Darcus Howe on Race in the Military

I do not think that Baroness Scotland should remain in the position of Attorney General, and that her disregard for the legislation which she had championed when vetting for employment for what turned out to be an illegal immigrant is a principle reason for the current Labour Party not being fit for purpose (as opposed to a war which finished anywhere between four and six years ago).

I remain in disagreement with everything which Darcus Howe said when linking her arrogance of power to the increase in the foreign-born personnel in the British military. And that includes his usage of the word “the”.

Speaking of how Britain, apparently, wishes immigrants only for war, Howe insists on describing Scotland as “Dominican-born”. There is something quite vile about reminding immigrants, or even the progeny of immigrants, that they are not and never will be real members of their adopted society: even where, in the case of Scotland, they have been in this country since she was three years old. Howe, at least, arrived here in 1961 when he was 18 (three years after Scotland), so has arguably known a different society.

Contradicting his own title, Howe cites the case of Loloahi Tapui, who was employed as a housekeeper by Scotland. We are informed that Scotland has foregone the right to identify with a homogenous mass known as ‘not-white’, on her being being “promoted” to “the ruling-classes”: thus becoming a ‘wallah’, ‘kitchen toto’, ‘Uncle Tom’ or whatever term from the racial arson lexicon is being used today.

Determined to view events through the prism of the Iraqo-Afghan fault-line, Howe also states:

Firstly, the gathered throng of Afghanistan’s children at the French border were dispersed by state violence and brutality of a kind that I have never witnessed in the 50 years since I arrived in the UK.

These children are here because the British Army are visiting upon their country tons of bombs and bullets.

The same goes for Iraqis who risk their lives sliding beneath lorries in an attempt to gain entrance to the land which justified the military invasion, claiming to rescue those citizens from the rule of Saddam Hussein.

The chickens are coming home to roost.

There are myriad reasons for those Iraqis and Afghans leaving their countries to attempt to enter Britain: economic prospects; existing family networks; commonality of language. If detailed geo-political considerations, such as recent invasions of their countries were concerned, I would have thought that there would have not been noticable immigrations beforehand (there was) and the Afghans, at least, would have been just as likely to seek refuge in France who was also involved in the invasion of their country. Furthermore, it does not explain immigration from Turkey or Ghana or China or India or Tonga which Britain has not occupied for at least 50 years.

Returning to the actual touted theme of his rambling piece, Howe states:

The British Army have been quietly recruiting citizens from far away places like Tonga, from the Caribbean islands which are not yet republics – St Vincent, Grenada, Jamaica, St Lucia – to fight and die in the poppy fields of Afghanistan.

This would be the poppy cultivation which is in decline.

While the dead bodies of British soldiers are returned here in splendour, those bodies of dead soldiers from these tiny island states are shipped to their respective homes as cargo. No bugles, nor eulogies to their bravery.

If the potrayal of disregard for foreign-born soldiers is accurate, I would find this reprehensible. I am, however, highly skeptical. I appears entirely proper that bodies are returned to where the soldiers’ family reside, and it is for individual states to stage commemorations.

Following efforts by the BNP to present itself as supporting British troops by… well… comparing their respected commanding officers to Nazi war-criminals, it appears unfortunate to accuse the British military of not caring for foreign-born troops considering the praise lavished on Grenada-born Johnson Beharry.

Or Fiji-born Sergeant Talaiasi Labalaba who, with eight other SAS soldiers, held back 250 Adoo rebels at the Battle of Mirbat in Oman, 1972. Taking single-handed control of a WWII 25-pounder artillery piece, which normally required three men to operate, he fought alone before being shot dead.

A statue to him will shortly be unveiled at the SAS Regimental Herefor Headquarters.

Howe’s final words in his piece were:

Be sure of one fact, white labour, now demoralised in northern towns, will never return for jobs beneath the stairs for £6 an hour.

Nor will the children and grandchildren of immigrants who came here from the Caribbean, India or Pakistan.

Not true, as I can attest to from personal experience. There is the distinct possibility that Howe is peddling pompous, racist lies.


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