Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Gordon Brown and "Veterans" Day

In a speech, included at the bottom of this entry, on the 13th February Gordon Brown said some of the most cynical and hypocritical distortions of what he and his new Labour Party really stand for.

Have a look at the opinions that some real Ex-Servicemen/women have to say about his suggestions in particular the following.

Real Ex-Serviceman Speaks

And perhaps a Times article on him

How Project Gordon failed to put a more human face on the Iron Chancellor

and finally a blog from Tommy English (I'll forgive him for not being Scottish)

A poem

I have suggested that we do more to value the ideals of Britishness - our commitment to liberty, responsibility and fairness - and its symbols and institutions and in particular I suggest today we recognise and show we value the contribution of our police, emergency and security services, our military and our armed forces and the contribution of all those who fought in the great wars of the last century.

Far from failing to teach history on these great times of conflict and courage we must do more to remember them so that they will never be forgotten.

In Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday "we remember the fallen" - and it is right and fitting to honour them.

So, after approval from Her Majesty the Queen I can announce that the Treasury will allocate £1.5 million from the proceeds from the coin celebrating the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar to help fund the memorial in Staffordshire for the men and women in our armed forces who have given their lives.

The national Veterans' Day is designed to thank today's generation of ex-servicemen and women for their service to our country. I propose ceremonies in every constituency and locality of the country to mark national Veterans' Day - where we present veterans with veterans medals at local ceremonies and we will consult with veterans' groups in taking this forward. Today the Defence Secretary is announcing that we will extend veterans badges to all those who served until 1960 including all who did national service.

And to involve young people more in celebrating the contribution of our armed forces - he and I would like to pilot an expansion of our cadet forces, especially in state schools. So we have asked Ian Russell to fundraise with the private sector, with funding matched by the government.

And we should ask young people to play a leading role in future Veterans' Day celebrations - in particular volunteering to tape and video the memories of veterans for a veterans archive - led by a prominent national figure and supported by government and hopefully lottery funding - so that we have a local and national record of pride and achievement that measures up to the contribution our armed forces have made.

I started by saying that on July 7 the British people stood as one. The victims of that day will never be forgotten. Accordingly the Treasury stands ready to play a part in funding a memorial that victims families may consider fitting.

1 comment:

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