Thursday, December 18, 2008

Something the government could do

Trixy is rather grateful she didn't have to go to Wootton Bassett today: not because she doesn't want to pay her respects to those who put their lives on the line to protect ours, but because today, driving through the town, there were six brave men brought back in wooden boxes.

Lieutenant Aaron Lewis from 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery
Lance Corporal Steven Fellows
Sergeant John Manuel
Corporal Marc Birch
Marine Damian Davies of the Commando Logistics Regiment.

No, she was glad she was in London because the tears were flowing freely* when the coffin of one Marine stopped in front of her the other week and it rips her to shreds every time. Six would have been too much. As a friend of mine in the RAF says "it does an upsettingly good job of bringing back the suppressed reality of what we're all up to."

That's a few more widows, fatherless children and parents having to bury their own children.

Which is why the Military Covenant is so important. Earlier this week the MoD announced that the AFCS payments for tariffs 1-4 (that's pretty fucking bad) which were doubled and retrospectively in the Armed Forces Command Paper are going to arrive before Christmas. The next few will arrive in the new year.

But that still leaves an awful lot to do in order for the government to be doing their job of maintaining the Military Covenant: to ensure that those who put their lives on the line, who risk making the ultimate sacrifice and who also give up many civil liberties in doing so are not penalised for doing that.

When you look at the huge wastes of money (I'm actually too tired of linking to the fuck ups we know: £14bn on the EU, £20bn at least on the NHS computer system, the pointless Welsh Assembly and Scottish parliament, regional assemblies, crack groups of social workers roaming the streets trying to make us live according to some Nu Labour guidelines) wouldn't you rather that instead of these, we say to the government to stop with their brain washing programme and, before giving us a nice tax cut, make sure those in the armed forces and their families and ex servicemen and women are properly looked after. Because they are doing a more important, worthy job than any politician.

young men going to fight on the front line have decent accommodation vs Peter Mandelson getting a huge salary, expense account, £2m house and staff.

I know which one I'd prefer and it'd be Mandelfucker living in a cardboard box under a bridge rather than any veteran with untreated Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

But then, I'm not the Secretary of State for Defence.

*And I hope they continue to do so when I see such a sight. So sad, so poignant and so moving.


Gallimaufry said...

I begrudge Mandelson the cardboard box and the bridge.

The Great Simpleton said...

20 MPs, one of them a Governemnt Minister, should be there to greet the coffins when they arrive. This will remind them of the gravity of the decisions we entrust them to make on our behalf.