FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist  Chat Chat  UsergroupsUsergroups  CalendarCalendar RegisterRegister   ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

The privatisation of war: Abbey Wood, Qinetiq, DERA, Carlyle

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    9/11, 7/7 & the War on Freedom Forum Index -> The Bigger Picture
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
TonyGosling
Editor
Editor


Joined: 25 Jul 2005
Posts: 18009
Location: St. Pauls, Bristol, England

PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2008 1:08 am    Post subject: Qinetiq - National security has been privatised Reply with quote

This short story from 2006 had passed me by -

Qinetiq, the former Ministry of Defence research lab, has been given chairmanship of a UK group designed to develop government security policy. The committee, which comprises government officials, academics, and other experts, will help inform UK government policy on issues such as the introduction of biometric-based identity cards and the establishment of ecommerce projects, the FT reports.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/04/11/brains_trust/

_________________
www.lawyerscommitteefor9-11inquiry.org
www.rethink911.org
www.patriotsquestion911.com
www.actorsandartistsfor911truth.org
www.mediafor911truth.org
www.pilotsfor911truth.org
www.mp911truth.org
www.ae911truth.org
www.rl911truth.org
www.stj911.org
www.v911t.org
www.thisweek.org.uk
www.abolishwar.org.uk
www.elementary.org.uk
www.radio4all.net/index.php/contributor/2149
http://utangente.free.fr/2003/media2003.pdf
"The maintenance of secrets acts like a psychic poison which alienates the possessor from the community" Carl Jung
https://37.220.108.147/members/www.bilderberg.org/phpBB2/
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website MSN Messenger
suraci
Minor Poster
Minor Poster


Joined: 17 Jan 2008
Posts: 75

PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2008 8:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I fired off a complaint when they privatized Qinetiq, as it was clearly about undermining UK independence in this area.

The Uk armed services generally have been privatized, with major outsourcing taking place in support services. In my area Dyncorp have the contract for servicing and training armoured vehicles and their crews. Dyncorp is of course US with Israeli backing, so UK forces are effectively now undermined by our Zionist chums.

The UK will find in the future that it will suffer attacks that are inexplicable unless insider information was available to the attackers, as US soldiers are in Iraq, finding themselves ambushed in ways that clearly indicate a failure in their security.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
TonyGosling
Editor
Editor


Joined: 25 Jul 2005
Posts: 18009
Location: St. Pauls, Bristol, England

PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2013 2:19 am    Post subject: The privatisation of war: Abbey Wood, Qinetiq, DERA, Carlyle Reply with quote

