"The notion that you can somehow defeat violence by submitting to it is simply a flight from fact. As I have said, it is only possible to people who have money and guns between themselves and reality."
--attributed to George Orwell
"A civilization that feels guilty for everything it is and does will lack the energy and conviction to defend itself."
--French writer Jean Francois Revel
“The future doesn’t belong to the faint-hearted. It belongs to the brave.”
--Ronald Reagan, speaking about the Challenger disaster
“The fastest way to achieve peace is to surrender.”
"People who bite the hand that feeds them usually lick the boot that kicks them."
All of these quotes are from a list of favorites I keep. Each of them applies directly to this story:
Private Johnson Beharry's courage in rescuing an ambushed foot patrol then, in a second act, saving his vehicle's crew despite his own terrible injuries earned him a Victoria Cross.
For the BBC, however, his story is "too positive" about the conflict.
The corporation has cancelled the commission for a 90-minute drama about Britain's youngest surviving Victoria Cross hero because it feared it would alienate members of the audience opposed to the war in Iraq.
The BBC's retreat from the project, which had the working title Victoria Cross, has sparked accusations of cowardice and will reignite the debate about the broadcaster's alleged lack of patriotism.
Alleged? It seems to me that the accusation is demonstrably true.
So what was it that Private Beharry do to earn this award?
Pte Beharry, 27, who was awarded the VC in March 2005, was the first person to receive the country's highest award for valour since 1982 and the first living recipient since 1965. He was honoured for two acts of outstanding gallantry which occurred just over a month apart while he was serving with the Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment, in the Iraqi town of al-Amarah, in 2004.
He was cited for "valour of the highest order" after he drove a Warrior tracked armoured vehicle through heavy enemy fire in May 2004 to come to the rescue of a foot patrol that had been caught in a series of ambushes. The 30-ton Warrior was hit by multiple rocket-propelled grenades, causing damage and resulting in the loss of radio communications. Pte Beharry drove through the ambush, taking his own injured crew and leading five other Warriors to safety. He then extracted his wounded colleagues from the vehicle, all the time exposed to further enemy fire.
The following month, Pte Beharry was again driving the lead Warrior vehicle of his platoon through al-Amarah when his vehicle was ambushed. A rocket-propelled grenade hit the vehicle and Pte Beharry received serious head injuries. Other rockets hit the vehicle incapacitating his commander and injuring several of the crew.Despite his very serious injuries, Pte Beharry then took control of his vehicle and drove it out of the ambush area before losing consciousness. He required brain surgery for his head injuries and he was still recovering when he received the VC from the Queen in June last year.
Stories about true heroes and true sacrifice are too much for lefties; such stories remind them of how pathetic they themselves are. It's much easier to stand up against Tony Blair or George Bush, to parade around in the street like an idiot, than to oppose true evil--after all, oppose Islamofascists and you might get your head cut off.
The BBC's decision to pull out will only confirm the fears of critics that television drama is only interested in telling bad news stories about the war.
Bad news about the war is the same as good news for our enemies. The people who make such decisions are contemptible.