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I just LOVE to stir the "pot" sometimes and to be controversial..........

Especially when people take the FACTS and the TRUTH and use

them for their own gains, or try to make us believe that the position

is somehow DIFFERENT from what the actual facts are, and how

things actually have been PROVEN to have happened in history.

==================================================

What do I mean by this? Well the first issue is that if one is a South

African, and especially if one lives in Durban or indeed, in the

province of Natal (we all have heard of Natal - also known as:

"The Last Outpost of the British Empire"), then we will know that

every time there is an anniversary to do with the Anglo-Zulu War

of 1879, or one of the battles, especially that of the famous Battle

of Isandlwana, then we read in the local press, and we hear - most

especially from local black politicians about how............

The British army was defeated by the Zulu Army......... using of

course the British defeat at Isandlwana (22 January 1879) by a large

Zulu army.

What upsets me, every time I hear the claim that the BRITISH ARMY

was defeated by the ZULU ARMY at Isandlwana, this is a huge distortion

of the facts, and a bending of the truth. A "twisting of history" by some,

if you like. Yes, the 20,000 men strong Zulu army of the day, did defeat

a very tiny part of the British army. I won't go into the details and history

of the British and Isandlwana here, but everyone (or most of us) know

that the "British Army" at Isandlwana was in fact composed of a few

companies of the 24th Regiment of Foot, (about 700 or so fighting

men) plus around another 700 men of doubtful fighting ability - that

is about 200 irregular Colonials and about 500 of the Natal Native

Contingent, all supported by two guns, and various camp-followers

and other assorted odds and sods.

And so OF COURSE it was relatively easy for these 20,000 screaming

savages to over-run the unexpecting makeshift British camp. Although

it is said that only about half of the Zulu army was used in the Battle.

Of the remaining men, about 5 000 were kept in reserve, and about

5 000 were sent on to attack Rorke's Drift, not far away, where a very

small British garrison of about 150 men and a few hundred locals

held off an attacking Zulu force of, perhaps, 4 000 or so men, until

re-enforcements arrived. We all know the story.

But was the British ARMY defeated that day? Some tihnk so. Many

local newspaper reporters say so from time to time. Many local Zulu

politicians believe so. Even a website called: "BritishBattles.com"

believe so, as they clearly state on their website-

Isandlwana, the battle that rocked Victorian Britain; at which the

Zulus wiped out a substantial British force including the 1st Battalion, 24th Foot.

Winner: The British force was wiped out by the Zulu Army.

Was the Britsh force a "SUBSTANTIAL" one, as they claim? Of course it

was not. Was the British ARMY defeated by the Zulu Army that day???

OF COURSE NOT. The so-called "defeated" British Army was just a few

hundred men. What would have happened if the Zulu Army HAD fought

in a battle against the British ARMY. Based on the number of Regiments

which the British had, under the 1880 (numbered) Regiments of Foot,

there were around 110 Regiments. If we accept that the average regiment

had/has about 800 men, sometimes more, then there were about 90,000

men in the "Foot". Now add the Regiments of Guards, the Cavalry, the

Lancers, The Hussars, the Artillery; the Engineers and other support units,

and then of course the entire Royal Navy - who controlled the seas of the

whole world in those days, and we will find that Britain could easily have

put together an army of, perhaps, 150,000 men and guns together.

NOW, did the Zulu Army defeat the British Army???? Of course NOT.

And these same people who think that the Zulu Army beat the British

Army, are very quick to forget about how the few defenders at Rorke's

Drift held off many thousands of screaming Zulus later on the same day.

Or they conveniently forget how the Zulu Army was defeated six months

later, by the British, at the Battle of Ulundi, following which the Zulu

King was captured. Eventually, Zululand was taken over by the British,

and incorporated into Natal. And Natal was incorporated into South

Africa. And so, Natal is a PROVINCE. South Africa is a REPUBLIC.

THIS BRINGS ME TO ANOTHER STRANGE RESULT OF THE
BATTLE ISANDLWANA and the eventual DEFEAT OF THE ZULU KING,

and the former Kingdom of Zululand being incorporated into Natal,

and then, later, into the Republic of South Africa.