Nice one Anna,

The March of the Private Armies
THE MARCH OF THE PRIVATE ARMIES
Monday January 7,2013 - Express - By Anna Pukas
IT SOUNDS like a radically modern idea. With the Royal Navy now downsized to a mere shadow of its former glory how do you protect commercial shipping, not to mention human cargo, in pirate-infested waters? Answer: bring in a private navy.
And in a couple of months that is precisely what corporations or indeed governments will be able to do when Typhon, a privately owned and run British maritime force, goes into operation. Set up by British businessman Simon Murray Typhon will provide an armed escort for shipping off the east of Africa which has long been plagued by Somali pirates. Murray, 72, plans to provide at least three so-called "mother ships" to accompany shipping convoys wanting to take the shortest - but also the riskiest - route from the Horn of Africa through the Mozambique Channel down to the Cape of Good Hope.
With a former Royal Navy commodore and an ex-commander on board as heads of operations the venture seems destined for success.
After all, since almost every other public service has been privatised - the railways, telecommunications, gas and electricity - privatising a branch of the armed forces seems a natural progression, a move in step with the march of the modern world.
Private armies already operate in at least 50 countries from South America to the Middle East. President Karzai of Afghanistan's bodyguards are provided by a private company not his own state. In Nigeria private forces guard oil platforms. Iraq is awash with private security firms with around 48,000 operatives. The Americans alone employ about 20,000 of them. The US army has even used a private firm's Apache helicopters to fly special forces personnel to the location of a covert operation.
The Libyans guarding the American consulate in Benghazi, Libya's second city, when the building was torched last September were employed not by the Libyan state or even by the Americans but by Blue Mountain, a British company. Indeed about 70 per cent of private military or security firms are British or American.
In 2008 security firm G4S, better known for providing routine bank and airport security, took over Armorgroup, which supplied 9,000 guards to protect non-military supply convoys in Iraq. With more than 625,000 employees in 125 countries, G4S is now the second biggest private employer in the world.
WHAT started as a niche industry has become in the past 10 years a huge global business worth £120billion a year. But it is by no means a 21stcentury business. In fact the idea of a fighting or defence force for hire is not modern at all.
The first military force to bear the name the British Army came into being in 1707 with the union of England and Scotland and grew out of regiments raised by individual members of the nobility to fight in the service of the sovereign in any of the innumerable conflicts of the Middle Ages and Renaissance era. The army's origins can still be detected in regimental names.
The rank of "private" still used today originally meant a soldier who was hired or conscripted into service by a nobleman raising an army. A privateer - a term ironically often confused with pirate - is a private individual or ship authorised by the government to attack foreign shipping during wartime. Privateering was a good way to mobilise ships and trained sailors without having to spend money as the privateers were paid from the profits generated by captured cargo and vessels.
The first representatives of the East India Company set up shop in 1600. More than 250 years later it was the realisation that it had grown powerful enough to have its own army and navy that prompted the British government to dissolve it and take over running the subcontinent.
Some of the earliest recruits to the French Foreign Legion formed in 1831 were Swiss and German mercenaries. (Simon Murray is also a former legionnaire.) The rebirth of the private army, which is not quite the same as a mercenary force (mercenaries fight; private armies also provide security), came in the early Nineties. The collapse of the Soviet Union triggered global insecurity and, coupled with a reduction in the size of many armies, left a gap to be filled by guns for hire.
Not that they would accept that description. The private army industry is desperate to erase the taint of the mercenary and even shies away from the term "military", preferring "security". But they participate in all stages of war. In Abu Ghraib, the now notorious Baghdad prison where Iraqi detainees were tortured, all of the translators and nearly half the interrogators were said to be private contractors rather than regular military.
Private armies are also involved in humanitarian work, protecting aid agencies working in war zones while TV journalists - especially those from the US - reporting from Iraq and Afghanistan have started employing private security guards.
Financially the advantages of private armies are clear. They cost less to hire than the army costs to keep. They can be more adaptable. When it comes to combating Somali pirates the Royal Navy is not only hopelessly overstretched (six warships covering 2.5 million square miles of ocean) it also lacks the right ships.
"You get the ridiculous situation where we have £1billion destroyers trying to sort out pirates in a little dhow with an outboard motor costing $100 and rocket-propelled grenades costing $50," says Chief of the Defence Staff General Sir David Richards. The cost of Somali piracy was estimated in 2011 to be £4billion. That cost is ultimately borne by all of us in higher prices for petrol and imported goods.
For those employed in private armies - private soldiers in the strictest sense - the rewards can be great. In the early days after the invasion of Iraq private security guards could earn £1,000 a day. The downside is that more private military personnel have been killed or wounded there than servicemen from any national army.
In the end the resurgence of the private armies is a direct result of the biggest change in commercial practice: outsourcing.


http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/369176/The-march-of-the-private-ar mies

_________________
www.lawyerscommitteefor9-11inquiry.org
www.rethink911.org
www.patriotsquestion911.com
www.actorsandartistsfor911truth.org
www.mediafor911truth.org
www.pilotsfor911truth.org
www.mp911truth.org
www.ae911truth.org
www.rl911truth.org
www.stj911.org
www.v911t.org
www.thisweek.org.uk
www.abolishwar.org.uk
www.elementary.org.uk
www.radio4all.net/index.php/contributor/2149
http://utangente.free.fr/2003/media2003.pdf
"The maintenance of secrets acts like a psychic poison which alienates the possessor from the community" Carl Jung
https://37.220.108.147/members/www.bilderberg.org/phpBB2/
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website MSN Messenger
Disco_Destroyer
Trustworthy Freedom Fighter
Trustworthy Freedom Fighter


Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 6342

PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 10:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

goes hand in hand with private Navies and law enforcement?
free the Governments of any wrong doing why not lol

_________________
'Come and see the violence inherent in the system.
Help, help, I'm being repressed!'


“The more you tighten your grip, the more Star Systems will slip through your fingers.”


www.myspace.com/disco_destroyer
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
TonyGosling
Editor
Editor


Joined: 25 Jul 2005
Posts: 18009
Location: St. Pauls, Bristol, England

PostPosted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ministry of Defence shake-up in chaos over conflicts of interest

Firms bidding to award MoD contracts already work for the department they would take over
Mark Leftly - Independent - Sunday 21 July 2013

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/ministry-of-defence-sha keup-in-chaos-over-conflicts-of-interest-8723165.html

The Government’s heavily criticised plan to “privatise” the £14bn defence agency that buys the armed forces’ tanks and missiles is in crisis, as all of the companies bidding to run the organisation have acute conflicts of interest.

The firms – which range from huge US engineering empires to the electronic-tag-scandal group Serco – are worried they will be compromised by their existing contracts with the MoD if they win the right to run Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S). The conflicts could even prompt legal challenges, while it is understood that Ministry of Defence officials fear that this globally unique overhaul is unworkable.

The chaos is heaping pressure on the coalition to scrap its radical experiment to reform how Britain organises its defences. It is understood that even the Pentagon has, privately, been shocked that the Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond, is so keen on promoting the idea of allowing commercial organisations to run such a sensitive area of national security.

