Hola. Hope you are well.
I struggle a bit with factual books but occasionally I dip into one. The other week I read some of Hope and Glory by Stuart Maconie.
There’s a section in the book where he writes about the Battle of the Somme, where more than 19 000 British Soldiers died on the first day alone. One soldier who survived the Somme was William Towers, but in so doing, lost a leg. On his return to England, he recalls how a man in the street looked him up and down and said, “I suppose you’ll be living off other people’s generosity for the rest of your life”.
A few pages later, Maconie references how immediately after the end of the First World War, the ‘wounded and damaged men’ were having trouble surviving financially and without jobs and with no welfare system, many ex soldiers were forced to beg on the street.
In 2013, it was revealed that 9000 ex soldiers were homeless (they also made up 10% of the prison population). In 2014 Evgeny Lebedev, owner of The Independent and London Evening Standard, set up a charity Homeless Veterans to help those ex serviceman that have fallen on hard times.
Whatever you think of war and military intervention, (it should be the very last option) does it not seem odd that we are relying on charity to help people who have fought in the name of this country? You might think the government would have some provisions in place to help them.
Apparently not because in Nov 2014 David Cameron, gave his backing to the charity. Unless I’m mistaken he’s the Prime Minister, is he not in a position to do more than merely backing a charity. After all some of these ex service people will have gone into conflict on his say so.
Til next time, be nice to each other.
If you have time, have a listen to my comedy podcast. Cheers