There lives in northern Natal, at a huge cost to Natal Taxpayers (a cost

of about U.S.$ TEN million per annum) a fellow whose name is Goodwill

Zwelithini. He is an unemployed Zulu man. He has managed to convince

quite a few people, including the local African National Congress (ANC)

people who are politically in control of the Natal Provincial Government

coffers at the moment, that he is actually King Zwelithini of the Zulu,

and that the residents of Natal should pay for his "kingdom" expenses.

This means his various wives, children, family, hangers-on, household,

"palaces"; transport and everything else besides.

Question: HOW CAN YOU HAVE a 'king' in a PROVINCE which is in

turn, part of a country which is a REPUBLIC.................??????

Answer: Under international constitutional law, YOU CANNOT.

But this Zwelithini fellow, and most of the local ANC politicians, and the

press, all like to think that he is a king. He even believes it. He even

wears a sort of "military uniform" with all sorts of accessories, meant

to make him appear as some sort of "Military / National Leader" - a bit

like a Mickey Mouse version of Field Marshal Idi Amin.

Zwelithini even goes so far as to wear a chest full of medals. It appears

not to bother him that this bunch of very plastic looking medals are ALL
THE SAME, WITH THE SAME RIBBONS on EVERY MEDAL.

(See pictures attached). I am sorry to say, but this is all a sad joke,

as far as I am concerned.

Question: Can anyone please identify the uniform worn by Mr Zwelithini,

and what rank does he hold, and what army does he belong to......?

Secondly: Can those of you who are experts in identifying medals,

please tell me what the medals are, that Mr Zwelithini is wearing, please.

(I may be wrong, but it appears to me that he got them in a lucky packet......)

Thanks guys,

All the best,

David B 1812

In the Last Outpost of the British Empire

======================================

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I disagree 100%... as Rumsveldt said... you don't go to war with the the army you want, you go to war with the army you have... The British did and got their butts kicked...

The battle was about 10:1 odds... they were the 1... and they lost fair and square... 10:1 odds against natives SHOULD have been a victory. It almost always was in the 19th century where battles between regulars and natives was usually a slaughter.

Remember, at Blood River Pretorius and co were outnumbered 20 or 25:1 , they managed to kill about 3000, for the cost of 3 wounded on their side... At Omdurman the British (excluding locals) were outnumbered about 6:1 and they killed about 10 000 and wounded about 13 000 to only 47 dead and 382 wounded.

Colonial wars were all about using superior weapons and trained soldiers to kill large amounts of people who realistically had no chance of winning becuase they were badly trained and dismally equiped....

Compared to Blood River, Omdurman and a host of other actions... Chelmford got himself his bollx handed to him on a plate.

IMHO, score: Zulus one, Colonialists zero... they are lucky they were better prepared in the next round.... ;-)

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"

There lives in London, at a huge cost to British Taxpayers (a cost of about GBP36 million per annum) a woman whose name is Elisabeth. She is an unemployed British woman. She has managed to convince quite a few people, including the local British Govt people who are politically in control of the British Government coffers at the moment, that she is actually Queen Elisabeth of the Brits, and that the residents of Great Britain should pay for her "kingdom" expenses. This means her various corgis, children, family, hangers-on, household, "palaces"; transport and everything else besides."

from what I can see, his claim is just as legitimate as the one above? From your post I thought he was a creation of the ANC... But he has been Regent since 1971!! Under the rule of the Nats at the time... that makes a big difference in the argument IMHO.

And as a king he can design his own King uniform? QE2 and co do as well methinks ;-)

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Here is a question... from the lineage it seems he actually IS the king... now... why would his right to wear a silly self designed uniform be any more ludicrous than European nobility in their self designed finery?

European heads of state award themselves and their families medals to this day... if he is a king, and designs and awards plastic medlas... realistically, why would they be any less legitimate than the "Order of the Garter" ?

Let me stir the pot and say... he does not look that much more twatisch than this bunch... and I bet his plastic medals cost the taxpayers less....

