Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Screw-Ups Yes, Heroes No

The saga of the Iranian hostages having easily made the transition from potential tragedy to certain farce, I have a confession to make: in some respects it’s a weight off my mind. See, I’ve run into a few Naval folks, and 90% of the time I think ‘what a tosser!’, closely followed by a vague guilt about thinking badly about one of the people defending my right to call them tossers. So, naturally it’s a relief to find that they are tossers after all.

Well, yeah, you can’t say how you’d handle a situation like that until it happens, but just how much worse could it have been handled ? Seriously, just what exactly did these professional warriors do that couldn’t have been done by Joe Public ? But let’s not lump all the blame on the Navy. The Romans knew that an Army reflects the society from whence it came. Need I say more ?

For proof of the real pathology affecting the Forces, consider that while the MSM was offering huge deals to the Navy’s answer to Jade Goody, the BBC was busy spiking a drama about VC winner Johnson Beharry as ‘too positive’. What more can you say ? Well, other than ‘against the war but for the troops’ must mean something different in Liberalland.

Then there’s the many specific policy decisions that have damaged efficiency. Take the PC recruitment policies that lead to people like Jabbah Turney being on an (alleged) warship in the first place. In fact, it goes further than that. The innuendo-proof RAF sent a team to a Manchester gay pride festival, complete with a mock up of the front end of a Eurofighter, so gays could climb into their cockpit, grab the joystick and fantasise about thrusting upwards. What could possibly go wrong ?

But that’s not the worst of it. Aside from the specific idiocies, there’s the logic that underlies it all, the belief all this talk of the ‘art of war’ and the like is just macho blather designed to prevent members of the headless lesbian community from getting their fair share of the cake. Ditto, the same idea underpins the Left’s determination to subordinate the Forces to the courts, via ‘human rights’ legislation and the like. Once you accept that dogfighting with a Mirage is just another job, sort of like working in a bank, why not have m’learned friends picking over every high-G roll ?

Well, here’s the news: if you remake the Armed Forces as a uniformed branch of the civil service, don’t be surprised when the troops act like the average civil servant.

Part of the impetus for the founding of the welfare state was the Boer War – or more specifically, the lousy physical condition of recruits for that war. Maybe history is repeating itself: could there be a better barometer of just how far our society has fallen than this case ? So don’t be too harsh on the Navy. After all, they’ve done what the Left wanted, look at these obese, whining chav scum and tell me we don’t have a Navy that ‘looks like Britain’.

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