Select Page

Given recent events (think, Senator Vann and the Brittany Higgins rape allegations and ensuing fiasco)  it might be more productive to mount body cameras on our politicians than the SAS.

But seriously this idea of SAS soldiers wearing bodcam is the ultimate expansion of the nanny state but now it’s beyond the wire and into the heat of battle.

It is as insulting as it is absurd. We’ve entered some bizzaro world of the nanny state, Mary Poppins and “daycare lawyers” and armchair generals, watching over, refereeing and Monday morning quarterback with the benefit of hindsight years down the track.

There’s that saying in sport. What goes on the field stays on the field. This should be no different

Ok, so rugby league, rugby and soccer are just a game with a couple of thousand witnesses in the stand and all manner of instant replay from many different angles but it’s not life or death and each side is playing to a defined set of rules.

I think it must be one of the most demeaning, dispiriting, demoralising and humiliating ideas that has been put forward in the history of the military and will be responsible for the death or injury of members of the SAS as they, for just a split second second guess what they are about to do or have done. What they intuitively and instinctively know what has to be done in the heat of battle.

What it will do to recruitment is anybody’s guess.

All of these man, all of them are already badly damaged. If not mentally, then physically or more often than not both. In our business, Veteran Medical,  we deal with them every single day. All of them are polite and decent young men.

In full knowledge that they are “on stage” being nit picked, scrutinised and watched over by big brother or big sister with a law degree like kids in day care and that their actions may come back to haunt them in a quiet air conditioned  court room a million miles from care years later, they will become hesitant when they need to be bold and decisive in the face of an enemy who couldn’t careless about our Mary Poppins, Marquis of Queensbury rules.

In fact that’s why they are in field with boots on the ground in the first place. The people they’re fighting simply don’t subscribe to the same rules and standards that apply in the West.

And any comparison with the body-cam worn by police is slippery, deceptive and dishonest. The police aren’t in the heat of battle in a traditional war zone and their circumstances are usually one or two on one or two. And to sn extent they can control the situation as to tactic and timing. And if in doubt they can hold off and/or call for backup if necessary.

By scale and degree the domestic police situation is a 4 or 5 out of ten and is isolated. They aren’t up against an entire company or platoon or whatever coming at them from all directions. They’re in a position to more calmly scope out the situation.

And what the hell are KPMG doing in this “providing advice on the cameras introduction”?

Have we reached a stage where we are now outsourcing our battlefield strategy and tactics to the consultants?