The honoured dead

Wooton Basset became synonymous with honouring our war dead in two campaigns, whether you thought the wars legal or not there was something very touching about the honour that was given to our fallen, almost quintessentially English in form where people just lined the route and just bowed their heads or in the case of the more traditional removed their head wear. The town was honoured for its honouring by being given the right to have “Royal” attached to its name as the flights to the RAF Lyneham airfield were to be changed to RAF Brize Norton. Still at least some people were prepared to honour our dead often killed by not having the correct equipment and some usually either Islamics or on the left preferred to mock. There are some though particularly amongst the bureaucrats in the Ministry of Defence who hate the parades and what they symbolize…

Telegraph.

For several years, the flag-draped coffins of fallen servicemen and women have been met by large crowds who line the streets to pay their respects as they return to British soil.

But repatriation flights are to be diverted and will no longer be flown back to RAF Lyneham and through the small Wiltshire town of Royal Wootton Bassett, where they were saluted come rain or shine.

Instead, they will arrive back to RAF Brize Norton, where they will be driven through the back gate and then down side roads, neatly avoiding the nearby town of Carterton, as they make their way to the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford.

Andrew Robathan, Minister for Defence Personnel, Welfare and Veterans, admitted that the decision to avoid public scenes of emotion had been taken deliberately.

“The side gate was seen by the Ministry of Defence and the police as the most appropriate way to take out future corteges,” he told Radio Oxford.

The excuse used is to avoid taking coffins in hearses past schools, past families, past married quarters because this is not necessarily the thing that everybody would wish to see, which is true, however it is something that needs to be seen! Needs to be witnessed! That the end result of the folly that has taken us into a war we cannot possibly win should not ever be hidden away from view to spare the blushes of the apparatchiks in the Ministry of Defence.

Again and again there are attempts to remove from public view the results of recent wars fought by honourable young men and women for less than honourable reasons dictated by political decision-making by politicians with no honour at all, the cortèges at Wooton Basset were a stark reminder of these decisions and of course had to be stopped somehow after all, what isn’t seen wont be commented on save by a few bloggers and the (very) occasional piece in the MSM.

As for our troops, they rise time and time again over their shameful treatment by successive governments and their Ministry of Defence, their courage shames politicians, bureaucrats and those who would call them murderers and rapists when they march home from doing their duty and from those who want to hide them away when they return from having made the ultimate sacrifice.

No one wants to see the cortèges of our honoured dead being driven to a final resting place, this is true, but it’s equally true that these brave men and women need to be honoured as Wooton Basset does and I’ve no doubt Carterton would.

We must bear witness, it’s the least we can do and the idiots who want to hide it away need to be named and shamed, though from what I know of their antics, a sense of shame is foreign to their nature.

The only real shame is that we cannot string them up for their treachery.

 

You can now sign an online petition

"We Demand A Main Road Public Parade For Our Fallen Soldiers!"
http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/britishpatriotssocietyparade/

12 comments for “The honoured dead

  1. June 28, 2011 at 6:27 am

    If any more evidence was needed that the creatures in power that call themselves ‘Conservatives’ are nothing of the sort, then I’m not sure what it could possibly be

  2. June 28, 2011 at 6:34 am

    The excuse used is to avoid taking coffins in hearses past schools, past families, past married quarters because this is not necessarily the thing that everybody would wish to see, which is true, however it is something that needs to be seen! Needs to be witnessed! That the end result of the folly that has taken us into a war we cannot possibly win should not ever be hidden away from view to spare the blushes of the apparatchiks in the Ministry of Defence.

    That pretty well sums it up. Julia’s right about the Conservatives. Also, this town is known for honouring the returned servicepeople. It’s such a cowardly thing this change of route and will not go down well with anyone who cares for his/her country.

    Predictable though.

  3. john in cheshire
    June 28, 2011 at 9:16 am

    I agree with all your sentiments. I don’t want to witness a parade of coffins, containing young men and women, because there shouldn’t be any to witness. But since there are, and far too many of them, I would say we are obliged to watch their homecoming.
    I ask myself, what would I want, if it was me in one of the coffins; I would want people to have a chance to see my last journey and to know that I existed. Without the public display of the coffins, the occupants just become part of the statistics of war.

  4. June 28, 2011 at 9:29 am

    And what next one wonders. Dig a hole in the desert where they die and drop them straight in?

    • June 28, 2011 at 2:30 pm

      That’s how it used to be. A corner of a foreign field and all that…

  5. Lord T
    June 28, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    Simply trying to hide the only true cost of the many wars we get involved in for no benefit to the people of the UK.

    Treachery to the public seems to be the only constant across every aspect of government.

  6. Voice of Reason
    June 28, 2011 at 12:57 pm

    As the son of a career soldier, it makes me want to grab a weapon, and educate some people.

  7. June 28, 2011 at 1:34 pm

    Spin comes in many forms and none of them are honourable. However, even Alistair Campbell might be ashamed of hiding bad news on the way to its being buried. These people are a disgrace to the once proud name of the Conservative Party.

  8. June 28, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    The Minister should have the courage of his convictions and equally ‘deliberately’ ban the Remembrance Day parade in Whitehall and tear down the Cenotaph. Oh, and dig up the Unknown Soldier while he’s at it. Then let’s see how the electorate like them onions. Not to mention the Queen who, acting on behalf of the people as the Sovereign and commander in chief to whom all in the armed services swear allegiance, ‘deliberately’ honoured Royal Wootton Bassett to almost universal applause. One wonders whether she will mention this matter at the PM’s weekly audience.

    Brize Norton will remain serviceable. Its primary service should be to receive the bodies of our war dead.

  9. June 28, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    It is most likely the senior politicians themselves who prefer not to be reminded, on the evening TV news broadcasts, of the growing and continuing disaster of their multiple policy failures.

    Treasury ministers would no doubt like to hide reports on the collapsing euro currency. They seem to have succeeded in obscuring the detail of the Greek Austerity package now being debated in a Greek Parliament barricaded against its citizens!

  10. Leslie Thomson
    July 4, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    I have just been listening about this on BBC Radio 2 and my head is reeling. Is the government missing something somewhere? Those who turned out in Wootton Bassett did so completely spontaneously. The parades to honour the fallen were never planned. People do it because they WANTED to do it. So the claim of not taking the procession past schools, churches, families and married quarters is not just unfounded, it is completely incorrect. For a government minister to come out with that is uncaring and crass in the extreme. The Tories used to be seen as the very party who were seen as jingoistic. We now see this government, under a Conservative Prime Minister, has absolutely no qualms about not only dishonouring our war dead but equally denying the wishes of grateful people to honour them as well. And taking them out of a “side gate” makes it sound like it is something to be ashamed of. David Cameron is the one who should be ashamed, for his complete disregard for the brave men and women of the armed forces.

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