Monday, 11 May 2009

Asides on the news

Visited the UK news sites last night to find them awash with tales about parliamentary fiddling of expenses (Fiddling? Sounds like the whole bloody string section of the Berlin Philharmonic). All I have to say is; what took you so long boys? People like Guido Fawkes and Wat Tyler have been blogging this stuff for a few years now. You took your own sweet time.

However, the gods rejoice for even one repenting sinner, and as investigative journalism in the UK seems to be undergoing a minor renaissance, a guarded 'well done' to the mainstream media is in order, with the codicil 'don't take so long next time'. Because there will be a next time, human nature being what it is.

Well, at least one sector of the UK economy will be kept going; Her Majesties Revenue and Customs investigation department.

Certain commentators have been asking "What about honour?" Er yes, what about honour? The British concept of honour was effectively despatched many years ago by those revisionist historical academics who took (and still take) great pains to deconstruct heroes from history to suit their own political agenda. The same mindset automatically calls regiments like the Brigade of Ghurka's 'mercenaries', which, having met a few of the gentlemen from Nepal I feel to be a gross misrepresentation and defamation.

A little tale my dad used to tell me about his service as AB Signals on Tank Landing Craft and Minesweepers comes to mind. According to my dad's story, his boat was despatched to pick up a number of American GI's somewhere in Sicily. The shore party found the all the GI's headless. My dad told me that according to the report, a platoon of Ghurka's had been passing through during the night and had killed the GI's because they had mistaken the GI's high legged leather boots for German Jackboots. A case of 'friendly slash' as it were. Notwithstanding, everyone I've ever known who has come into contact with that regiment has nothing but praise for them. This would exclude all those on the opposing side of course.

It is thus with no little rejoicing that I hear ex serving members of the Brigade of Ghurka's are to have the right to take up settlement and / or citizenship in the UK after their service is up. The French do it for those who have served in their Légion étrangère, the United States I believe adopt the same policy towards foreign nationals who sign up in their armed forces, as do the Canadian armed forces. Anyone who serves out their term in that country's armed forces has presumably proved their commitment and value, so why not? Now all the UK politicians have to do is honour the Ghurka's pension rights. Let's face it, when we left UK social services appeared to be throwing money at every illegal immigrant to touch UK soil, and look what that's done. Maybe importing a few thousand people who have demonstrated loyalty and commitment to the UK might do some good.

For me that's all rather academic. I've made my choice and it's Canada. My fondest hope is that any grandchildren our girls present us with will be born Canadian and go on to make the most of the opportunities here.

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