Handing DE&S over to the private sector is one of Mr Hammond’s flagship reforms as he looks to rein in spending. Critics say this is privatisation by stealth, but the plan is designed so that there is the commercial acumen to ensure the taxpayer does not overpay for anything, from submarines to satellite systems.

At least nine companies have formed three consortiums to bid for the right to run the Bristol-based DE&S in what is known as the “government-owned, contractor-operated” model – or GoCo. They are fronted by US engineers Bechtel, CH2M Hill and, believed to be working together, URS Corporation and KBR.

An industry source said: “The whole plan could end up being axed. There is only a very small clique who believe that a GoCo can deliver value for the taxpayer. It is questionable, given the conflicts across the supply chain, that any private-sector partner could deliver value for the MoD.”

A bidder added: “Conflicts will be top of our list; it’s going to be a nightmare. It’s not possible to be part of a conglomerate bid of this size without conflicts of interest.”

One of two serious problems is that several of the companies already work regularly for DE&S, meaning they would be dishing out or overseeing contracts handled by their own employees. For example, the defence technology group Qinetiq won a £1bn contract this year to improve the effectiveness of artillery shells, while Serco provides maintenance on military aircraft.

Peter Rogers, the boss of Serco’s rival Babcock International, recently warned City analysts of this problem when explaining why his company was not bidding for DE&S. In a transcript of the meeting seen by The IoS, Mr Rogers said: “It’s inconceivable that you could be responsible for the GoCo and win contracts. I’m not sure it’s dawned on Serco yet.”

The second major problem is that several firms either work for or are involved with DE&S’s biggest suppliers, notably th defence giant BAE Systems.

Lee McIntire is chief executive at CH2M Hill, but is also a non-executive director at BAE, while accountant PricewaterhouseCoopers checks the books of many defence contractors, such as Cobham. Atkins, KBR and PA Consulting have also worked for BAE.

Mr McIntire said this weekend that “should CH2M Hill be awarded the contract, I would, of course, give up my seat on the BAE board of directors.”

A third controversy is that URS, Bechtel and Serco are also bidding to be the business partner on another MoD agency, the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO). This runs the MoD’s estate, including naval bases and airfields.

DIO has a budget of £3.3bn, which means that a firm involved in running both the DIO and DE&S would control more than half of Britain’s defence budget. This is considered by many sources and – again – by some MoD officials as distinctly unpalatable.

A spokesman for the MoD said: “From the outset, bidders have been required to declare any perceived, potential or actual conflicts of interest, together with proposals for how they would manage them. The MoD has the right to exclude potential bidders if new conflicts of interest arise during the process.”

_________________
www.lawyerscommitteefor9-11inquiry.org
www.rethink911.org
www.patriotsquestion911.com
www.actorsandartistsfor911truth.org
www.mediafor911truth.org
www.pilotsfor911truth.org
www.mp911truth.org
www.ae911truth.org
www.rl911truth.org
www.stj911.org
www.v911t.org
www.thisweek.org.uk
www.abolishwar.org.uk
www.elementary.org.uk
www.radio4all.net/index.php/contributor/2149
http://utangente.free.fr/2003/media2003.pdf
"The maintenance of secrets acts like a psychic poison which alienates the possessor from the community" Carl Jung
https://37.220.108.147/members/www.bilderberg.org/phpBB2/
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website MSN Messenger
TonyGosling
Editor
Editor


Joined: 25 Jul 2005
Posts: 18009
Location: St. Pauls, Bristol, England

PostPosted: Fri Sep 27, 2013 12:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Private sector 'will hold MoD to ransom': PCS union warns MPs over proposal to outsource defence procurement

MARK LEFTLY Author Biography SUNDAY 22 SEPTEMBER 2013
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/private-sector-will-hold -mod-to-ransom-pcs-union-warns-mps-over-proposal-to-outsource-defence- procurement-8831837.html

The British government will be "held to ransom" by US and UK contractors if the Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond, pushes through with far-reaching departmental reforms, union leaders have warned.

MPs have been told that it could be difficult for the armed forces to get the weapons they would need at short notice should a territorial dispute similar to the Falklands War suddenly escalate. The warning is contained in a submission to the House of Commons committee probing the controversial defence reforms by the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS).

Mr Hammond wants Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S), the government department responsible for buying everything from missiles and ammunition to communciation equipment for the British military, to be run by the private sector. He argues that the commercial nous of big business will ensure the vital kit will be purchased at a cheaper price than the state could negotiate.

Two teams, led by the US engineering giants Bechtel and CH2M Hill, are pitching for a contract that is expected to start next year. The accountant PricewaterhouseCoopers and Serco, the firm at the centre of two contractual scandals at the Ministry of Justice, are among the British names on these teams.

However, this globally unprecedented transformation has been widely criticised over fears that the nation's security could be compromised for the sake of being able to buy a few more guns and bullets with its budget. Britain's closest military ally, the US, is particularly sceptical that such sensitive information should be handed to big business.

