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Comments

malcolm

I've never heard of the Investors Business Daily. Is it an influential newspaper?
I'm interested to know which British diplomats and media 'pointed angry fingers of blame....at President Bush.' Any ideas?

Alan S

I hope Faye Turney is thoroughly asahamed of saying those words. Surely she did not have to go that far.

Tim Montgomerie

Malcolm: I don't have a full answer to your question but I remember ITV1's Sunday Edition suggesting Bush's call for the hostages to be released was very unhelpful.

Richard

Quite a contrast with British soldiers captured in WWII who would either have tried to escape or remain silent.

davod

'Ahmadinejad even chastised Blair for sending Faye Turney — a mother — into harm's way. "How can you justify seeing a mother away from her home, her children? Why don't they respect family values in the West?"

This from a regime which encourages mothers to send their children to die as suicide bombers and encourages women to join their jihadists.

davod

Richard:

The vast majority of British (and others for that matter) prisoners settled down to captivity and did not try to escape.

Adrian Owens

Good article from Stephen Glover in this morning's Daily Mail that sums up my current feelings well.

Richard

"The vast majority of British (and others for that matter) prisoners settled down to captivity and did not try to escape."

Fair enough but did they really have to trot out what they were told to say? One can hardly imagine prisoners of the Nazis telling everyone over the airways how wonderful their captors were etc.

tired and emotional

I have to say that given the extraordinary weakness of our naval forces at present we got away very lightly in terms of humiliation, we also got our troops back unharmed which is something to be very thankful for. Now we must urgently ensure that we have sufficient naval air power and TLAM capability to give Iran and all the other scumbags pause before they attempt something similar again. We must also drastically change the ROEs for our troops, boost their defensive and offensive capabilities when on patrol plus urgently review the 'propaganda in capture' training that troops are given, those smiles we saw in that foul ceremony appeared to be genuine - only one soldier seemed grim faced. That cannot be right.

We have just received a salutary lesson - how we respond to it over the next few years will define our place in the world for generations. There is no hope that Labour will do more than posture while destroying the services, God help us if Cameron and Fox turn out to be gutless when in power.

jfkalltheway

"Now - let me be clear - I'm not criticising our individual sailors." Well you could fool me. You use their picture and their words.

Good God Tim, I just hope that you are never in the position these chaps found themselves in. You sit in Cathedral Close safely tapping away on a lap top with no more than a pigeon to threaten you spouting this nonsense. How dare you criticise these brave chaps and suggest they had any other option.

You grew up in a service family. You know the pressures. Your A-Level results were actually blown up in a terrorist attack! Have some sympatyhy and stop putting yourself forward as a foreign policy expert - you are not and you need to know your limitations before you hurt someone.

This is the last post I will make on this site and it is the last time I will visit. I am sick of the posturing.

Tim Montgomerie

I stand by what I wrote jfkalltheway. The great thing about blogging is that everyone gets the chance to disagree with the author and you can always set up your own blog to put the alternative perspective.

Steevo

Good post Tim and my sentiments. There are some appropriate posts but I'll keep it simple and just give mention to a couple points of view: that by tired and emotional, and your quote from the National Review.

mamapajamas

re: "Richard:

The vast majority of British (and others for that matter) prisoners settled down to captivity and did not try to escape.

Posted by: davod | April 05, 2007 at 12:35 PM"

Please see The Great Escape. Yeah... I KNOW it was a movie. But it was based upon a TRUE incident. The first duty of a POW in WWII was to find a way to escape. Sometimes a way could not be found.

The situation in Iran would have been enormously different from WWII, however. The people would not have been able to escape across land unless, by sheer luck, they encountered some counter-revolutionaries in Iran, who might well NOT stick their necks out for a hostage situation.

IMHO, it would be incumbent upon people watching the alleged "news" media to understand that virtually everything hostages say or do these days is staged by the captors, and that the hostages have no power to do anything about it.

That understanding could be critical to a happy outcome to these situations.

RedSam

Disgraceful comments from the armchair General - who is probably facing the wall as well.

Paul Oakley

Chaps - ask yourself this. What would you have done in their position? I'm sure that we'd all like to think we'd be in-which-they-serve heroic but you can never know unless you're facing the same threat. Looking at the footage as a whole, it's clear that signals were sent when responding to the Iranian unfree press. My only criticism is that they might have used the traditional British symbol of disbelief, incomprehensible to foreigh nations. Namely, tongue in front of lower teeth; chin stroked pensively. I speak of course of the Jimmy Hill.

mamapajamas

I agree with you Paul, and agree that they DID send "messages". In the one photo of the hostages eating that was circulated widely, the look on the face of the Marine in the background (at least, he was wearing camo instead of blue) struck fear in my heart. He was looking down at his plate, but the expression is plainly visible. If I had been an Iranian, I would not have gotten within 10 feet of that Marine!

