The Western military are clueless about conflict! Fighting talk or true?

of course, this is very much a non-woke individual's view of "woke", exaggerating some or all of the aspects so as to minimise and reduce some fairly interesting thoughts on how we should address the past etc.
Guilty as charged.
The challenge with addressing the past is that UK's view can trend towards the myopic and negative, often missing that in the wider picture, the basic building blocks of the UK make us different for the better. for a mostly Anglican country, there is a real taste for catholic self-flagellation

We seem to scrabble around for one or two historical incidents and use those to condemn a whole society.
The recent Peterloo film by Mike Leigh was quite typical, 18 dead from a low level commander screwing up by delegating edged weapons/livestock/pedestrian segregation and crowd control and its "our Sharpeville and Hillsborough" all in one.
That we have to go so far back should be an indicator we're not all bad*.

In France one one only has to go back to 1961, when the CRS and police drowned a couple of hundred Algerians in the Seine and kept denying it happened until 2012.



*[cough, cough Amritsar, Batang Kali, Boer war camps, etc etc]
 

Yarra

Old-Salt
Excellent post by OP. We are in the foothills of Cold War 2 (++). This requires a full spectrum capability, including the ability to mount credible disruptive Ops at the extreme RoA. It also means a credible long term plan, working with our closest and most credible allies, as well as others with aligned interests. Let's just hope that the UK's new Gov are serious adults. Cos' that what we will need.

Max Hastings is a has been.
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
'Wokeness' is not interested in understanding history, it's about creating a narrative of the past that can be used for social and political control in the present and the future - mainly by weaponising perceived guilt to silence dissent and demonise sections of society they construe as a threat - white, middle class males being an obvious group.

As Orwell wrote: "Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past".

The sooner people 'wake up' to the fact that the 'Woke' are a deeply unpleasant collection of the ignorant, the intolerant and the extreme, and who come with a very definite agenda, the better for everyone.
 
'Wokeness' is not interested in understanding history, it's about creating a narrative of the past that can be used for social and political control in the present and the future - mainly by weaponising perceived guilt to silence dissent and demonise sections of society they construe as a threat - white, middle class males being an obvious group.

As Orwell wrote: "Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past".

The sooner people 'wake up' to the fact that the 'Woke' are a deeply unpleasant collection of the ignorant, the intolerant and the extreme, and who come with a very definite agenda, the better for everyone.
Of course the counter claim could be that white men have systematically rewritten history so as to emphasise their contributions and negated (or removed) anyone else's contributions.

Perhaps instead of knee-jerking to defend your own positions, it might be worthwhile and educating to engage with the arguments and understanding why they might have such a point of view...
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
Of course the counter claim could be that white men have systematically rewritten history so as to emphasise their contributions and negated (or removed) anyone else's contributions.

Perhaps instead of knee-jerking to defend your own positions, it might be worthwhile and educating to engage with the arguments and understanding why they might have such a point of view...
So, in your view, the appropriate counter to the possible manipulation and misrepresentation of history is to manipulate and misrepresent history but in a different way? You're even more baffled than usual.

Why don't you read as much Orwell as you can and then you'll at least have some basic grasp of the issues involved and why people might wish to weaponise culture. The promotion of 'woke' history and trying to turn every aspect of history into some sort of morality play has nothing to do with intellectual rigour.

Further, to anyone with even a slight degree of intellectual curiosity and at least a passing acquaintance with a decent bookshop, the writing of history is not the exclusive preserve of white men.

This chap was hardly an imperial apologist and he wrote one of the best biographies of Clive that I've come across Nirad C. Chaudhuri - Wikipedia in which he specifically criticises those who dismissed reports by the East India Company as being driven by racism - pointing out that they were written by people intent on making money and who could be ruined by misinformation. That's the sort of acumen, analysis, understanding and objectivity that quality practitioners bring to the historical discipline.

The likes of Antonia Fraser would be surprised that you didn't consider her to be an historian while arguably one of the best works on the British Empire was written by someone who is famously transgender.

