I can't remember for the life of me, seeing one Black TA Infantry Officer ever. Actually, I can't remember seeing one Black TA Officer at all. Not saying that there are none, just can't remember seeing any in a dozen + years of serving.
Indian/Asian yes, but not 'Afro-Caribbean' However, I have seen plenty of Black Infantry NCO's and SNCO's including some very scary men.
PotYos , your poll is flawed , I suggest more questions rather than yes or no.
Plenty has changed and the ex Guardsman's allegations are utter balls.
We've bent over backwards to accommodate minorities. The whole country has and the Army has merely reflected that. If he wants to see more black and Chinese Guardsmen, then why doesn't he recruit them? If they don't join, he'll not see any.
But perhaps the reason is that they prefer to join the RLC and AGC. There are plenty black faces at PRB in Gutersloh.
The armed forces tend to reflect the society they recruit from, and therefore in theory therefore there is no institutional racism.
Notwithstanding this, there are always people who may project there own prejudices, but provided that this when detected is dealt with by their mates first and if it continues the chain of command then it should not be an issue.
When at the Pointy end of the business, on ops, I would suggest that most of judge by the quality of their solidering and not the race (or nationality) of those who we serve alongside.
PotYos, I really suggest changing that poll question and answer options, it's very open to abuse, and I don't feel the results will give a clear picture of what the Army has definitely tried to do to address this question.
There used to be an RAMC RSM who was afro-carribean. I vividly recall his having an "interview without coffee" with him on my first posting having spent the weekend with my (then) girlfriend in Belfast, without telling him first.
I like the BBC's use of an almost fifty year old quote in the eye catching side box.
Same with all jobs that the governments trying to get more minoroties into, if they wanted to join, they will. Giving any preferential treatment or setting targets (a labour fave) will only increase hostility.
Let people prove that they are there because they're the best, not just to reach a target.
Then it's a never ending circle and the Army will always come out as the villain no matter what it does and this sort of reporting does f*Ck all to improve the situation.
Then again it's the BBC and that's probably the intention.
I live near CAtterick and I can tell you that there is a great many black faces in Vimy Bks. The ex Guardsman should get his arrse up here and speak to some of them, or even better, go back to his old Bn and speak to those there.
I appreciate what happened to him was bloody awful but for f*ck sakes let it go and do something positive. He should get over himslef and bin the grudge. The whole Army didn't hate him only a few arrseholes who happened to be in it at the time.
no one goes out to actively encourage whites over blacks. its the white guys walking through the doors. they are the people who want to be there. it isnt racism! its people looking at the adverts and walking into the careers centres
last time i went to a certain log regt in germany i felt like the minority... admittedly they were all commonwealth but still
I knew quite a few officers in the RAF from minority groups, including one Afro-Caribbean. I also heard of one officer in the RAF who made a racist comment and he was posted within 24 hours. What amused me were the complaints along the lines "we're always getting grabbed for PR stuff and photocalls".
Over 10 years ago, in my TA unit, there was at least one member of a neo-Nazi group. This was an open secret and I suspect that nowadays they would be given the heave-ho.
In short, no I don't believe the British Army (or sister services) are institutionally racist - although in the past the racist attitudes of society in general were reflected more strongly - but every organisation has its bigots. The excellent "Dusty Warriors" by Richard Holmes (Regt Col of PWRR) mentions many Foreign and Commonwealth soldiers from nations such as Fiji.
Also worthy of note that our most recent VC recipient isn't white. The British Army used be mainly white because Britain was made up from mostly white people. As the population changed, so did the army. The UK is home to blacks, whites, indians, asians, gays, lesbians, neo-nazis and extremists of many kinds. The British Army will always represent a cross section of society.
I agree with the majority of posts on this thread, there is no colour bar any more in the Army. The last remnants of it disappeared in the 90's.
The Armed Forces recruit from all parts and levels of Society. At the moment, the UK is approximately 93-94% white, a figure that is reflected pretty much across the Army.
Until the mass recruitment of Commonwealth citizens to fill the gaps in many Regts and Corps, the percentage of black and other ethnic minorities was even lower, particularly in those Infantry and Cavalry Regts that recruited primarily away from the major urban areas in which most minorities live. As we recruited more, then it was only natural for the high quality individuals to get promoted.
As the numbers of ethnic minority personnel serving in the Army rises, then so will the proportion of those in senior positions. We already have a muslim Rear Admiral, so it is only a matter of time before we have a General who is from a non-white background. The colour bar is gone and good riddance to it.
Agree Invicta. I have served with $hite whites and decent black guys and vice versa. Look at young Beharry, fair play to him what a great example. We lost a a guy from Fiji in the R Irish last week. It's good to see diversity and I know of some Olympic standard black guys that are great ambassadors. I also have seen stroppy ambulance chasers that looked for racism for a Â£Â£ claim, but we get white ambulance chasers as well. Thank goodness we promote and recruit on ability, yes there will always be ignorant racists in the firm but they will not get promoted. It's a very fluid and moving machine we have and if you look at young fit guy from Fiji who is at the sharp end and compare him to a fat overweight smoker of a thick uneducated white chav scum RLC blanket stacker who do you want on your side ?