I agree with the decision to treat the Ghurkhas properly; we have been exploiting them for approx. 200 years, for that length of time it has been a master servant relationship which has been a blot on the honour of Britain as well as being a stain on the British Army and its history. I don’t however buy in to the sanctimonious crap which papers and celebrities have been churning out, to put the record straight we should admit that all the glory; the bravery and all the heroics shown by the Ghurkhas all the VC’s etc. won on behalf of Britain could and would have been shown to any other country which offered them more money than us all those years ago, that s the somewhat inglorious truth of the first Ghurkhas to fight for the British Empire.
When I asked my old man what he did in the war he used to say he played football for the regiment which he indeed did; some pictures survive; he also boxed for the regiment as well, he used to say “they wee Gurkeys cannae play fitba but by Christ they can fight” he bowed to no man in his admiration for them which was not only based on their fighting qualities but also on the knowledge that when he and his comrades got in to a tight spot they (the wee Gurkeys) were on our side, borrowing from Wellington he used to say “they scare the s**t out of us so what do they do to the Germans” When the British employed the German ‘Hessians’ to fight the American revolutionaries and an the beast Franco employed the Moors to fight the Spanish Republicans they were called by their right name which is of course ‘Mercenaries’ Britain as usual goes in to denial at such a suggestion, it’s gross hypocrisy as usual. This is how the Ghurkhas started their relationship with Britain. This term of course no longer applies to them but it doesn’t help in the long term to whitewash it over.
Britain employed them and exploited them, their soldiers were not paid the same as British Soldiers for instance the Ghurkhas by contrast always fulfilled their part of the bargain and after all this time they are at last to be treated fairly. The British military has a brutal and terrible history, as well as the glory of the Second World War and the defeat of Nazism there are many shameful episodes, in that sense we are no better than most countries and it’s taken a long time to do the right thing but it’s a start, now what about all those Indians.
Monday, May 04, 2009
MEET PRV. TOMMY ATKINS BRITISH ARMY (GURKHA RIFLES)
Posted by Cllr Terry Kelly at Monday, May 04, 2009
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Perhaps now the Labour Party will put right their utterly repugnant treatment of the Chagos Islanders. If, by chance, some are unaware of this outrageous incident, then I'll give an outline. Quite simply, Jack Straw used pseudo-monarchical privy-council powers to deny the islanders the right to return to their homes, despite three unanimous court rulings in favour of the Chagossians. Human rights groups and the courts said that the Labour government was "denying the islanders one of the most fundamental liberties known to human beings." An elderly Chagossian man said what many think, when he said that 'The British Government is playing with us until one by one we die'. In a recent interview with BBC Radio Four, Straw excused himself by saying, 'err...it was a mistake...'.
Nietzsche got it wrong, God isn't dead, he/she/it merely walked off in disgust. What a crew!
I don’t understand why on such an important matter you find it necessary to remain anonymous; perhaps you could explain.
As I understand it the Islanders who wish to return number approx. 1,000 and there are approx 10,000 American military personnel on the island I confess to complete bafflement as to why they cannot return.
It seems at best perverse and at worst sinister; by sinister I mean that perhaps we don’t know what goes on there and the authorities don’t want us to know, how could 1,000 people be such a problem to them?
I agree entirely that they should be allowed to return and be properly compensated as well, I also confess that this whole matter had slipped off my radar and it is certainly a scandal and embarrassing for the Labour Party. I will write to my M.P. as part of my support for them, I know that that, doesn’t sound like much but it might encourage others to do the same, I will post something on the blog as well, at the last count about 35,00 to 40,000 people a year were reading it so it might help a little.
Well said! The only honourable position for a decent human being and a worthwhile reply. However, I doubt that you will be able to have your voice heard at by the centre by parliamentary parties that have now become superannuated versions of a self-regarding professional caste. Still, hope springs eternal, as they say.
I have not given up, you sound as if you have; that’s a pity. The Labour Party is the only conceivable way that I can see of any chance of changing our society for the better; warts and all.
If I didn’t believe that I would join you and throw in the towel.
Anonymous. Thursday, May 14, 2009 7:15:00 PM
My apologies you clearly haven't quite given up or you would not be writing such angry comments.
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