Category Archives: France

Banning Burkha’s Simply Not British

Man/Woman Wearing Burkha: Especially handy for those wishing to leave the country, or commit crimes, incognito.

Banning burkas in the UK would be ‘rather un-British’, says Green | Mail Online

A cabinet minister has delivered a staunch defence of a woman’s right to wear a burka.

Quite right, I totally agree with Caroline Spelman, the Burkha empowers women. It allows them to go out and about without any thought to having to use sun glasses and make-up to cover up their bruises and black eyes, unlike most abused women. How many drunkard wife-beaters are kicking themselves, or their wives, for not thinking of such a marvellous piece of clothing?

I mean is the woman really that naive? She’s meant to be a Government minister. 

Possession and Repression

Afghan Woman

Boy crying as he realises that this person, is not in fact, his mother and he has lost her in a sea of similarly dressed women.

The burkha has nothing to do with Islam, indeed it is believed to pre-date Islam and is part of a culture that at best marginalises women, at worst subjugates them. Of course most cultures and civilisations have been guilty of this at some point, including the great Greek and Roman civilisations, but the fact that such an attitude persists in the modern world, and with such vehemence, is quite disturbing. Almost as disturbing as having it not only in Britain, but also defended by so called intellectual women in Britain.

The burkha allows women to be removed from society, to become non-people, and invisible. I am sure that they are times when we all crave a little anonymity, but to have it forced on us daily, whether we want it or not, would be soul destroying. 

Spelman said:

I’ve been out to Afghanistan and I think I understand much better as a result of actually visiting why a lot of Muslim women want to wear the burka.

The irony of course is that women in Afghanistan may very well chose to wear it, but usually because they’d much rather not be accosted for not covering themselves or worse, have acid thrown in their faces or be killed.  To me that isn’t so much a choice as an ultimatum. And yet that is what she bases her view on women wearing the burkha in Britain on! The dozy mare continues to dig herself a hole stating:

‘We are a free country, we attach importance to people being free and for a woman it is empowering to be able to choose each morning when you wake up what you wear.’

Quite right, I am sure they agonise for hours over whether to wear the black burkha with the semi-tranparent mesh covering the eyes, or the black burkha with the semi-tranparent mesh covering the eyes! Does she really not see that this is precisely the point? These women cannot chose what they wear, she may very well spend time picking the perfect outfit each morning, but for burkha wearers, the outfit has already picked them.   

Afghan ID parade

ID parades in Afghanistan are much easier to organise, unfortunately not so easy to pick out offenders.

Not Part of Our Culture

Another ministerial buffoon, Damian Green, stated that it was un-British to tell people what to wear. Clearly he hasn’t been shopping or to his local bank for quite a while then, hoodies and motorcycle helmets and anything else that covers the face are banned in such places. Even Jedi are not allowed to cover their heads in Tesco.  So is it really a case of it being un-British telling people what to wear, or is it just considered un-British telling those what to do who bring their whole culture here, wholesale, and expect the British to put up with it?

Surely it is more un-British to behave in a totally unfamiliar way to most Britons, i.e. force your wife to cover herself from head to toe in black with only a semi-transparent eye slot? There’s nothing particularly British about that.  Imagine if we all were to go around dressed in burkhas, men and women? It would be totally impractical and absolute chaos, no-one would have any idea who any one is, the whole sense of community would collapse, so why do these ministerial half-wits think it is OK for certain people to do it?

Such behaviour is not part of British culture, nor indeed is it part of any modern, forward thinking society, as Sarkozy said:

“The burka is not a sign of religion, it is a sign of subservience.”

Which is why they have banned it there. Even Syria, yes, that’s Syria has banned them from University campuses.

Mustn’t Upset Anyone

There is no end to this kind of limp wristed, ‘let’s put up with everything from a foreign culture, no matter how wrong it is’ attitude, and from the nation that put an end to Thugee and Sati in India, and helped end the slave trade world-wide, it is deeply worrying. It seems that to some people foreign = better, or at least means that it overrides normal, British, morals. 

