Flowers long gone

Yesterday marked Remembrance Sunday.. And on a day when we had Flowers of the Forest playing its mournful lament, we also heard the rousing chorus of Flower of Scotland vocally blasted out with great passion as Scotland hosted The AllBlacks at Murrayfield.

One song of Flowers remembers those who died at the Battle of Flodden in 1513
The other refers to the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314
Two entirely different battles with two entirely different outcomes.
The Battle of Flodden was instigated by King James the 4th of Scotland and was an invasion of England, in support of the Auld Alliance, France.
It was played by chivalric rules, game on old boy, between noon and 3pm.
It should never have happened, it need never have happened,and if King James was the Craig Levein of his day, He lost his job,by being inept and by being killed on the battlefield. Unfortunately..war is no game!
And many brave men lost their lives on that day, fighting a battle which really they should not have been part of…It was a battle between Royal aristocracies.
At least King James, fought in the front line, unlike the warmongers of today, who stay as far away from mud and the dirt and the blood and the grime,as they possibly can get, while sending others to die.

Floddens 500th anniversary will be next year, I doubt that many will be celebrating it!

Flower of Scotland on the other hand refers to the Battle of Bannockburn, of which we have heard more than plenty. In that battle, King Edward of England was the aggressor, and the Scots didn’t play by any chivalric rules, they used brain and guile, and decisively won that contest…But in this case, they were fighting for their freedom and Independence.
As everyone must surely know, it’s anniversary falls in 2014, and much has been made of that, by the Better together campaign, but not by Scottish nationalists.
Those Scots peacefully fighting for Scottish Independence today,are not reliving old battles, but instead looking to the present and the future.
Whether Flowers of Flodden or Bannockburn are sung, is immaterial and irrelevant to our today, or for our tomorrows. They belong in a different time,and a vastly different world.

However, the British nationalists don’t see it that way. They see the Bannockburn anniversary as being simply a Saltire flag waving exercise, and worse still, it coincides with more saltire flag waving, with the Commonwealth games,and the ryder cup scheduled here in the same year….And they don’t like it! Not one bit.
There is a very simple reason for their fear, they use every excuse possible to try and make us feel more British, by waving Union Jacks and events such as Royal Weddings, Jubilees, and the Olympics to distract us from the real crap that is going down.
The last thing they ever want is for Scots to actually feel good about themselves…that would never do.

The most despicable thing, is that a good number of themselves, are Scottish! And they would be the first ones to take false umbrage, if it was even suggested that they were not acting in Scottish interests. They sure have a funny way of showing their Scottishness.

And so, bearing this mind..they come up with a spiffing wheeze…lets make the 100th anniversary of the 1st world war a celebration!
If you can find anything much more perverse than celebrating the greatest carnage ever inflicted in war as that, you would be struggling.
The total number of military and civilian casualties in world war 1, from direct or indirect reasons,such as famine amounted to around 37 million people.

The population of the United Kingdom at the time amounted to 45 million… The immediate military deaths were in the region of 887,000 and the wounded amounted to 1,664,000

Of the 157 battalions which comprised the British Expeditionary Force, 22 were Scottish regiments…

Of the 557,000 Scots who enlisted in all services, 26.4 percent lost their lives. This compares with an average death rate of 11.8 percent for the rest of the British army between 1914 and 1918. The main reason for the higher-than-average casualties among the Scottish soldiers was that they were regarded as excellent, aggressive shock troops who could be depended upon to lead the line in the first hours of battle.

To put this in another perspective, out of a total population of around 4.5 million Scots, over half a million of them fought, and over a quarter of them lost their lives.

For what? An Imperialist war which the British Empire just had to be involved in.

That is a cause for celebration and union jack waving? I sure don’t think so!
And yet that is what David Cameron and the Unionists have said will happen.

Remarkably a Unionist supporter, accused a nationalist friend of mine the other day of being unpatriotic and disrespectful of the war dead, by supporting Independence for Scotland.

That is quite a horrendous accusation. Scots have always given disproportionately of ourselves in these major wars. They still do!
But just because they have fought and died in these wars, does not make them not be Scots! Scots had been promised home rule in 1913, and it was sidelined because of the 1st world war. They then presented over 2 million signatures in 1921,( more than half the adult population) to Westminster demanding home rule..only to be ignored. Does that make them all British?

Meanwhile Cameron goes selling guns and bombs to the middle east, and has a cheek to look all suitably sad faced wearing a poppy at the cenotaph. All the while they still send our young men to die on more foreign fields, and insist on parking their nuclear bombs in our country.

No war…Flodden, Bannockburn, or any other war should ever be part of our independence campaign.That is disrespectful of those who gave their lives.
Scotland has barely ever fought with anyone as a country,and when we have fought others, it has mostly been for our own Freedom. We are a Nation renowned for our fighting abilities,and we have had our mercenaries for sure…But as a whole we live and let live.
An Independent Scotland, ensures we no longer fight just because someone else demands it,and damned be them who try dragging us into their power games. We shall decide..If we fight, who we fight,and what we fight for!

Our drive for our freedom of choice, should be looking to what we can become,and what we can peacefully aspire to.

And just as a little reminder to our jingoistic British national friends.

I will leave you a very poignant song written by a Scot..Eric Bogle, and performed here by the Corries.

