I hate soldiers and I hate police officers. They are not our comrades, nor our protectors, they represent a system that is racist, cruel and established to protect global imperialist interests. This is not only the statement I am most vehemently vilified for, particularly come Poppy November when the questioning increases, and yet of course when I retort that to support these professions you must support the most heinous and cruel of wars along with the atrocities committed by officers of the law daily I am met with a common, and inherently flawed, argument: They’re just the people, blame the government for their mistakes. This isn’t entirely illogical, we have developed a perception of these people as automated machines wired to follow their superiors, and whilst this may hold weight with psychological evaluation, to reach any level of industrial instinct, every soldier, officer and serviceman must make a singular, vital error which is joining these institutions.
By now, it is somewhat known and very nearly accepted by many, particularly on the centre to left, that the Middle-Eastern intervention carried out by Blair, the drone strikes by May and many other forms of military action are, in fact, mass-scale atrocities and in no way signs of a just military, something which makes pro-forces rhetoric from both sides all the more confusing. We agree that the military act without reason and with ulterior motives often and that this intervention is violent and unforgivable and we, rightfully, blame the ministers who ordered attacks and why then is it so difficult for western countries, specifically the U.K in focus here, to blame individual perpetrators? It’s because we know these quasi-obedient fascists, they’re our parents friends, they’re the neighbours, they’re family members and they suffer, and on an inter-personal level we don’t like to see these people suffer and yet their suffering is nothing compared to the almighty cruelty they inflict upon people of colour under a propaganda campaign that paints ‘foreigners’ as the enemy. We feel a disconnect here. It’s easier to blame those who we don’t interact with, it’s harder to look those we know in the eye, those we may have previously chose to associate ourselves with and declare that they’re terrorists. They are. Not all terrorists are extremist religious zealots, no the most common terrorist is the one we befriend. The same rule applies to officers of the law, we claim to abhor police brutality and unjust laws that criminalise the act of being black, we hate the way they treat the poor and despise methods such as stop and search, why then, can the people of England disavow every uniformed menace who chooses to work for an organisation that serves enemies of the people? We kid ourselves, everyone joins these forces to help people but they don’t. They wear a uniform with pride, a uniform that celebrates legalised violence of the state. If you wear this in this society you are well aware of what you’re doing. You follow orders and you may disagree with policy but the information surrounds us. We all know what the government does, we know the police are vile and so how can we expect to believe that people don these badges blissfully unaware of the criticisms of the state? We can’t. Our government values the protection of bourgeoise interests much more than they value the quality of life or indeed lives of the vulnerable of society. This dictates that if you join state sanctioned terrorist organisations you are well aware that you may, will, be asked to act on orders that you disagree with but that, more importantly, endanger the lives of innocent people and so ignorance is no longer a plea. If you are not prepared to follow any order given by the State regardless of consequence then you shouldn’t join these organisations – that’s obvious. You may say you were following orders but so did nazis, being an obedient bootlicker is not reason enough for execution.
Here comes the second form in which this argument manifests itself with the discussion of how easy it is to be lead into the industrial complex with the promises of being a promising protector of freedom. I briefly touched on this point above when I spoke about the education available to us now and that is true however I can extend some sympathy to young people (particularly boys for reasons explained below) who join the military not because of a want but because of their own anxieties. Advertisements for the military (gross already I know) in the U.K are truly sickening, they use language akin to helplines or maybe a summer camp promising that the army offers a place to “belong” and that you’ll always have employment and that you’ll make friends and you’ll find your place in this world. This tactic is deliberate, planned and manipulative, the government prey upon the fears of teenage boys who can’t express themselves, feel alienated and face the possibility of a life on the dole, the army offers a masculine alternative to the doldrum existence you face and it’s truly tragic that people believe this when in fact military service sends you home with guilt, trauma and no real promise of support. These people are brainwashed by the state and I wish to offer them, emotional support and education however repentant officers are hard to come by and often too much of a war criminal to earn my empathy. A similar thing happens with the police force who push campaigns of multiculturalism and acceptance as a means of luring liberals into believing they have chance to protect people something which just isn’t true. The police are a force of evil in this country and for proof one needs only turn to stop and search rates based on race, levels of police brutality and the laws themselves that these officers are brought in to protect. It paints a justifiably bleak picture of a force who can no longer hide their capitalistic agenda that demonises the poor and ignores societal issues, instead intent on hiding EDL nazis on marches. The working class debate is also nonsense, the education is available and this is an argument that bases its assumption off the idea that the working class is a group of homogenous fools who will walk themselves into enforcing oppression if lead by the hope of social mobility.
In conclusion, there are no individuals within oppressive state systems. If you follow or make the decisions of an imperialist government then you are a fascist. If you wear the uniform of genocide and oppression then you are a fascist. You are not working class, you are the enemy of us. That’s why all cops are bastards, and all soldiers too, all Tories also and weapon manufacturers too – because they support, uphold and act for a system that is a threat to people across the globe. I won’t wear a Poppy. I won’t thank the police. I won’t be friends with a soldier. I have more respect for myself and others than that.