MUSLIM BUS DRIVERS’ BAN ON GUIDE DOGS

MUSLIM drivers are forcing blind people and their guide dogs off buses because they consider the animals to be ‘unclean’, it has been revealed.

This is another example that some aspects of foreign cultures or even religions, have no place in Britain. 

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The Fastest Ever White Man

Christophe Lemaitre - The first white man to run under 10s

Well, I said that it would never happen, and even that it could never happen, but on the afternoon of 9th July 2010 –  a white man broke the magic 10 second barrier in the 100m.

That man was 20 year old French Sprinter Christophe Lemaitre.

The 10 Second Barrier

Only 71 men had gone under 10s before him, the first being of course Jim Hines in 1968 when he ran 9.95s in the Olympic Final in Mexico City. Although it was run at altitude, where the air is thinner and constitutes an advantage in the sprints, the IAAF accepted the time, and would do the same today. To give you an idea of the difference it would make, had Bolt run his 9.58s time in Mexico City, he would have run 9.49s. Jim Hines adjusted time would be 10.03s, equaling his PB and World Record at the time.

Jim Hines, the first man to run the 100m in under 10 seconds, albeit at altitude.

Jim Hines ran under 10s in the 100m in 1968.

The next man to break 10 seconds, Silvio Leonard, did so nine years later, again at altitude in Guadalajara Mexico, his adjusted time would be 10.02s, which would have been a new World Record, were it not for the fact that Hines ran his at a higher altitude. Six years later, in 1983, it was broken again, but this time at low altitude by the great Carl Lewis with 9.97s. Discounting the high altitude runs, which sadly the IAAF does not do, that would be the first ever sub ten second run, and the world record.

Calvin Smith went on to be the fourth man to break ten seconds shortly afterward, with a world record time of 9.93s, again at altitude, adjusted it would have been 9.98s. After that the sub 10 second times came a little quicker, with four more men going under before 1990, one of whom was the first European – Linford Christie, although technically he was born in Jamaica. Between 1990 and 2000, 22 more men joined the exclusive sub ten seconds club, almost double the number of men ran sub 10s in the following decade (40),  and the 10s barrier went from being rarely broken, to expected.

In the 1984 100m Olympic Final only one man (Carl Lewis – 9.99s) ran  under 10s, by the 2004 final, only one man ran slower than 10s. Breaking the ten second barrier doesn’t hold the same prestige that it once did, but it is still an important barrier, particulary in Europe. Lemaitre is the first European to break the 10s barrier since his countryman, Ronald Pognon five years ago, and only the fifth European ever to have done it (Two Frenchmen, Three Britons).

The Fastest White Men

Technically, the first white man to run under 10s was actually Polish sprinter, Marian Woronin in 1984, whose time of 9.992s was rounded to 10.00s. Although there is quite a bit of doubt about this time as it was run on his home track, with the maximum allowed wind, and he had never run under 10.10s before, or since.

Indeed if you look at the top ten white sprinters list below, many of the top times are either at altitude, or lacking in credibility.

  1. 9.98 (+1.3) Christophe Lemaitre (FRA) 09.07.2010
  2. 10.00 (+2.0) Marian Woronin (POL) 09.06.1984 – Dubious
  3. 10.01A (0.0) Pietro Mennea (ITA) 04.09.1979 – Altitude
  4. 10.03A (0.0) Nicolas Macrozonaris (CAN) 03.05.2003 – Altitude
  5. 10.03 (-0.1) Matthew Shirvington (AUS) 17.09.1998
  6. 10.06A (+2.0) Johan Rossouw (RSA) 23.04.1988 – Altitude
  7. 10.06 (+1.2) Simone Collio (ITA) 27.01.2009
  8. 10.06 (+1.9) Frank Emmelmann (GDR) 22.09.1985
  9. 10.07 (±0.0) Valeriy Borzov (UKR) 31.08.1972
  10. 10.08 (+1.3) Ramil Guliyev (AZE) 13.06.2009

Valeriy Borzov beating American Bob Taylor into second place in the 1972 Olympic Final

Valeriy Borzov winning the 100m Olympic Final in 1972, American Bob Taylor was second.