The main thing to remember is that we don't have any idea at this point what sort of warnings and threats they received from the Iranians holding them.

It should be presumed by ALL that everything we saw in the staged news videos was, in fact, staged, and not to be believed.

davod

Mama:

Not to belabor the point but there were approximately 135,000 British POWs in the European theatre. Most waited for the war to end.

If a large number of each POW camp tried to escape as in The Great Escape we would certainly have heard about them. We did not.

davod

I have just read a news report which indicates the the RM captain said on the embargoed tv program that they did intelligence collection during their checks of the ships. This is probably true but what the heck is he doing talking about this to the TV interviewer.

The Turbanhater

These service people were used as propaganda by an enemy of the free world, plain and simple. WW3 is nearer then we think. Soon the time for talking will end and the time for dying will begin.

mamapajamas

Davod... and why on earth do WWII POWs matter today? We're in a completely different era of warfare, with prisoners being used for propaganda.

As I've stated elsewhere, no one with more sense than God gave a doorknob believes anything said in these staged vids. So there's really no reason for the military to risk their lives to not produce them.

mike d

malcolm please dont try to fool yourself or anyone else reading this blog.

every gimmick-hungry yob in the UK...with precious few exceptions...will proudly don an Osama Bin Laden T-Shirt and spit in your face their belief that President Bush is to blame for everything and anything bad that happens on this earth.

Let's play ask a Briton between the ages of 15 and 75:

Global warming? Bush's fault.

Iranian madmen seizing Royal Marines w/o justification? Bush fault

Death of Lady Di? Bush's fault.

Eel & Pie shop closed coz local Paki gang mbangers burned it down? Bush's fault.

The sad but growing transformation of the once-proud United Kingdom into the Islamic Republic of Brittanistan? You guessed it. Bush's fault.

Not that most British kids anymore give a crap about that anyway (the notable exception being the brave young Tommies serving alongside the US and allied forces in combat across the globe), as long as they get to parade their Bush=Hitler puppets through Picadilly the same way their older brothers and sisters did when Ronald Reagan equalled Hitler.

davod

Mama:

I did not bring up the WWII POWS, just commented on views expressed in this blog.

I take it then that you do not subscribe to the view that a picture is worth a thousand words. Why do you think, that in other instances, people resisted being used like this.

We live in an age where large numbers of those in the West believe that Bush is the equivilent of Hitler (they really That large numbers of Westerners view the videos as coerced actions is probably true.
do) and he conspired to bring down the towers at the World Trade Center.

That large numbers of Westerners view the videos as coerced actions is probably true.

I would suggest to you that it is equally true that these videos will have an effect for years to come in justifying Iranian actions.

davod

Corrected entry.

Mama:

I did not bring up the WWII POWS, just commented on views expressed in this blog.

I take it then that you do not subscribe to the view that a picture is worth a thousand words. Why do you think, that in other instances, people resisted being used like this.

We live in an age where large numbers of those in the West believe that Bush is the equivilent of Hitler (they really do) and he conspired to bring down the towers at the World Trade Center.

That large numbers of Westerners view the videos as coerced actions is probably true.

I would suggest to you that it is equally true that these videos will have an effect for years to come in justifying Iranian actions.

Samuel Coates

Peregrine Worsthorne agrees:

"Did they have to fawn to their captors?"

http://www.thefirstpost.co.uk/index.php?menuID=1&subID=1298

Why can't it be said that the navy personnel didn't react to the situation in the best way? They didn't, but that doesn't mean we are judging them as people or that we would have done any better.

mamapajamas

Davod, re: "I take it then that you do not subscribe to the view that a picture is worth a thousand words. Why do you think, that in other instances, people resisted being used like this."

Today? I absolutely do NOT believe that "a picture is worth a thousand words".

Neither should anyone else when the producers of a vid have had time to monkey with it.

Not when I can go to any video dealer and rent movies with starships flying around in space or a fire-breathing dragon chasing a kid on a broomstick.

Not when news media photographers have been CAUGHT setting up shots, photoshopping otherwise finished pictures, or grabbing shots from porno films as "proof" of a preposterous claim.

Not when the news media itself is completely untrustworthy.

I'm of two minds about the resolution of this crisis, but I'll put that in the thread for that later. I've got things to do right now.

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