You have much reading to do but if any other massively racist and sexist over-generalisations occur to you meantime, do share.
 
I have just received this book for review do hopefully we will have a review on Arrse fairly soon.
Did it ever get reviewed here AY.

I checked reviews back to last April and can find no trace of a review.
 
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Auld-Yin

ADC
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Reviews Editor
Did it ever get reviewed here AY.

I checked reviews back to last April and can find no trace of a review.
Looks like this one has slipped by me and I have not chased up the reviewer. Doubt we will get it now but I will check.
 
You missed a rather more obvious and recent one, that actually happened in the UK.
If you say Hillsborough was a Thatcher-ite plot, you win a free copy of the Sun....

Rollestone? Battle of the Bean Field? Orgreave? Bloody Sunday*?


*though why doesn't Ballymurphy get the same coverage?
 
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If you say Hillsborough was a Thatcher-ite plot, you win a free copy of the Sun....

Rollestone? Battle of the Bean Field? Orgreave? Bloody Sunday*?


*though why doesn't Ballymurphy get the same coverage?
No, Hillsborough was not what I had in mind at all. It amazes me how many people reach for a tragic crush at a sports stadium when looking for a modern comparison with Peterloo. The Guardian had three big articles last year on the bicentenary and each one of them made the Hillsborough comparison.

If you want to compare an instance where British troops killed a dozen or more British subjects demanding their basic civil rights on the streets of a provincial British city in modern times there is a rather more obvious comparison.

You cited it, and it certainly wasn't the relatively minor incidents of Orgreave or the Battle of the Bean Field.
 

Yokel

LE
How did Woke culture become part of this thread? Anyway - surely both Woke and anti Woke (WTF do these terms mean?) are attempts to close down the debate and prevent a proper exploration of history or contemporary issues?

Surely any work should be judged solely on academic or artistic merit?

Part of being Western is the ability to accept our shortcomings and shortcomings in the past, whilst holding onto the good things.
 
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Its highly dependent from your military and education system. If you start initial military training in kindergarden, and have significant conscript Army, that produce trained reserves, if you allow joing the Police only after military service, if you keep big amount of weapon and vechicles at stores, you can easily double or triple your Army in a few weeks. Russian actual army is 0,9 millions of soldiers, first line reserve - 2,5 millions, second line reserve - 31 millions.
Yes, but civilised countries use their school system to educate their future citizens.
I really can't see the utility of using taxpayers money to train a future pool of rapists and war criminals from the creche.
 
How did Woke culture become part of this thread? Anyway - surely both Woke and anti Woke (WTF do these terms mean?) are attempts to close down the debate and prevent a proper exploration of history or contemporary issues?

Surely any work should be judged solely on academic or artistic merit?

Part of being Western is the ability to accept our shortcomings and shortcomings in the past, whilst holding onto the good things?
Bear with me, threading together 2 or 3 linked concepts here!

Referring back to the book that kicked off this thread, woke/anti-woke and its surrounding all consuming debate is a significant weakness in western society, and is vulnerable to a range of sub-threshold strategies.
If a standard has been set that armed forces are to meet, constantly picking at irreducible faults within them will inevitable affect the will to fight. Not sure if sun tzu/psyops is more appropriate here.

Resource scarcity, be it physical minerals, commercial access or information domination is a key driver to some pretty big players.
If you take Verhofstadt's proposition that we are again in an age of conflict between empires, where mass vs mass will be decisive, that will to fight as part of a cohesive Alliance or coalition; to wield that mass, despite losses and to persevere will be key. The Tet offensive lesson ("Even Cronkite is saying the war is lost") still is valid.

The 21st century is likely to be dominated by China and India. Of these, China is in the process of pacifying/re-educating 3 million Uihgurs in Xinjiang whose only sin is to be astride the end of the CPEC corridor and therefore a possible speed bump to BRI's success. Note, possible speed bump. If China was all diversity friendly, Xinjiang's strengths would be incorporated, not eradicated.

