Question everything

Ever since I realised that the Boer War is surrounded by a dense fog of myths (which are still eagerly and passionately believed by dense people), I have adopted the attitude of ‘question everything’ when it comes to history.

A few days ago, in the run-up to Remembrance Sunday, I was sent this picture on WhatsApp:

At first glance, it was – of course – very poignant. But then I looked at it again, and started to doubt the veracity of the photo(s), or, at least, the spin which had been put on them.

Though it would seem remarkable that both photos had been taken from exactly the same position, in the same weather conditions, and time of day / time of year as each other, that is obviously not impossible – if rather suspect. But when one notices that, in the four years that have allegedly passed, there has been no change whatsoever in the height or shape of the trees on the right-hand side of the photo (indicated below), it is clear that something is wrong.

Initially I wondered if both photos had perhaps been taken on the same afternoon (with one photo showing the whole battalion, and the other just showing the officers, for example), but then I spotted the problem of the shadows, also as indicated below:


The lower photo has quite clearly been (rather sloppily) photoshopped. This has been done by persons unknown, for the purpose, I imagine, of keeping alive the ‘Blackadder Goes Forth’ version of the Great War. The horrors suffered by our troops in that conflict are bad enough, without needing clumsy attempts at creating ‘fake history’ to make them even more ghoulish, or (more likely) to generate as many ‘likes’ as possible on Social Media.

What a shame that there are so many who, though professing a passion for history, actually have no interest in historical fact whatsoever, and who are only really driven by keeping their preferred myths alive and well.


  • Marc Posted November 19, 2022 6:32 am

    Well spotted Chris.

    Facts hold true. Myth is like story telling that is told differently each time it gets told.

    Photo editing history is pure evil.

    • Bulldog Posted November 19, 2022 5:08 pm

      Perhaps not quite ‘pure evil’, but certainly insidious in the extreme. Such a pity there are so many out there with agendas they are desperate to push.

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