For decades, the man most people considered to be the fastest white sprinter was Russian, Valeriy Borzov. Emmelmann may have run faster in 1985, but had Borzov had the same wind as Emmelmann, he’d have run 9.96s in 1972. Indeed had Borzov run his time in Mexico City, rather than in Munich, he’d have run 9.99s, as well as equalling Mennea’s 1979 World Record in the 200m (had Borzov run in Mexico City with the same wind as Mennea would later have, he’d have run an incredible 19.63s). Borzov truly was ahead of his time and unfortunate that he didn’t achieve more.

Then came Matt Shirvington in 1998, running under 10.1s three times in his career, the only white man to break the 10.1s barrier more than once. Until of course, Christophe Lemaitre, who now has more sub 10.1s times than any white sprinter, as well as the only sub 10s time, and who has also made Marian Woronin’s dubious time, irrelevant.

The World Record

As staggering achievement as it is for Lemaitre, the other top sprinters won’t be losing any sleep over it; as he said himself:

“This was my goal to break it of course. One has to run under 10 seconds in order to be part of the world’s best. I will be recognised as the first white man to run it, but today is mainly historical for myself!”

The likes of Bolt, Powell and Gay are still running nearly a quarter of a second faster (almost half a second faster in Bolts case), and so Lemaitre certainly won’t be challenging for medals any time soon. However the 10s barrier has long been more psychological  than physical barrier to most athletes, and once breached and out of the way, takes a little pressure off.  I don’t think that Lemaitre will go much faster however, he only has a couple more good years left in him, and I think it unlikely that he’ll break 9.9s, but then I said the same about the 10s barrier.

Sssh! Don’t Mention the Whites

Christophe Lemaitre running under 10s. Few people are likely to have noticed however, as it was barely reported outside of France.

It it worth noting that Lemaitre’s achievement has not even merited a mention in the press here, the BBC website’s latest story even mentioning Lemaitre is only a quick remark about him breaking the French record, and that has taken nearly a week to appear. Few other news articles mention anything other than the fact that he broke the French record, even the IAAF make no mention of the fact that he was the first white man to run under 10s.

This once again demonstrates the double standards that modern society seems to hold regarding race, a quick search of the IAAF site for ‘first black’ returns hundreds of results, from the first black African woman to win an Olympic title (Derartu Tulu – 1992) to the first black man to win an Olympic Medal (John Taylor – 1912), yet the same for ‘first white’, save for Lemaitre himself mentioning it, just returns lots of people named White, coming first.

It seems that the media falls over themselves to congratulate the first black (insert mediocre achievement here) on overcoming adversity, with regular stories on how tough ethnic minorities have had it really laid on thick. Take Obama for instance, if I’d had a pound for every mention of ‘the first black President’, I would be a billionaire. Yet it seems that no matter what the accomplishment, if it is made by a white man it is considered wrong to even mention it, as if by doing so we’d be at worst going back to the days of slavery and apartheid, at best demonstrating white racism.

The only example in the UK press that I could find any mention of Lemaitre being the fastest white man was at the Daily Mail site, yet even here they believe that merely by mentioning it they have sailed too close to the wind, and any congratulatory or joyful comments is a step too far and so they banned any comments.

This sickening self flagellation by well off, middle class, left leaning liberals is destroying community cohesion and driving disenfranchised white youths to people like the EDL and BNP, as that seems to be the only place they find any pride in being who they are.

This kind of ‘whites don’t matter’ attitude is the worst kind of double standard, ironically such double standards in regards to race is normally termed, racism.

