The noble art of being a Military Scoundrel

We've all met them or know of them from history: the cad, the bounder, the ebsolute sharrr etc.

And then those closer to the darker side - criminals, the odd murderer or two - though usually with a reasonable military history before they turned to the bad.

Some loose rules, maybe?

1. Obvious ones: a certain Obergefreiter A Hitler, Mrs Stalin's vicious son, etc are really in a class of their own and have no place here.

2. Purely fictional characters: Sharpe, GMF's immortal Flashman and that man McAuslan are out.

. . . other than that, I think that's pretty much it, though I may impose further restrictions if you don't make me laugh.

To begin with (and I immediately fall foul of my own Rule 1) one Idi Amin Dada Oumee.

As many will be aware, his military career began in the King's African Rifles, where he was initially employed as a cook. By all accounts he was a reasonable and effective soldier, so much so that he was commissioned Lieutenant into the KAR. Allegedly, when being briefed on how to conduct himself as a newly minted officer by the Bn 2i/c*, he was told to get the duty driver to take him down town and open a bank account for the purpose of salary payments.

Off he trots to do as he is bidden.

2 weeks later, the 2i/c requests the future FM Idi Amin Dada to attend his desk in fairly short order, where the 2i/c instructs him to note that, whilst he may have a newly-issued cheque book, this does not mean that he has sufficient funds to cover his cheque issues, a fiscal blind spot that he never properly acknowledged.

Lt Col Arapeta Marukitepua Pitapitanuiarangi Awatere DSO MC (1910 - 1976). A North Island (East Coast) Maori, he was a pre-War Territorial Force soldier and enlisted immediately on the outbreak of WWII. He was a brave a competent soldier who, by war's end, was a Lt Col in command of the 28th Maori Bn, having been awarded the DSO and MC.

But, it seems, there were demons inside him - during service in Italy, there were constant rumours of German PoWs 'disappearing' on the route back from the front line to the cages.

His later years ended badly: diagnosed with diabetes, he began an affair with a Maori woman who left him for another. Awatere went to their shared house believing that she was in danger and a scuffle ensued. The result was that the new boyfriend ended up un the floor with Awatere's knife sticking out of him.

Awatere was convicted and sentenced to life in prison. He died, suddenly, on 6 March 1976.

*and I heard this as a young man from the chap himself
 
Neville Heath

Neville Heath. All round cad, bounder and lady killer. Met a well deserved fate on the gallows after a prearranged appointment with Albert Pierrepoint in 1946.

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ste14w

MIA
Leslie Grantham.
Loveable rogue Dirty Den in Eastenders...convicted murderer whilst serving in the Royal Fusiliers.

celebrity-killers-resized-leslie-grantham.jpg
 
Anybody (almost anybody) who served in 1KINGS, 1QLR or 1RHF.
 
Yeah, I imagine that was ripped off fairly rapidly not long after this pic was taken.

Look on the bright side, at least as the defendent in a court martial for murder, he didn't have to waste hours whitening his belt, brushing his beret, and doing whatever Fusiliers do to their hackles.

The Provost Sergeant was clearly a bit slack when it came to haircuts though...
 

ste14w

MIA
Is the RP wearing a woolen glove?
Prosthetic hand?
Looks very odd...
It doesn't look like any kind of issued glove that I'm aware of.
Although if it was a prosthetic hand, I'm sure our Den, being the cheeky chappie that he was, would have no problem yanking it and the handcuff off before legging it.
 

ste14w

MIA
Look on the bright side, at least as the defendent in a court martial for murder, he didn't have to waste hours whitening his belt, brushing his beret, and doing whatever Fusiliers do to their hackles.

The Provost Sergeant was clearly a bit slack when it came to haircuts though...
The one at the back of the Land Rover didn't seem to be too slack with the pies.
 
It doesn't look like any kind of issued glove that I'm aware of.
Although if it was a prosthetic hand, I'm sure our Den, being the cheeky chappie that he was, would have no problem yanking it and the handcuff off before legging it.
From the early 1950s such white woolen gloves were worn by Line Regiments with No1 Dress, from the early 1960s No2 Dress ceremonial....and, on occasion, by Regimental Policemen... as worn by Grantham's RP escort.
 
Captain Robert Maxwell MC
(The second photograph caused more than a slight stir of consternation in RHQ when it first appeared!)
 

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