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I must say I agree with Chris. While "British Army" is a stretch A British force/army got its butt well and truly kicked by the impis that day. A shock for the Empire, without a doubt, and only partially offset by the valiant defence of Rourke's drift. In common with the Siege of Delhi, that second battle resulted in a very large number of Victoria Cross awards. I've always assumed that this was how the Imperial authorities reassured themselves that, minor blips like the Indian Mutiny and Isandalwana aside, the armies of the Empire really were the best on earth!

As to Goodwill Zwelithini and his regalia, cost and legitimacy: I can only assume that the government of SA didn't pick his name out of a drum but, probably with great reluctance, recognized his claims as valid and consequently continue to support both his title and his lifestyle.

However, whether or not he is the one true king of the Zulu is in fact irrelevant, an example of what my philosophy students learned to call an "ad hominem" argument: an attack on his person which has no bearing on the strength of his claims as such. "My opponent has no right to claim to be king and, besides, he dresses funny!" In a discussion of who won what at Isandlwana, King Zwelithini's claims are only marginally relevant and it

would make no difference to the debate if he chose to wear a sun dress and calls himself the Planetwide Potentate!

Either the Zulu did or did not whup whitey's butt or they didn't. I say they did. What the present King od the Zulu says, does or wears is no more relevant to that question than what the 1st Battalion, 24th Foot had for breakfast that morning. Possibly less.

Respecfully,

Peter Monahan

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Peter that could be very relevant, perhaps the 1/24th didn't have a proper breakfast that morning and as a result their fighting ability was impaired.

Paul

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David B. I am not at all happy with this post - I think you are being deliberately provocative and in a way that could get GMIC into problems.

We may have our own opinions on the Zulu King - the fact is that he is recognised by the Government. You choose to live in Natal and whilst

free speech is still allowed it is not polite to be so rude about someone who is recognised by over 12 million people.

Regarding the Battle of Isandlawana - the British press make their own headlines - to say 'Defeat of the British Army' has to be correct

in that the troops present represented the British Army on that occasion. I don't think anyone could think it meant the Zulu Army could defeat the might

of the British Army in full.

You have only recently joined GMIC and some of your posts have been well researched and are interesting. Possibly taken from earlier articles

you have written ? However, you seem to be going out of your way to be controversial and forcing your opinions on us. I have pointed out in an IM

that it is better to take things slowly and let Members become accustomed to you.

I will discuss with the Chairman if this entire post should be deleted.

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Dear Mervyn,

I apologise if you are upset. And I apologise to any GMIC Members who I may have offended.

I am quite sure that the GMIC will not get into trouble, because I have not said anything which

is not true. Nor have I made any statements of libel. As you come to know me, you will find that

I choose my words very carefully, and accurately, and I attempt, as far as possible, not to make

a statement which I cannot prove, or back with facts.

Anyway, when I write, people should read what is said carefully. And one should understand the

overall trend of what is being written, and why. Quite often something is written as a precursor

or introduction or foreword to something that is to follow.

What I wrote originally essentially covers TWO main areas: The Battle of Isandlwana and the

defeat of the Zulu nation, and the ultimate demise of what was then the Zulu kingdom. What I

wrote quite clearly put the question: Did the Zulu Army defeat the British Army? We all know and

accept that the small detachment of British soldiers were almost obliterated by the Zulu Army on

that day. I know a fair bit about military history, and do not need to be told about Blood River,

Omdurman or any other battles. They have nothing to do with the principle of this matter.......

Going back to what I first wrote, and reading it carefully, you will see that I stated that FOR POLITICAL

reasons, there are certain local politicians, certain local newspapers and certain sections of the local

population, who, whenever Isandlwana is mentioned, then they immediately state, write or otherwise

communicate that 'Yes, that was the place / battle where the Zulu defeated the British Army' - which of

course is a blatant untruth, because all they did was defeat a teeny-weeny little fingertip of the mighty

British Army who, I think I am correct in saying, whilst they have lost the odd battle, have never been

defeated ever in a war, in all history. Had they been then we would presumably all be talking French, or

German, or Spanish or whatever. These people seem to be happy to write about how the British Army

was allegedly defeated by the Zulu Army, but you never see them writing about how this same Zulu Army

was beaten months later, that their King was captured, and that their Kingdom thus collapsed, and ceased

to exist. This is all true.