The Americas Kick Britain in the Teeth

Idiots on Parade

What do the uncool kids do when they don't get to be leader? Create their own gang!

BBC News – Summit backs Argentine claim to Falkland Islands

Latin American and Caribbean leaders at a summit in Mexico have unanimously backed Argentina in its new row with the UK over the Falkland Islands.

Once again Britain receives a kick in the teeth from the those that frequently seem to have their hand out demanding our aid. The annoying word here is unanimously. We have friends in that region, apparently.

Belize

Belize for example always cries out for British aid and has a British garrison permanently based there to protect the country should it’s neighbour Guatemala invade. Like Argentina with the Falklands, Guatemala has always claimed Belize as part of its own terrority and the only thing that has prevented it exercising it’s claim is the ever present British garrison.

If Belize does not support our sovereignty over the Falklands, maybe we should stop supporting their independence from Guatemala. Their independence is enforced by the British Tax payer and British soldiers, and their gratitude is overwhelming.

Then of course there are the Caribbean nations like Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Bahamas and Barbados, all of whom receive generous aid from Britain each year.

They have all stuck up a collective two fingers at Britain and its claim on the Falklands, to appease the Argentines.

History of the Falklands

Nelson's Navy

When Britannia Ruled the Waves: With 100 more ships than Argentina, Britain still does as far as they are concerned.

Despite the claims of the Argentinians and the Spanish, the Falklands were always British. Although sighted by many European sailors prior to this the Islands were first explored by John Davis in 1592. The French claimed and settled on East Island in 1764, the British claimed the other Islands and settled them in 1765. France handed over her settlement to the Spanish who then attacked the British settlement and drove out the British. A peace deal was reached in 1771 although neither relinquished their claims on their effective halves of the Islands.

The British abandoned the settlement in 1774, but made it clear that once again they were not relinquishing their claim on the Island. Spain abandoned her settlement in 1811, but did not hand over sovereignty of their half of the Islands. The Argentinians took control of the Islands in 1828, their settlement was destroyed by the US before the British returned in 1833 to re-assert their claim.

Argentinian President Shopping

Argentinian President looking for the perfect accessory - the Falklands

At no point did the British ever relinquish their claim to the Islands. The Argentinians also claim the South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands, both of which were discovered by James Cook in 1775, and neither of which have ever officially been occupied by the Argentinians.

Argentina has claimed the Falklands more or less since its independence in 1816, but the South Georgia and South Sandwich Island since the mid 20th century, and the whole of Africa and Antarctica since 2011. The Argentinians never drove the British from the Islands, and never got the British to relinquish their claim on the Islands.

Apart from the fact that none of Argentina’s claims have merit, the British allowed the Argentinian settlement to remain in 1833, and those descendent’s and subsequent settlers have made it categorically clear that they wish to remain part of Britain. A point which Argentina wishes to ignore.

Oil

However the real reason why Argentina wants the Islands is greed, pure and simple. There is oil, 60 billion barrels of the stuff and they want it and the reason for this is twofold. The first is obviously that they want the oil for themselves, there is thirty times more oil in the Falklands than in the whole of Argentina (and Britain), and Argentinian, and the whole South American dependence on oil is rising.

The second reason is that Argentina currently supplies the Falklands with all each energy needs and the Islands having their own energy is going to affect that.

War

Argentina know that militarily it has no chance against Britain, a lesson the Argentinians learnt the hard way last time. They are desperate, trying the UN repeatedly, despite having no case, begging Britain for talks on the Falklands, even though the British refuse, after all what is there to talk about? The Islanders want to remain British, they are British, there is nothing to discuss.

Veterans still fighting

After facing a British bayonet charge, the Argentinian Falklands Veterans now have to face this at home trying to secure their pension rights. No way to treat veterans.

