Monday, 9 November 2015

Rememberance Week does not belong to the Right,Politicians or Military but to us all

If there is a case of showing  of showing disrespect to the fallen on Reemergence Sunday then surely it is the attempt by the right to politicise what should be a solem ceremony

The Telegraph makes play that Jeremy Corbyn has been criticised for not bowing deeply enough after laying a poppy wreath at the Cenotaph on Remembrance Sunday

The Labour leader came under fire for only slightly moving his head after laying a traditional wreath of poppies.
The Labour leader's message in his wreath contained an appeal to remember the fallen "in all wars" and was not directed specifically at Britain's war dead.
Sir Gerald Howarth, a former Conservative defence minister, said Mr Corbyn was an "embarrassment" for not realising that remembering Britain’s war dead “requires complete commitment”. 

The Torygraph dug out Etiquette expert William Hanson who said that Mr Corbyn's "slight tip forward" was not really appropriate for the occasion. 
"Protocol dictates that while his bow did not not necessarily have to be deep, like a theatrical bow and scrape, it should have gone down around 45 degrees from the waist.
"He barely did anything. But that said, it is his right not to bow and the people he was there to remember fought for our rights to do, or not to do, anything.
"Whilst I do not agree with him, we all have the right to mark the occasion in different ways.
"It is his first time in this role at the Cenotaph and he is not cut form the cloth of a statesman."
 Jeremy Corbyn after laying his wreath at the Cenotaph

The above picture shows Mr Corbyn showing  respect to my mind.

But it seems that the Tories and the Telygraph were looking for any excuse to politicise  and turn it into attack onthe Labour Leader.

Sir Gerald, Howorth  a defence minister from 2010 to 2012, said Mr Corbyn needed to

 “observe the formalities which all of us subscribe to. It is nothing to do with whether you agree with a particular campaign or not”. 

“He is a beneficiary of the sacrifice those men and women were prepared to make, and he needs to be uncompromising in his gratitude for them and not to use weasel words.
“He is an embarrassment to his party and also he is an embarrassment in the grudging way in which he is adjusting to his new responsibilities. He is an embarrassment to our country.
 Meanwhile  Wales Online reports that Plaid Cymru has reacted angrily to criticism their representatives didn’t sing God Save the Queen at Wales’ national remembrance service.
Lyn Hudson, Cardiff Conservative councillor for the Heath ward tweeted: 

“Disgusted that Plaid reps did not sing God Save The Queen, no sense of occasion, no respect, no sense”.
Councillor Neil McEvoy, leader of the Plaid group on the council, said he “never had and never would sing God Save the Queen”.
“I am not a royalist but respect other people’s right to be and they should respect my right to stand in respectful silence while God Save the Queen is sung,” he said.
“What angers me is the Conservatives concentrate on an anthem and flag while allowing servicemen and women who have served their country to end up having no home, living on the streets and not getting the healthcare they needIt’s about time we had a proper debate about how to honour our troops.”.

Remembrance Sunday does not belong to the Tory Party or Royalists nor does it belong to those who attempt to use it to bolster support for Government interventions in the Middle East.

It is about remembering those who died in Wars some may think that they are honouring only British fallen , whilst others like myself feel that we should be remembering all the victims of War and make  it an occasion to resolve to work for peace so no more Men and Women are killed in their thousands.

We now have Armed Forces day for those who wish to "Back our Boys". which is really intended get people to Back our Politicians .

There should be no room for the same politicisation of the Week of Remembrance.


  1. Glyn, entirely agree with your comments.

    As someone who lost several family members as a result of the two world wars I always attended the annual Remembrance Service. That was until the creeping politicisation of the event since Iraq and Afghanistan changed it's emphasis.

    Not only has it been hijacked by those who seek to justify war, but also by the establishment that seeks to justify its existence. Those who don't wear the poppy, don't bow their head low enough at the Cenotaph or choose not to sing God Save the Queen are attacked for being unpatriotic or worse.

    The people who criticise others are often quick to invoke the blood, suffering and sacrifice made by the dead to uphold individual freedom. But of course that freedom doesn't extend to those who hold different views to them.

  2. I'm with Neil McEvoy...couldn't have put it better.