Sixty Joyless De-Britished Uncrowned Commonpoor Years (1949-2009)

Elizabeth II Vice-Regal Saint: Remembering Paul Comtois (1895–1966), Lt.-Governor of Québec
Britannic Inheritance: Britain's proud legacy. What legacy will America leave?
English Debate: Daniel Hannan revels in making mince meat of Gordon Brown
Crazy Canucks: British MP banned from Canada on national security grounds
Happy St. Patrick's: Will Ireland ever return to the Commonwealth?
Voyage Through the Commonwealth: World cruise around the faded bits of pink.
No Queen for the Green: The Green Party of Canada votes to dispense with monarchy.
"Sir Edward Kennedy": The Queen has awarded the senator an honorary Knighthood.
President Obama: Hates Britain, but is keen to meet the Queen?
The Princess Royal: Princess Anne "outstanding" in Australia.
H.M.S. Victory: In 1744, 1000 sailors went down with a cargo of gold.
Queen's Commonwealth: Britain is letting the Commonwealth die.
Justice Kirby: His support for monarchy almost lost him appointment to High Court
Royal Military Academy: Sandhurst abolishes the Apostles' Creed.
Air Marshal Alec Maisner, R.I.P. Half Polish, half German and 100% British.
Cherie Blair: Not a vain, self regarding, shallow thinking viper after all.
Harry Potter: Celebrated rich kid thinks the Royals should not be celebrated
The Royal Jelly: A new king has been coronated, and his subjects are in a merry mood
Victoria Cross: Australian TROOPER MARK DONALDSON awarded the VC
Godless Buses: Royal Navy veteran, Ron Heather, refuses to drive his bus
Labour's Class War: To expunge those with the slightest pretensions to gentility
100 Top English Novels of All Time: The Essential Fictional Library
BIG BEN: Celebrating 150 Years of the Clock Tower

Friday, 11 May 2007

"I'm Harry."

This week, people were having such a good time at that big White House welcome for the Queen. The New York Times says her majesty was "making Americans go weak in the knees." Sometimes we colonials seem so dazzled by British royalty that I wonder if General Washington did defeat Cornwallis at Yorktown.

But a less playful thought also occurred to me watching the first and royal families all gussied up. I couldn't help but think of Prince Harry, the Queen's grandson, who is headed for Iraq with a cavalry regiment, even though he's a conspicuous target for assassination or kidnapping. There's angst in official circles that other members of his regiment will be put at graver risk because of his celebrity. So guess what his comrades -- his fellow soldiers -- are doing? Rather than petition the Queen to keep the young man home, they have gotten shirts printed up with the words across them: "I'm Harry." Marvelous, no? The commoners and the Prince are in this together: one for all and all for one. What a notion -- that war should be the great equalizer, that no one's son or daughter is privileged from duty or danger.

Bill Moyers is the host of the weekly public affairs program Bill Moyers Journal, which airs Friday night on PBS. This essay appears on tonight's program.


Beaverbrook said...

Ha ha! The presence of a warrior prince doesn't get in the way of patriotism, now does it. Brilliant!

Splendor Sine Occasu said...

I would not expect any other response from Harry's mates. It sounds as though they have bonded as a true "band of brothers".

redtown said...

What a powerful gesture of solidarity! Reminds me of the heroic actions of the Danish people under Nazi occupation during WWII.

When Hitler gave orders that all Jews must wear the yellow star of David, the entire Danish people put on the yellow star, beginning with King Christian X and the Royal Family, who chose to remain in Denmark, under House arrest.

Subsequently, when the Nazis tried to round up the Jews for deportation to the death camps, virtually every Danish Jew was smuggled out the country to neutral Sweeden in a massive national conspiracy to save their neighbours from destruction.

Thank God that members of Her Majesty's forces still exhibit the same selfless, heroic spirit!

Younghusband said...

I'm proud to own a Kongemærket which hangs in my classroom. The story about the yellow star is unfortunately just that- a story. Denmark never had such a policy.
Nevertheless, my favourite story about King Christian was when the Nazis had flown the swastika over Christiansborg Palace where the Danish Parliament meets. Christian told a Nazi general to remove the flag who then refused. Christian then informed him that a Danish soldier would take it down. When the general replied that any soldier attempting such an action would be shot, the king's replied: "I think not. For I shall be that soldier." The flag was removed.
Or how about when he would ride, unescorted, though Copenhagen. When a German soldier asked someone how he could do so without fear, he was told "All of Denmark is his bodyguard."
So many great stories....

Spencer100 said...

This is great to hear. But I wonder if they have another soldiers agreement....Not to be taken alive.

Splendor Sine Occasu said...

Add to Younghusband's post...

A couple of years ago, I met a young (22-26) woman from Denmark. When the discussion turned to how our respective countries are governed and how we both had monarchs, she told me that "Everyone in Denmark loves our Queen. If she asked the people to attack Parliament, we would do it!"

Younghusband said...

Apparently a camera crew will follow Prince Harry during his tour of duty in Iraq...
"Defence chiefs are planning to let a camera crew follow Prince Harry during his tour of duty in Iraq.

The Ministry of Defence crew will film him while on operations, with footage being released to television channels and on the internet.

Harry's commanders hope the film, being dubbed Desert Prince, will inflict a propaganda defeat upon insurgent groups which have been using videos of hostages and wreckages of British aircraft to publicise their causes."