There are two plays on in London's West End currently that depict life in the UK military, and they do so critically. Our Boys', by Jonathan Lewis, at the Duchess Theatre is a revival, having first been performed in 1993. Sandi Toksvig's Bully Boy is at the St James Theatre. There is considerable similarity in the themes of the two plays: why young men join the armed forces, how they are often neglected when injured, and the horror of contemporary war in general.
RAF and Navy each take on just TEN 16-year old recruits in one year amid fears forces are failing to appeal to youngsters
The number of under 18s joining the armed forces is falling, particularly in the RAF and Navy.
Over the past month, amid announcements of major cuts to the armed forces, came some unexpected news on public spending: £10.85million to expand cadet forces into state schools, a £1million grant to promote a military ethos in schools and senior Labour politicians calling for a series of 'Service Schools', staffed entirely by former members of the armed forces, to be established. Unexpected, that is, to anyone who hasn't previously been aware of the importance that military policy makers place on access to young people within education.
An independent website, setting out the pros and cons of enlisting in the UK armed forces and other advice. Contact us for a batch of these cards. Go to beforeyousignup.info
An exclusive interview with Ben Griffin, spokesman for Veterans for Peace, and former SAS soldier
2018 update, USA
“Before You Enlist!” provides a rational voice to counter the seductive and often deceptive recruiting practices of the U.S. military. The message is not “don’t enlist” but rather to provide young people and their families a more complete picture of the life-altering consequences of joining the military – especially in wartime. Latest version: 2018. This short film is from the US so many of the details about recruitment are different from the UK, but the general questions to ask 'before you enlist' are similar.
07/07/2011Hackney Stop the War
We're celebrating after the closure of the army showroom in the Kingsland shopping centre. We've been campaigning against the centre for two years.
A controversial Army recruitment office has closed just two years after it opened amidst protests by anti war and gun campaigners.
An independent report by David Gee, published in 2007, highlighting the risks posed to young people through joining the military, how young people from disadvantaged communities are targeted, how information available to potential recruits is often misleading and how the terms of service are complicated, confusing and severely restricting. The research found that a large proportion join for negative reasons, including the lack of civilian career options.
Strategies to counter military recruitment, end war, and build a better world by Aimee Allison and David Solnit, 2007 This is a book from the heart of the vibrant counter recruitment movement in the United States. It looks at the many ways in which schools and communities have become targets for military recruiters and how those schools and communities have responded - with a powerful movement that seeks to resist the militarisation of young people.