The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

British Soldier Refuses to Serve:
The Tip of an Iceberg?

May 8, 2006

A British Royal Air Force doctor was sentenced to eight months in jail after refusing deployment to Iraq.

Flight Lieutenant Malcolm Kendall-Smith refused to serve in Basra last July, saying the invasion was an act of aggression similar to Nazi war crimes.

Judge Advocate Jack Bayliss said that even though Kendall-Smith had acted on moral grounds, the government couldn’t put up with it. Bayliss said the jail sentence was intended to send a warning to all of the troops, that “those who wear the Queen’s uniform cannot pick and choose which orders they will obey. Those who seek to do so must face the serious consequences.”

In other words, the British government is sending a warning to all those other British soldiers who feel the way Kendall-Smith does. It’s an admission there are others “who wear the queen’s uniform” who are not ready to “obey.”