World War 2 -keeping diaries whilst serving in the Royal Navy

Discussion in 'History' started by MichaelBully1, Jul 25, 2016.

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  1. Greetings, I've heard claims that it was forbidden to keep a diary whilst serving in the Royal Navy during World War 2. Presumably in case if diary was ever found by the enemy might have potentially useful information. Trying to find actual source for this, ideally a specific regulation. Can anyone help? Thanks .
  2. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    I have a feeling it was in the Articles of War.

    During the Falklands conflict we were certainly briefed not to keep diaries. I remember studiously ignoring it and writing events as they happened in an A5 ringbound shorthand notebook. I kept it for many years and to my lasting regret, ditched it when I moved to Gosport, mid 1990s. Wish I'd kept it now but at the time I was embarrassed by how scared I felt and how I'd expressed it at the time.
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  3. Thanks for your response . I remember years ago talking to a RN World War 2 veteran who was really cross with service personnel who kept diaries at the time and later got them published . But I have to admit that from a historical point of view diaries are a vital source of information.
    Will search for Articles of War. Appreciated your help.
  4. Would it perhaps have been similar to logbooks and restricted publications not desirous of falling into enemy hands as perhaps lots of information could be gleaned from some diaries? :cool:
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  5. Indeed bollotom. I suppose that because diaries are a potential source of information to later historians this would also mean that they could be useful to an enemy during the conflict itself.
    The veteran I knew also seemed to resent service people who kept a diary against regulations then being in a position to profit after World War 2 ended.
    My impressions are drawn from conversations that took place over twenty years ago and that's why I would like to see some regulations to confirm what the correct position was.

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