By Tom Allan, submitted by Anonymous on Mon, 20/12/2004 - 12:59
According to the Observer on Sunday, new figures show that recruitment for the military has fallen sharply in Scotland, and that the effect is spreading to Wales and the North of England. According to the Observer, senior Army Commanders are blaming the poor results on the anti-war movement, and mentioned specifically Rose Gentle's high profile campaign. That was taken to a new level this weekend, with the launch of a the film "Dear Cherie," at the Glagow Film Theatre in Glasgow. The film shows Gordon as a child in a pantomime; as a young man of nineteen at his passing out parade as a Royal Highland Fusilier; and then, only four weeks later, footage of his dead body on the ground in Basra. [Rose] "Don't turn around and say you agree with it, because deep down no mother will agree with it. We did nae sign up for war o lies, is the difference between this and any other war. Because they boys did nae know what they were signing up into. Some of them only look like babies - they are only babies, only 18, 19. The Government knew. Your man knew. George Bush knew." "Do you know why I started this campaign? Because I got up one morning, and Maxine says, "Mum, I want to write Tony Blair a letter." Ok, Gordon's no here, I'll no get Gordon back, but I'm doing this to try and stop some other family go through what we're going through."[END] That letter sparked of national sympathy and media interest. Since then, the Justice for Gordon Gentle campaign has become a rallying point for the anti-war movement, which had floundered since the failure of the big marches before the war. The Government had effectively stifled criticism by arguing that the nation should "support the troops" by supporting the war. But the Gentle's personal loss and willingness to campaign publicly has given them a opportunity to argue instead that supporting the troops means bringing them home. [ROSE]"Your the only one that can speak to him, you sleep with him at night. I hope you don't turn to him at night and tell he's doing a good job, because we don't think he's doing a good job." "I want him to explain to me why my son was sent out there after six months training. He was in Iraq under a month and he was killed. I want him to speak to me as a mother, and him as a father, and learn to be the Prime Minister of this country"[END] Rose tried to persuade Gordon not to join up, but he was unemployed and wanted a way out of Pollock, an economically deprived area of Glasgow. Army recruitment officers promised him training opportunities and a driving license. He was expected to be posted to Germany. Instead, he was sent to Iraq, only 10 days after completing basic training. The film was made by the Camcorder Guerillas in Glasgow. For more information, their link, and the Observer article, is below.