Originally posted 2017-05-22 10:50:22. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
May 22nd 1917 – British Government Prepares to “Counter-Attack the Pacifist Movement”
Pictured – A American Life cartoon mocks pacifists, who are drawn as dumpy and feeble compared to the masculine soldier.
Anti-war feeling was spreading in 1917, not only in Russia, but also in France, where soldiers mutinied against pointless attacks. The British government prepared to pre-emptively strike at its own pacifist movement, as the Cabinet agreed on a “counter-attack” on May 22. Groups like the Quakers refused to enlist in the army, although some agreed to alternative service, such as being a stretcher-bearer. Many on the British left, including women’s groups and the philosopher Bertrand Russell, also refused war service. The government answered by setting long prison sentences for men who refused to enlist.