The Flying Column #8 DULCE ET DECORUM EST by Connor Kelly


“Poppies, poppies will make them sleep,” cackled the Wicked Witch of the West on BBC’s Newsnight this week, her flying monkey Evan Davis grunting by her side. For the next few weeks our screens will be overwhelmed by the morose and nauseating revisionism of Great War remembrance. Poppy day. Poppy month. Poppy Britain. You see them now, old and young pottering about their daily business, remembering. Gaudy little plastic pins rest on their lapels – poppies being the international symbol of mass slaughter, and the heroin trade.
“Something about dead heroes,” mutters Harry, when asked about the symbolism.
“Defending Britain from the Hun hoards,” murmurs June, her eyes glazing over.
“Remember all the men who died,” says Edward.
“Germans were evil, but they aren’t anymore. Are they?” asks Mary.

This is the month where we are encouraged to remember the “sacrifice” that so many young men made by dying in the Great War for….something or other. Because the surest way to do your country proud is to get mowed down by a machine gun in foreign fields for….something or other. Millions of them, heroically running to their deaths for….something or other. Rule Britannia!

The fact that the First World War was so pointlessly evil and devastating that it took a wave of revolutions across Europe to finally bring about its end should be reason enough to question the official narrative. That the ordinary people of Russia, Germany and beyond were prepared to risk their lives standing up to their own ruling classes to end the slaughter gives you an idea of how dreadful the conditions must have been.
But all this is superfluous historical fluff. For in an extraordinary scoop – exclusive to Bogmans Cannon – I can reveal that for the last decade, British surveillance company GCHQ along with MI5 have orchestrated the distribution of millions of plastic poppies containing hidden microphones. This mass monitoring is believed to be in response to the combined threats of Russian aggression, Islamic terrorism, paedophiles and the SNP. When asked for comment about this new and unparalleled surveillance, the director of GCHQ, E.Blowfeld said, “something about dead heroes….defending Britain from the Hun hoards.” Public response to the news has been ambivalent:

“I don’t know what people are complaining about,” said June, “If they’re not questioning the glorious leader then they have nothing to worry about. We have to protect our freedom you know.”

“You have to see both sides of the argument,” said Edward before a black bag was placed over his head and he was bungled into a van. Mary and Harry were disappeared.

We attempted to contact MI5 controller “Mammy May”, but could only reach her personal secretary who simply said, “We know where you live. Watch yourself.”


Since moving to England, along with mass surveillance and imperial war-mongering one thing I’ve noticed is the average person’s complete ignorance of the Northern Irish political situation. It is bad enough when they say “Is that part of the UK?” but worse when they project a patronizing GCSE-level analysis onto it – “Why can’t you all just get along?” And when you alert them to the fact that Northern Ireland is the only region in the UK where gay marriage and abortion are still not legal they often react with some pious declaration on the ignorance and backwardness of the place – as if they believe its inhabitants only discovered fire and microwavable ready-meals last week. Although Northern Ireland has its share of funny-mentalists on the ground, it is those in power – in a wholly undemocratic system – that are truly backward and ignorant. And the Lilliputian political oddity which maintains their rule – “The Peace Process” – is propped up by the British State in Westminster.

So it was on Sunday that for the first time a majority of Stormont MLAs voted in favour of legalizing gay marriage. Hurrah! Democracy in action! Not quite. Because of a wonderfully nefarious mechanism known as the “petition of concern,” either of the main parties from each “community” essentially has a veto on any democratic vote in the house. All they have to do is register their “concern” – and unsurprisingly, the DUP did just that. Amazingly, they are wholly unconcerned by education cuts, the closure of care homes, and trade union legislation – but two men or women fucking causes them much consternation indeed. The fact is that Northern Ireland appears backward because our representatives have been transported to their positions via time machine. The population is very much in favour of social-change – as registered in almost every opinion poll – but it is blocked at every move by a bigoted and undemocratic elite.


Indonesia is ablaze. Wildfires rage across the entire country. Children are being evacuated offshore onto warships. Who needs science fiction when you’ve got modernity? Dystopia squared. Yet the catastrophe goes largely unreported by the world’s media. They’re apparently more interested in one plane crash in Egypt or who Germaine Greer insulted before breakfast than something as trivial as the “eco-apocalypse.” It doesn’t make such a good news story does it? “Capitalism ruins planet – humans to die – now here’s Angie with the weather.” Trying to discuss the impending climate catastrophe is like being at a dinner party where, after quietly alerting the other guests to the fact that the house is on fire you’re greeted with the response, “Could you pass the oil please?”
In other news, Volkswagen has issued a new electric version of their iconic “hippie” camper van – it only seems right that ageing eco-warriors now have an eco-friendly vehicle to be annoying in. However, there has been some perplexing at the fact that the electric vans don’t seem to run unless you put diesel in them. Volkswagen says this was a minor error and “it isn’t the end of the world.” I asked June what she thought:
“Never trust a Hun,” she said, “Poppycock.”