Sunday, December 6, 2009

Forget Letter-gate This Is The Real Story

The real story of how angry military personnel and their families feel about this Government was over shadowed following The Sun's over-the-top coverage of "Letter-gate" the other week.

This is unfortunate as I believe this is one of the Government's worst and most shameful failures. However, a story in today's Sunday Times refocuses our attention on the real issue. It's got nothing to do with the Prime Minister's handwriting, ability to spell, eye sight, general competence or anything else. It's got to do with how little respect our armed forces have for him and his Government because they feel they have been let down badly. The Times article illustrates the extent of the anger felt and goes some way to explain Jacqui Janes reaction to that shoddy letter sent to her about her son's death. Although, after what we've seen this week, I suppose she should be grateful she got one at all.
Sapper Matthew Weston, 20, is one of the most seriously injured soldiers to have survived. He lost both legs and his right arm when a bomb exploded on a dirt track outside Sangin.
He said: “I didn’t want to speak to him, I didn’t want to waste my time talking to someone who was just trying to make themselves look good. I spent the day with my family instead.
“Half the lads didn’t want to speak to him and those that did pretty much blamed him for everything. Many of the lads just closed their curtains and hid themselves away.
“I met Prince Charles and Sir Richard Dannatt [when they visited Selly Oak]. I have respect for them. Prince Charles spoke to me for two hours. I really didn’t want to speak to Gordon Brown.”
It's clear that the feeling in the ranks from top to bottom, as well as from their families, is that the military covenant has been broken, that Labour has used our armed forces to gain party political advantage on occasions and that there is no real commitment to the cause or the men and women sent into harms way, and this has led to woeful under-equipping and resourcing.

The snubbing of Brown at Selly Oak is just another expression of the disdain felt for the Prime Minister. We all remember the unbelievable sight of a British Prime Minister being Booed at the D-Day ceremony by normally highly respectful World War 2 veterans:

Jacqui Janes received quite a bit of criticism for her alliance with The Sun and their attacks on Gordon Brown. I hope people will read The Times article and have a little more understanding of the strength of feeling there is against Brown. I also hope future governments will take the covenant a lot more seriously. That needs to be especially true during the difficult years ahead when budgets need to be balanced.

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