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Tony Grist

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Trooping The Colour [Jun. 18th, 2017|10:09 am]
Tony Grist
A young guardsman collapsed in the heat. I only know this from newspaper accounts because the TV cameras very cleverly avoided showing the incident.

It must be foul having to parade in 80 degree heat wearing headgear designed for the Crimean winter.

Those bearskins! Victorian soldiers were actually expected to fight in them. Crickey!

The ceremony itself goes back to a time when flags served as rallying points for soldiers scattered on the battlefield. The "trooping of the colour" was about parading the regimental flag in front of the men so they knew what it looked like. I didn't know that before.

The wonderful gold uniforms worn by the mounted musicians have hardly changed since the late 17th century, the silver kettle drums were a gift from William IV, the household cavalry wear uniforms Queen Victoria would have recognised, the shiny guns being pulled behind the limbers were fired in anger during the Great War...

Time is defied, informed that it doesn't actually apply in situations like this. That's what we mean by "tradition". And let's throw a little anachronism into the mix- Victorian bearskins and red jackets but modern automatic weapons. The Queen is in her twentieth century granny gear, the Dukes of Edinburgh and Kent, Colonels of Regiments, wear top hats...

[User Picture]From: matrixmann
2017-06-18 02:25 pm (UTC)
And such kind of people always wanna draw an exceptionally threatful picture when North Korea takes everything out of every shack what they got to hold a military parade...
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2017-06-18 03:47 pm (UTC)
Well, we're not parading missiles and armies, just a few soldiers in fancy dress. There's a difference. The changing of the Guard is a quaint, Gilbert and Sullivanish occasion. No-one is going to be frightened by it.
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[User Picture]From: matrixmann
2017-06-18 05:02 pm (UTC)
It's because in the West they're only used to history military parades like this which nobody takes serious anymore in the current age for their obviously outdated gear.
But still the West clings to it, wherever you look. Even though they're all so superficially pacifistic and nobody allegedly wants war (what do they all produce and play the ego-shooter video games for?), let even alone produce a gun anymore (which they produce like fuck and deliver to some of the most criminal regimes and groups in the world).
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2017-06-18 05:56 pm (UTC)
We like our pageants. The reality of arms manufacture and arms sales is something we prefer to keep in the shadows.
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[User Picture]From: matrixmann
2017-06-18 09:08 pm (UTC)
That playing around and downplaying of the matter actually I find quite dangerous.
If all that remains from war is glory and cool costumes, then people can be much easier turned from their violence-free life to being monsters than otherwise.
Pacifism you can easily turn around if you only offer something that looks cool enough for a good mass of people... For example by an internet meme.
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