14 1 min 15 yrs

ghurkas.jpgCan I just say that I FULLY support the demand from hundreds of retired Gurkhas to have the right to remain in the UK and pension equality with British soldiers? Gurkhas who retired after 1997 can automatically stay in the UK, but those who retired earlier must apply. Fifty of the Nepalese soldiers handed their medals to Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg in protest. Clegg told MPs ministers had made a "spectacular misjudgement", while the prime minister praised the Gurkhas. At prime minister’s question time, Mr Clegg demanded that all Gurkhas be given equal pay and pension rights as well as the right to live in the UK. Brown dissembled, as ever. These Ghurkas are true patriots and deserve what they are asking.  When you  considerer the hundreds of thousands of others that the British Government lets in, this nasty discrimination against the Ghurkas is disgraceful.

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  1. A very worthy post David. I looked them up back when Prince Harry was pictured with some Gurkhas in Afghanistan and was shocked at the slight.

  2. It’s so bad Mahons – it is a matter of honour and our government over here is being dishourable in the extreme and it annoys me no end to see these brave soldiers treated in this fashion.

  3. Concur.

    These men have been among the best of the best in the military for a long period of time. I’d be proud to have one of them in my community.

  4. The way Britain treats it’s real friends is – to put it mildly, quite contemptible.

    The Ghurkas are unsurpassed in their loyalty to Queen and country, along with several other Commonwealth volunteer divisions they have been the most admirable of friends and compatriots.

    That so little thought has been given to them when legislative changes have been made to the immigrations laws, shows a shortfall in someone’s historical knowledge, – maybe, – it could also be just petty minded ignorance!

    That may well be the excuse for the bureaucrats, but what excuse does the Queen have for maintaining her tight lipped silence on this matter – after all, it is not the first time that this problem has been raised.

    Does she really erxpect her ‘use and discard’ policy to win her the continued loyalty of those Commonwealth citizens who have made many sacrifices on behalf of her and the Commonwealth.? She often speaks of her pride in the Commonwealth, but she sure does have a peculiar way of showing it.

    Recently I read a description of one mean old lady as ‘a pursey lipped old despot’, – they were not referring to her, but it may well have been…

  5. "Bravest of the Brave, most generous of the generous, never had country more faithful friends than you." The words of Sir Ralph Turner, inscribed on the Ghurka soldier’s statute in Westminster, and ignored by the British Government. A crying shame (don’t get me started on our Yankee mistreatment of Vets).

  6. Could they not just hijack a plane and land at Stanstead? Then they would be welcome to stay.

  7. If Brown wants to capture the essence of loyalty and a sense of duty, to impart to the number of less well integrated of our visitors, he would do well to look closely at the Ghurkas…he might even learn something about those virtues himself!

    But then – that isn’t really what he want’s, is it?

  8. but what excuse does the Queen have for maintaining her tight lipped silence on this matter

    Ernest, point of order, for us Yanks. Since HM reigns but does not rule, is she allowed to make statements in support of the Gurkas, or Lisbon, or anything else save the weather?

  9. Charles,

    Whether she can legally be required to maintain a silence on all and everything is quite irrelevant in this instance. The Ghurkas are an integral part of our armed forces, and as such swear allegiance to the Queen.

    Now if she doesn’t have enough integrity to speak out when such an obvious injustice is committed, then what is her crown really worth?

    She may be Queen, but she enjoys the same freedom of speech that we all do, to hide behind petty legalities is at best unworthy, at worst cowardly…

    The idea that as Queen she must keep quiet is quite insane. She expects loyalty and respect, but how does that work when she never voices an opinion – apart from the occasional speech when unveiling a statue or opening a supermarket, or the anachronistic ‘Christmas Speech’, we rarely get any idea of what she really does think about anything.

    That said, she probably is not allowed to say anything relevant, – what a wonderful excuse!…since when has a true Bit kept quite just because they are ordered to?

  10. Well said Ernest. It also occurred to me that she could and should voice her concerns to the PM during their weekly meeting.

    Sometimes one wishes for Charles the first!

  11. The only problem is there are 45,000 non-active/retired Ghurkas in Nepal, waiting to be granted citizenship here.
    How would they get on with all the others here from the Indian sub-continent with whom they have little or no ethnic relationship, not-with-standing the fact they are pro-British?

    It’s a tricky one.

  12. Bernard,

    It is nothing of the kind!

    The application of a modicum of discretion or an attempt at prioritisation – a skill that seems beyond our politicians and bureaucrats, would quite easily resolve the matter.

    Re the 54,000 figure – I have doubts about that figure, but even if true, it is small beer when compared to the numbers of illegals who manage to enter the UK, seemingly, with little effort,trouble, or restraint. Surely far better to welcome true friends here than so many self-declared enemies!

    As far as the other visitors from the Indian sub-continent are concerned, we have little or no problem from Sikhs, and Hindus, and they have no problem with each other, so why should we have a problem with Ghurkas? – Don’t be so picky! – it’s Muslims that are the problem…who incidentally, have always been the least friendly of the sub-continent’s religious groups.

  13. I quite agree Ernest, but you missed my point.

    (The Gurkhas are probably more pro-Brit that the Brits are about themselves right now).

    The Gurkhas are Hindu in faith. Them and Islam are pathologically opposed and any large influx of them would cause strife in most of our big cities.

    As for the number 45,000; it was from a BBC TV reporter. Most likely completely inaccurate.

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