In all battles, combatants go missing in action. Sometimes they have been taken prisoner or have been wounded and lost in the confusion of the war.
They may return with important stories, but sometimes they are never heard from again.
What happened to some important witnesses in the battle of which we write?
We still await some news of Father David Heal and his wife Pam.
We are also anxious for news of another couple who have not been heard of since October 2007. Susan and Paul Moyes were the occupants of apartment G5K, which was the apartment directly above Mrs Fenn's; 2 floors above.
They told the press that they arrived in Praia da Luz on the day that Madeleine disappeared. They returned from a “fabulous” night out at 9.15. and sat on their balcony, overlooking the Tapas restaurant.
They saw that the place was full of people eating and drinking. (would that be 15 people, according to Kate, minus Gerry who was carrying out his check and Jane Tanner, who was on her way to or from somewhere?)
The Moyes described the resort as safe and idyllic, a “paradise”, with no mention of recent burglaries or abductions; nor, for that matter, any commotion below that night. Their first inkling about what had happened was a knock on their door at 11.30, that evening, asking them to join in the search for a missing child.
There are no witness statements from them in the released files, despite the fact they would have been crucial witnesses to the events of that evening. Neither is there any mention of them by name in Kate's book.
She does mention an unwelcome visit that evening by a drunken woman, but it can't have been Mrs Moyes, because they say they knew nothing about what had happened until the next day and surely, Pam Heal, the vicar's wife, would not have arrived to console in such a drunken state.
Perhaps the drunken woman should also be listed as missing in action?
The occupant of G5I is listed as Irene McMillan, but according to the cleaner, who normally had this apartment on her list to clean, this was not one of the occupied apartments.
Susan Moyes was interviewed by Radio Stoke in October 2007. She described Madeleine's disappearance as “ a sad, unfortunate ACCIDENT”; a strangely muted choice of adjectives to describe a supposed abduction and an interesting word to use as an alternative to disappearance or abduction.
In the case of the missing in action, it is usual to issue a bulletin to this effect and hope that news of the missing, whatever it may be, will soon be forthcoming.