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The Men I Killed

Just before the outbreak of the Second World War, Crozier wrote these personal reflections on the First.

Published in 1937, Crozier’s ‘true confessions’ argue that if England were to go to war again, it would bring about the end of civilisation.

One of several controversial books authored by Crozier, The Men I Killed draws on his own military experiences to paint a brutal picture of war.

In depicting the horrors of life in the trenches, he focuses in particular on the pressure during the Great War for an officer at the front to ‘hold the line’ at all costs – even when this meant shooting his own men to keep them from fleeing.

This, Crozier writes, comes as a result of the need for ‘justice’ to be upheld through Force: the only way to keep a man from using his revolver and shooting, in the name of justice, is to disarm him.

Disarmament forms a key branch of the plan Crozier outlines for achieving a global peace.

Aircraft, which he writes is an evil invention that dramatically changed the nature of warfare due to its inability to be stopped and its threat to women, children, and other innocents.

Crozier also forcefully argues that as long as the Church continues to pervert Christ’s teachings through the support of warfare, and the assertion that God is on England’s side when she goes into battle, that true peace and disarmament are impossible to achieve.

The Men I Killed is a representation of a former military officer’s understanding of war and the urgent need for pacifism in the face of another rapidly approaching world war.

Brigadier General Frank Percy Crozier C.B. C.M.G. D.S.O. (1879-1937) was a British Army officer. He served in the Boer War, the First World War, the Lithuanian Wars of Independence and finally in Ireland. During this last posting he became disillusioned with the British regime and subsequently became a pacifist, writing a number of controversial books.

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