So in the end the Argies, and others with an axe to grind have created a little gang to back each others claims. This summit hasn’t just been a kick in the teeth to Britain, but the US and Canada too, the American nations have decided to set up another organisation, specifically omitting Canada and the US, so that they can pursue their anti-Anglo Saxon agenda.

I am sure that next they’ll back Argentina’s attempts to block shipping to the Falklands, probably by all blocking Falkland bound shipping.

It is sad and pathetic really, as I am sure that they’ll all be around the ankles of Britain, USA and Canada come donations time. They are also alienating three of their biggest export markets. If all three nations were to decide to cut any and all economic aid, or introduce their own trade embargo, the whole region will slide into recession.

There will only one set of winners in such an affair, and none of them will be the 32 nations at the Cancun summit.

British and Canadians Airbrushed out of History.

President Sarkozy: ‘We squished the Germans like ziss

The French have been saying since before the end of World War II that they liberated themselves, now, 65 years on they have almost convinced themselves of the fact.

D-Day snub to Queen: Palace fury as Sarkozy refuses to invite royals to 65th Anniversary – and Brown won’t act | Mail Online

Buckingham Palace voiced anger last night after the French snubbed the Queen over next week’s D-Day commemorations.

Astonishing that the Head of State of Great Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand will not be present at the 65th Anniversary of D-Day. Especially considering that these nations made up the largest contingent of fighting men on the day.

Charles de Gaulle

It seems that France only recognises one other nation as having been there on D-Day, the USA.

It says: ‘Surrounded by French and American veterans, the presidents Obama and Sarkozy will pay homage to the thousands of Americans who lost their lives on the Normandy beaches in their fight for liberty.’

Some 6,000 Americans were killed, 4,000 British and Canadians. The French, despite it being a liberation of their nation, barely took part in the Normandy Landings. Of the 150,000 troops that landed on the beaches; about 60,000 were British, 70,000 Americans, 20,000 Canadians. 

That of course is not the picture that they like to paint of the end of World War II. De Gaulle himself said after the liberation of Paris:

“We are back home in Paris which is on its feet to liberate itself and which has been able to achieve it singlehanded.”

And so it began; apparently the French liberated Paris, and probably the rest of France single handed. Churchill should have pulled us out when he heard the speech and left the great general de Gaulle to finish off the Germans.

Impregnable: The French relied almost entirely on their system of fortresses, German paratroopers took them in one night (pictured); if only the French had rolled two sixes, D-Day wouldn’t have been necessary.

This latest snub just shows the contempt the French have for everyone that aided them during WWII and I shouldn’t really be surprised at their ungratefulness. I should be pleased that at least they are acknowledging the American presence that day.

Only in the movies

Having said that the Americans are just as bad when remembering the rest of the Allies. Most war movies and dramatisations of WWII rarely, if ever, mention, let alone feature any non-Americans.

One of the most famous war films of recent times, Saving Private Ryan, made no mention of any other Allied forces, and even cut the British ships that the protagonists from the 2nd Rangers departed from, out of the film entirely, replacing them with US ships.

Not to mention U-571, which depicted US sailors capturing a German submarine and cracking the enigma code; when in reality the capture had been done by British sailors in 1941 and the cracking of the code by British code breakers at Bletchley, before the Americans had entered the war.

The screenwriter did later admit:

“It was a distortion…a mercenary decision…to create this parallel history in order to drive the movie for an American audience. Both my grandparents were officers in World War II, and I would be personally offended if somebody distorted their achievements.”

This isn’t helped by the fact that us British rarely seem to protest about such things, as if our Government is ashamed of our history and would rather it all was re-written.

I am sure that many American, British and Canadian kids grow up thinking that WWII was a war between the US and Germany. Indeed, I have lost count of the times that I have heard Americans say things like ‘We’ve saved Europe’s ass…twice!’ But us Brits have got used to it.

This is probably compounded by the dire British education system that rarely, if ever, likes to teach about British victories.

