A few years ago I wrote about The sanitisation of war, how our media have come to depict warfare in general as not only just, but as a simple story of good against evil in the manner of a Commando comic.
On page 47 of today’s free Sport magazine, the Royal Air Force have taken out a full page Commando comic style advertisement for staff. It’s taken us a while to get to the point where this is an acceptable depiction of something quite terrifying, but I think we’ve been prepared gently and can now relax, safe in the knowledge that war is not only fun reading, but is also something to aspire to.
The advert features the handsome Flight Lieutenant Sean Langrish, an epitome of the well rounded young man, complete with steely determination and well rehearsed student sneer. (In another advert he’ll be seen relaxing over a few beers with an orange juice swigging colleague, however everyone knows that not drinking in the forces is paramount to homosexuality).
The story is as follows. The lads on the ground in Helmand are cornered, brave Sean calls in some Laser Guided Bombs, he keeps his promise, the enemy is eliminated and he’s got 24 new bezzie mates. No really, that’s what happens! Then we’re ‘all good’! Fucking superb! If only I wasn’t so old!
There’s money to waste on misleading adverts though isn’t there? We know that because there’s cash to be spunked on teaching the country’s two most over privileged brothers to indulge in learning to be Search and Rescue pilots. The Palace must be getting wet thinking about that little number when it comes to fruition. All the tabloid glory, none of the risk, everyone’s a winner! Essentially, it’s this week’s hobby, a well deserved break from playing football with six year old African children with no legs, or from getting cunted in China Whites.
This is nothing new though, The RAF, like the military in general, has a history of outrageously misleading adverts bent on showing that in War, there’s something for everyone. Remember the ridiculous Cinema adverts of a few years ago that suggested that young people could progress from delivering pizzas on a moped to piloting a Harrier? Yes, that’s going to happen isn’t it?
No need to worry too much about it though, when the reality of the cartoon like battle against evil ends up with no arms to have a wank with, there’s always Help for Heroes.
Royal Air Force. Be part of the story.