Is the UK a ghost of its former glory?

Jun 2017
2,988
Connecticut
First, at that point the French were not “allied soldiers” (sailors). They were Vichy whose government had made its deals with the Nazis. Let’s get that straight, shall we? Second, the French were given a non-combat deal to remove the fleet to other far away anchorages where the Germans could not get to them. The French fleet was not obliged to join the British fleet. The French refused. Third, kindly recall that the official French position at the time was that joining Great Britain in the fight against the Germans was tantamount to “fusion with a corpse” - while remaining with the Vichy government wasn’t? When all else failed, the British opened fire.

I don’t blame them. It was awful, horrible and stomach churning, but it had to be done.
Wow.
 

Ancientgeezer

Ad Honorem
Nov 2011
8,899
The Dustbin, formerly, Garden of England
What's your definition of "glory?" If you mean "military glory" by sending off a bunch of working class people the Duke of Wellington derisively called "scum" to die or get maimed for life in some battlefield in Belgium, or charge at entrenched Russian guns led by incompetent aristocrats at Balaclava, or slaughtered to a man at Isandalwana just so they can make a bunch of rich lords and merchants even richer then where's the glory in that?
The squalor that most of the British Empire's soldiers came from during this so-called "glory days" of the Victorian era would indicate that most of them never saw this "glory." Subsistence level wages forced families to put children to work at an early age making therm vulnerable to exploitation and abuse. In 1848 London alone there were 30,000 homeless children forced to turn to begging, crime and prostitution just to survive. You don't even want to know the diseases you can pick up in Victorian Britain where most people had no healthcare. Now compare the average life expectancy and overall quality of life of people in Britain today and you tell me if Britain is a "ghost" of its former "glory."
I am not sure that anyone can argue against that.
Funny old thing, all the front bottoms who squeal about "English Imperialism" or "British Domination" rarely mention the near-slavery of the British working class during the age of Imperialism.
 
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Belgarion

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,770
Australia
" Do machine guns render one against a thousand possible, especially with relatively safe range? "

on open ground , yes
No. A determined enemy will overwhelm a single machine gun fairly easily. Classic example here............. "Within minutes of the start of the breakout attempt, Privates Ben Hardy and Ralph Jones manned the No. 2 Vickers machine-gun and began firing into the first wave of escapees. They were soon overwhelmed by a wave of Japanese prisoners who had breached the lines of barbed wire fences. Before dying, Private Hardy managed to remove and throw away the gun's bolt, rendering the gun useless. This prevented the prisoners from turning the machine gun against the guards."

Cowra breakout - Wikipedia
 

sparky

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
5,355
Sydney
the Cowra breakout was made possible by the Aussie guards ( second rate militia ) firing warning shots and waiting too long to open fire
the newly installed Lewis were too close to the perimeter
less than half of Japanese POW made it out of the camp
one hundred yards more and a harsher attitude would have seen the escape fail

today Cowra boast of a very fine Japanese public garden , which I had the great pleasure to stroll through
Cowra Japanese Garden and Cultural Centre
 
Jun 2016
1,863
England, 200 yards from Wales
What's your definition of "glory?" If you mean "military glory" by sending off a bunch of working class people the Duke of Wellington derisively called "scum" to die or get maimed for life in some battlefield in Belgium, or charge at entrenched Russian guns led by incompetent aristocrats at Balaclava, or slaughtered to a man at Isandalwana just so they can make a bunch of rich lords and merchants even richer then where's the glory in that?
The squalor that most of the British Empire's soldiers came from during this so-called "glory days" of the Victorian era would indicate that most of them never saw this "glory." Subsistence level wages forced families to put children to work at an early age making therm vulnerable to exploitation and abuse. In 1848 London alone there were 30,000 homeless children forced to turn to begging, crime and prostitution just to survive. You don't even want to know the diseases you can pick up in Victorian Britain where most people had no healthcare. Now compare the average life expectancy and overall quality of life of people in Britain today and you tell me if Britain is a "ghost" of its former "glory."
Absolutely, well put.
I don't know about glory (except that it's often, or usually, a nonsense to get people to die to either correct their rulers' mistakes or to increase their rulers' power), it would seem to me that a country is most glorious if it concentrates on providing and encouraging the best possible life for all its people.
 
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Jun 2016
1,863
England, 200 yards from Wales
I am not sure that anyone can argue against that.
Funny old thing, all the front bottoms who squeal about "English Imperialism" or "British Domination" rarely mention the near-slavery of the British working class during the age of Imperialism.
So the British working class were as much the suckers and victims of imperialism as the foreigners they fought?
 

VHS

Ad Honorem
Dec 2015
4,745
Florania
Absolutely, well put.
I don't know about glory (except that it's often, or usually, a nonsense to get people to die to either correct their rulers' mistakes or to increase their rulers' power), it would seem to me that a country is most glorious if it concentrates on providing and encouraging the best possible life for all its people.
It was "gory" rather than "glory" back then: if "Glorious Revolution" meant one without bloodshed, most other revolutions were "gory" by definition.
 
Oct 2015
1,196
California
So the British working class were as much the suckers and victims of imperialism as the foreigners they fought?
Essentially, I would say yes. The people in power using one oppressed group of people to suppress another group of people just so those people in power can expand it.
 

stevev

Ad Honorem
Apr 2017
3,625
Las Vegas, NV USA
If you could roll the dice to live in the UK today or by magic end up as a random person in Victorian Britain at the height of its glory, would you do it?
 
Oct 2015
1,196
California
If you could roll the dice to live in the UK today or by magic end up as a random person in Victorian Britain at the height of its glory, would you do it?
Most people who glorify the past would almost always never say they would want to end up as some random person. For this question most if not all of them would probably say they would not mind being some lord of the manor and never a welsh coal miner with black lung disease.
 
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