evidence that CO's kinda figured out that dying for King and Country meant an ignominious death.. It would have all a bit pointless to those behind the lines.. Death to those on the lines..
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Lexilogio
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 8:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the term hero depends on the reason for conscientious objection, and subsequent action. Otherwise I could argue that I was a co because I was too lazy to fight....

I think co is valid where the person undertakes other activity, such as medical treatment or stretcher bearing, then they are hero's. If a person is working hard on activities to keep the nation going, such as farming, then yes. Any activity deemed essential, qualifies.
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Shaker
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Farmer Geddon wrote:
Were the CO's rejecting fighting on religious grounds?

A great many of them, yes.
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Jim
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Agreed, manyy rejected war on religious grounds.
Others were pacifists due to moral or political persuasion.
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Richie
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Location: South Wales

PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 12:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jim wrote:
I'm thinking of some of the Clydeside radicals in WWI, who refused to work on the shipyards for political, rather than religious reasons.
They were forced to go to work - by armed troops - and their leaders imprisoned (though popular resentment and strike action resulted in Lloyd George capitulating and letting them go.
Google "John McLean".
If a person's views are so opposite of the government (which he had no vote in electing),  are they not justified in refusing to aid that government in its' effort?


I have great sympathy with that. Having no vote makes someone powerless in terms of democracy (something which still afflicts the UK today in a different form), but I stand by the 'total war' aspect.

In a situation where the war wasn't absolute and there being no general conscription then they are free to exercise their distaste for a government sponsered event, but again, we are still talking about a total war that saw the entire population engaged in some way with the effort.

If not in a protected trade then they should be engaged in some fashion, even if it is in a non-combatant role
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Jim
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The problem, though, is that many non-combattant roles were seen as bolstering the war effort, and many COs were absolutely opposed to war and supporting it in any way, shape or form.
Some, such as those conscripted or volunteered to go down the mines or work on farms.
But what of those who saw coal as aiding the production of munitions?
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cyberman
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Farmer Geddon wrote:


There is overwhelming evidence that CO's kinda figured out that dying for King and Country meant an ignominious death.. .



(a) What evidence is that, then?
(b) Knowing that there was a risk of death doesn't mean that that was their reason for refusing to fight, does it?
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Ketty
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Location: Walking the narrow path, singing merrily and living Victoriously

PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hope that never again are our young men conscripted to fight wars that are none of their doing, and there is no need for others to conscientiously object to going to war.

This is George Michael haunting cover of Don McLean's 'The Grave':


Link



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