I remember thinking when David Cameron extended the invitation to the retiring Army Chief Sir Richard Dannat to become the Tory spokesman on defence that it looked like a gaffe; a blunder by him and a clanger by the retiring soldier, one which called the soldier's competence and judgement in to question instantly. It is commonly recognised that the upper sections of the military in all three services are polluted by Tories and rotten to the core with cronyism; it was ever thus and it has been accepted as part of some kind of British tradition, like upper class inbreeding and the half witted Royals. The continuous sniping by these career soldiers against the Labour Govt. and in particular Gordon Brown always looked politically motivated and Brown’s evidence at the Chilcot enquiry stunned everyone by its confident and robust nature, this was not a man with anything to hide and he enjoyed his day in court.
What he highlighted was what many people were already beginning to think; simply by laying out the facts and squaring up to these nonentities he damaged the reputation of Sir Richard Dannat and Lords Guthrie and Boyce; who are two more retiring senior soldiers with their own agenda. The public is at last beginning to ask questions about these so called leaders and their motives; suddenly we are hearing “why was Brown so self-assured; after the mauling he has taken from the Army Chiefs and the right wing Tory press over this why wasn’t he cowering? He kicked Ass and didn’t even have to name his targets.
The UK spends more per soldier than any other country in the world except the USA! Wow! we haven’t heard that one Sir Richard; complaints about sending more troops are dashed by complaints about not having enough troops, when will people see through the Tories? Many members of the public; more often than not those who shout the loudest denunciation of the Govt. would rather watch strictly come dancing than a programme about the Afghanistan conflict but the right wing press don’t tell you that do they? The lazy corrupt media will relentlessly pursue the easy headline about troop deaths using them to attack the Govt. Here is a comment from a very unlikely source (certainly for me it is) which rather blows apart the case for the retiring senior soldiers who are now bleating from the sidelines “What no one seemed to have noticed was that no one resigned over the defence matter” I will return to this, (Norman Tebbit) Honestly it is Norman being quoted by me, the reptilian old ‘Chingford skinhead; the semi house trained polecat) nails them with effortless logic he makes them look like knaves and self serving liars; ‘well done that man’ as they say in the Army.
The truth of the matter which old Norman highlights is that these Lords and Sirs had a well established course to follow; they identify a military need and they ask the defence secretary to finance it; if he/she refuses they go over his/her head to the Prime Minister and if he refuses they can and should resign. if their outrage is authentic that is, it seems they failed to do so; the old ‘lions led by donkeys thing’ let me quote from my old chum Tebbit (more old than chum) still; coming from him it is too good to let pass.
“As we know, no one resigned. That is, they all went along with the then Chancellor. For anyone who held responsibility at that time to say now, years later, that the troops were sent to war without the right equipment is to invite the question: Then why did you go along with it at the time”? This is why David Cameron exploded with synthetic rage at PMQ’s the other day when he quoted the three exposed military officers attacking the PM. A number of Labour MP’s shouted out exactly what the rest of the country was thinking “they are Tories” they cried, as Mandy Rice Davies once said and I paraphrase “they would say that wouldn’t they”? She caused the Tories quite a crisis in a long-ago humiliation in their corrupt history.
Tebbit is a right wing yob who is true to his beliefs he does not excuse anyone who falls short no matter who they are; he has looked at these higher-ranking soldiers and their conduct and concluded as I do that their real position is self protection. They have failed and they know that if they can’t shift the blame on to Gordon Brown they have to think about who comes next? the answer is they do! I don’t in truth know and don’t for the most part care what kind of military career these men had but their behaviour in this matter suggests that for the sake of morale and professionalism the armed forces will not miss them.
I have said before and I say again the soldiers sailors and airmen and women who risk their lives deserve better than this, the officer class of the UK military needs an enema.