The PCS argued that, with the winning bidder given a nine-year contract, it might garner so much expertise in that time that no other private sector consortium would be able to win a subsequent pitch process against the incumbent team.

As a result, the winning companies would be able to dictate terms to the Ministry of Defence, offsetting any financial benefits they might have introduced. The submission said: "The MoD has done no risk analysis on the ability of other contractors to re-bid in 2023. Without this risk analysis, there is huge fear the winning contractor will be able to hold the MoD to ransom in years to come."

The PCS added that it was not clear whether what will be called a "GoCo" – government-owned, contracted-operated – would be willing to "absorb" the additional costs of short-notice military operations. A union source said that this could result in delays to battle gear reaching the Army, though an industry insider argued there would be money ring-fenced for such emergencies.

Dougie Brownlie, a PCS defence sector officer, said: "What would happen if one of the contractors also worked for a country we were in dispute with? Wouldn't that be a conflict of interest? If it also worked for the Argentinians, who would that contractor supply, us or them?"

Labour is looking to ambush the Defence Reform Bill with a string of amendments to undermine the chance ofa GoCo becoming enshrined in statute. There are also concerns that overhauling the agency could result in more than half of DE&S's 16,500 staff, who are largely based in the South-west, being made redundant.

Exclusive: Conflict row as MoD top brass join contractors
Ex-mandarin now in charge of US giant's bid to manage his former department

MARK LEFTLY Author Biography THURSDAY 26 SEPTEMBER 2013
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/exclusive-conflict-row -as-mod-top-brass-join-contractors-8839973.html

The Ministry of Defence's relationship with big business is under fire as it emerged that the former head of strategic weapons is now working for an engineering giant which is bidding for sensitive military contracts.

Clive Billiald, who left the department earlier this year, is now a senior business development manager at US-based Bechtel. He is working on Bechtel's bid to take over Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S), the £14bn-budget MoD agency that buys military helicopters and missiles.

Prior to looking after strategic weapons and a stint overseeing the construction of submarines, Mr Billiald was for two years a private secretary to the chief of defence materiel – the senior civil servant that looks after DE&S. The current chief, Bernard Gray, is trying to push through revolutionary plans to semi-privatise the agency in the hope that the private sector's commercial nous would lead to guns and ammo being bought at a cheaper price.

The MoD has been accused of having a "revolving door" policy on the private sector, which sees senior civil servants and generals end up in well-paid jobs with defence contractors that value their inside knowledge.

Critics believe that officials who have been privy to such sensitive matters of national security should receive at least short-term bans from working for companies that bid for MoD work.

A spokesman for the Public & Commercial Services union, which is concerned that outsourcing DE&S to the private sector could cost thousands of jobs at the agency's Bristol base, said: "Unfortunately this happens time and again. A senior MoD official leaves on the Friday and on the Monday is doing a very similar job for a defence contractor. Quite clearly there should be procedures to stop this happening."

Bechtel has already been criticised for hiring No. 10's former defence policy adviser, Richard Freer. He is currently working on a waste treatment project in the US, but is expected to ultimately look at defence bids for Bechtel.

The two consortiums – the other is led by CH2M Hill, the US engineer behind the London 2012 Olympics – pitching to run DE&S are ravaged by potential conflicts of interest. Many businesses within the consortiums work for defence giant BAE Systems, meaning they would be awarding lucrative contracts to a key customer.

A Whitehall source said: "This [Mr Billiald's employment with Bechtel] will no doubt raise more concerns about conflicts of interest and access around this controversial privatisation. It's frankly ridiculous that this appointment can be deemed acceptable given the commercial conflicts and concerns it raises."

Bechtel said: "We have fully complied with the Government's business appointment rules."

The MoD said: "All former MOD staff who take up posts in business are subject to the rules set out by the Independent Advisory Committee for Business Appointments."

Top men in the 'revolving door': How they switched to private firms

Dr Richard Freer A private secretary in the No. 10 policy unit, he swapped the MoD earlier this year for Bechtel.

Lt Gen Sir Mark Mans He announced formation of the Defence Infrastructure Organisation, is now with Capita's defence division.

Brigadier Jim Bowden He was DIO's head of policy and strategy. Today he works for KBR, which has contracts with that agency.

_________________
www.lawyerscommitteefor9-11inquiry.org
www.rethink911.org
www.patriotsquestion911.com
www.actorsandartistsfor911truth.org
www.mediafor911truth.org
www.pilotsfor911truth.org
www.mp911truth.org
www.ae911truth.org
www.rl911truth.org
www.stj911.org
www.v911t.org
www.thisweek.org.uk
www.abolishwar.org.uk
www.elementary.org.uk
www.radio4all.net/index.php/contributor/2149
http://utangente.free.fr/2003/media2003.pdf
"The maintenance of secrets acts like a psychic poison which alienates the possessor from the community" Carl Jung
https://37.220.108.147/members/www.bilderberg.org/phpBB2/
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website MSN Messenger
TonyGosling
Editor
Editor


Joined: 25 Jul 2005
Posts: 18009
Location: St. Pauls, Bristol, England

PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 2:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Uproar as MoD brings in American giants to manage military procurement
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/uproar-as-mod-brings-i n-american-giants-to-manage-military-procurement-9672666.html

Exclusive: MARK LEFTLY Author Biography ASSOCIATE BUSINESS EDITOR Saturday 16 August 2014

Unions and industry insiders are up in arms because two US engineering companies have been asked to oversee the way in which the Ministry of Defence runs the £14bn arm that buys military kit.

