Don't remove the word "heroes" from the India Cross war memorial

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For every name signing this petition, we want to record an official complaint to Historic Environment Scotland for their proposed removal of the word ‘heroes’ from the India Cross sign commemorating soldiers who gave their lives for their country.

It appears the most heinous crime today is to offend. But why do you value the offence caused to one person, and not to another? The wording on this sign has apparently offended one man, but by removing it you are causing offence to many thousands. You are offending anyone who has respect for men who gave their lives for our country. You are offending anyone whose ancestors died during this conflict. And you are also offending the memory of those men by casting dispersions on their character. Why are you happy to cause offence to all these people, just to avoiding offending one?
 
Whatever one’s thoughts on the conflict in question, this memorial is to the ordinary soldiers who fought, not the policy makers. It is perfectly possible to be heroic and to act heroically regardless of the situation. Their individual heroism should not be questioned. The siege lasted 148 days in total, including November 16th 1857 when 24 Victoria Crosses were won – the largest number ever awarded on a single day.
 
But we must also resist the rewriting of history from one viewpoint. The framing of the Indian Mutiny as a ‘War of Independence’ is the clearest example of rewriting history there is. It must be remembered that it was almost exclusively a conflict with rebel sepoys over professional complaints. The was no mass uprising of people and no national force driving it. We must also remember the context of horrendous atrocities on the part of those rebel sepoys. Immediately before the First Relief, the British had recaptured Cawnpore, just 48 miles away. There they had discovered the aftermath of the Bibighar Massacre: 120 British women and children murdered, having been shot and butchered to death with meat cleavers. Any survivors had been thrown down a well, including three little boys who were buried alive. None survived. This is the context behind the First Relief of Lucknow carried out by the men of the 78th Highlanders and others. We cannot take an ambiguous position on these atrocities. The men who stood against them were heroes.