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World War I, 1914-1918
Río Gallegos, Sample News Item


Is there no shame in you, what are you to answer to your children in the years to come when they ask you [what you] did in the great war? Will you own up to them that you were a coward, or tell them a lie and leave it to the children of those who did their bit for KING AND COUNTRY to tell your children that you are a liar as well as a coward? Will your children be like you, degenerates? We will hope not, but through the saving grace of their mothers they may turn out better than their Fathers.

I have not the slightest doubt that if any of you get into trouble with the Government there, your first idea would be to invoke the British Consul to defend you. But you should be treated as Renegades, outlawed in fact, and not be allowed to return to Great Britain or any of its Dependencies. Don't run away with the idea that any person admires you. On the contrary every day I hear those of other Nationalities sneering at you. They are more diplomatic than I am, they don't say it to your face, but don't forget they are saying it all the same.

We all know that every Britisher cannot go home, that British interests must be represented in this country, but, leaving out the halt, the lame and the blind, and the indispensables, there are still 50% who, if they had the faintest spark of Patriotism in their hearts should go home and fight for the country that bred them. But I am afraid I am like the man crying in the wilderness, THE SHIRKERS DON'T WANT TO HEAR ME. 

William Dickie

[Text transcribed from clipping; name of newspaper and publication date unknown.
The writer's eldest son Jack was killed in France in 1917 (see family bio). ]

Thanks: Pablo Beecher (VIII-2008)
Last updated: 31-III-2016