Thursday, October 02, 2008


Justice for the Gurkhas at last

It's a disgrace that the Gurkhas had to fight the leftist British government for this. Only reality-defying and military-hating Leftists could argue that the Gurkhas "did not have strong ties to the UK"

I remember once when I was in Britain, probably in 1977, seeing these small Asian men in green caps on guard at Buckingham palace. I expected tall men in red jackets and bearskin hats. It was very surprising to see until one realized that the guard that day were Gurkhas. It is only the great affection felt towards the Gurkhas by most British people that gave them the honour of standing guard at Britain's most important ceremonial post. The one thing that we can be grateful about in the disgraceful affair described below is that the Gurkhas saw very clearly that the British government was the problem, not the British people.

It is difficult to imagine a more racist policy in this day and age than the British government claim that it OK for Gurkhas to die for Britain but not OK for them to live in Britain

Former Gurkha soldiers from Nepal won the right to settle in Britain on Tuesday, in what their lawyers hailed as an "historic victory" for the veteran fighters. Ending a two-year legal battle, the High Court in London ruled in their favour in a test case affecting some 2000 Gurkhas who retired from the British army before 1997.

"Today is a wonderful, terrific victory day for the Gurkhas of Nepal," said their lawyer, Martin Howe. "It's a victory for common sense. It's a victory for fairness. ... It's a day that will go down in history for the Gurkhas." Until now, only Gurkhas who retired after 1997, when their base was moved from Hong Kong to England, had the automatic right to settle in Britain. All other foreign soldiers in the British army have a right to settle in Britain after four years of service anywhere in the world.

Around 200,000 Gurkhas fought for Britain in World Wars I and II, and about 3500 currently serve in the British army, including in Afghanistan and Iraq. More than 45,000 have died serving Britain. Judge Nicholas Blake underlined the "moral debt of honour" and gratitude which Britain has to the Gurkhas for their long military service, wounds sustained in battle, conspicuous acts of bravery and loyalty to the crown.

Howe said the case had seen "a torrential outpouring of affection and concern" from ordinary British people - and called on the government to allow the affected Gurkhas in immediately. "We call today on our government to respect the views of the people of Britain, to respect this judgment fully and immediately allow the men and women affected by this judgment to come into this country," he said.

Subas Gurung, 47, a former staff sergeant in the Gurkha Transport Regiment, told AFP outside court that the British government's stance was "very unfair." "I'm very, very happy to hear the verdict," said the Gulf War veteran who was decorated with the British Empire Medal for his service peacekeeping in Cyprus in 1991. "All the soldiers who retired before 1997 who were badly affected now can join with us which is very, very good news for me and people like me who are back in Nepal. "We joined together, we worked together, we should be able to get the right treatment together as a group," he said. He added: "The British people really supported this case. If they had not supported so well, this day probably would not have come. "I would really like to thank the British public supporting us and recognising the value of the soldiers who have been in service over 200 years."

British actress Joanna Lumley, who has been a key supporter of the campaign, welcomed the judgment but called for a change in the law to cement it. "It gives our country a chance to right a great wrong, and to wipe out a national shame that has stained us all," said the actress, whose father fought alongside the Gurkhas. "It's not over yet. Until the laws are changed, fundamentally rewritten, it's not over yet."

The Gurkhas, who are renowned for their bravery and ferocious fighting skills, have also struggled for many years for pension rights equal to those of their British army counterparts. Three Gurkhas who lost a court challenge on pensions in July are taking their case to the Court of Appeal in October.


British local government tyranny


CAMPAIGNERS have condemned a council's plan to fine residents $10,000 for leaving wheelie bins out, branding it an "abuse of power" and "blatant moneymaking". Under the scheme residents would face a penalty of $200 if their bin was still on the street the day after it had been emptied. But if householders fail to pay up within 14 days they could face court action - where they may be fined 50 times more.

East Staffordshire Borough Council has been given permission to issue the notices to those who persistently leave bins out. They will be introduced in Burton-on-Trent in the coming weeks.

Taxpayers' Alliance chief executive Matthew Elliott said: "This is quite staggering and completely over the top. "It is a blatant attempt by the council to make money rather than enforce a law reasonably. "I am sure there are many scourges in communities which would be better addressed than leaving a wheelie bin outside your home for more than 24 hours. "This is just the kind of abuse of local authority power that makes people resent councils."

