Full article: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,16949-1259336,00.html Paragraphs relevant to ARRSE: iGeneration September 13, 2004 We won't fight for our country, but we would bring back the cane By Alexandra Frean, Sam Coates and Michael Evans of THE TIMES This generation has seen British troops in Afghanistan and Iraq and they don't like it BRITAIN is becoming a nation of people no longer prepared to take up arms and to lay down their lives for Queen and country. The most extensive survey into the beliefs, fears and prejudices of Britains 18 to 30-year-olds has found that just one in five would now fight for their country unconditionally. Almost as many would not take up arms for their country under any circumstances and the vast majority of those who would make up the bulk of the Armed Forces in times of conflict would only fight if they personally agreed with the reasons for war. ..... It is the findings on the Armed Forces, however, that are likely to cause most concern amongst policy-makers. Experts said the poll provides the first clear evidence of a break with 20th-century thinking, when the idea of fighting for ones country was regarded unquestioningly as an inherent virtue. This is the first generation brought up without the spectre of the Cold War hanging over them and it appears that the exposure brought by British troop involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq has decreased support for the call to take up arms. At a time when Britains Armed Forces are deployed at full stretch around the globe, 19 per cent of the 1,004 British adults aged 18 to 30 questioned for the poll said they would not take up arms for their country under any circumstances. A further 57 per cent said they would only fight if they agreed with the reasons for the conflict. Only 22 per cent readily said they would fight for their country if called on to do so. The poll appears to be backed up by Army recruitment figures that show the Armed Forces are now under strength by at least 4,800. I cannot think of a period since the 1930s when there have been similar levels of scepticism about military action, Michael Clarke, director of the International Policy Institute at Kings College London, told The Times. Britain is safer now as a territorial entity than at any time in its history. The Armed Forces dont recruit people to fight defensive wars for the country any more, but to defend Britains economic and foreign policy interests. Patriotism no longer comes into it really. Paul Whiteley, director of the Department of Government at the University of Essex, said that the interviewees opposition to taking up arms for their country reflected the emergence of a new post-materialist value system, in which quality of life assumed a greater value than material goods. Part of that shift in thinking involves a move away from believing that the Services are important. It is not that these young people are not patriotic, its just that they see militarism as bad for society, he said. Oh my God! This is what happens when historical and traditional values are binned in the name of political correctness. Just one other point ... this article appears in the same issue of The Times which shows that the Army is among the top 10 "companies" for graduate recruitment. Not sure what this implies.