The Independent can reveal that San Francisco-based Bechtel and Denver’s CH2M Hill have bagged the programme management contracts for the Bristol-based Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S). This agency buys and looks after everything from forklift trucks to Astute class submarines, but is being overhauled by the Government so as to get better value for the taxpayer.

The companies were told earlier this week that they had won the contracts to transform the way in which these crucial items are bought, in what are known as managed service provider (MSP) roles.

Bechtel will look after the navy and RAF, while CH2M Hill will work with DE&S on army and joint-command projects. Detailed negotiations start next week and these talks will be important as the roles are widely considered to be vaguely defined.

CH2M Hill, which worked on the 2012 Olympics, and Bechtel, which has overseen the construction of a 21-kilometre tunnel for London’s Crossrail, have few suitable British employees to fill these contracts. Industry insiders estimate that they will need 150 to 200 staff.

Sources said around half of these experts will be flown in from the US. This would cost around £5m more than just using British staff, with the remuneration including food and accommodation expenses. An industry insider said: “Two US firms running this is not the ideal option – that’s what worries me the most. They don’t have the indigenous capability.”

The source added that the MoD had failed to pay enough attention to an area of such sensitive national security being awarded to overseas companies. However, MoD sources that “a fair and open competition” has been run.

A spokesman for the Public and Commercial Services Union said: “We are very concerned indeed that there isn’t the skills base in the UK to make this happen. We’ve asked again and again for a guaranteed skills transfer to the existing workforce.”

Separately, the reforms also involve the private sector taking over DE&S’s human resources department. It is understood that all of the Big Four accountancy firms bid for this role and that PwC has landed the contract.

The MoD is highly sensitive about the reforms of DE&S. Last year, ministers tried to semi-privatise the agency in what was known as a “Go-Co” – government-owned, contractor operated – model.

This plan collapsed over lack of competition after CH2M Hill decided against bidding for the contract at the last moment, leaving Bechtel as the only bidder.

It was thought that CH2M Hill would struggle to win any further significant work in the more limited reforms that are known as “DE&S-Plus”. One industry source said he was “staggered” that it had won the two contracts.

An MoD spokesperson said: “Negotiations to bring in managed service providers are still under way in order to secure the best value for the taxpayer. It would be inappropriate to comment further at this point. We plan to award contracts next month.”

_________________
www.lawyerscommitteefor9-11inquiry.org
www.rethink911.org
www.patriotsquestion911.com
www.actorsandartistsfor911truth.org
www.mediafor911truth.org
www.pilotsfor911truth.org
www.mp911truth.org
www.ae911truth.org
www.rl911truth.org
www.stj911.org
www.v911t.org
www.thisweek.org.uk
www.abolishwar.org.uk
www.elementary.org.uk
www.radio4all.net/index.php/contributor/2149
http://utangente.free.fr/2003/media2003.pdf
"The maintenance of secrets acts like a psychic poison which alienates the possessor from the community" Carl Jung
https://37.220.108.147/members/www.bilderberg.org/phpBB2/
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website MSN Messenger
Whitehall_Bin_Men
Trustworthy Freedom Fighter
Trustworthy Freedom Fighter


Joined: 13 Jan 2007
Posts: 3034
Location: Westminster, LONDON, SW1A 2HB.

PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2016 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vfpuk.org header image
My Name is Legion: The Control of Remembrance
on 05/11/2015
http://vfpuk.org/2015/my-name-is-legion/
full report; My Name is Legion: The British Legion and the Control of Remembrance

Published by Veterans for Peace, 5 November 2015

With its links to the arms trade, increasingly militarised presentation of Remembrance, and growing commercialisation and corporatisation of the poppy “brand”, it’s time to reconsider whether the Royal British Legion is still suitable to be the “national custodian of Remembrance”.

My Name is Legion: The British Legion and the Control of Remembrance explores how the Royal British Legion’s status as the self-appointed “national custodian of Remembrance” has been compromised through its collaboration with some of the world’s most controversial arms dealers, its increasingly militarised presentation of Remembrance, and its commercialised and trivialising corporatisation of the poppy “brand”.

It draws on the work of a number of journalists, campaign groups, veterans, and religious organisations who have expressed concern at the direction the Legion is taking, and asks whether the charity is still fit to be the “national custodian of Remembrance”.

