Professor leads Remembrance research
13 November 2017
Professor Ian Beckett, of the School of History, has completed a round of 16 radio interviews for local stations across the country following research he undertook for the military charity, Forces Net.
The new website www.forces.net/remembrance has an interactive map with additional material showing every conflict in which British servicemen and women have served since 1914 and the cost in lives.
The aim is to inform and educate the public about British participation in conflicts, peacekeeping missions and deployments from such well known conflicts as Afghanistan to those long forgotten such as military supervision of the plebiscite in Upper Silesia in 1921.
The research was accompanied by a survey. It revealed that 92% of those asked did not know how many members of the British armed forces had died in wars and conflicts since 1914 [1,088,879], 85% were not aware of more than half of those conflicts in which the armed forces had been involved since 1945 , and more than a third were unaware of any of current conflicts in which British forces were involved.
Depending upon region, between 83% and 91% did not know how many members of the armed forces had died on active service since 1945 [7.048]. An astonishing 56% of those aged 18-24 were not aware that British armed forces had participated in the Second World War!
Professor Beckett, Professor of Military History at Kent, said: ‘There is understandable emphasis upon the commemoration of the two world wars with the ongoing centenary of the Great war and the 75th anniversary of the Second World War. The public is also aware of recent conflicts such as Iraq and Afghanistan.The significance and value pf the Remembrance campaign is that it reminds us of those other occasions on which service personnel have made the ultimate sacrifice.’