Shot by firing squad, often as an example in front of their fellow soldiers, these disgraced, so-called cowards are now largely seen as traumatised victims of the horror of war.
It was a time of female munitions workers, welders and engineers. As the commemoration of the first world war centenary nears, Kate Adie says we should remember them
The BBC's Jeremy Paxman has joined the revisionist pack with publication of Great Britain's Great War. His arguments are ignorant, shallow, and childish, argues First World War archaeologist Neil Faulkner.
David Cameron's commemoration will present the first world war as something glorious and part of our national heritage, when it isn't: it was a total disaster that was unnecessary and destroyed a generation
Attempts to hijack the commemorations must be contested every step of the way. Remember the suffering of the soldiers, says Seumas Milne, rather than the cowards who sent them to die.
Lindsey German says if you read one book on the first world war make sure it is this readable and gripping account of the prelude to war, and the political and military decisions which accompanied it.
Coope Boyes and Simpson are angry and cynical: "Politicians will wave flags. It's easy to get into the pomp and glory of it, but we have to say what happened and why."
Let’s be honest, says David Berry, the first world war is a global canvas of arrogance, brutality and stupidity that puts other wars—before or since—in the shade.