Wear your poppy with pride

poppiesThis is always a special time of year for me as we collectively remember those brave men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice to secure our freedom and democracy. But it is even more poignant when we are embroiled in a bitter war in Afghanistan. The shooting dead of five soldiers yesterday was a stark reminder of what is at stake and illustrates just how important it is that we give our troops all the support they need in what are incredibly trying conditions. What I’m sure they don’t want to hear is elected politicians undermining their efforts by describing them as a “misadventure” and a “farce” as my fellow Councillor – Ben Duncan of the Green Party has done over on his blog.

For Remembrance Day and this year I am really looking forward to attending an event at Whitehawk Primary School. This means a great deal to me because this is the school where I first met Henry Allingham for last year’s Remembrance Day. It is very sad that Henry has since passed away but I’m sure his memory will live on for all the young children who met him that day, as it has for me.

Finally, I would just like to say how relieved I am that Gordon Brown has performed a u-turn on the proposed funding cuts to the Territorial Army. I visited the barracks in Dyke Road a couple of weeks ago with the Mayor – Ann Norman – and they impressed upon us the seriousness of the proposed cuts. As I said above, at a time when we are fighting a war, all parts of the armed forces must be given all the support they need. As with the recent Gurkhas issue, the Government’s timing on this was poor to say the least.

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