I am somewhat disappointed and saddened to have to write this Blog. It concerns our Service men and women who are fighting, and with regret, dying abroad.
The Chairman of Cornwall Council decided that those units that were serving in Afgan and based in Cornwall should have a little reception on their return over at County Hall. This is not to glorify war or tag on the coat tails of our brave forces, but to say “Thank You for what you did/are doing”. It isn’t going to make up for the hardships they had to endure, but at least they know people do care.
The sad part to this Blog is that this thoughtful gesture offered by the Chairman has been knocked on the head by the MOD for the simple reason that “it is too close to an election for this event to happen, but we don’t mind you doing this AFTER the election“.
Well sorry, but by the time that’s done some of these forces will be starting to return to Theatre or are trying to get on with their lives as best as they can. There is no point in holding a reception 3 months after you have returned. It should be done (within reason) as close to the time you have returned.
I have served in our forces, over 14 years in fact, so I can speak from experience on this subject. We go about our business serving in whatever far flung place we are sent to. We get on with the job we are trained to do. I know if a Council wanted to hold a small reception for me to say “thank you” upon my return, I know I would have greatly appreciated the gesture.
It is insulting that the MOD has taken this action. The MOD can comment on this Blog if it chooses to do so, or come up with Political speak as to why this event had to be cancelled, but I feel the real reason is that they don’t want any war-type stuff in the news. I have also not been primed to write this. I spend enough time over at Council Hall to know the talk of the halls. I could comment that I heard that the Chairman was upset over the cancellation, but I cannot confirm that.
The way the MOD has gone about this has left a bitter taste in my mouth. But then again, most of the MOD has never served in Uniform.