on how a bunch of wounded British troops 'greeted' PM Brown; as he notes, when troops do this to their head of government, it tells us a number of things, none of them good:
Gordon Brown was snubbed by badly injured Afghan veterans when they closed curtains round their beds during a hospital visit and refused to speak to him.
More than half the soldiers being treated at the Selly Oak hospital ward in Birmingham either asked for the curtains to be closed or deliberately avoided the prime minister, according to several of those present.
The soldiers, who have sustained some of the worst injuries seen in Afghanistan, described his visit as “opportunistic” and a “waste of time”.
Personally, I don't doubt it was exactly both; take a look at some of the things Brown & Co. have done:
The concerns of the wounded soldiers appear to highlight a disconnection between front line troops in Afghanistan and Brown and his government. Earlier this year an official report suppressed by ministers revealed that soldiers’ lives were being put at risk by “endemic” failures at the Ministry of Defence.
It blamed a “political fudge” and Whitehall incompetence for the failure to provide soldiers in Afghanistan with adequate equipment, and said bungled projects were £35 billion over budget.
At the same time Brown has been accused of failing to give adequate funding to the military. As chancellor he oversaw a dramatic increase in government expenditure on education, welfare and health while the defence budget fell from 2.8% of GDP to 2.2%.
...while a month earlier the government took two injured soldiers to court in a test case that would have slashed compensation payments to injured soldiers.
Take a real good look at that last: it's been in the press before. Just what kind of miserable sonofabitch does it take to try that? Why, a socialist crapweasel like Brown, that's what.
The British Army, overall, has always been considered one of the best fighting forces around; despite being so often crapped on by government they've always tried to get the damned job done. For them to be pushed to this point:
“I wanted to find out how the guy’s head worked,” he said. “I was interested in what he had made of his trip to Afghanistan and what he had learnt from it.
“I feel that even if someone is a moron, he should have the opportunity to defend his moronity. [His response] all seemed rather textbook and not from the heart.
“It is quite obvious to anyone that Brown is not concerned, it is almost as if we [the soldiers] are the product of an unwanted affair.
“The straight fact is this: we don’t like the man, he has done nothing for us and continues to kick us in the teeth over equipment and compensation.”
means things are near or at a breaking point. The question that's been asked before is, looking at much of what these troops have done, "How do the Brits manage to keep men of this quality in the forces when they keep getting crapped on?" Well, I think that's going to change; and the Brit army and Britain overall are SOL if it does. To borrow the last stanza from Mr. Kipling,
You talk o' better food for us, an' schools, an' fires, an' all:
We'll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
Don't mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
The Widow's Uniform is not the soldier-man's disgrace.
For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Chuck him out, the brute!"
But it's "Saviour of 'is country" when the guns begin to shoot;
An' it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' anything you please;
An' Tommy ain't a bloomin' fool -- you bet that Tommy sees!