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Can a Black Man or Female become a General in the UK Army?

#1
Just been reading the other thread on this forum about whether a black man or female could become US President. The question had me wondering whether a Black Man or Female could (or has) make Major General or above in the British Army?

The clear answer is Yes, but has it already happened or if not is it likely to happen?

We have had female and possibly coloured (stand to be corrected on that one) Chief Constables but not sure.
 
#2
Providing it's done on merit then why not? As long as the appointment isn't made to tick some PC demographic box.

It's life or death stuff and any affirmative action to fast track an inexperienced candidate could be disasterous.

If someone gets there on hard work and ability however then good luck to them I say.
 
#4
All down to demographics I guess.

I did once see a female Brigadier in the late 1980's and a male coloured full Colonel (RLC I think) but nothing above that.
 
#5
afghanman said:
The question had me wondering whether a Black Man or Female could (or has) make Major General or above in the British Army?

The clear answer is Yes, but has it already happened or if not is it likely to happen?
I think it happened, twenty years ago - Brigadier WRAC got promoted to Major-General.

I remember playing in a Pipe Band at Depot WRAC at the farewell for Director WRAC, on her promotion, in 1986 or so. Maj-Gen Helen Meechie?

(I may have mentioned the incident in the "OTC Skills and Drills" thread... I was very, very...)
 
#7
I remember reading an article once that stated that the glass ceiling for females in the armed forces was still very much in place - we will not see a female General because a General needs to have combat experience, and of course, women are not permitted to take combat roles.

The Army - equal opportunities, only, you know... Not.
 
#9
The gunners had a black colonel in the nineties, who was additionally a Barnardos boy (I believe)...might have been half-colonel.

There have been black general officers in the British Army, including Ras Tafari himself!

I am minded to share this story at this point...

Court Martial in the eighties: Prosecutor to Irish corporal on witness stand

"Cpl Murphy, in your own words please tell us of the events of the evening of the 12th July."

"Sorr, I was the vedette commander at the Tidworth vedette. At twenty hundred hours I saw a car containing four wogs..."

President interrupts

"Corporal Murphy! Are you aware that one of those men was HM the Sultan of Brunei; who holds the honoarary rank of Lieutenant in the Irish guards?"

"Sorry sorr! I was not so."

"Carry on with your evidence"

"Yes sorr. I was the vedette commander at the Tidworth vedette. At twenty hundred hours I saw a car containing HM Lieutenant the Sultan of Brunei and three other wogs..."
 
#10
[/quote]I remember reading an article once that stated that the glass ceiling for females in the armed forces was still very much in place - we will not see a female General because a General needs to have combat experience, and of course, women are not permitted to take combat roles.
but the same glass ceiling applies to men in non combat roles so it is equal in that sense
 

Biped

LE
Book Reviewer
#11
Does it make a difference? Do they make better officers by virtue of the colour of their skin?

If the colour of their skin has no effect on their capabilities as leaders, why ask the question?

You might also, and equally validly ask the question: Do Pte's ever make the top ranks of the Army . . .
 
#12
afghanman said:
Just been reading the other thread on this forum about whether a black man or female could become US President. The question had me wondering whether a Black Man or Female could (or has) make Major General or above in the British Army?

The clear answer is Yes, but has it already happened or if not is it likely to happen?

We have had female and possibly coloured (stand to be corrected on that one) Chief Constables but not sure.
There is already a Rear Admiral of asian descent in the RN. I can't remember his name, but ask on rum ration if needs be.

Mike Fuller, the Chief Constable of Kent is of afro-carribean descent. He was appointed on merit and is apparently doing an OK job. He does not appear to have a political agenda of any sort. He came to the Kent job from the Met and some of the coppers that I know think that he is a potential Met Police Commissioner.
 

Biped

LE
Book Reviewer
#13
Well pointed out.

Those that get to the top ranks on merit alone are respected, and expected to go further.

Those (and we know who they are, especially in the Police) who get rank through a political agenda and screaming 'racism' at every turn, will get so far and no further, and/or be shifted to a non-job where they can do no harm.
 
#14
joey_deacons_lad said:
I remember reading an article once that stated that the glass ceiling for females in the armed forces was still very much in place - we will not see a female General because a General needs to have combat experience, and of course, women are not permitted to take combat roles.
but the same glass ceiling applies to men in non combat roles so it is equal in that sense
Perhaps, but a man always has the option of transferring to a combat role, doesn't he?

'Equal in a sense' != equal.
 
#15
Biped said:
Does it make a difference? Do they make better officers by virtue of the colour of their skin?

If the colour of their skin has no effect on their capabilities as leaders, why ask the question?

You might also, and equally validly ask the question: Do Pte's ever make the top ranks of the Army . . .[/
quote]

That question has already been asked and is the subject of another thread.

The question of coloureds or females making the top echelons is another matter and it will take someone (of the ilk of Obama or H Clinton) to finally break through the 'glass' ceiling referred to earlier in this post.
 
#16
mnairb said:
In my time in, I never met a black officer, let alone served under one.
My CO is coloured, and due to leave as a full Col.

At my last unit my OC was also coloured, and we had 2 other coloured officers.

There are plenty out there, and I second Bipeds' comments, it doesn' matter colour or creed, if they are good enough, well done them.
 

BuggerAll

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#18
There are RA, RLC, AMS generals and both have plenty of women officers who could expect to become generals if the are up to it.

I know a number of black officers, indeed I even know a black female officer. I would like to believe that their careers are managed on a level playing field with their peers.

Perhaps a better measure of integration might be to look at the ethnic and gender diversity of WO2 SSM/CSM's and WO1 RSM's.
 

Biped

LE
Book Reviewer
#20
thrombo said:
Biped said:
The question was asked if a female could ever make PM . . . .
Might've been a crazy, crazy dream, but wasn't some lady called Margaret PM for a while?
Yes, I believe you are right - mind you, begs the question, was she from an ethnic minority, and if not, why not!?!?!
 

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