Royal Marines cadet: Muslim heroes 'left out of history books'

Muslim military heroes 'often left out of history books,' Royal Marine cadet says

10/28/2021 3:22:00 PM

Muslim military heroes 'often left out of history books,' Royal Marine cadet says

A Sheffield cadet believes better knowledge about Muslim soldiers would encourage more people to join up.

Image caption,Salahudeen Hussain said joining the Royal Marines Cadets was the "best decision" he had madeMuslim military heroes are "often left out of history books," a Royal Marine cadet has said ahead of this year's remembrance ceremonies.

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Salahudeen Hussain, 16, from Sheffield, said better knowledge of their stories would inspire more Asians to join up."I think it's important people know about them," he said.He joined the Royal Marines Cadets in 2018 and undertook the Special Forces selection march in the Brecon Beacons, known as the Fan Dance, when he was 15.

Salahudeen, known as Sal, is believed to be the youngest person to undertake the 15-mile (24km) load-bearing march.More news from YorkshireNow he is preparing to be installed as the Lord Lieutenant's Cadet, a role which will involve him accompanying the Queen's representative in South Yorkshire, including during the ceremonies to mark Remembrance Day in his home city of Sheffield.

The teenager originally signed up to the cadets, with his father's encouragement, after experiencing bullying."Honestly, it was the best decision I ever made," he said.After joining he developed an interest in Muslims who had been awarded the Victoria Cross (VC).

"My dad and I went to the Imperial War Museum and, on the top floor, they have a place dedicated to VCs and there are a number of cases that commemorate these Muslim soldiers."But it's something you don't see talked about. They're often left out of history books and the school curriculum."

Image source,PA MediaImage caption,Sgt John Daley (l), commander of the Sheffield detachment, said he would like to see more young people from all kinds of backgrounds joiningSal pointed to people like Fazal Din, of the British Indian Army, killed in action in 1945 and awarded the VC.

The soldier was stabbed through the chest with a sword by a Japanese officer while clearing a bunker."He proceeded to remove the sword, kill the officer and then lead a charge to countless other bunkers before filing his report and, unfortunately, dropping dead," said Sal.

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"I know a lot of young Muslim and Asian people in this country often feel a kind of a disconnect to things like the military."If everyone knew how involved their ancestors and people like them were, they would want to join up and wouldn't feel like they couldn't."

Cadets commander Sgt John Daley said Sal's work in highlighting the contribution of Muslim soldiers was bringing it to the forefront and hoped it would encourage recruitment."We want to represent our city as best we can and that is from every background," he said.

Read more: BBC News (UK) »

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