It seems that the soldiers at the 2nd Infantry Battalion of the Royal Australian Regiment had a bit of a shindig recently. And the waitresses got their gear off. And now it’s in the media.
The only surprise about all of this is that it is such a surprise.
Any time you put a bunch of blokes together and train them to be hard-fightin’, you’ll inevitably end up with a bunch of blokes with a propensity to be hard-livin’, hard-drinkin’ and hard partyin’ too. That’s human nature for you.
I’m not suggesting for a second that it is right. It’s not.
It’s just what happens when discipline of self and system is lacking in the military.
This has always been the conundrum for commanders: training tough and self-disciplined soldiers. This is the process by which a soldier is transformed from a blunt instrument into a useful weapon; well-balanced, razor sharp and able to discern the difference between immoral violence and the legitimate use of lethal force.
Unfortunately, self-discipline does not come cheap. And its currency is morality. The former necessarily presupposes the existence of the latter.
History has shown that a morally-functional military does not grow on trees. Student of the past will know that any thug can raise a mob and send them off in any given direction to rampage, rape and pillage and send the ill-gotten spoils back to the national treasury. If you took these stories out of history, you wouldn’t have much left at all.
History, however, is sadly lacking stories of morally-functional militaries that acted in humanity’s interest by defending principles of natural law from a world of ‘might is right’. Those that did were inevitably defending themselves from attack. They were the underdogs and they did not always win. And, I might add, they operated in accordance with the doctrine of just war found only in Christian teaching.
The current situation is unlikely to improve any time soon. In fact, as our society’s only moral belief is that morality is intolerant, it’s just going to worsen. Good luck building a self-disciplined military in today’s society, I say.
That doesn’t mean we won’t have moral outrage though. We will, and it will be of the worst kind. That’s because the one core ingredient in all the moral outrage about the extra-curricular activities of Australia’s soldiers is hypocrisy. And not just any old hypocrisy, but oodles of the most extreme duplicity and double standards.
Let’s start by looking at the hierarchy of the military. Today, they will be in damage control. Statements will be made. Orders will be issued. And the message will go out: no more cavorting with topless women.
They are orders that I support.
But they are made by kings bereft of any clothing. Because already the Australian Defence Force is planning to march down Oxford Street next year, just like it did this year, with bus loads of topless lesbians. And almost entirely naked homosexuals groping their way past the children who will once again be encouraged to attend in order to promote a tolerance of sexual immorality.
Defence: topless women are forbidden, except if you march with them
(images are all from the same Mardi Gras gallery)
The message is loud and proud but completely unintelligible.
You can wear your uniform with topless women but you can’t wear your uniform with topless women. You can march with topless women but they can’t serve you beer. You can be publicly seen in an event where women are encouraged to bare their breasts because it is good for the military’s image but you can’t hold a private function where this happens because it is bad for the military’s image.
In other words, the generals aren’t even telling the soldiers to do as they say and not as they do. They’re telling the soldiers not to do what they tell them to do.
And that is about the quickest way to kill off any idea of any form of discipline in any army that has ever existed.
But it would be wrong to hold the idea that these generals and admirals and air marshals are somehow alone up on their cloud of moral hypocrisy.
Because they are not.
They are standing up there with the politicians who mouth platitudes about the importance of addressing moral scandals in the military while they pass laws legalising, protecting and even promoting all sorts of immorality in every area of society.
And standing there with them are the feminists: the hypocritical feminists with their mealy mouths and ever unhappy and forlorn expressions of eternal victimisation.
These women and the increasing number of men who think they’re women (hey, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em) are the same moral evangelists who told us this year that being a prostitute makes you a good mother. And that this activity actually helps marriages. And they tell us that it is liberating for women to strip themselves bare for men. And they tell us that it is wrong to oppose the local brothel popping up down the road. And they tell us that the Mardi Gras is a healthy sign of a tolerant and modern society.
And then they spit off that cloud of moral hypocrisy at the men who are the economy for ‘liberated’ prostitutes and strippers. These women don’t do this because they are defenders of virtue. They do it simply because they hate the one organisation that by its very nature is masculine and always will be. In fact, these women would destroy our nation’s ability to defend itself just so they can feel smug.
Yes, the feminists want to have their cake and they won’t share it with anyone. But they will blame everyone but themselves for indigestion when they scoff the lot.
This whole incident also reeks of amateurism in an organisation that prides itself on professionalism.
The Army has truckloads of lawyers. Trust me, I know. And by and large, they have shown themselves to be inept. Time and again, soldiers who misbehave get away scot-free, while the military bureaucracy plot and scheme charges and disciplinary action against those who have broken no laws at all.
The soldier who organised the strippers for the ‘booza’ has just spent two weeks in jail. And now his conviction has been overturned because of the perception of a conflict of interest. The commander who issued the orders for ‘women to remain clothed at all times’ was the same commander who heard the military charges and issued the sentence. Rule 101 of military law is that the ‘judge’ does not sit on cases where he is also, in effect, the prosecuting officer and the primary witness.
Yet despite the knowledge that this incident would probably became a media story, and despite the knowledge that this ‘procedural anomaly’ would probably lead to a challenge, the hierarchy and their legal teams still went ahead with a kangaroo court to deal with an incident that required tight procedures precisely because it was so serious.
If the military disciplinarians can’t even be trusted to get an open and shut case right, it seems like Senator Jacqui Lambie’s call for a Royal Commission into the Defence Force just became an urgent requirement.
And the other point that can be made about all of this is that the Defence Directorate of Do-Goodery, otherwise known as ‘People Policy and Culture Division’ couldn’t organise themselves a stripper at the local booza with a fistful of dollars. You could ‘economically rationalise’ this entire division of the Department off the books and save enough cash to buy the Navy a battleship. And it would actually improve Defence culture.
The whole reason this lot exist is to end the ‘culture’ where strippers rock up at the local soldier’s club. Just so you know, the entire time I served as an officer, from 2003 until 2011, I never once heard of strippers being employed at a soldier’s club. And during this timeframe this mob have grown from being the token ‘diversity nerds’ to a bureaucratic cabal with tentacles and fingerprints everywhere.
But now real diversity of thought is dead and strippers are coming and going like there’s no tomorrow. This is not the first time this has happened this year.
However, that probably won’t stop the People Policy and Culture Group from deploying its Rapid Response Team armed with yet another Powerpoint presentation about ‘cultural reform’ and the requirement to be non-judgemental about sexual activity. They’re probably flying to Townsville, even as I write this, in order to ‘sanitise’ the incident and provide counselling to all and sundry. And preparing submissions for more departmental funding due to their ever-increasing workload.
After all, it must be hard dealing with outbreaks of strippers when your primary role is to organise the military’s ‘float’ at the next Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras.