The British And Caribbean Veteran Association

June 30, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

So last night we had the privilege of documenting The British And Caribbean Veteran Association, as well as meeting old friends like  Ms Maxine Pryce-Miller, as well as new friends for the first time, like Ms Rachel Toussaint, one of my many Facebook friends...

 

I personally would never go to War, since I  have a phobia about taking a next person's life, however, you have to give RESPECT to those Men and Women from the Caribbean who heard the “Cry” that the “Mother Country” needed extra help during the War...

 

It would be interesting to know how many of today’s second and third generation who heard that same “Cry,” would go to war with the same enthusiasm, as well as a sense of duty to King or Queen of the “Mother Land”...

 

Because Men and Women of colour including many Asians, gave their Blood,  they thought it was the right thing to do, somehow I do not think today many would feel the same loyalty. However, it is still important that we all remember that many from the Caribbean including Asian’s gave their Blood for the “Mother Land.”

 

Many from the West Indies did not know what they were getting into, or the fact that once signed up, they would be treated like second or third class citizen within the British  Military Forces they left their family for, including the sun shine, many did not realise that the war would be the reason, why they would never see their families again...

 

In attendance, you had members from all section of the Military Forces, who were very proud to be acknowledging 70 years since the end of the Second World War, including their contribution to the war effort of the British Military Forces...

 

Since the Second World War, it is true that many 2nd and 3rd generations have made a career out of the various sections of the British Military Forces, but it has been more a career, than a sense of duty to the King or Queen of the "Mother Land," like those who fought in the 1st or 2nd World War... 

 

Mr Fred Coke - Ex Petty Officer Marines Engineer Artificer, the current Chair of The British And Caribbean Veteran Association, gave the opening presentation of the role of the West Indians who answered the “Cry” to be part of Great Britain Military Campaigns…

 

He spoke about the approximately 6,000 Caribbean volunteered for the RAF, 5,500 as ground staff and 500 Aircrews. Another 80 Women joined Auxiliary Air Force; much more joined other section of the British Military Fighting Forces for the war effort of the 2nd World War...

 

He spoke how it is said that Mr Winston Churchill was so grateful to the No139 Squadron, that he renamed it 139 (Jamaica) Squadron…

 

The evening had two guest speakers, one was Ms Alphea Wiggins – The Deputy High Commissioner of Barbados, who was so pleased to be in the company of Caribbean Veterans, she spoke passionately about how important that the Military Veterans documented their stories for the next generation to enjoy and learn from…

 

She compared the type of history taught as a child, like Christopher Columbus throughout the Caribbean, which many feel has no value compared to the lost history of the Caribbean Islands that were never taught...

 

She felt very strongly that the next generation need to know stories that they can relate to, and people who look like them, that they can learn from, both Men and Women they can be proud of...

 

Because much of the second and third generation of today, are not aware of the contribution from the Caribbean Island during the war years, including some of the other Commonwealth Countries…

 

The second speaker was a stunning young man, that many parents in the room would have been proud to call their son, Captain Christopher Walker, B.A Hon a product of The Royal Military Academy ,at Sandhurst...

 

Captain Christopher Walker who is currently an Operational Officer, started his presentation with military protocol, with the words  “What you hear in this room stays in this room” So out of respect for Captain Christopher Walker, I will respect his request…

 

However since it is common knowledge on Social Media, what I will say is that, with the current technology available to everyone, any military dramas in 2015,  is very different from World War One and Two, as well as the Fualkland’s. Since in 2015 any military dramas can be reported and viewed in “REAL TIME,” instead of hearing about the news of the battlefields, days, or weeks later…

 

Real Time military reporting of LIVE Military Operation does not help, I will say no more…

 

Finally with my involvement over the years, with The British And Caribbean Veteran Association and the Black Police Association, I have observed the Professionalism of individuals, who have been groomed, or conditioned by certain Institution, that demand a certain level Standard of Communication and Leadership as well as Loyalty and Unity, I wonder sometimes if some of the Community Leaders could learn from that…

 

I do hope such lesson learnt continue with them, once they are no longer part of the Institutions that trained them, which they served...

 

 


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