This and the debt traps that other countries are getting into reduce the manoeuvre space available to either counter or slow it.
Opportunities are missed regularly to counter or stem the slow spread of one of the most racially driven globalisation campaigns ever.

Unless "woke" can be translated into effective economic or military strength to address these strategic challenges to what is left of western hegemony then giving it more than lip service is not to our advantage.
 
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No, Hillsborough was not what I had in mind at all. It amazes me how many people reach for a tragic crush at a sports stadium when looking for a modern comparison with Peterloo. The Guardian had three big articles last year on the bicentenary and each one of them made the Hillsborough comparison.

If you want to compare an instance where British troops killed a dozen or more British subjects demanding their basic civil rights on the streets of a provincial British city in modern times there is a rather more obvious comparison.

You cited it, and it certainly wasn't the relatively minor incidents of Orgreave or the Battle of the Bean Field.
Minor thread drift
Interesting about a Bloody Sunday blindspot, it appears in this article as well.


France

A central theme of fascism is a love of violence against ideological opponents, and so a visitor from outer space with a vague understanding of our human political philosophy would probably conclude that there was only one fascist state in the EU — France, where the brutality of the police is on a scale that would be unfathomable in England.

Among the recent victims of the gleefully violent French police is a teenager who lost an eye in Strasbourg and an elderly woman in Marseilles who died from her injuries after being hit by a rubber bullet. Just this month prosecutors launched a probe after a video appeared to show a policeman firing point-blank at protestors with a riot control gun.

France is quite far down from Britain in the Freedom International rating, and treats minorities like Roma in a way that would do more than embarrass liberal Brits.

Right-wingers often complain that the horrific behaviour of the French police towards the gilets jaunes has received scant coverage in the BBC; certainly if Hungary or Poland treated their citizens like that, I’m pretty sure it would be on our news more. But then France has always been a politically violent country.

The last mass murder of protesters in England occurred in 1819, when 18 people were killed by authorities in Manchester; in France police in Paris killed up to three hundred unarmed protesters in 1961.

Had anything even vaguely comparable happened during the US Civil Rights era it would have been the subject of about 500 films and even my children in an English primary school would now be learning about it now. But then Anglo liberals are fascinated with the Anglo world; not so much by the continent.

France is different to England, in some ways far more traditional; for example, the same-sex marriage campaign there was opposed by enormous protests, while, like many continental countries, it has a 12-week limit for abortion, when even talk of a 20 weeks-limit would have the Anglo commentariat dressing up in those Handmaid’s Tale outfits.



I wonder if it's the support to the civil power/police element bit that makes it an exception/blindspot?
 

Oyibo

LE
No, Hillsborough was not what I had in mind at all. It amazes me how many people reach for a tragic crush at a sports stadium when looking for a modern comparison with Peterloo. The Guardian had three big articles last year on the bicentenary and each one of them made the Hillsborough comparison.

If you want to compare an instance where British troops killed a dozen or more British subjects demanding their basic civil rights on the streets of a provincial British city in modern times there is a rather more obvious comparison.

You cited it, and it certainly wasn't the relatively minor incidents of Orgreave or the Battle of the Bean Field.
That's the narrative that Sinn Fein use. Let's re-write history again about 1972 again shall we, and mention it at every opportunity?
 
Minor thread drift
Interesting about a Bloody Sunday blindspot, it appears in this article as well.


France

A central theme of fascism is a love of violence against ideological opponents, and so a visitor from outer space with a vague understanding of our human political philosophy would probably conclude that there was only one fascist state in the EU — France, where the brutality of the police is on a scale that would be unfathomable in England.

Among the recent victims of the gleefully violent French police is a teenager who lost an eye in Strasbourg and an elderly woman in Marseilles who died from her injuries after being hit by a rubber bullet. Just this month prosecutors launched a probe after a video appeared to show a policeman firing point-blank at protestors with a riot control gun.

