Armed Forces Day is a propaganda tool for arms firms and the military – and the public are footing the bill
29/06/2019Joe Glenton, The Independent
Joe Glenton in The Independent about the 10th year of Armed Forces Day, an annual day of 'family-fun' and celebration of militarism, with heavy costs to local councils and the involvement of some of the world's largest arms companies.
Should the armed forces encourage young people to interact with weapons and military vehicles? Our new web resource looks at why is this happening and asks if it is right and how can it be challenged?
The Warrior Nation podcast is a deep dive into military affairs and the relationship between defence, the armed forces and civil society in modern Britain, produced and edited by ForcesWatch.
In this lecture Professor Paul Higate from the University of Bath looks at the ways in which ‘British values’ have helped to obscure the militarised character of the nation, which is evident in its long history of the use of military violence abroad. Paul draws upon his service in the RAF to discuss the British Army’s recruitment campaign ‘This is Belonging’, the Home Office instigated ‘hostile environment’ and the racialised character of social policy more broadly. Read the lecture transcript.
A new film about recent militarism and the battle for the hearts and minds of young people in the UK. The film follows the stories of Ben Griffin, former SAS soldier and founder of Veterans for Peace UK, and Quaker activist Sam Walton, and features the work of ForcesWatch and partner organisations. See here for screenings and how to organise one.
The armed forces are engaging in 'war games', reservists will be mobilised and Brexit planners are reportedly looking at the possibility of martial law in the event of a no-deal.
While militarism has long been a central dynamic in British history, it has current manifestations that are particular to the present day. We look at key aspects of 'the new tide of militarisation' in the UK and list further sources of information on everyday militarism.
In the run up to Armed Forces Day on 30 June we provide background information on how this and other public events are part of a concerted effort to increase general support for the military amongst the public, stifle criticism and recruit young people. We list events that challenge the militarism of Armed Forces Day with messages of peace and resistance.
updated August 2018
We have teamed up with the Peace Pledge Union to produce a White Poppy Schools Pack, which aims to explore Remembrance in a way that encourages critical thinking, and gives space for marginalised perspectives on war and peace. The learning resource can be read online here, or purchased from the Peace Pledge Union as a bigger pack including white poppies and white poppy leaflets.