I am saddened to hear of the resignation of Johnny Mercer from his Government post of Veterans Minister.
It is one of those rare occasions where the right man was actually in the right job but I am fully behind his decision as the Conservative Government and especially Boris Johnson had informed him that they planned to stop the historic persecutions of the Northern Ireland veterans.
The whole sorry episode of the Northern Ireland troubles is still not over but to a former serving soldier, I find it abhorrent that the then Prime Minister Tony Blair gave get out of jail free cards to the terrorists who murdered loyal soldiers, police officers, prison officers, MPs, Lord Mountbatten and the innocent men, women and children who were caught in the crossfire.
To be honest I was not surprised Tony Blair had done it and the sneaky way he went about it, as this is the man who took security advice on Saddam’s WMDs from an Iraqi taxi driver. It is and always has been about the political gain for most of the people in parliament and the role they take after leaving as an MP, and it seems we can now add treachery at the feet of this Government and this parliament.
I am not saying that we should forget but why are they insisting on dragging old men through a court for something they supposedly did over 40 years ago? We are talking about men in their 70s and one of them is dying, others have given up and are now just wanting to drink themselves to a stupor and for what? What do they hope to bring from this? There cannot be justice as the victims of the terrorists have been denied it by our Government, and it is appalling to think that a British Government denied the victims any form of justice.
It will do nothing for those of us who were in the forces at the height of the trouble, as I can remember going into the Horse and Groom in Guildford and finding out its sad history. I was in Deal the week the IRA blew up the barracks and killed musicians in the Royal Marines and living in Warrington when the town was shook by a bomb, and you only have to read at the sad story of how they murdered 2 innocent children in the town on the Saturday before Mother’s day. and who were buying things for their mums. Where is the justice for those poor children? Yet, we who have been loyal servants to the Crown are just supposed to accept that the bad guys get protected and those who were sent in because the politicians had lost all control, were now to be prosecuted and persecuted on the mantle of nothing more than appeasing the terrorists and their supporters.
The Overseas Protection Bill was thrown out of the Lords again. Don’t get me wrong you only have to ask those who are currently serving and those of us who are veterans what would we want done with those who commit war crimes, and we would be the first to tell you that those who do it should go to jail and for a very long time. You see the one thing that we former soldiers are proud of us is our history in the Armed Forces, and the fact that wherever our soldiers go they are determined to turn what could be confrontational into a hearts and minds campaign, and no soldier wants to go out and kill a human being and certainly they don’t want to be in a war.
With all that in mind I find it abhorrent that the promise to protect those servicemen and indeed the way things are going women from persecution was reneged on and part of Mr Mercer’s letter was spot on…
‘We have abandoned our people in a way I simply cannot reconcile. Whilst endless plans are promised and solutions mused, veterans are being sectioned, drinking themselves to death and dying before their time because the UK Government cannot find the moral strength or courage we asked of them in bringing peace to Northern Ireland, in finding a political solution to stop these appalling injustices.’
Mr Mercer concluded: ‘I made promises on your behalf to protect them. No discernible efforts have been made to do so and I can see no prospect of this changing.’
It is hard for those of us who are Conservative voters and former veterans to think that the promises made to those who have served this country faithfully was nothing than hot air and smoke and mirrors, and whilst expected from a Labour Government never in my wildest dreams did I think it would be done under a Conservative one.
The Armed Forces are struggling to recruit as it is and one of the major reasons given is why should I fight when a bleeding hearts leftist lawyer will be waiting with the most outrageous lies, and spouting them from the comfort of their offices safe in the knowledge that they won’t have to fight for their freedoms, as people like me and Mr Points of Sue will do that and then they get what? Investigated, thrown to the wolves and more than likely end up in prison…..like Soldier A…
It is duplicitous and it is downright lying when any Government says they will protect our soldiers as none of them do. oh they talk the good talk and up until an election they are all for protecting the armed forces and when they get in nothing….not a thing infact they are liars.
Instead this Government has behaved even worse as they built up the hope in those who are old enough to be grandfathers now and then deal a blow that some will never recover from.
I think I am coming to the point where I don’t believe a word any of the politicians say anymore as it is just lies, spin and a con trick to get in, and I was a fool to even think that this Government would protect our veterans.
It was and is all lies but at least we have one MP with honour and that is Johnny Mercer but then he is a former Army officer, and having worked round officers I know they are honourable, stand by their promises and by their men and for someone like Johnny Mercer he would have expected the PM and the Government to honour that commitment, and the fact that they have deliberately chosen not too has left him with no other option and we are poorer for him having left.
I for one hope to see him back on the front bench but I think it will be a long time before we do as quite frankly he doesn’t believe a word any of them say, and rather disappointingly neither do I. However, he must carry on fighting for the veterans as there is no one else in parliament who will and they are only sat on those benches because brave men and women mop up the mess they make.
Most MPs are not fit to be in the same room as those who put their lives on the line for our protection.