The Green fields of France

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About auldacquaintance

I am not a member of any political party. I am however a strong supporter of Scots Independence. Any views which I express in this Blog are purely my own. This Blog intends to be a place where I will be putting my views on Scots Independence. It will primarily concern itself with the upcoming Referendum In Scotland. However It will also be somewhat diverse in the range of day to day issues which are evident to me in modern day Scotland. Not all of it will be political, and indeed may take me off into avenues I am not even aware of yet. Please come and join in on this journey, and any comments are welcome provided they are not abusive! All the best from a new acquaintance! Rod
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6 Responses to Flowers long gone

  1. Macart says:

    A number of near family members have served in the armed forces. Those family members are ardent independence supporters. The people who conflate independence for Scotland with being somehow traitorous toward Britain really a. Have no knowledge of history and therefore irony b. No respect for the fact that not all folks fight in the same uniform for the same reasons. I have it on pretty good authority that you fight to just get through the day and for the guy standing right next to you mostly.

  2. Ron says:

    Rod,

    Guess you meant 1913?

  3. I have been a nationalist all my life – my mother was a founder member of the party. Her father was kia in October 1917. I was proud to be at the Remembrance Service yesterday wearing his medals. I have also been a member of the Western Front Association for quite a number of years and visited the Western Front on several occasions. WW1 was about the freedom of Belgium initially and then the freedom of the UK which it was as was WW2. Scotland could not stand alone and UK was NOT the only country involved in either conflict as seems to be implied too often. For the freedom of nations France and Belgium come to a standstill for 2 mins (as do we) on 11th November. Children place flowers on graves of our soldiers and in the Netherlands too candles are placed on graves – what for? They are taught these horrendous conflicts with the horrendous loss of life were for FREEDOM – theirs and ours. Somehow or other it has been put about that we should not have been involved! WHAT? FREEDOM? (As for the Royal family – the Dof E served in WW2. Prince Andrew in the Falklands and where is Harry just now? They have more involvement than those politicians)As for subsequent conflicts I agree that many have been engineered for no particular purpose and that we should Never have been involved. As for commemorating WW1 we will not be alone in marking the carnage – do you really think other nations will leave it unmarked? What bothers me is the form that DC may be considering. I trust the Western Front Association, the British Legion and the forces associations will keep things in the ‘proper’ manner with the aid of the public who I may say are abysmally ignorant of WW1. We’ve just had a second school party back from Flanders – those kids know what was what. They helped us with the Remembrance Planters locally – they were in tears about it and determined that ‘it will NEVER happen again’. These will be voting in 2014. Please ensure that the commemoration is exactly that – one nation participating with others in marking what was a turning point in World History. Thank you Sandra

    Date: Mon, 12 Nov 2012 06:55:01 +0000 To: sandraross_rothes@hotmail.com

    • Thanks for your perspective Sandra. I take a different perspective.
      The war intially kicked off, using the assassination of the Austrian Arch Duke Ferdinand by Serbians. This gave Germany the excuse to go to war, and they had been looking for one. Namely because the British Empire were holding and restricting trade the the lucrative East Indies,The Middle East and far East. Britain had control over the Suez canal too.
      Britain and France were cutting up Africa between them.
      The German and Russian Empires were wanting a larger share and foothold in this.
      The Austro Hungarian Empire was the other Empire in play.
      Germany realise that the Russians would soon overtake them in the arms race, and wanted to cut them off, before they were fully organised.
      With Serbia wanting to break away from the Austro Hungarian Empire… Obviously the Austro Hungarians were not chuffed at that Idea…and Russia would come in on the side of Serbia if it came to war.. Germany on the side of the Austrians.

      So when it all kicked off…Germany wanted access from Belgium to send their troops through..The Belgians weren’t having it…and thus Germany ssaid that they would march through in any case. Which caused British alarm…as coming round the coast via France and Belgium, was bringing German troops too close for comfort.
      The British informed Germany that should they take that route…Then Britain would enter the war.

      So really what was going on here was a Game of Thrones.
      Britain didn’t need to get involved..but did!
      Now it can be debated whether or not they were right to get involved or not? But the fact is, Scots certainly had no part in the decision. But Scots did provide the initial attack troops when called upon.
      And the greatest losses were when they were sent over in Ypres…It was carnage!

      Would Scotland have got involved if Independent at that time? I do not know? But as part of the British Empire, they felt they were doing their duty..and did it.

      British freedom was not under threat initially in world war 1….But it most certainly was in World War 2.

      World War 2 was a Just War…I would struggle to think of many wars that would meet that criteria. Iraq most certainly wasn’t…The Falklands wasn’t, and what the hell are we doing in Afghanistan?

      I can see the reasoning for commemorating the end of the 1st World War in 2018.
      But to commemorate the beginning of it?? That is perverse in my view.

  4. Phillip Ward says:

    I would like to comment on this paragraph “There is a very simple reason for their fear, they use every excuse possible to try and make us feel more British, by waving Union Jacks and events such as Royal Weddings, Jubilees, and the Olympics to distract us from the real crap that is going down.The last thing they ever want is for Scots to actually feel good about themselves…that would never do”. First off there is no Royal family there are some electors pretending to be Royal, Therefor there is no actual Queen, an Elector cannot be a King, Queen, Prince, or Princess. Any Jubilee would be little more than a costume party. It’s time to relegate this bullshit to the fairy tales, it might make a good Disney movie but it has become as useless in real life as tits on a boar hog. Please campaign to do away with the Monarchy once and for all. You people need and deserve a Totally Elected Representative Republic, nothing less is acceptable.

    Date: Mon, 12 Nov 2012 06:55:02 +0000 To: phillipward@live.com

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