Christine Melsom, founder of council tax campaign group IsItfair, said: "A lot of people find it hard to stick to a deadline, especially if they are going out to work. "People are trying hard to be responsible with their rubbish. This is heavy handed."

A council spokesman said: "The starting date for the scheme is imminent. We have everything in place and wardens will be the eyes on the streets to enforce it. "Bins should only be put out on the evening before refuse collection is due and returned to private land on the same day." Town hall bosses say left-out bins present a danger to pedestrians, especially those with impaired vision or disabilities.


More stupid and uncaring bureaucracy

Stalker Barry George has been living at a run-down hotel used as a hostel for vulnerable women, The Sun can reveal. The weirdo tried to strike up friendships with battered wives and destitute single mums he met there.

George, 48, was cleared at a retrial of murdering BBC Crimewatch star Jill Dando after serving eight years for her killing. He stalked hundreds of women in the past - and has convictions for attempted rape and indecent assault. Yet he was placed in the hotel by a council while waiting for more suitable accommodation.

Last night Women's Aid branded the move "absolutely appalling". The charity - which works to end domestic violence - added: "These women should be put first and that does not seem to be happening."

Loner George approached women residents inside the hotel and chatted to them in the street. One said: "I can't believe a man who has been convicted of trying to rape someone and stalked lots of women would be housed in a place like this.

Another source said of the hotel: "It is mainly full of single mums on the waiting list for a council home. They want to be somewhere they feel safe, not in a hotel next to a stalker." George was put up at the bed and breakfast joint in Hackney, East London, despite allegedly being paid $100,000 for his story by a Sunday newspaper. He is also in line to receive up to $1,500,000 in compensation.

It was reported he had been staying with a relative but Hackney council placed him in the $608-a-week hotel - now being refurbished. He was one of only three men in the 40-bedroom establishment. George was put there under a Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangement, designed to supervise violent and serious sex offenders.

As well as fears he might start stalking women again, there were concerns for his safety. He was moved from the hotel last Thursday after a worried resident spoke to the manager. Neither Hackney council nor the Ministry of Justice - responsible for MAPPAs - would comment.


Britain's Keystone Kops again

Police confiscate walking stick from retired teacher, 78, because it is an 'offensive weapon'. And then they can't even find it when they want to give it back! They are as incompetent as they are lacking in commonsense

They must have known he was a troublemaker the moment they saw him. With his white hair, wax jacket and glasses, 78-year-old Philip Clarkson Webb clearly ticked all the boxes any eagle-eyed policemen would mark as 'danger'. And as he shuffled along the pavement towards them there was one thing above all they deemed to pose a threat - his walking stick. The officers surrounded the retired classics teacher and informed him the 3ft wooden cane was an 'offensive weapon' and had to be confiscated. Mr Clarkson Webb duly handed it over, but the farce did not end there.

When he later went to collect it from his local police station in Southborough, Kent, with his police receipt, he was told it had been misplaced. It took a string of phone calls for Kent Police to finally admit they had lost it and to offer to buy him a brand new one.

Mr Clarkson Webb was caught up by overzealous policing at a climate camp environmental demonstration in Kingsnorth last month. He was not one of the activists at the climate camp but merely paid a visit to attend a seminar on trade energy quotas. The police stopped him and confiscated his walking stick as he approached the site where dozens of policemen, some in riot gear, were stationed.

Mr Clarkson Webb said: "At the bottom of the lane Kent Police officers confiscated my stick as an offensive weapon but gave me a receipt and promised to return it. "But later when I produced my receipt and asked for the stick it was curtly refused. "Since that date there have been three different telephone conversations. They've lost the stick even though it had a numbered receipt."

Mr Clarkson Webb, who is currently using his spare stick, said: "What this shows is that the efficiency of the police leaves a lot to be desired. "In total the policing for this climate camp cost the taxpayer 6 million pounds. It was a disgraceful waste of taxpayers' money."

Medway MP Bob Marshall Andrews criticised the police for being "provocative and heavy handed" and said the vast majority of the people at the climate camp were "thoroughly decent people".

Kent Police Assistant Chief Constable Allyn Thomas has apologised. He said: "We are sorry we have not been able to return Mr Clarkson Webb's stick and we have apologised to him directly. "During the climate camp there was a considerable amount of activity and our officers and others from around the country who supported Kent Police had to make swift decisions as part of policing the protestors. "Any complaints that are made will be looked into thoroughly."



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.


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