France is quite far down from Britain in the Freedom International rating, and treats minorities like Roma in a way that would do more than embarrass liberal Brits.

Right-wingers often complain that the horrific behaviour of the French police towards the gilets jaunes has received scant coverage in the BBC; certainly if Hungary or Poland treated their citizens like that, I’m pretty sure it would be on our news more. But then France has always been a politically violent country.

The last mass murder of protesters in England occurred in 1819, when 18 people were killed by authorities in Manchester; in France police in Paris killed up to three hundred unarmed protesters in 1961.

Had anything even vaguely comparable happened during the US Civil Rights era it would have been the subject of about 500 films and even my children in an English primary school would now be learning about it now. But then Anglo liberals are fascinated with the Anglo world; not so much by the continent.

France is different to England, in some ways far more traditional; for example, the same-sex marriage campaign there was opposed by enormous protests, while, like many continental countries, it has a 12-week limit for abortion, when even talk of a 20 weeks-limit would have the Anglo commentariat dressing up in those Handmaid’s Tale outfits.



I wonder if it's the support to the civil power/police element bit that makes it an exception/blindspot?
Yes, that is funny, police firing riot guns at protestors in France? Oh my, the humanity, that would never happen in the UK. Although in fairness the writer does specify England.
 
Yes, that is funny, police firing riot guns at protestors in France? Oh my, the humanity, that would never happen in the UK. Although in fairness the writer does specify England.
They didn't fire riot guns (as they didn 't really have them in 1961) they pushed the protestors into the Seine on orders of the chief of police and let them drown.

E2A: riot guns prior to the British inventing the Rubber Bullet in 1970 were predominantly shotguns. So if the French did have riot guns, then they were not automatically less than lethal
Shot size used depended on a variety of criteria.
 
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Yokel

LE
Bear with me, threading together 2 or 3 linked concepts here!

Referring back to the book that kicked off this thread, woke/anti-woke and its surrounding all consuming debate is a significant weakness in western society, and is vulnerable to a range of sub-threshold strategies.
If a standard has been set that armed forces are to meet, constantly picking at irreducible faults within them will inevitable affect the will to fight. Not sure if sun tzu/psyops is more appropriate here.

Resource scarcity, be it physical minerals, commercial access or information domination is a key driver to some pretty big players.
If you take Verhofstadt's proposition that we are again in an age of conflict between empires, where mass vs mass will be decisive, that will to fight as part of a cohesive Alliance or coalition; to wield that mass, despite losses and to persevere will be key. The Tet offensive lesson ("Even Cronkite is saying the war is lost") still is valid.

The 21st century is likely to be dominated by China and India. Of these, China is in the process of pacifying/re-educating 3 million Uihgurs in Xinjiang whose only sin is to be astride the end of the CPEC corridor and therefore a possible speed bump to BRI's success. Note, possible speed bump. If China was all diversity friendly, Xinjiang's strengths would be incorporated, not eradicated.

This and the debt traps that other countries are getting into reduce the manoeuvre space available to either counter or slow it.
Opportunities are missed regularly to counter or stem the slow spread of one of the most racially driven globalisation campaigns ever.

Unless "woke" can be translated into effective economic or military strength to address these strategic challenges to what is left of western hegemony then giving it more than lip service is not to our advantage.
Sorry for the delay. I suspect that you would agree we need to rebuild the public's instincts to do things for themselves and indeed the skills to do so? We also need to let people understand what exactly is so valuable about Western political and legal systems.

People need shaking out of apathy and learn that standing up for things is admirable.
 
The 21st century is likely to be dominated by China and India. Of these, China is in the process of pacifying/re-educating 3 million Uihgurs in Xinjiang whose only sin is to be astride the end of the CPEC corridor and therefore a possible speed bump to BRI's success.
Their only sin is to regularly slaughter their non-kinsman neighbours - three large scale massacres (at least) since 1992 alone.

If they weren't so bomby/stabby/shooty, they'd pose no threat to the major communications links planned to run through Xinjiang to Central Asia.
 

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