ForcesWatch scrutinises the ethics of armed forces recruitment practices and challenges efforts to embed militarist values in civilian society.
Book: confronting a culture of militarism
At a comfortable distance from warfare, our culture easily passes over its horrific reality in favour of an appealing, even romantic, spectacle of war. Yet, over the last decade, most Britons have opposed Western military ventures abroad. This book takes a fresh look at a culture of militarism in Britain, public resistance to it, and the government's prodigious efforts to regain control of the story we tell ourselves about war. See details & buy book
Film: Engage - the military & young people
Why does the military have a 'youth engagement' policy and why is the government promoting 'military ethos' within education? What is the impact of military activities taking place in schools? This short film explores these questions and gives teenagers the opportunity to voice their reaction to the military’s interest in their lives.
Ask your MP and MSP to sign
Ask your MP to sign an Early Day Motion on The Recruitment of Minors into the UK Armed Forces.
If you are in Scotland, ask your MSP to sign the motions on the Medact Report on British Armed Forces Recruitment and on the British Army's Increased Intake of 16-year-olds
Scottish Parliament Petition
ForcesWatch and Quakers in Scotland submitted a petition to the Scottish Parliament to:
- scrutinise armed forces visits to schools in Scotland
- provide guidance on how such visits should be conducted
- ensure that parents are always consulted.
The petition is now being heard by the Scottish Parliament. See more info.
The report outlines concerns about the existing model, and offer a different vision for the future. Read more
A short film about our work
Subscribe to our mailing list
Stay in touch with ForcesWatch by subscribing to our announcement list.
Get in touch
We look forward to input from many different individuals and groups and welcome ideas, comments and suggestions. Please use the contact form to email us.
A funny short film by a young boy on The Militarization of Boys
A 4 part investigation of 'the soldier myth' - talking to soldiers about recruitment, training, fighting and coming home
The UK is one of few countries that allow minors to enlist. Despite calls to cease the recruitment of under-18s the Army is digging in to hold its ground.
The new British Army advert is astonishing. Organised violence as antidote to anomie.
This series of 2-minute films by Child Soldiers International give a powerful insight into the reality of signing up as a young recruit, how training brutalises young soldiers and the long-term harmful effects of training and combat.
Figures released today reveal that the British Army has increased its intake of 16-year-olds in the past 12 months, defying calls from the UN, children’s rights organisations and others campaigning for an end to the recruitment of minors.
Ask your MP to sign an Early Day Motion on The Recruitment of Minors into the UK Armed Forces. If you are in Scotland, ask your MSP to sign a similar motion on the Medact Report on British Armed Forces Recruitment.
MSPs will consider what further action to take on a petition from ForcesWatch and Quakers in Scotland calling for increased transparency and scrutiny of armed forces visits to schools this Thursday (24 November).
Coverage highlights the Scottish Children's Commissioner concerns about the age of recruitment and armed forces visits to schools, and the motion in the Scottish Parliament about the vulnerabilities of young recruits, as discussed in the recent Medact report.
Recruiting children aged 16 and 17 into the British army places them at greater risk of death, injury and long-term mental health problems than those recruited as adults, according to a new report.