One striking manifestation of the synergy between the British Legion and the British arms trade is its relationship with BAE Systems, who in 2003 not only funded sales of weaponry to Saudi Arabia, Libya, and the Middle East, but also the RBL’s annual Remembrance events. As the Telegraph noted, “a decision by British defence manufacturer BAE Systems to sponsor this year’s Poppy Day has been likened to ‘King Herod sponsoring a special day reserved to prevent child cruelty’”.

The Legion’s £100,000 sponsor and “platinum corporate member” is not only one of the world’s most profitable arms companies (as the world’s third largest arms producer its revenue in 2013 was $26.82 billion) but also one of its most controversial. One of its main markets is Saudi Arabia, which the British Intelligence Unit ranked 163rd out of 167 countries in its “democracy index” – just above North Korea and Syria.

Despite the “King Herod” associations, the Legion has maintained and even strengthened its relations with arms traders. This year (2015), for example, the British Legion’s annual ‘Poppy Rocks Ball’ is being sponsored by Lockheed Martin UK, the subsidiary of the world’s largest arms supplier, Lockheed Martin; the slightly grander Poppy Ball is sponsored by Sphinx Systems Limited, who manufacture handguns and pistols.

The increasing involvement of the arms trade in the Legion’s activities also coincides with a much more coercive and aggressive ‘in-your-face’ campaigning style that the Legion has adopted in recent years, as many journalists and veterans have noticed.

In 2014, for example, Quaker Peace & Social Witness produced a document that explores how “the involvement of the military in the RBL’s campaign has increased” over the last few years, in line with a rise in the more general promotion of the military, and noted that this involvement marks “a substantial departure from the RBL’s historic message of remembering the horror of war, towards those involved in current war” (The New Tide of Militarism).

A number of veterans also signed a public letter to the Guardian in 2010 complaining that the RBL’s Poppy Appeal was subverting the original intention behind Armistice Day: “A day that should be about peace and remembrance is turned into a month-long drum roll of support for current wars.” Respected war correspondent Robert Fisk has written eloquently about his anger and disillusionment with the “bloody poppy”, and how the symbol of the death of so many men has now “been turned into a fashion appendage”. Channel 4 News presenter Jon Snow has referred to modern “poppy fascism”, to denote the increasingly coercive and militarised presentation of Remembrance these days.

BYPks6WCYAA8UYI

This shift towards a far more commercialised and corporatised approach to Remembrance has developed since 1997, when the Legion formally applied to trademark what they now refer to as their “iconic poppy brand”. The Legion are also taking a new litigious heavy-handed stance towards anyone deemed to be “infringing its trademark”, as its website page makes clear: “The Legion’s 2-petal poppy is a registered trademark and should not be used without permission.”

Transforming the Remembrance symbol into a “product”, an “iconic brand”, may be a way of ensuring that the Legion gets more money but it also places the Poppy firmly in the world of the corporate logo, like the Nike Swoosh, or Coca-Cola. And at least with Coca-Cola you are not harangued for choosing not to consume its iconic brand, unlike the Legion’s increasingly coercive ‘For their sake, wear a poppy’, ‘For his family’s sake, wear a poppy’, ‘Something Missing?’ advertising campaigns launched in recent years.

The growing commercialisation and corporatisation of Remembrance is evident both in the thirty pages of website “Poppy Shop” (selling you everything from poppy ceramic stud earrings and poppy golfing umbrellas, to poppy dog name tags, poppy iPhone covers, and “I Love Poppy’ t-shirts) and also in the new “designer” poppy brooches that the Legion is actively pushing and promoting. “Updating your poppy” – or “pimping your poppy” – is another way the Legion has cheapened and trivialised our collective remembrance of the dead.

The RBL’s decision to launch their 2013 Poppy Appeal with corporate-friendly girl band The Saturdays dressed in patent leather mini skirts singing “I’m a bad girl, I’m a bad girl, I’m notorious” while wearing Swarovski-encrusted poppies, shows how badly the Legion has lost its way. In one sense it’s a remarkably clever and commercially savvy instance of brand product placement and what the Legion calls “Cause Related Marketing” – i.e. using a “cause’ that people care about in order to co-opt it to sell frozen goods, ketchup, or jewellery. But it’s also a deeply demeaning and disrespectful way to commemorate the deaths of those who dies in conflict.

That these trivialising and commercialised “brand poppies” the Legion wants us to endorse and buy are being sponsored by some of the world’s most aggressive and controversial arms traders makes them even more sinister and toxic. For these reasons, it is surely time for the British Legion to stand down and return the poppy to us as a shared symbol of national commemoration, and for the British government to take responsibility for the welfare of the men and women it sends to war and not leave it to a charity.

Click here to read the full report; My Name is Legion: The British Legion and the Control of Remembrance

Rod Tweedy is author of The God of the Left Hemisphere: Blake, Bolte Taylor and the Myth of Creation, and Secretary of the William Blake Society.



Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
Paul Bright
PLEASE NOTE THE ROYAL BRITISH LEGION PROMOTES WORLD PEACE
❤🇬🇧#RoyalBritishLegion❤#WorldPeace❤#Promotion🇬🇧
❤🇬🇧#NHS❤#Fitness🇬🇧http://UKOK.fr.gd/HEROES.htm
❤🇬🇧#Remembrance 1914~2015 #HMS #RMT #GBR

REPLY LINK
David Blackburn
How exactly does it do that? By #Hashtagging words? It promotes the biggest and most repulsive arms dealers who sell to the most repulsive regimes around the world. Did you actually read this article? The one link you actually share leads to Better Together St Kilda site, with no connection to the British Legion whatsoever apart from putting links on it’s mash up of a page of links to random organisations.

REPLY LINK
Garry Harriman
Rod.

Thank you for your extremely well informed expose of the direct but seemingly surreptitious linkage to the RBL and the arms industry. I had absolutely no idea at just how irrefutably and definitely the poppy campaign and the RBL have associated themselves with such abhorrent industries that, in turn, distort the true nature of war fare and the associated human tragedy that war brings to all parties. Former senior military officers are also RBL board members and generally work for the defence and arms industry upon retirement. Further, such linkages seem to rationalize, glorify and even justify war and make it seem like a noble undertaking and not for what war really is, the ultimate dark side of what human beings are capable of doing to other human beings. Here in the USA where I currently live, the military are almost god like and are worshiped everywhere they go and `thanked for their service as if what they are doing benefits the public directly. In light of all this, the paint scheme on the airframe of the Tornado GR4 almost seems like a corporate advertising poster by an lethal killing machine. If I were still in the RAF (I was in charge of aircraft refurbishment) and I know now that I did not know then about the poppy campaign, I would refused to apply such a paint scheme the aircraft!

Many thanks again, Rod.

Garry H
Ga
USA

REPLY LINK
Garry Harriman
I have often thought that, on Remembrance Day at the Cenotaph, instead of the Royal Family, politicians and former UK prime ministers, the heads of the Common Wealth and the likes laying the wreaths displaying military motifs, they should all be replaced by serving and former CEOs of major oil and gas corporations, energy providers and other corporate leaders. Instead of poppies, we should instead remember our recent wars with corporate logos on them like `BP`, `Shell`, `Halliburton` and the likes to signify what, in my opinion, these recent wars really symbolize…..energy security and the associated huge profit that comes wit it.

In the USA, the same kind of representatives are the very people who should be stopping serving and former military members and `thanking them for their service`.

Like the War of Independence, the US tax payer is again facing tax without representation as the Pentagon budget is one of the largest in the developed, industrialized world and seemingly safe from all economic woes. We can have a vast and well funded military, but we can not have universal health care, a living wage and a job that offers sick pay and time off (like those ghastly Europeans do) and a quality of life that makes life worth living and working for.

Garry H
Ex British military
Ga
USA

REPLY LINK
Josh
After reading this article the word “poppy” doesn’t seem real anymore

REPLY LINK
maurice
very good article but the legion has help 1000s of ex forces people in many ways but if it can get funding for the weapon supplier then so be it,

we will never stop war as sometimes you need to stand up for what you believe and also it is a Multi billion pound industry that also funds political parties in some ways.

as ex forces can we not sort pensions out for armed forces to get the same style as MP in government receive instead of 50%.

But i agree with some of your points

maurice newell

REPLY LINK
Garry Harriman
Maurice

You are right, the RBL do indeed help a lot of people. It`s a shame that financial assistance is both offered and accepted from such a inappropriate source.

Take care

Garry

REPLY LINK
maurice
I agree gary but the legion was never a anti war movement and funding is required, but then if we did not have wars then the legion would not be required i agree.

as i say if we put the same amount into peace as we do to wars would all be better for everyone ( but you would always get someone that wanted more

but thanks for the reply

Maurice

REPLY LINK
Garry Harriman
Maurice

I can`t disagree with what you say at all, and the RBL do indeed do great work. Human nature, I feel is the reason why there never has and never will be stability in the world and, indeed, completion, dominance, envy, greed, and control is ecliptic and generic to the DNA make up of every living organism on the planet, it`s just that we, as species, have taken that principle to the absolute limit. Further, once oil and gas has ran out, and it will, and with a population the globe can not sustain, we`ll always be fighting wars until we can not sustain ourselves any longer!

Take care

Garry H

REPLY LINK
rudebox
stand up for what you’ve been brainwashed to believe*

REPLY LINK
Kenny Williams
Oh the picture of the jet speaks volumes… responsible for millions of civilian deaths lets paint it with poppys? makes me sick

Peace and Love roll on sunday!!

Kenny Williams VFP UK

REPLY LINK
Garry Harriman
`roll on sunday`?

