Socialist Worker

Armed forces day is an insult to intelligence

Issue No. 2102

A Saturday at the end of every June will see armies parade through the streets, showing off their military might. Sporting events on the day will acquire a “military flavour”.

These plans for the glorification of the military sound like they have been cooked up by a repressive regime in North Korea or Burma. In fact they are proposed by New Labour in Britain.

A new report by Quentin Davies MP calls for an “armed forces day” in Britain. His proposals also involve outlawing “discrimination” against people wearing military uniforms.

This is a response to the dubious allegations earlier this year that RAF personnel were “insulted” in Peterborough. Such laws are the hallmarks of repressive states. In Turkey, for instance, any criticism of the army is prosecuted under legislation against “insulting Turkishness”.

The report’s proposals are an attempt to put a lid on anti-war arguments by misrepresenting them as “anti-soldier”. But the people who are truly anti‑soldier are those sending them to kill and die in other countries for the benefit of British and US imperialism.

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What We Think
Tue 20 May 2008, 18:46 BST
Issue No. 2102
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