Do you ever hear of the forces of the Lakota, Northern Cheyenne and Arapaho Red Indian tribes (about

2 000 strong) who defeated the U.S. 7th Cavalry Regiment (under 700 men) at the Battle of Little Bighorn,

lay claim to defeating the U.S. Army? No they never did. They defeated one measly little, regiment.

So, this brings me to the now vanquished Zulu Kingdom. It was annexed by Britain, became part of Natal,

and then part of South Africa. There was NO KINGDOM of ZULULAND. Many years later the Nationalist

Party in South Africa, in attempting to promote their separate development policy of “Apartheid”, established

so-called “Homelands” or Bantustans; one of which was kwaZulu (where Mr Zwelithini was supposedly 'king')

but kwaZulu never became 'independent' - it remained a self-governing territory within the province of Natal.

And now we come to the point:

Today, years after the 'Bantustan’ homeland of kwaZulu was disolved, we still find that there are people

who talk or write about the "Kingdom" of Zululand, and about the 'King' of that territory - who today happens to

be Mr Zwelithini, they claim.

WE SHOULD ALL NOTE THAT SOUTH AFRICA IS A REPUBLIC; NATAL IS A PROVINCE, IT IS

THEREFORE COMPLETELY IMPOSSIBLE TO HAVE EITHER A KINGDOM OR A KING.

No question, no arguing.

We should also note that countries who ARE ruled by either a king or a queen, are called the

“KINGDOM of Great Britain and Northern Ireland”, or the “Kingdom of the Netherlands?”, or

the “Kingdom of Denmark”, and so on. There is NO kingdom of Natal, or of South Africa.

Therefore no king. And why? Because their kingdom was defeated and destroyed by Great

Britain over one hundred and thirty years ago.

And now we come to Mr Zwelithini. Who seems to think that he is a 'king' operating in a REPUBLIC.

At a cost to the taxpayers. Earlier, we saw a contribution by Mr Boonzaier who stated that:

“There lives in London, at a huge cost to British Taxpayers (a cost of about GBP36 million per annum)

a woman whose name is Elisabeth (sic). She is an unemployed British woman………….”

Of course Mr Boonzaier is entitled to his opinion, but I think he will find that Queen Elizabeth II is the

legitimate head of state of the Kingdom. She most certainly is not 'unemployed' and the cost of the

palace to the nation is very small as compared with the tourism benefits it brings to the country and the

overall size of the national budget. And, besides which, many members of the Royal Family have private

means of income, which contributes to the overall cost of the system. Mr Zwelithini's expenditure is very

seriously out of order, and much of it even illegitimate. The only reason he even exists (and costs

taxpayers) is that the Xhosa based ANC see to it that they appease the Zulu nation, by supporting

their 'king' - all for the vote of the Zulu people - thus keeping the ANC in power.

And now we come to the second part of my posting. As this is a site populated by people with

an interest in the military and in military history, I posed two military related questions,

accompanied by some supporting photographs.

Mr Boonzaier was rather unfair, I think and very uncomplimentary when, using a supporting

photograph, he described a procession of Members of the Most Noble Order of the Garter,

(a 665 year old order), as compared with Mr Zwelithini:

“…he does not look that much more twatisch (sic) than this bunch……….. “

First of all, Sir Winston Churchill was a member of that Order, and he was voted “The GREATEST

BRITON of all time” in 2002, and if it was not for him, and his leadership, we would all be speaking

German, (or possibly Russian) today. But to refer to Mr Churchill's Order and Members of this Order

in terms of female genitalia is, I feel, wrong. Does Mr Boonzaier also think that Field Marshal Jan

Smuts also resembles female genitalia? After all, Field Marshal Smuts was awarded two extremely

high Orders of Great Britain – The Order of Merit, and the Companions of Honour.

