The release of the album ‘Coming Home’ by a trio of serving British soldiers is being celebrated in various ways. And as all the proceeds are to go to charity, this is inevitable. But the undeniable objective result of this and all the other staged PR events by Vera Lynn and the rest is to glorify war and killing, encouraging more children to become hired killers and get themselves killed. This will, in turn, be seen on the streets as no less morally bankrupt than the average inner city gang defending its territory, and will justify the actions of those who choose to become soldiers in their own armies.
In other words, glorifying war destroys the society that wages it, even if it wins. ‘Easy Listening’ is how the hero boys categorise their justification of this futile, squalid slaughter. Which says it all, really. They have become so desensitised that they simply cannot relate on any human level with the suffering they cause, even to what they laughingly call their ‘comrades’.
Willkommen, bienvenue, welcome!
Fremde, etranger, stranger.
Meine dammen und herren!
Leave your troubles outside!
So – life is disappointing? Forget it!
We have no troubles here!
Here War is beautiful.
Killing is beautiful.
The guns are beautiful.
The bombs are beautiful.
Even the bullets are beautiful!
And we are beautiful.
Because we are Heroes.
Dame Vera Lynn and Kathryn Jenkins told us so.
And if you want to be a hero too, then come with us.
Only 17 years old? Bored with computer games?
Can’t get a job?
We don’t care.
We will give you a big gun and let you shoot it at real people!
And if you get killed, then people in country towns will stand and watch your coffin on the way home.
When you Come Home they will play Coming Home for you.
And people will say:
“There goes a hero.”
And so other boys will want to be like you.
And the war will go on forever.
And that will be beautiful…
(apologies to Fred Ebb)
“Coming home”, “The Soldiers”. Sgt Maj Gary Chilton, Sgt Richie Maddocks and L/Cpl Ryan Idzi)