George, I am sympathetic to every soldier who had to face the hell of the trenches and battlefields in a war that was essentially a struggle for terrain and political influence in Europe between rival Monarchies. I don't seek to excuse the actions of those in authority who executed men who ran, but I do think there are some reasons why these executions were ordered besides a moral disgust over cowardice. I think these commanders were essentially schooled in the tactics of Napoleon, and were unprepared for mechanized warfare, hence the "human wave" attack approach. The fact that men refused to participate is completely understandable. What I find amazing is the fact that so many were able to muster the strength to go forward into the jaws of enemy fire.
May they all rest in peace. A lot of good any memorial will do them.