Sunday, June 16, 2013
Muslims must reject jihad
Pat Condell addresses British Muslims
Ministers refuse to mark Waterloo: Campaigners say Government do not want to celebrate 200th anniversary in case they offend France
It is often regarded as the British Army’s greatest military victory. Led into battle by the Duke of Wellington, UK troops routed Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo, a triumph ushering in almost a century of peace and stability in Europe.
But the Government is refusing to mark the battle’s 200th anniversary in 2015 amid suspicions it does not want to offend France.
That decision is in stark contrast to Belgium - where the clash took place. The government in Brussels is spending at least £20million on commemorative events, including restoring the battlefield.
Instead, there will only be ‘initiatives’ at military museums and ‘some commemorative activity’ at the Duke’s former homes.
The decision also contrasts with the major events organised to mark the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade in 2007 which involved an apology on behalf of the nation by then prime minister Tony Blair.
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey has told the bicentenary campaign group Waterloo 200 that he will not help. The Government has also declined to hand over a single penny for any events.
James Morrow, secretary of Waterloo 200, which is organising commemorations including a service at St Paul’s and a re-enactment of the Waterloo Despatch, where British troops travelled with three captured French troops to London to tell the King of victory, said he was ‘disappointed’. He said: ‘The Government has given us its blessing but it is difficult to know why they are not being overly supportive. ‘They have encouraged us but they have not got behind us.
‘The Belgian government has spent millions on events to commemorate the battle but we have been given zilch, zippo, nothing. I think it’s very disappointing.
‘The Battle of Waterloo was a milestone in European history which ended over 20 years of conflict in Europe. ‘We can’t let the 200th anniversary pass without marking it and learning lessons about why it was so important.’
Ian Fletcher, editor of the Waterloo Association’s journal, said: ‘When you look at some of the crazy ideas that the Government wastes money on, you would have thought they might have found some for the Waterloo commemorations. It’s an appalling indictment of where their priorities lie.’
David Green, director of the Civitas think-tank, said: ‘This is very unsatisfactory, especially if the reason is not to insult the French or because celebrating the victory would be seen as bad or triumphalist. ‘It appears to be ludicrous hyper-sensitivity.
‘Waterloo was a battle of the most immense importance. Britain was fighting a tyrant who had conquered Europe. It was a momentous moment that should be commemorated. We should be shouting it from the rooftops.’
In a message to Waterloo 200, the 8th Duke of Wellington said: ‘I am often asked whether we should not now, in these days of European unity, forget Waterloo and the battles of the past.
Napoleon Bonaparte, French Emperor, whose power was broken at Waterloo
‘My reply is, history cannot be forgotten and we need to be reminded of the bravery of the thousands of men from many nations who fought and died in a few hours and why their gallantry and sacrifice ensured peace in Europe for 50 years.’
Waterloo was fought a few miles south of Brussels on June 18, 2015.
Wellington described his own troops as ‘very weak and ill-equipped, and a very inexperienced staff’.
Britain and its allies had 68,000 men, and were joined by about 45,000 Prussians on the evening of the battle. The French had 72,000 troops.
Heavy rain had turned the battlefield into a swamp. The scale of casualties was staggering - around one in four men were killed.
But the victory brought about the final destruction of Napoleon’s army and the end of his bloody reign as dictator.
People worried about immigration and EU are not 'Little Englanders'
David Cameron today attacked Labour for dismissing people worried about immigration and the over-bearing power of Brussels as 'Little Englanders'.
The Prime Minister used a major speech on Britain's place in the world to condemn the other 'wrongheaded approach' of people who embrace globalisation 'so enthusiastically that they lose sight of the national interest'.
He said: 'We’re familiar with their frankly patronising approach to those who may disagree. '"You’re a Little Englander" they say. "You don’t get the modern world".
'This approach – largely pursued under the last Government – didn’t feel too good for ordinary people – and frankly it didn’t do too much for our competitiveness either.
'We saw mass, uncontrolled immigration changing communities in a way people didn’t feel comfortable with, putting huge pressure on public services.
'We saw large bureaucracies like the EU having a huge impact on our way of life in a way no one voted for, while at the same time burdening our businesses with red tape and regulation.
'We saw, fundamentally, a political class too easily seduced by the rewards of globalisation – and not alert enough to the risks.'
