articles about military covenant

27/06/2015 ForcesWatch comment

A year ago we wrote how Armed Forces Day symbolises the creep of militarism into our civil institutions. Far from being merely a reflection of public respect, this creep is the result of a concerted effort, which can be tracked through policy initiatives and is fuelled by concern that the military are losing control of the public narrative around defence. We noted how these public displays, which are ostensibly about supporting 'the men and women who make up the Armed Forces', (including Camo DayReserves Day and the Poppy Appeal), act to market the military as an institution and to build a positive and uncritical narrative around it and support its recruitment needs.

A year, and another Armed Forces Day, later, we look here at how militarism continues to creep into schools and colleges and how recent developments further embed military approaches and interests within the education system.

This article was originally published in Red Pepper

Vron Ware reports on how the Armed Forced Community Covenant is a crucial part of the creeping militarisation of UK society.

As politicians have sought to prove their own commitment to the troops in an effort to control ‘the message’ about the wars, they have effectively turned this public concern into a political instrument. One consequence has been that, within the last two or three years, local authorities up and down the country, from borough to county level, urban, metropolitan and rural, have been ushered into an unprecedented programme of support for the armed forces in their areas. This development is symptomatic of a wider process of integrating military work into civil society, but it also reveals the social costs of maintaining a professional military force at home.

28/06/2014 ForcesWatch comment

This article was originally published on openDemocracy

Armed Forces Day represents a major shift in military-civil relations over the last 6 or 7 years that has seen the embedding of the military in civilian institutions in a way never seen before. What will be the impact on how we, as a society, view and accept military activities and military approaches? How will the promotion of the military affect young people as the next generation of 'future soldiers'?

10/03/2014 Yorkshire Post

The Yorkshire Post has published a piece about soldiers working with young people in Bradford to “shift negative perceptions” about the armed forces. What were these 'negative perceptions'? This comes after the government committed in August 2013 to sending serving Muslim soldiers into schools around the country to counter Islamaphobia in the wake of the killing of Lee Rigby. Were the 'negative perceptions' in Bradford based on concerns about life in the armed forces and the impact of wars that the armed forces have been in? If so, was it appropriate for the armed forces to 'help pupils lose' them? Would an encounter with Veterans for Peace UK have had the same effect on the young people? 

21/09/2013 Yorkshire Post

The first School Community Covenant - between a school and a local section of the Armed Forces - has been signed between Risedale Sports and Community College at Catterick and the Army's 15 North East Bridage. The school is unusual in that at any one time 50% of its pupils will have one or both parents in the Forces, but this could be the first of many.