03 Jun 2017

Britain’s National Army Museum Captured by the Enemy

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Andrew Roberts finds that the forces of Political Correctness have completed their long march right through the British National Army Museum.

Today’s huge new £24 million refurbished National Army Museum looks imposing inside, but instead of chronologically taking you through the history of the Army it is now broken down thematically into spaces such as ‘Society’, which ‘explores the Army as a cultural and military force that impacts on our customs, technologies and values’, and ‘Army’, which ‘explores the Army’s major role in the political development of the country’. Instead of seeing artefacts in a historical context, as part of a chronological narrative, the visitor is forced to explore themes, and as ever this has provided an opening for guilt, apology and political correctness.

In the old museum they just showed vast collections of uniforms, weaponry, regimental silver, medals and vast paintings of the battle of Omdurman; in today’s you are invited to press buttons to vote on whether ‘The money spent on the Army should be spent elsewhere’, and asked to decide ‘What issue should the Army focus on in the coming decade?’, giving you the choice of ‘Fighting international terrorism’, ‘Training other countries’ armed forces only’, ‘Cyber warfare’ or ‘Peacekeeping’. There is no choice available to vote for the job it has now done for four centuries, that is, ‘Defending Britain by fighting other countries’ armies’. …

[M]edals are thought of as old-fashioned and boring by the new right-on Museum, we are not told in very many cases what they are or even who they were awarded to. The wonderful pictures are still there, but in the Art Room there is now a big sign saying ‘Political Statement’ in red letters, which tells us that ‘Art became a means to legitimise territorial expansion’, and ‘Today, few artists are commissioned to celebrate military victories and triumphalism is seen as distasteful.’ For the iconic picture of the relief of Ladysmith we aren’t told the title or the name of the artist or what is happening in it, but just: ‘This was known as the Bovril War picture.’

‘The National Army Museum,’ it boasts, ‘challenges you to think again about what an army museum is.’

RTWT

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One Feedback on "Britain’s National Army Museum Captured by the Enemy"

Gbear

‘The National Army Museum,’ it boasts, ‘challenges you to think again about what an army museum is.’

It sure does.



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