Why the UK government wants us to ignore the real history of World War One
Historian Neil Faulkner, author of the pamphlet No Glory: The Real History of Word War One, explains how the UK government wants us to commemorate the centenary of the first world war by ignoring its real history.
Historian Neil Faulkner speaking at a meeting organised by Bristol Radical History Group and Bristol Stop the War Coalition.
Bristol Stop the War's Jeremy Clarke reports
On 26 March 2014, 100 people came to the public meeting organised by Remembering The Real World War 1 – Bristol's campaign to commemorate the real first world war in the year of its centenary.
They heard historian Neil Faulkner explain how the government wants us to commemorate the centenary of WW1 by ignoring the real history of the war.
Rather than a 'just' war fought to 'uphold democracy' it was a conflict started and conducted by the rich and powerful on all sides to protect their empires.
The price in death and destruction was paid by ordinary people. The war ended not because of conclusive victories on the battlefields but because governments were unable to persuade people to continue fighting. Revolutions in Russia and Germany were key events in bringing about the end of the war, along with mutinies and disaffection in all armed forces.
Local documentary film maker Colin Thomas, showed clips of films he had made in the 1970's, including interviews with conscientious objectors and Harry Patch. Colin also explained some of the stories that have been unearthed about the war in Bristol – showing the wide range of responses to the war at the time
Roger Bull of the Bristol Radical History Group explained the Remembering The Real World War 1 campaign in Bristol and encouraged people to get involved. There was a lively discussion afterwards.
A video of the whole meeting can be viewed here