By: Joti Brar
Is it just me, or was it kind of disgusting to see every big-name artist in Britain queueing up to wrap themselves in the flag on Sunday night? To join in the endorsement of such symbols of British imperial criminality as the armed forces and the royal family?
Kudos to Danny Boyle for being a very talented director. But shame on him for forgetting what that flag meant to his Irish ancestors – and hundreds of millions of other oppressed and exploited people around the world. Not to mention every class-conscious worker in Britain.
The music was uplifting, the production was marvellous. But what was it all for?? To make us forget what that the imperial flag they were waving represents and push us all into believing that we are ONE nation; in it together on all fronts (be that facing the economic crisis or launching the latest genocidal war).
Forget about rulers and ruled, exploiters and exploited; most definitely forget that the royals, the army and the flag are symbols of British imperialist oppression and slaughter all over the world. Does it stop being the Butcher’s Apron just because you can make it out of pretty lights and put the Spice Girls in the middle of it?
I like to think John Lennon would have had something to say to Ms Ono if he could have seen the use to which she let the organisers put his music and his image.
Of course it was a beautiful moment when his face appeared alongside his voice to sing the magical words of ‘Imagine’. So lovely that it almost made you forget that this was the most corporate games in history, and that the Queen (as head of state) and the army would most definitely have something to say about it if workers in Britain really DID start to ‘Imagine no possessions’ or ‘Imagine there’s no countries … nothing to kill or die for’.
Really, ‘Imagine all the people sharing all the world’ is about as far away from what these games represented as you can get; the exact opposite of the role that Britain currently plays in the world.
Why would someone of Irish descent be so happy to help create an image of this country that ignores imperialism, whitewashes war criminals and prettifies the mercenary forces that are even now participating in butchery in Libya, Syria, Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan?
Don’t let a few gold medals and some cute ways to ‘reinvent’ the red, white and blue fool you. There is no ‘Team GB’. There are British rulers and British workers, and their interests are diametrically opposed to one another. If it’s good for them you can be sure as hell that it’s bad for the rest of us.
But they are exceptionally organised and very experienced in finding ways to keep the rest of us weak and stupid.
They use racism, sexism, class prejudice and every other kind of divisive trick to keep us isolated from one another, and they use the Olympics, the Jubilee and all the rest to try to persuade us to identify with them and their culture; to kid ourselves that they rule on our behalf and not merely in their own interests.
Everything we wrote about the jubilee applies here too:
“The Queen is not ‘ours’, but theirs. She is of and for that tiny handful of ruthless exploiters who keep the world’s people in poverty and servitude, and we must not be fooled by sentimental hogwash into imagining that she has any interest in seeing our children taken care of.”