However, Mr Cameron also insisted that remaining part of the European Union is vital to Britain being able to compete in the world.
He vowed to take on people who adopt a 'stop the world, I want to get off' approach and ignore the threat posed by 'leaner, fitter countries'.
He claimed opponents to reforms of the ‘bloated welfare system’ and underperforming state schools are 'in denial'.
The Prime Minister lay out three key goals - creating a world-class education system, reforming benefits and rebalancing the debt-fuelled economy - which he described as ‘national weaknesses’.
In a bullish speech ahead of the G8 summit in Northern Ireland next week, he revealed ‘ruthless’ plans to ‘turn our country around and give all our people the best chance of success’.
Taking on welfare spending, after a week in which the Labour party finally committed to caps on benefits, and economists predicted that austerity could last another decade, he said: ‘We have identified, very clearly, our key areas of national weakness compared to the rest of the world.
‘One – our debt-fuelled, unbalanced economy. Two – our bloated welfare system. Three – our under-performing education system.
‘These are the priorities that define and drive our domestic agenda. A stronger economy. Welfare that works. A world-class education system. And we are pursuing them with ruthless ambition for everyone in this country.’
He attacked Labour’s record on education, and say a ‘sense of opportunity’ has been lacking for too long for children in the worst performing schools.
Britain’s national interests are a battle ‘on two fronts’, with the need to both competing at home and stand up for British values abroad, and every government department will be focused on the global race, he said.
He also set a goal to make Britain one of the top five places in the world to do business and the number one country to do business in Europe in the next three years.
'When your prosperity is won in far-flung places, when your fortunes are disproportionately affected by what happens beyond your borders then your national interest is not just about standing up for yourself – but standing up for what’s right, and standing for something more.
‘At the UN. The Commonwealth. NATO. The WTO. The G8. The G20. And yes – the EU. Membership of these organisations is not national vanity – it is in our national interest’, he said.
‘The fact is that it is in international institutions that many of the rules of the game are set on trade, tax and regulation. When a country like ours is affected profoundly by those rules, I want us to have a say on them.
‘That doesn’t mean supinely going with the flow…far from it. At the European Union we are prepared to stand up for Britain’s interests with resolve and tenacity.
'In Europe, actions speak louder than words. This is about boldly pursuing our interests - not by withdrawing from the world but engaging with it.’
Mr Cameron boasted of how he secured a cut in the EU's seven-year budget, removing Britain from the Eurozone bailout mechanism and vetoing an EU Treaty.
But Mr Cameron argued a single market of 500million people in Europe would be a ‘huge advantage in this world’ if it worked properly and was not bureaucratic.
He added: ‘The EU is a way off that goal yet’ which is why he is seeking to negotiate a new membership deal for Britain and put it to a referendum.
He highlighted investment in apprenticeships which are equivalent of a degree, and ‘re-writing the benefits system so that work actually pays.’
He went on: ‘I have a very clear vision of the country we are building. It’s one where there is a sense of opportunity that was lacking for too long.
'Where children in all our schools – in the roughest areas, the places that were once written off are encouraged to dream, inspired to learn and feel good about where they’re going.
‘Where those who want to work hard can get a good job, with prospects and a decent wage each month - enough for a home to raise their family in, enough to feel that things are getting better.
'As a parent what you want more than anything is to be able to look at your children and know they will grow up and be able to fulfil what they were born to be.
‘We tell them that if they try, they can make something of their lives. That is what we teach our children. And we need to build that country for them. Where everyone who works hard can get on. Where effort is rewarded. Where we pull together to make life better.’
Diversity at work
An image has emerged showing a Wendy’s server filling his mouth with ice cream directly from the nozzle of a Frosty machine.
The photo is just the latest in a series of unpleasant images to go viral showing fast food employees doing things that their employers wouldn't approve off.
The only certainty with this PR disaster is when the fast food chain catches the culprit he will undoubtedly get sacked for doing untold damage to the chain’s brand.
The photograph surfaced on Reddit on Wednesday along with the words: ‘I was going to buy a frosty from Wendy's until I saw the employee do this’.
The photograph appears to have been taken behind the counter which suggests that the person taking it was also an employee.
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, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN (Note that EYE ON BRITAIN has regular posts on the reality of socialized medicine). My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.