Famed Codebreaker and computer pioneer Alan Turing has been finally given a royal pardon – 61 years after his death
Turing was a major player in the Allied Powers’ fight against Germany in World War II
He singlehandedly gave the Allies quite a boost when he deciphered the supposedly “unbreakable” Enigma code used by Nazi Germany. The guy was smart and he put his brains to good use.queerty.com
Turing’s Bombe, the device he developed to break the Nazi’s code, was an early ancestor of the computer.globalpost.com
“His brilliance was put into practice at Bletchley Park during the Second World War where he was pivotal to breaking the ‘Enigma’ code, helping to end the war and save thousands of lives,” British Justice Minister Chris Grayling said in the pardon statement.bbc.co.uk
Why did a war hero like Alam Turing need a royal pardon?
Because in 1952, homosexuality was still a crime in Britain (it remained so until 1967).indianexpress.com
Turing was convicted for having sex with a man – the punishment for which was chemical castration.firstpost.com
It didn’t matter if he helped the British win WWII; in the eyes of the law Turing was a homosexual, a criminal.punemirror.in
The conviction of gross indecency and subsequent castration drove Turing to suicide two years later, at the age of 41.bbc.co.uk
What took so long to get Turing a pardon?
Royal pardons in Britain are very rare: there have only been three other notable cases since 1945.nytimes.com
But there has been an active campaign for Turing, led by some of today’s most notable scientists, including Stephen Hawking. A petition to the British government for Turing’s pardon received over 37,000 signatures.telegraph.co.uk
British Prime Minister David Cameron called Turing a “remarkable man” and the “father of modern computing”