British Soldiers Are Coming Home in PiecesPublished October, 2007
PHOTOS AND TEXT BY STUART GRIFFITHS
Read the rest at Vice Magazine: SHREDDED BY WAR - British Soldiers Are Coming Home in Pieces - Vice Magazine
“When I joined the British Army I respected the Ministry of Defense. I thought that it was their duty to support you through thick and thin. But when you’re at the parade they have for graduation from training and they say, ‘Not only is your son part of our family, you’re all part of our family now,’ it’s bollocks—total shit. As soon as something like what happened to me occurs, they toss you aside like a number.
Now here’s the really hilarious part: Andy’s tank had come under fire from allied troops. This incident was caused by what was described in the inquiry as a “catalog of errors.” The laws of combat immunity protect the identities of those responsible for the attack, so nobody will be charged. In fact, Andy has heard rumors that since the incident, crew members of the tank that fired on him have been promoted.
“There was a little girl about eight or nine. Her family had died. We were trying to do a nice thing by giving her water and bits of chocolate. One day we spotted a militia hanging her in an alleyway and we had to make the decision whether to go in and save her—which would have led to a riot and many more deaths—or just allow one person to die.” In the end, she was hanged.
At the time Selly Oak were not prepared for as many casualties as it was getting. One of my main problems there was being on the same ward as civilians. Civvies are the last people you want to see after something like what happened to me.”