Friday, 30 October 2009

A Good Point

Richard North - aka EU Referendum and Defence of the Realm - made a good observation a few days ago in that blogs dealing with Afghanistan and Pakistan tend to be US or Canadian and that British bloggers, especially those of a political nature, have been strangely silent on the subject.

Whilst it has to be acknowedged that Richard North is an 'expert' on matters military, as is Christopher Booker on Climate Change/Global Warming, as someone who has only been blogging for just under a year my knowledge of such matters is limited - to say the least - as is, probably, those bloggers who have been blogging for far longer.

However, one point has struck me and that is this. On each occasion the UK suffers a fatality amongst the Armed Forces, we witness 'expressions of regret' from the Prime Minister at PMQs, such 'expressions of regret' dutifully repeated by Cameron, Clegg and other members of the 'Great and Good'. What we do not see - to my knowledge - at the 'homecoming' of our troops, when they parade though our towns and cities, is the presence of those Ministers who have a responsibility for the Armed Forces, nor do we see the MPs of the constituencies in which the 'homecoming' takes place, nor do we see the MPs in whose constituencies where the 'fallen' of those regiments lived.

Do not those MPs have a duty to ensure their 'presence'? Would not the relatives of those who serve in these regiments appreciate their MP's presence? Would not the relatives of those who have given their lives for their country, appreciate some 'political' acknowledgement?

Just a thought.............


Richard said...

WFW - the military regard repatriation ceremonies as military events, and themselves advise against political presence. I think they are right ... we really do not want these ceremonies hijacked by showcasing politicians, showing up for the photo-ops and turning them into a political event.

Next thing you know, there would be scraps about equal air-time, with complaints that too many soldiers in Conservative/Labour constituencies were being killed, so the other parties were not getting their share of air time.

Best leave it as it is ... keep the pols out of it.

Witterings From Witney said...

Richard, the last thing I would want is them taking part in the welcome ceremony and thereby 'highjacking' the event.

It would be nice though to have them in the crowd - their presence is all that is necessary - to at least acknowledge their part in why these brave men and women went to war on our behalf