Paint – A Boy Soldier’s Journey
Simon Hutt always wanted to join the Army. In 1989, aged 16, he enlisted in the Royal Artillery and after a years basic training was posted to Germany as a regular soldier. Within months his unit was posted to the Middle East to take part in the first Gulf War… Simon was only 17. The devastation and destruction left a big impression and on his return he wondered why the Western World could mobilise its forces to fight for Kuwait, but not the likes of Bosnia or Rwanda. Determined to make a difference, Simon goes Absent Without Leave and travels to the former Yugoslavia to join the Bosnian Croat Army. Fighting for people instead of oil… but the scars of war are not only physical.
Life on a Target: A French Volunteer in the Croatian War of Independence
Gaston Besson and Marc Charuel
In their war narrative, the authors speak of the foreign volunteers in the Croatian War of Independence: of men who came from a different world, culture, and environment. Of the brave people (not mercenaries), who came to Croatia and who fought against a far superior enemy for the freedom and the independence of Croatian people. Mostly because, as they have said, by coming to Croatia they were able to see for themselves that they were standing on the side of good, on the side of the victim.
War and Beer
Watching the war unfold in Croatia on TV, Steve Gaunt felt complelled to take an activist role. So with no military experience at all, he packed himself off for the front as a volunteer soldier. It was the beginning of an odyssey through which he evolved into a seasoned soldier, a war invalid, and a professional photographer. During the war years, Steve Gaunt kept a diary which he dubbed War and Beer.
Steve Haydock joined the British Army in 1972 aged 15, joining the lnfantry Junior Leaders Battalion, based in Oswestry, Shropshire. On his 18th birthday he arrived in Northern lreland to begin the first of his three tours of duty in the province, with the 1st Battalion of The Queens Lancashire Regiment. He served nine years with the QLR from Northern Ireland to Cyprus to Ghana before becoming a civilian in the mid 1980’s. In 1992, after seeing the war unfold in Yugoslavia he left England to join the Croatian Army, to use his experience and skills to help the Croats fight to defend the country and win freedom from the Serbian aggressor. This is his story…