09 January, 2008
Going for the easy targets
So, if a man make his way to Calais, hides in the back of an artic and manages to smuggle himself into the UK, then provided he keeps his head down, the Government will make no effort to find him and remove him. If he is found out, he will apply for asylum and in due course the Government will give up and grant him indefinite leave to remain in one of its periodic amnesties.
If a man arrive on a visitor's visa from Lagos, pops down to Thamesmead and buys himself some forged documents, and lives here for years, the Government will do nothing to detect the fraud, nothing to deport him should he be embarrassingly accidentally discovered; in due course, having brought his wife over by the same route, he will sire some UK-born sprogs, and HMG will obligingly tidy up the bureaucratic inconvenience by granting citizenship all around.
But if a man voluntarily put himself in harm's way in the service of the British Crown in a foreign war, so that he and his family are in mortal danger from retribution once British forces have withdrawn, our dear leaders will wring their hands, um and ah, and leave the poor blighter to his fate.