…to the Prime Minister, David Lloyd George about the Government’s policy on Russia.
The War Secretary confirmed that the Prime Minister had: “decided that Colonel John Ward and the two British battalions at Omsk are to be withdrawn”. One week later, he sent Major Leonard Vining and Warrant Officer Emerson MacMillan to Siberia on the SS Stentor.
Little did he know that they would be captured by the Red Army and not released from their Moscow prisons until November 1920.
Read about their amazing story in Churchill’s Abandoned Prisoners: The British Soldiers Deceived in the Russian Civil War, available from Waterstones and independent bookshops later this month.
The Ivanovsky monastery in Moscow where the British were imprisoned in July 1920
Emerson MacMillan and Dallas Ireland were caught in the middle of the tumultuous crowds that gathered at Mansion House in Dublin, when the new Members of Parliament declared independence for Ireland.
Read about their extraordinary love story that provides the backdrop to Churchill’s Abandoned Prisoners, available from Casemate UK.
“All the Services’ charities are precious, but I am especially full of admiration for the work of Combat Stress and am tremendously honoured to be invited to join the list of distinguished speakers who have stood at this lectern…
Reflecting on reconciliation, everyone in the audience who supports veteran’s charities will be acutely aware not only of some of the challenges of care, but also the wider issues of human resilience. I know as we approach the Centenary of the Armistice many people’s thoughts turn to the symbolic poppy, but I hope that you will also remember the leading veteran’s mental health charity, which is particularly busy in the run up to Christmas.”
I was delighted to meet the generous sponsor of the event at RUSI, Hilary Meredith and the Chief Executive of Combat Stress, Sue Freeth: