Tweet Follow @RPJblog
By Jason Michael
BEFORE EVERY SOCIAL and political calamity, and without exception, there are those who, when warned of the dangers on the horizon, say ‘it can’t happen here – not in this day and age.’ This was as true of Germany before the rise of the Nazis as it was before the conflicts in Ireland and the Balkans. In fairness, this state of denial says something wonderful – but dangerously naïve – of human nature. We are, in the main, optimists; we are wishful thinkers conditioned by the peace and stability of our past experiences. We hope and therefore assume the future will be as normal as our past. Periods of relative peace and social and economic stability lull us into a false sense of security, persuading each new generation that it has passed into the millennium of tranquillity, and forms the opinion that in these times – this golden age of peace – such upheaval and misery can never happen again.
No doubt this hopeful denial was prevalent in both Ukraine and Syria even as conflict was erupting in recent years in those countries. War and state-sanctioned violence are always impossible until they happen. But we must realise that the spectre of such mayhem hangs over us all so long as the present conditions of the world are determined by state power and the hegemonic ambitions of contending state-political ideologies. Hoping that it will never happen again, as fine as that hope is, is not quite the same as a guarantee that it won’t happen again. Given the right circumstances, and with the removal of all the necessary safeguards for peace and security, any state or society – anywhere in the world – can descend into chaos, conflict, and war.
Over the past couple of years in Scotland, we are again hearing those denials – that, in this day and age, the British state will not use force against us; either in the event of civil disorder arising from a no-deal Brexit or in the event that the Scottish government pushes for independence against London’s wishes. One pro-independence blogger even went as far as saying that the suggestion that this might actually happen was “incitement” on the part of those suggesting it. Entrenching himself in this assertion, he went on to imply that the Irish background and the religious beliefs of those suggesting it need further interrogation – because, you know, Irish Catholics are inherently violent. The reality in Ireland, however, was that Britain instigated sectarian tensions and violence. Blaming the victims of Britain’s dirty war in Ireland may be a sophisticated way of distancing us from the events and thus denying any possibility the same could happen here, but it is as callous as it is cruel.
Others are saying the British Army is too small to control the population of Scotland, let alone the population of the United Kingdom. This may be true, but it is irrelevant. Britain has always had a pocket-sized army, yet it managed to subdue India, vast territories of Africa, and most of North America. Britain has never relied on the size of its armed forces to dominate and brutalise nations. It colluded with a ruling faction in both India and Ireland so as to ignite internal conflict and so rule over the chaos it started. As recently as the late 1990s, the British security and intelligence services aided and supplied paramilitary murder gangs in Ireland. British authorities worked hand-in-glove with loyalist terrorists, instigating violent atrocities – even going as far as promoting an armed assault on school children and the assassination of the Irish Taoiseach, all in the service of keeping part of the island of Ireland under British rule.
Britain has never needed a large military force to subdue and control a large unarmed civilian population. Britain is a master of the art of population control. Between the 9 and 11 August 1971 the British Army went door-to-door in Belfast’s majority nationalist Ballymurphy estate gunning down eleven innocent women and men to send a message to the Irish civil rights movement. The commander of this unit, Brigadier Frank Kitson, the man who wrote the British Army’s manual on counter-insurgency, had been brought in for exactly this job. Kitson had been “decorated for his service during the Mau Mau uprising in Kenya and the Malayan Emergency, in which thousands of local people had been killed while Britain tried to hold on to its Empire.” Britain was using methods against UK citizens it had developed in Africa and Asia.
Less than a year after the Ballymurphy massacre the same unit, the Parachute Regiment, opened fire on civil rights marchers – a crowd of unarmed men, women, and children – in Derry, killing fourteen innocent people and seriously wounding over a dozen more. Since these events the British government and the British media establishment have worked tirelessly to construct a fictive narrative in which the victims were held responsible for “firing the first shots” and for being “terrorists” – all of which was found to be lies by the June 2010 Bloody Sunday Inquiry that forced an apology from the then British Prime Minister David Cameron.
Yet, this was achieved by the British state without a large military force, without a mass mobilisation of troops and military hardware. It was achieved by terrorising an entire population – as it did in Kenya and Malaya – with a small number of extremely violent attacks on innocent people. Once sufficiently shocked and traumatised, this population would be kept in check with the active collaboration of the British state with loyalist murder gangs. This is a formula or military strategy Britain has honed to perfection over the world, in every corner of its empire where it has been compelled to teach the natives a lesson. It would be foolish to imagine that this behaviour has been consigned to history. It most certainly has not.
In its alliance with the United States, the British government was called upon for precisely this skill set to control urban populations in Iraq and Afghanistan during their illegal invasions and occupations. In both these theatres of conflict the British military and security forces developed and improved their methods. Being effectively above the law, they were free to work on torture methods and their psychological warfare tactics beyond the reach of international scrutiny. Even now, the British government under Theresa May is doing everything in its power – even to the extent of changing the law – to protect British war criminals from journalistic investigation and legal consequences. The truth of the matter is that the British imperial leopard has not changed its spots. It is still up to the same disgusting dirty tricks, and the fact that they are happening thousands of miles away to people of another culture, religion, and skin tone, does not mean it can’t happen here.
In the coming weeks the United Kingdom is going to slip chaotically into the deepest political and social crisis it has experienced since the outbreak of the Second World War. The very existence of the British state, given the conditions of an “Apocalypse scenario” Brexit crash out, will be on the line. Civil disorder caused by food shortages and lack of essential medicines will bring matters to a head in England, Scotland, Wales, and those parts of Ireland still under British occupation. Faced with economic ruin without trade deals, Scotland’s oil and gas resources will be crucial for the survival of the London regime. When this happens, and mark my words, its rules of engagement with Scotland and all the old certainties will change – and rapidly so.
The suggestion that Britain would use deadly military force against the people and government of Scotland is not an incitement to violence. It is a warning from recent history and current events. This is how Britain behaves. This is how Britain has always behaved. Incitement is the last thing we need. An armed struggle in Scotland would be foolish and suicidal. In fact, the lessons from our nearest neighbour – Ireland – suggest that peace and passive civil disobedience are more effective. Britain, knowing no other way than brutality and violence, will achieve nothing but the radicalisation of Scotland for independence in time and by peaceful and democratic means. But to suggest that this cannot happen here – in this day and age – is just idiotic. By all means trust in God, but lock your car.
The Ballymurphy Massacre
6 thoughts on “Not in This Day and Age?”
This Scottish Exceptionalism is what makes me realise how unlikely Scottish independence really is.
Somewhere deep in the collective consciousness Westminster has planted this dangerous seed that subconsiously traps them in the Union.
The tragedy is that each and every atrocious government act has been forewarned by its past behaviour. What is most surprising is that the next group of victims are surprised when Westminster ratchets the “other”ing to them.
Just as Indyref media manipulation was the forewarning of Brexit campaign where the English were caught unawares….(they didn’t care as Indyref was not about them). All people need to do is extrapolate the current hostile environment on to themselves to see what is coming.
It is time for people to break out of their belief in the permanence of the Social State without constant vigilance and ongoing protection. The disaster capitalists are gunning for that wealth…and Scotland is their magic money tree.
LikeLiked by 2 people
You know, Tol? You are dead right.
Its like FISH DON’T REALISE THEY ARE WET…this weird exceptionalism is just so ingrained.
EG…I was blown away when someone pointed out that men don’t need makeup to be attractive….its that moment when you hear your own heartbeat and its shocking.
I agree fully.
Anyone who doesn’t think the British would behave in Scotland as they did in Ireland or Kenya isn’t paying attention to history.
They are still underneath the smart suits and public school etiquette the same savages who landed at Hastings 1000 years ago.
Reblogged this on Ramblings of a 50+ Female and commented:
Sadly, I have to agree.
I’m afraid that watching the events of the so-called pro-Brexit rally on Friday it was difficult not to concur with your arguments Jason.
The recieved wisdom seems to,be that what ‘’we’ need is some sort of Government of National Unity. This would undoubtedly be Tory led and seek to include as many quislings from other parties as they can scrape up. Such a move would undoubtedly be hugely popular with middle England and to an extent middle Scotland as well.
It is in such a situation that Imcan see,the,dystopian nightmare you have previously described arising. It would be well within relatively recent experience,to,envisage a,National British Government using the ubiquitous special measures to,deal,with any dissent,
To this end I deem it absolutely vital for the SNP (and Labour too): to stick to their guns and continue,demanding a General Election and touch not the hand of corruption.