Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A more civilized way to war....perhaps

Greeting from the President. For men of a certain age, those words struck fear in their hearts. Most served with distinction, many jimmied the system through various deferments to avoid service, some fled. Times were not always thus.

I trade obits from the Telegraph with several friends when something catches our eye. For some its military heroes, others explorers, musicians or lady's of questionable character.

Today's missive detailed the career of British Vice Admiral Sir Louis Le Bailly.

According to the Telegraph: "Admiral Le Bailly, who has died aged 95, was an iconoclastic naval officer and Director General Intelligence from 1972 to 1975, responsible at the height of the Cold War for the collection (from a wide variety of overt and covert sources) of information on the enemy, principally the Soviet Union and its allies."

What struck me most interesting, as you read further is the following description of how he happened to join the King's navy.

"Louis Edward Stewart Holland Le Bailly was born on July 18 1915, the son of an engineer in the Royal Naval Air Service. As a boy Louis and a cousin bought £5 tickets at Victoria station to take them to Germany and Austria, where they went mountain-climbing. His early impressions of Germany were favourable, as he noted its jolly Hitler Youth and clean streets that were a contrast to the slums and squalor of home.

His summons to join the Navy was delivered via a telegram from Gieves, the naval tailors, to a ski resort in Austria in 1928, and he joined Dartmouth in the Drake term."

I've heard of men changing tailors to avoiding paying the old ones bills, but how do you dodge a summons like this?


1 comment:

Dutch Uncle said...

All those young Americans (more than 58 thousand) who died in Vietnam for nothing. And now what do we have? Buy USA in Vietnam!