Friday, August 28, 2009

The smoking gun

A snippet from the press association which will have the killjoys and controllers at the Department of Health dropping from strokes and heart attacks:

Another soldier described the stress of driving an armoured vehicle 29 hours through the blistering hot Afghan desert.

Mark Freeman, 21, credited smoking with surviving his ordeal in Helmand Province. The convoy averages 4.3mph and can stretch to more than 100 machines.

He joined the army in 2005 and steers a vehicle guarding supply trucks for military outposts - and said he smoked to relieve the stress.

"The most I have driven was about 29 hours. We took quite a lot of indirect fire going through," he added.

A few weeks ago I wrote about how the Americans were going to let their troops smoke:
American troops are not to be banned from smoking in war zones, the US Defence Department says...Mr Morrell said the Pentagon would examine the recent study to see what else could be done to move towards banning tobacco in the military.

He said: "Obviously it is not our preference to have a force that is using tobacco products."

Surely if people pass their fitness tests and don't use illegal drugs which could impair their judgement - that's the current position so I'll go along with that regardless of personal opinion - then it doesn't matter if they smoke?

The government are having a wee bit of a struggle over soldiers at the moment. They don't like them asking for a decent amount of compensation or wanting to live in decent accommodation but they love the feeling that the British public have for their armed forces and revelling in the opportunities to get down and cuddly with the troops. But they do smoke and drink a lot and swear and go to strip clubs which is not in the 'NuLabour guide to very dull and sanctimonious living'. So what to do?

Well, as it's this government what they'll do is still try to make it as difficult and expensive as possible to smoke because they don't like it and they're the boss. Until you get a chance to vote, of course.

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