There are two photos of Mr Zwelithini wearing a military uniform and one of him wearing leopard skins

(which by the way are a CITES protected species, but we won't get started on that subject). And my

questions, quite simply were:

Could any GMIC members identify the uniforms worn? Which army does Mr Zwelithini command?

Does anyone have any idea what medals he is wearing? What were they issued for? What do they

represent? Does anyone have a close-up of them? Will they be listed in the Medal Yearbook?

And, in response to Paul Wood, the area of kwaZulu does not have any awards of their own, to the

best of my knowledge. So that does not explain who/where/when/what awarded these medals to Mr Zwelithini...........

And to answer Mr Monahan who stated:

“What the present King od the Zulu says, does or wears is no more relevant.......”

Again he is welcome to his opinion. I say that as a consequence of the little blip to the British at Isandlawana,

and the subsequent final defeat of the Zulu nation at Ulundi, followed by the British annexation of Zululand,

(now part of a REBUBLIC), there CANNOT be a KINGDOM, and there cannot be a KING. Therefore IT IS

relevant what Mr Zwelithini says and does. Especially to me as a taxpayer.

After all it is no different from someone running about in Germany, calling himself the successor to Mr Adolf Hitler

and therefore Chancellor of the Third Reich. Or a woman making it known in Russia that she was Empress of Russia,

and all that flows from that statement. We need to see these things in CONTEXT. Of COURSE these people would

be attacked and ridiculed, because the positions they claim (in my imaginary examples) are IMPOSSIBLE today

with things standing as they do, historically, and in terms of accepted international constitutional law. Imagine if

someone in Germany stated publically that he was the legitimate Chancellor of the Third Reich, and Angela Merkel

allowed the German government to pay this man many tens of millions of Euro very year, and have the German

Army even salute and protect him. Would that be OK? Yes, I think that would be fine……………………

So why is Mr Zwelitini any different? His position too, is IMPOSSIBLE, no matter what he or the ANC may think.

That is my opinion, and I am sticking to it. In LAW, it is a correct position. The problem in South Africa is that

the ANC very often see themselves as being above the law. And they even change laws as they need, to suit

themselves.

However, if raising interesting matters like this causes consternation, then I will refrain from doing so in future.

And I apologise to the group. I will stick to mundane and dull things like medal research, old documents, badges,

weapons and so on.

All the best,

David B 1812

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"'Yes, that was the place / battle where the Zulu defeated the British Army' - which of

course is a blatant untruth, because all they did was defeat a teeny-weeny little fingertip of the mighty

British Army who, I think I am correct in saying, whilst they have lost the odd battle, have never been

defeated ever in a war, in all history."

An army is like a sports team... they represent their country. This is especially true when that army is on the offensive.... Chelmsford (acting on behalf of the British Empire methinks?) miscalculated, They chose the time and place to invade Zululand, his main column was attacked, and he got his a§§ handed to him on a plate...

Probably half a million South Africans play rugby... In August 2008 the All Blacks beat the Springboks 19-0 at Newlands... Would you argue that New Zealand did not beat South Africa because the South Africans only had 15 players on the field ... only a teeny-weeny little fingertip of all South African Rugby players?

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"So why is Mr Zwelitini any different? His position too, is IMPOSSIBLE, no matter what he or the ANC may think.

That is my opinion, and I am sticking to it. In LAW, it is a correct position. The problem in South Africa is that

the ANC very often see themselves as being above the law. And they even change laws as they need, to suit

themselves."

David, with all due respect... that is B.S.

1) He was Zulu King for almost 25 years before the ANC came to power, put in place by a white nationalist govt..... did you complain back then?

2) You seen to put a lot of value on the word republic and rights... were you on the "one man one vote" barricades in the 1980s? if not, this seems just to be a "sour milk" argument...

"The only reason he even exists (and costs taxpayers) is that the Xhosa based ANC see to it that they appease the Zulu nation,"

Once again... See 1)

Native Americans tribes have Chiefs, even if they are not leading raiding parties... Plenty of princes etc from no longer ruling families around in Germany and Europe... I think of Georg, His Imperial and Royal Highness, Prince of prussia... who by the way is Grand master of the House order of Hohenzollern... a royal family trinket with more tradition than old King Zulus medals, but arguably and objectively not more legitimacy in this day and age?

