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Conference Opposes Military Ban ... Just

Apr 03 2008 22:54
Ashley Brown
Students at NUS Conference narrowly defeated an attempt to ban military recruitment at university campuses.
Comrades Stephen Brown (ICU President) and Chris Mullan (Kings President-elect) hand out motions of support for student military organisations (Photo: Elizabeth Hyde)

The final day of NUS conference saw time run out before a motion calling for the support of student military organisations was discussed, however an earlier motion calling for a ban of military recruitment was narrowly defeated.

The presence of the military on campus was always going to be a contentious issue, with recent bans on student military organisations at London colleges and the recent NUT opposition to military recruitment at schools. As these issues appeared after the deadline for motions to conference, they were only covered in amendments, and an emergency motion which was not discussed due to a lack of time.

A motion in the "Society and Citizenship" zone - which was passed - called for opposition to a military attack, or economic sanctions on Iran. An amendment to this zone called for NUS to work with the "Stop the War" coalition to ban army recruitment on campuses, while also organising campus meetings with "Military Families Against the War" and "Stop the War".

A compromise was proposed, with the calls for a campaign to ban military recruitment removed after some agitated speeches. This fell after not making a 2/3 majority. With the full body of the amendment still intact, a number of hand counts were conducted but were too close to call. Following a count, the amendment was rejected by 338 to 316.

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Discussion about “Conference Opposes Military Ban ... Just”

The comments below are unmoderated submissions by Live! readers. The Editor accepts no liability for their content, nor for any offence caused by them. Any complaints should be directed to the Editor.
Apr 04 2008 09:08

"with the calls for a campaign to ban military recruitment removed... there was still opposition to the amendment based on its underlying principle"

Ash, I'm going to be pedantic but I think this is one of those points when you must have been asleep again (not that I blame you...)

The parts calling for a ban on military recruitment were not removed from the amendment because it needed a 2/3rds majority. The amendment was then defeated because people didn't want to ban the military on a simple majority.

Apr 04 2008 09:37

Changed. I lost my sheet of notes for that session!

Apr 04 2008 09:43

the loonies clearly stole them! they are so overly represented on NUS and I suspect student unions around the world - purely because ordinary students are more likely to be apathetic.

Apr 04 2008 10:00

The motion that passed still calls for students to occupy campuses in the event of an attack on Iran...

Apr 04 2008 10:08

"The motion that passed still calls for students to occupy campuses in the event of an attack on Iran..."

only NUS loonies would think that actually attending their campus was a form of protest ;o)

Apr 04 2008 10:51

What was really frustrating was that the majority of the room were incapable of thinking for themselves. It was quite clear that the respect delegates were asking their leader (see, aliens) how to vote. If she was not available then the alternative was to find out how Imperial were voting and vote the other way. (btw most delegates from other unions were not mandated on how they should vote.) my point being I don't think the majority actualy read the motions they were voting on.

Apr 04 2008 10:55

Change our name to "University of West London (Formerly West London Polytechnic)". That would get the commie sheep voting on our side. No self respecting left winger would ever vote along with a place called "Imperial"

Apr 04 2008 13:36

it seems to me that the NUS is the only place in the uk that still talks about right-wing and left-wing with a straight face.

that fight is over. move into the centre and lets contest style.

Apr 04 2008 13:38

The only reason we had this minor victory was because David Turner from Swansea uni got up and said something along the lines of "I'm proud to be in the military, when I joined I knew I could be called up at any time and three of my friends have been killed on operation. The most recent was three months ago whilst he was helping to build a road to enable emergency food to be taken to civilians."

Then all the respect people were like - oh, oops.

Apr 04 2008 14:32

Seconf best speech of Conference.

Shortly following our very own Stephen Brown's trot-idol speech.

11. KE   
Apr 04 2008 15:40

You laugh, but you know us lefties do call you "Imperialist College"...

12. ha ha   
Apr 04 2008 15:46

Communism has never worked in any of the countries it has ever been tried in - give up and get some realistic views!

Apr 04 2008 15:47

that insult is almost as bad as "Tory, Tory!"

I do laugh at you, hard.

Apr 05 2008 02:49

communism have never worked?

i suppose you are going to define communism and worked in such a narrow way to serve your arrogant argument

Apr 05 2008 09:06

Communism can work on small scales. I assume ha ha and yourself are referring to whole countries though.

I think it's fair to say we've never seen true communism. It either always fails during the fairly lengthy implementation process. It takes a long time to dissolve the state. Or actually there is a state and the party in charge just has "communism" in it's title. Oh look we're in charge. How fortuitous!

Apr 18 2008 18:29


It all comes down to humans being selfish and having that competition gene in us. There qualities where very important for our evolution. The average human will work the hardest for (in order): self, partner, family/friends and lastly people we don't know. So when you ask people- as happens in communism- to work in the reverse order, by not having any personal gain from work, you will get discontent.

Now I did say average human, so communism can work in small groups where everyone will sacrifice them selves for the group. Monks, NGO employees, Jehovah witnesses are good examples of these kinds of people.

It is a natural human instinct to better one self. So in communism where is it to be a classless society this is not possible and is against our entire evolution.

Oct 06 2008 21:03

I think it's good that Left and Right ie. actual political convictions, are still represented in the NUS (well, maybe not the Right...). Whoever suggested it should embrace 'competing on style' is a sad example of modern politics.

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