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February 20, 2006

Support for the Armed Forces?

I will admit to almost falling off my chair yesterday morning as I heard our Secretary of State for Defence actually stating that the media are far too onesided in their reporting on our troops actions in Iraq! Good grief, I found myself agreeing with him! Help, I think I need a psychiatrist, at the very least a sedative! I'll be voting for the idiot next!

Having got over the shock (Oh, the shame, the shame!) of being in agreement with anything this government says, let alone one of the ministers whose understanding of the department he is responsible for is probably less than a schoolboy's, I would have to say that he is spot on the money on this one. The media are very quick to spread the word on anything that is to the discredit of the Troops, but never sullies their pages with anything about what they have achieved - unless it's to share the reflected glory of medals or heroism. Let's face it, the troops are involved in a great deal more than simply sitting in protected camps and taking potshots at the natives for their amusement!

In the early days it was these same troops who saw to it that food, medicine, water and shelter got to where it was needed. It is these guys who are helping rebuild and then protect the schools that the majority of Iraqi kids now attend. It is these guys who have repaired the hospitals, rounded up the murderers, lunatics and bombers and got them, by and large, off the streets. And most of them are under 30 years of age. In fact the vast majority are under 25. They deserve to have their praises sung from the roof tops and they deserve all the support we can give them, because it is through their efforts that Iraq will eventually emerge as a free, democratic and safe society, not through the efforts of the Press Corps or the money grabbing Human Rights lobbyists and lawyers clustering like vultures ready to denounce every soldier for sneezing out of place.

It says a great deal about the society in which we live that our troops are routinely treated as a "necessary evil" to be underpaid, kept on a leash and treated like second class citizens by our politicians, civil servants and the Media Circus - until the ordure hits the great big whirly thing - then, as Kipling once said in his poem - they all want to hide behind the lad in the camouflage outfit!But, as soon as he's sorted out their mess - they want to shove him back into the box and pretend he isn't there.

Tacitus wrote, Caesar quoted and Pliny commented that if you seek peace, you must prepare for war. Si vis pacem; para bellum. This is the lesson this present generation has forgotten and it is one we will all pay dearly to relearn.

The press is not alone in it's constant denigration of the soldiers conduct, they are, after all, merely repeating the lies, deceits and myths they learned from pacifist lecturers at university and polytech. Downing Street's Press Corps is comprised entirely of people who have no understanding of war, of uniformed services and of the ethos, discipline and camaraderie that pervades such organisations. Their creed is based entirely on the belief that if you denigrate everyone else and make them look bad, you somehow look better than they do in the eyes of the public. Look hard at this government and what do you see, a bunch of over privileged ex-hippies who used family advantage to get to the best schools, the best universities and to the top in the Party they belong to. Frankly they make the Roman Senate of Caesar's day look like a Sunday School outing, but they reflect the society they have created and represent, a society which cares only for it's own comforts and it's own image and prestige. Frankly we would be well served if the troops packed it in and told us all to get on with it ourselves - at the point of their bayonets!

Between our so-called "leaders" there is not one who can be termed a "worker" (I do not count "Union Official or Union Activist as being anything to do with real work!) and there is certainly not one who can claim to have served this country or any other in the Armed Forces. That is true too for the bulk of the Press Corps - not a sailor, soldier or airman among them, so they have no understanding whatever of the way the troops respond to threat - unless it makes good negative copy or film. This is why they have, between them, systematically destroyed the discipline codes, subjected the services to politically correct garbage and legislation and now wave "international law" at them at every opportunity.

Let's get a few things straight. Firstly, there is no such thing as "International Law". The UN is NOT a law making body. It never has been and it never will be. "International Law" is a concept, a myth that exists in the minds of the Socialist "Internationalist" elite and no where else, it is said to be comprised of treaties and agreements between states, but this too is a myth since no treaty is ever valid unless all parties agree fully to apply all the codices equally and in full - which they do not. This is a legalistic vision which is not only unworkable but entirely unenforceable. Secondly our Armed Forces have been reduced and equipment cut on the myth that the "end of the Cold War" brought a "Peace Dividend" which allowed us to cut the heart out of the armed services. Well, the world is a much more dangerous and unstable place since then - and it is getting more so all the time, particularly as our enemies see that our forces are stretched beyond breaking point! As a former First Sea Lord said in the House of Lord's in answer to the latest stupid statement by the government's motormouth in the Lord's "one ship may have the fire power of the entire Grand Fleet, but it remains one ship, in one place at one time". The Grand Fleet had over a thousand ships at it's disposal, with a permanent strength of over three hundred, including thirty battleships.

It is good the see the Secretary of State at long last standing up and saying that the briefing against our forces must cease, but I fear he is far too late. The damage is too far gone and the society we live in has been too far poisoned against the Armed Forces - indeed against anyone in a uniformed service. The "bad press" the military in Iraq and Afghanistan receive is merely a part of the whole, and the whole story is that the anti-military propaganda of the last fifty or more years is now coming home to roost.

I hope that Mr Reed, our Scottish Secretary of State for Defence, is able to persuade the media to be more positive in their reporting - but somehow I doubt it. The Guardianista Brigade who lead the Media don't like positive images of the military or any other uniformed service - it undermines their entire belief in Humanist "goodness" undermined by an evil scheming "Capitalist Military-Industrial" conspiracy.

Posted by The Gray Monk at February 20, 2006 05:21 PM

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I reckon that JR recognises the damage that he and previous Defence Secretaries have done to our armed forces. They know that morale is very low, and recruitment levels are way down. Also, when the media is focussed on the 'misdemeanours' of our troops, there is also a good chance that the spotlight will also fall on the bastard who sent them there in the first place. That's why he's wanting the press to leave them alone! As for the press - I have the greatest admiration for those brave reporters who are risking life and limb to send their reports back to us. Only to be censored by the Politburo...

Posted by: Slim Jim at February 21, 2006 10:33 AM

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