Kenneth, you former beastly, undedicated and brutish former soldiers are really quite ghastly. Your grammar and spelling leave a lot to be desired, kind sir! Your loutish vocabulary abilities are what one aught to expect from such savages. Such ghastly examples of comprehensive educational traits are just not my cup of tea, old boy, and you would not have lasted 5 minutes in Her Majesty`s Royal Air Force. Indeed, one give such a brute like yourself a good old debagging in the Mess. Such types like you are simpletons, happy with a pint of lager, in one hand a cigarette in the other and a copy of The Sun newspaper….simple pleasures for simple specimens! I am now going to retire to my study with a brandy and to immerse myself with the Financial Times.

Tally ho

Garry H
Ga
The Former Colonies.

REPLY LINK
maurice
rudebox

what do you believe in?

REPLY LINK
David Seagrave
Yet ANOTHER “Remembrance/freedom parade” which serve one purpose and that is to instil into the minds of the general public that all the people (mostly working class) who have been maimed or killed in conflicts did so for Freedom, Queen and Country. When in fact, all wars are about the same thing – to enrich the 1% with even more MONEY and POWER. So we have even more of these charades when they think the penny might have started to drop and people start to question – why are we suffering and dying in order to protect the 1% and their wealth?

REPLY LINK
andy lewis
Great article, very informative.

REPLY LINK
andy lewis
A very informative article…..

REPLY LINK
Admin
http://thequietus.com/articles/19202-remembrance-poppy-nationalism-war

“Each cemetery in Berlin has an area devoted to civilian victims of British and American bombing and the brutal Red Army advance at the end of World War Two. At the St Thomas-Kirchhof, just under the flight path into the old Tempelhof airfield, a few hundred square metres are surrounded by a hedge. “Anonyme Gräber” is written on a simple short black crucifix with a pot at its feet. In it are a yellow and white flower. Across the path behind another hedge, thousands of small black slabs mark the graves of one, two or three people, some with full names and dates of birth and death. Most of these lives, young and old, ended between March and May 1945.”

REPLY LINK
tom
the link to the full report report doesn’t work, please correct so that I can share this page, many thanks

REPLY LINK
admin
Thanks for letting us know. We changed websites this year and not everything migrated correctly. Please try the links now. or click…

http://vfpuk.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/my_name_is_legion-web.pdf

REPLY LINK
James
This was amazing to read and I have shared it far and wide.

I have long had reservations about the red poppy and remembrance day and you perfectly summed up many of my criticisms. Thank you!

REPLY LINK
Kirsten Frederiksen
Really interesting and thoughtprovoking article. I wish, I had thought about it earlier. Thanks
K

_________________
--
'Suppression of truth, human spirit and the holy chord of justice never works long-term. Something the suppressors never get.' David Southwell
http://aangirfan.blogspot.com
http://aanirfan.blogspot.com
Martin Van Creveld: Let me quote General Moshe Dayan: "Israel must be like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother."
Martin Van Creveld: I'll quote Henry Kissinger: "In campaigns like this the antiterror forces lose, because they don't win, and the rebels win by not losing."
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
TonyGosling
Editor
Editor


Joined: 25 Jul 2005
Posts: 18009
Location: St. Pauls, Bristol, England

PostPosted: Wed Mar 17, 2021 1:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Q is for the Queen's QinetiQ - Coronavirus Patent - Huge Discovery

Link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4rw_bdHn5GM
8,956 views•24 Feb 2020

Big, breaking intelligence inside this video. This is the real Q. This is a mirrored video. Q is for the Queen’s QinetiQ - Original Source: https://tinyurl.com/wkfpden​ Also check out
Jud Witham: Quantitative Bondage - Slavery for 12.5 CENTS (this is how they are funding the Deep State)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0VngsGhr4oU

Qinetiq is a British multinational defence technology company headquartered in Farnborough, Hampshire. It is the world's 52nd-largest defence contractor measured by 2011 defence revenues, and the sixth-largest based in the UK.
Shinplaster was a common name for paper money of low denomination, less than one dollar, circulating widely in the economies of the 19th century where there was a shortage of circulating coinage.

_________________
www.lawyerscommitteefor9-11inquiry.org
www.rethink911.org
www.patriotsquestion911.com
www.actorsandartistsfor911truth.org
www.mediafor911truth.org
www.pilotsfor911truth.org
www.mp911truth.org
www.ae911truth.org
www.rl911truth.org
www.stj911.org
www.v911t.org
www.thisweek.org.uk
www.abolishwar.org.uk
www.elementary.org.uk
www.radio4all.net/index.php/contributor/2149
http://utangente.free.fr/2003/media2003.pdf
"The maintenance of secrets acts like a psychic poison which alienates the possessor from the community" Carl Jung
https://37.220.108.147/members/www.bilderberg.org/phpBB2/
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website MSN Messenger
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    9/11, 7/7 & the War on Freedom Forum Index -> The Bigger Picture All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
You cannot attach files in this forum
You can download files in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group