Ministry of Defence staff get same Afghan medal as front line troops
Civil servants working for the Ministry of Defence in Afghanistan are entitled to receive the same Operational Service Medal as front line troops.
Now I'm not saying that the civil servants lives weren't in danger and I do think that if they served in Camp Bastion that they should get some sort of award, particularly if they came under fire.The medal is presented to bureaucrats who have spent time at Camp Bastion, the British headquarters, by ministers at official ceremonies.But critics said it was "offensive" that civil servants who work only at Army bases or accompanying ministers on walkabouts should be given the same medal as the troops who face the Taliban on a daily basis.
Military service medals are just that for military service, you don't award Victoria Crosses to civilians, ever! There are a whole raft of civilian awards for bravery with the George Cross being the highest. However these aren't the same as campaign medals, but you don't give campaign medals to those who are not under arms or in the armed services, something the civil servants definitely are not.
Yes they should perhaps get some sort of commendation, however I do think the danger money they receive ought to cover that, they get £8,000 a month for working in Afghanistan, nearly five times as much some soldiers on the front line.
We honour our forces, we honour the covenant and for this we award them with tokens of our gratitude and respect. What the MOD is doing here is diluting and denigrating this tradition, it should stop, it's wrong, there are other ways to reward civilians and it's being done.
Reading between the lines on this statement...
At a presentation ceremony in July, Armed Forces minister Kevan Jones said: "The welfare role these people do is vital in operations and I thought it important that they get public recognition."This smacks of a Labour political correctness lunacy, but as in the past they've already proven just how much they value our troops which is why they went to a war under equipped and over-stretched.
Perhaps the civil servants should get a service badge for Afghanistan, but it shouldn't be a service medal, troops are different, should be treat differently, should be made to feel special and not the same as the civilian support staff however much they help.