WWI

Thousands Of Jewish Soldiers Killed In WWI Commemorated

55,000 British Jews volunteered in all services, out of a small community population of 300,000...

AJEX, The Jewish Military Association UK, held its annual Ceremony of Remembrance and Parade at the Cenotaph today.

The event recognises Jewish service to Crown and Country during the First World War. 

Around 55,000 British Jews volunteered in all services, out of a small community population of just 300,000 Jews. 

A further 35,000 Jews from Palestine and the British Empire also served and the Royal Fusiliers formed five Jewish battalions, known as the Judeans. 

Many Americans joined the Judeans to serve with their fellow Jews, with one of the battalions being formed mainly from Americans and Canadians.

Five British Jews were also awarded the Victoria Cross. 

One of the veterans present was 102-year-old Lieutenant Colonel Mordaunt Cohen who received an MBE from the queen earlier this year.

He said: "I am proud of the Jewish contribution to mankind and the world.

"We strive to see that our efforts and the efforts of our comrades are not forgotten and are continually remembered."

The Jewish Military Association UK

Rabbi Simon Taylor, Reservist Chaplain in the British Army and grandson to Lt Col Maudaunt, he said that the event was the first time his grandfather had been out all year.

He added: "There's nowhere else he'd rather be than here with his fellow comrades from the war."

Along with the parade an additional educational event for young people and their families was held before the parade.

Pupils also marched with the names of people who had served for their country.

Lieutenant Colonel Simon Soskin, the parade marshal said the event was not just a military parade but was now open to the whole community.

"This is a community event rather than a military parade now. 

Lt Col Soskin added: "Many of the marchers hadn't been in the military themselves but their parents, their aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters might have been - and that's who they were remembering today."