I was once talking to a Nigerian and was joking about the Nigerian Princes... he stopped me in my tracks by asking, why are they any more ridiculous than European Princes...

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"First of all, Sir Winston Churchill was a member of that Order, and he was voted “The GREATEST

BRITON of all time” in 2002, and if it was not for him, and his leadership, we would all be speaking

German, (or possibly Russian) today. But to refer to Mr Churchill's Order and Members of this Order in terms of female genitalia is, I feel, wrong. Does Mr Boonzaier also think that Field Marshal Jan

Smuts also resembles female genitalia? After all, Field Marshal Smuts was awarded two extremely

high Orders of Great Britain – The Order of Merit, and the Companions of Honour

"

What does that have to do with the Order and looking like a ponce in a funny coat?

If I read my comments correctly, it refers to royal awards and regalia, as opposed to the character of the person wearing them.

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"There are two photos of Mr Zwelithini wearing a military uniform and one of him wearing leopard skins (which by the way are a CITES protected species, but we won't get started on that subject)."

Agreed.... because we want to hold everyone to the same level of responsability when it comes to animal exploitation...

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Chris,

You say that the British Army have never been defeated in a war in history. As a proud Englishman it breaks my heart to say that some annoying rebels in a colony in the North West Atlantic managed to defeat the British Army who surrendered at Yorktown in 1783 (We did get some revenge by burning down the White House in 1812), However that it is the only time that I can recall the British Army losing a war but on the other hand we lost more peaces than won wars.

All the best

Paul

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Oh my god. And here was me thinking that I had found a website for military enthusiasts that didn't hold political arguments on its pages. Maybe the name of the website should be changed. Because at the moment it doesn't sound much like a Gentleman's Military Interest Club!

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Hi Paul,

I never said that ;-)

Sorry Chris, I must have misinterpreted your earlier post.

Paul

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Harry I am sorry you think we are a bit out of order. I think the posts are guilty of of some overliteral interpretation. To call some one a twat, generally refers to the fact that they are ridiculous and in coloquial speech does not directly refer to female genitalia, very much as when we say someone is talking b****cks we mean he is talking utter rubbish. Certainly when I use bloody as an expletive it do not think that I am taking the name of the Virgin Mary in vain, although bloody is an abbreviation of by Our Lady. Yes discussions can get a bit heated at times and if members become unecessarily abusive then action can (and has been) taken against them. I like to think we are a fairly friendly if somewhat irreverent and at times eccentric group. Although I eschew the term gentleman for myself (I think the only time I have ever been referrred to as gentleman was by an arresting officer in my youth). Stick with us we are not a bid bunch.

Paul

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(I think the only time I have ever been referrred to as gentleman was by an arresting officer in my youth)

This begs a new thread.... I am all ears... :-)

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It was when I was a student and had been imbibing copious quantitiies of fortified Scottish lemonade. I was walking in a somewhat unsteady fashion and was approached by a member of the constabulary, who after my initial protests asked my to be a good gentleman and cooperate with him . I was then given a night in the Pilgrim Street Police Hotel and the following morning fined £2 for drunkeness (they asked if i wanted pay straight away or in installments). That is the sole incidence of a dark descent into murky world of crime (well the only time I've been caught).

Paul

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Ok Gentleman this post is now locked. We can all see that this post has veered away from any Historical perspective into a political discussion.

I understand that those of you from SA or Expats have very strong views on the running and history of your country. Please feel free to continue this discussion amongst yourselves by IM.

We have at GMIC always prided ourselves on the No Politics rule. Im sure you can see plenty of examples of this with moderator rulings.

Would members please not attempt to slip politics into posts under the pretence of historical record.

Thank you for your cooperation

Craig Vice Chairman

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Using or abusing my ability to comment on locked posts: I think that Craig has made the right decision in ending this thread, not because I agree or disagree with the posts but because, as Harry the Mole so rightly remarks, this is a military forum for gentlemen of a military bent and politics, mine or anyone else's, are out of place.

Thank you, Craig.

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