In this book Babington tells the story of the many young soldiers executed by the British army during the First World War. The facts and stories behind each case are provided, as well as background information about the war. Many of the cases are chilling and tragic, and leave the reader wondering how he would have behaved in the circumstances. Overall, I feel this book has only two significant drawbacks. While interesting and informative, this book fails to put the debate about military capital punishment into a proper philosophical or intellectual framework. The author seems to assume that his readers will all share his disgust with the executions. But isn't there a place for such punishments during wartime? Are not disobedience, cowardice and desertion serious offenses? The system was certainly out of hand in the WWI army, but that does not mean that capital punishment must be done away with entirely. Of course, a society that finds it innapropriate to exclude gays from the military can hardly be expected to favor executions. I was also troubled by Babington's failure to tell us more about the punishments served out in other armies. As it is, he leaves this to a paragraph or two at the end of the book. Understandably he could not have covered this mater in too much detail, but greater effort could have been made to compare and contrast the situation in France and Germany with that of Great Britain. But these are fairly minor flaws. This is a good book about those unfortunate souls who lost their lives mostly for the sake of example.