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Explosions! Planes!!

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Whatever the rights and wrongs of the intervention in Libya, the BBC could do with toning down the gung-ho jingoism of their coverage, not least in the photographs illustrating the story on their website. Explosions! Fireworks!! Planes!!! BRITISH planes!!!! When did they make Tony Scott director general?

Comments on “Explosions! Planes!!”

  1. requiemapache says:

    Disgraceful. The “Planes!! BRITISH planes!!!!” link clearly does not click through to a British Plane at all, looks more like a French Dassault Mirage to me…

    • Thomas Jones says:

      Oh yes: I got the red and blue of the insignia the wrong way round… Good job I don’t work in an anti-aircraft battery. But this just goes to point up another of the problems with those cycling galleries of images without captions on the home pages of news-sites. Heroic shots of our mega expensive kit, cheering rebels(?), serious-faced children holding posters of Gaddafi, and no word as to what, who, when or where they are, just a general impression of thrills, heroism, machismo, pathos, like a series of Athena posters. Elsewhere, there are breathless descriptions of all the hardware, and stories headlined ‘Britain steps up…’

      • requiemapache says:

        Well, fighter planes look awesome…the mega expensive kit is a mega problematic issue of nationalistic pride though. The Typhoon is U.K, German, Spanish and Italian in build, the Tornado is German and Italian as well as British. Meanwhile the French fly French because the state didn’t force merging within the industry, unlike the British government did not long after the end of WWII, killing off our aspirations for independent leadership of the global aviation industry.

        Meanwhile, if you had to put together a literary anti aircraft battery unit, you could add Gunter Grass and the Pope (well he has published a lot) although you should be in charge of the loading not the pointing.

  2. Fatema Ahmed says:

    If the literary anti-aircraft battery unit is going to be manned by 80 year olds, then I’m sure James Salter (same generation, different war) could climb back into the cockpit of an F-86 to resume life as a fighter pilot. (Though given the choice, he might admit to a sneaking preference for a vintage MiG-15) He’s pretty clear that he, too, thought fighter planes, and that was 60 years ago, were awesome. The current British media enthusiasm (“War… BOOM!!!) seems rather different, though.

  3. requiemapache says:

    Ok, so we’ve got the LRB Web Editor manning an anti aircraft battery with Gunter Grass gunning for James Salter in a F-86 Sabre and er, Roald Dahl in a Hawker Hurricane. Surely we could get a whole squadron?

    Salter might have shown respect for the MiG-15 but in an interesting bit of aeronautical historicity, NATO call signs during the Cold War did the opposite; “fagot”, “frogfoot” and, most bizarrely “fishbed”. How rude.

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