Arrogance

But their is more to this that than the American movies or French ungratefulness. The French hate the British, pure and simple, and there is no love lost the other way either. In their hatred the French have lumped the Canadians in with the British, and probably would the Americans too, if Sarkozy didn’t need the Americans.

It also seems that the French hatred of Monarchy and it’s connotations doesn’t stop them being sycophantic.

France’s equivalent of BBC1 plans blanket coverage in a day-long programme called Barack Obama On The Invasion Beaches.

A whole day about President Obama, surely the day should be about those that gave their lives? And that is what really saddens me, it is the men that fought there, and the families of the heroes that died there that really feel this slap in the face.

A French government source said: ‘There were never any plans to invite members of the British Royal Family, although an invitation has been extended to Gordon Brown after he said he wanted to come.

Few men left to sing – ‘Hang out your washing on the Siegfried Line!’

There was never any plans to invite the British and Canadian Head of State to commemorate when British, Canadian and US troops saved France from the Germans whilst the French sat idly by?

These men fought for King and Country; their country has all but forgotten about them, and now their Queen cannot be there to honour them.

‘The veterans have immense respect for her and feel a very special bond. The fact that she took the salute at Arromanches at the 60th anniversary was very special to them.’

But it is clear what they think of Brown.

‘[it] wouldn’t make a scrap of difference’ to most veterans whether the Prime Minister turned up or not.

Which sounds about right, no-one likes Brown. I only hope the Queen or a high ranking Royals does attend, as it is the least that these men deserve.

As for Brown:

A spokesman said: ‘This is an event organised by the French government. It is for them to issue invitations. The Prime Minister is pleased to have been invited and hopes to attend.’

Hopes to attend? So he may not even bother! Then again would it matter if he did?

Something tells me he won’t bother, after all he likes to be at the centre of things to massage his ego and apparently:

‘He will, of course, be concentrating on the British commemorations, away from the American beaches, as is appropriate. This is very much a Franco-American occasion.’

So Brown isn’t really invited to the main party, just the sideshow. From the looks of things there will be no official British representation and few British veterans as they were initially told not to go.

We  should remember this, and next time leave the ungrateful French to their invincible Maginot Lines and great generals. As the Americans say, we saved their asses twice, the question is, why?

Spanish Armada Assaults Gibraltar

Sir Francis Drake discovered that the Spanish don’t like it up ’em

Minister’s fury at Spanish moves to take over Gibraltar waters as Navy warship moves in | Mail Online

Royal Navy warships have forced a an armed Spanish ship to retreat from British waters around Gibraltar.

Typical Spaniards, resorting to sneaky, dirty tactics thinking that us Brits would back down!

Bulldog spirit

Then again, these days they were probably odds on that Britain would back down. We have become a spineless nation bearing little or no resemblance to the nation that stood up to Napoleon and then Hitler.

We have become a nation of weaklings and leftist whiners. If the Second World War were to happen today, we’d be Italy or worse, France.

Neville Chamberlain wouldn’t meet with Hitler to discuss peace or appeasement, today he would be handing over our unconditional surrender. Well, perhaps that is a little too harsh, there are after all some quarters wherein the bulldog spirit still lies, typically the hard done by working class.

In fact a little sabre rattling or even a good war normally goes down well with those people. It certainly worked for Maggie Thatcher, although rumours that Gordon Brown has orchestrated the whole affair, or even a war, appear unfounded.

hypocrites

The Spanish are complete hypocrites when it comes to claiming bits of land. They whinge and complain about Gibraltar, which they lost fair and square, demanding that the Rock and the 30,000 inhabitants be handed straight over to them, despite the fact that the 30,000 overwhelmingly don’t want to be Spanish.

Yet, at the same time they are keeping control of Ceuta which is across the Med in Morocco! They claim that it is part of the Spanish State and therefore belongs to them, despite being in Morocco itselt and despite Morocco repeatedly trying to claim it.

Penon de Alhucemas viewed from Mororroco; Spain must seem awfully close to the Moroccans.

Melilla is another example, a good 100 miles away from Spain itself, this Spanish town is also located in Morocco, which also claims it. Each of these ‘Spanish’ towns has more than double the population of Gibraltar, and Spain has no intention of ever letting them go.

Nor do they have any intention of letting the Moroccans have back; Penon de Velez de la Gomera, the islands of Penon de Alhucemas and Islas Chafarinas,despite them being in Morocco, or just off the coast.

This of course begs the question, if they won’t give their former colony its land back, why on Earth should we hand over 30,000 Brits, living on 2 square miles of rock?

History

Gibraltar ended up in British hands during the War of the Spanish Succession. When the Treaty was signed ending that war, the Spanish gave the British Gibraltar permanently as part of the peace agreement. Clearly the Spanish word for permanently isn’t quite as permanent as the English one.

The duplicitous Spaniards took each and every opportunity since then to get the Island back, including siding with the American’s in the War of Independence and laying siege to Gibraltar with the French for three years.

At the end of the day though, it is just a rock and few people in Britain really care about a lump of rock in the Mediterranean. But is is the people that live there that matter. In 1967 the Islanders were asked whether they wanted to join Spain, they voted 12,138 to 44 against. Pretty conclusive.

Another referendum was held in 2002, 17,900 to 187 against joining Spain. Clearly however joining Spain is becoming more popular, so in about another 1000 years, Spain will get Gibraltar back peacefully!

Incidentally, the Channel Islands, just off the coast of France, have never been claimed back by France.

Naval Power

Type 45 Class Destroyer: The lone Spanish destroyer looks nothing like this

Although no longer the naval power she once was, Britain still has the most poweful navy in Europe (excluding Russia). Britain has two aircraft carriers, although both of them are a bit shit. Spain has just the one.

Spain has 8 submarines, but Britain has 17.

When it comes to Destroyers, the British have 11, the Spanish, just the one. But things are more closely matched in Frigates, Britain has 21 Frigates, Spain has 15.

Of course the naval power isn’t all that relevent when you consider that Spain shares a border with Gibraltar and can just pop troops over. Still it is worth noting, as is the fact that the RAF is three times larger than the Spanish airforce, and that Britain has more active troops.

In the unlikely event that Spain, like its former colony Argentina, may try and take its claim by force, it is reassuring to know that Britain is more than capable of fighting its corner. Of course having the equipment and having the will are two entirely different things, but Gordon won’t be in power for much longer.

The Spanish, and others, are likely sensing a weakness in Brown’s Britain, hopefully our next leader will have more balls, and give the Spanish a bloody nose.

The Might of the EU

As the war in Georgia has recently shown, a resurgent Russia is one of the most powerful nations on earth, in terms of both military power and influence. Completely dependent on Russian fuel, Europe is at the mercy of Putin.

The EU is often described as toothless, weak and spineless, so I thought it would be interesting just to see what the military might of the EU is. Although it has no formal army the EU is made up of some of the world’s foremost powers and could be forced to act if say Russia took the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline in Georgia, or cut off supplies to Europe.

The EU as a single entity would be the richest nation on earth but even individually the nations that make up the EU are well off. France has the largest defence budget in the EU and the second largest in the world, some £39 billion; Russia has a budget of just £24 billion. In fact all of the EU’s big three nations, France, Britain (£36 billion) and Germany (£24.2 billion) spend more on defence each year than Russia. Even China spends more on defence each year than its former comrade with £31 billion.

The combined EU defence budget is £165 billion, the second largest in the world, after of course the US, which spends an incredible £308 billion a year on defence and accounts for almost half of the world’s combined defence budget.

The EU big four would make up the bulk of any EU force. In terms of manpower France once again leads the way with a total of 750,000 men, including reserves; Germany, 700,000; Italy, 600,000; Britain, 440,000. A combined EU force would number 7.2 million men, including reserves but without reserves that number would be just 2.2 million active service personnel.

Russia has 1.2 million active service personnel, the US 1.6 million. China is the only country able to field more men that the EU, at 2.3 million.

As Sun Tzu said:

“In war, numbers alone confer no advantage.”

There has never been more true than in modern warfare. Russia has a staggering amount of equipment, and would certainly be high on anyone’s ‘nations not to fuck with’ list. Russia has a whopping 25,000 tanks, 2000 fighter aircraft and still has a formidable navy, 2 aircraft carriers, over 100 warships and about 85 submarines.

In comparison France has about 1000 tanks, 300 fighter aircraft, 1 aircraft carrier, 30 warships and 10 subs. Altogether though, the EU has over 8000 tanks, 2500 fighter aircraft, 8 aircraft carriers, about 200 warships and about 80 subs.

The USA has 8000 tanks, 2500 fighter aircraft, an incredible 12 aircraft carriers (which is more than Russia, the EU and China combined), over 150 warships and about 80 subs.

Far from being a toothless tiger, the EU certainly has the military might for a direct confrontation with Russia, or anyone else for that matter, but there is one area where the EU dominates all other nations.

Bureaucrats.

The number of bureaucrats in the EU, including the EU and domestic ones, must run into the millions and this is the Achilles heel of the EU.

Were Russia to take control of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline in Georgia and cut off the fuel supplies to Europe, the citizens of the EU would have frozen to death or died of starvation long before the bureaucrats had reached any consensus on a plan of action.

The conflict in Georgia has shown who really holds all the cards on this side of the Atlantic. Sarkozy may believe that he negociated a ceasefire, but in reality Russia had made its point. A quarter of Georgia is now in the hands of the Russian army, it is unlikely they will ever be returned.

I am sure that in the next few weeks and months, Georgia and the Ukraine will renounce any plans to join either the EU or NATO.

Royal Navy under French command

Royal Navy warships may form part of EU fleet – Telegraph

Royal Navy vessels could take part in a new “European Union fleet” being planned by France.

carrier I am not sure that I see a problem with this, in fact it could well be a good idea. It is about time that the EU had more clout and in the current climate, where the UN is ineffectual and bogged down with bureaucracy and the US is already over stretched in Iraq and Afghanistan, it would be good to have another power looking after humanitarian interests.

But back to the real world, all this means is that EU countries will have one of the most powerful navies in the world protecting them, the Royal Navy. The Royal Navy has the second largest carrier fleet in the world, as unbelievable as that may sound, with a whopping 3 carriers. France has just 1, Germany 0, Italy 1, Russia also has just 1.

France is currently building another aircraft carrier, but Britain is building two big new carriers that will take the fleet to 5 (although three will probably be decommissioned), giving the EU quite a carrier fleet at about 8 carriers. The US has 24.

The Royal Navy also has the largest submarine fleet in the EU, twice the size of its nearest rival, but only half the size of the Russian and Chinese fleets, and a third of the size of the US one.

I can see why France would want a European Union Fleet, all of the benefits of the Royal Navy and none of the costs, but this isn’t all one way traffic. I am sure that the British government is thinking the same thing, after all why build the destroyers that the Royal Navy desperately needs, when we could use the French and German ones? The RN has just eight destroyers, the French and Germans have twelve each.

This could be the start of another cost saving plan by the government to scale down the Royal Navy and have other nations fill the gaps.

The other concern is spelt out by the Conservative Defence spokesman:

“We need to know if this is an attempt by the Government to ingratiate itself with EU allies and in so doing sell the Royal Navy down the river. “

Both France and Germany have shown their unwillingness to risk their own armed forces in Afghanistan so will the EU Fleet simply be a way of France and Germany getting the British to once again do the fighting for them?

This scheme has grand aims but I think that it will be forever bogged down with just who contributes what for each mission and more importantly, who controls the fleet, and the French have never been much good at compromising.