Thursday, 10 November 2011

I will not wear a Poppy tomorrow. Because I will not be Bullied.

In june  2010 I blogged on Armed Forces Day . To save you the trouble I am copying its ome of it below

"I am really sorry but I can't support Armed Forces Day..
My late Father spent most of the Second World War in the Orkney Isles.
However he was to take part in D-Day, where he lasted only three days before being seriously injured by shrapnel from a mine. and after major surgery he was given a plate in his head which was to be part of him until the end.
This injury affected him all his life, He suffered fro Blackouts and was a contribution to his death nearly 10 years ago.
He hardly ever talked about his experience and it was only later in life that he applied for his War Medals for which he received three and when I see the be-medaled members of the Royal Family I wonder.
He also received an inadequate war pension which ironically was far less than if he been a member of the German armed forces.
I doubt very much that he would have approved of Armed Forces day, he rarely wore a red poppy on Armistice Day and I think that he would have wondered why another day should be set aside.
I think I know! Despite the increased politicisation of Remembrance Sunday where it appears for weeks before it is compulsory to wear red poppy on the BBC. The last government needed such a day in order to justify their involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq and the coalition will follow suite.
What would the BBC reaction to someone who insisted on wearing a White Poppy (which you can get from the Peace Pledge Union) here. Or how would all the Media react to MP or Am wearing the White Poppy in the Commons or Assembly chamber?
Incidentally I stopped wearing the White Poppy believing that we should have separate day for remembering all victims of war: But now because of Armed Forces Day I will reconsider my position.
It is thought that 1968 is only year since the Second World War when no British soldier was killed in action.
I believe that far too many of our armed Forces have died because successive governments have involved themselves in conflicts in order to maintain the illusion that Britain is still a Major power.
We are being spun in order that concern for the safety for soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq manifest as support for government policy.
There also those in the Military complex of senior armed forces personnel and contractors who have a vested in interest in a large military force.
If you wish to take part in today’s events, do so with Pride, but remember many of us who disapprove of Armed Forces Day also have the interest of the ordinary Soldier. Sailor, and Airmen at heart."

Sadly noting has changed our young men are still. in Afghanistan and in Iraq and the annual Poppy campaign is still being for Political reasons and not for its True intention.

I was however pleased to see the return of Welsh Political Twins who blogged on the subject and give us hope that not everyone has been cowed.

We may be a small minority though since our viewpoint is almost totally excluded from the Media then we have no idea how many of us there are.

Just imagine the BBC or the rest of the Media reporting on a country where everyone who appears on Television there is forced virtually forced to wear a symbol (no matter its merits). They would argue that it was totalitarian and would interview those who oppose it.

Or footballers from Argentina wearing a symbol of their fallen in the Falklands.

The compulsory wearing of Poppies on the BBC where it results in comedians wearing them on Panel shows  which are then repeated 3 or 6 months later  or every week on Dave.

The problem now of course is that no BBC Director General would reverse the policy  it would be a very brave politician  who would be seen in any of our legislative chambers (out side Northern Ireland) not wearing a Red Poppy let alone a White one.

I really feel the only way to express my disquiet is to not wear a poppy but I will feel uncomfortable because I would like to show that I remember in a particular a young man from  Treforest ,Pontypridd  who landed on Gold Beach  on Dday and paid with his injury the rest of his life for helping us defeat Nazi Tyranny


  1. I can very much relate to what you have written and feel similar to you. Wearing a poppy shows to me that we somehow approve of the wars that have been fought and are still in place. We praise soldiers who fight for the country and show our respect to the dead by wearing the red poppy but I do feel that there is a lack of questioning why those people died in the circumstances they did. And similar to you I am more than willing to support those who fought against the Germans on Dday as they have saved us from Hitlers Dictatorship but I fail to understand why many soldiers had to die in the Afghan and Iraq war and that is my reason not to wear a poppy.

  2. Trish

    Yes and it is important at this Time when faced with overwhelming coverage on the media like the BBC that we are not alone.

  3. Did you see Nicky Wire of the Manics on BBC's Something for the Weekend nervously fiddling with a poppy he'd obviously just been given?
    He didn't wear it. he just played with it in his hand.