Northernheckler's Blog

A Yorkshireman's adventures in the big Smoke

Johnny Seven’s One Man Army & the Mujahideen

[ I’ve struggled with the image settings a bit here- they might push the text about a little oddly in some browsers – Sorry ! ]

Stuck for something to blog about, I consulted my Twitter tweeps, and was given this worrying subject matter by @ByrneTofferings – yes that well known avenger of Councillors from Barnsley, the Libertarian Neo-Con blogger & closet socialist himself. Thanks Tom !

The subject in question being this little gem on the BBC News website : Film seized ‘shows children being radicalised’ which discusses a short video (please watch it) discovered on a police raid in Manchester, but believed to be filmed in Pakistan, which apparently shows young children playing with a Kalashnikov rifle and a pistol, while an adult asks them questions about what they want to do with the weapons, the adult answering for them : “I want to kill the infidels”.

While the police have no idea who the children are, they clearly believe them to be Muslims. Also seized were Flash cards which “instead of having M for Muhammed” had “M for Mujahideen” . (and there’s me expecting M to be for Man, or Mother, or Milk … or Molotov !!!)

To be honest, I think there’s a fair likelihood that these are people who do describe themselves as Muslims. Let’s assume for the purposes of my blog that they are.

The frightening thing in this video is supposedly that these people are indoctrinating young children in the ways of terrorism at a very young age. An age in fact where they are too young to understand what they are taking on, and what it means, which makes them all the more likely to adopt radical extremist positions, and to favour terrorist action when they reach adulthood.

Before I go on I want to say that that isn’t a difficult conclusion to jump to  – that’s what it does look like, and in all likelihood it IS what is going on in the video. It’s not pleasant, and I don’t believe children should be allowed to play with weapons in this way, or casually indoctrinated into radical positions.


Is it really so different from what we’ve done in the west for years and years though ?

When I was a kid there was one thing that I never got for Christmas – although I asked Santa for it many times. Lot’s of my friends got one though – a Johnny 7 Gun  !

This little beauty was one of the most desired objects of fun for many young boys. clip_image004

It brought a whole new level of realism to the incessant games of “Cowboy’s & Indians” we played; and also to other favourites like “Japs & Commandos” – or just shooting Germans, which was less intellectual but just as much fun. The Johnny 7 was suffixed “OMA” which stood for One Man Army,

and had 7 different weapons for the well armed young boy in the playground.

But all this was just fun wasn’t it ? Our parents never really wanted us to go out and shoot Germans & Japs ?

And it would be ‘political correctness gone mad’ to start ranting on about how ‘cowboys & indians’ had damaged our youth. Wouldn’t it ? Wouldn’t it ?

Well actually for once, I think it probably would. We played those games because children play with things which reflect the ways of adult life. If the grown ups are farmers they play with toy farms. If they’re soldiers the children play with guns and weapons.

In the early 60’s most kids’ parents had done National Service, many had served in the Second World War. Grandparents had often served in the First World War. The mental wounds from the wars were still etched deep in the nation’s psyche. When I was 10, the war seemed like ancient history – but the D-Day landings were as recent then, as Margaret Thatcher and the Miner’s strike are to today’s 10 year olds.

So I think we could be excused playing with guns. I don’t think it did many of us much harm – I haven’t shot anyone as an adult, and have never used a grenade launcher.

So while I don’t approve of the playthings of these apparently Pakistani children in the video – and would never dream of giving my own children guns to play with – real or otherwise. I think we should cut them a little bit of slack – it doesn’t mean they’re going to grow up to hijack planes or be suicide bombers.

Excuse me now – I’ve got to go ! – my 15 year old son is telling me that it’s my turn to play Call of Duty on the PS3 !

NOTE : Mujaheedeen : Is a word which roughly translates to “freedom fighters” it was used to describe the Afghani resistance to Soviet occupation, in the 1980’s and also to describe the Communist resistance movement opposing the regime of Ayatollah Khomeini in Iran – both of which were either covertly or overtly funded by Western Governments.

“Infidel” is a term used by Christians, Jews, and Muslims to refer to someone who does not believe in their religion – often (but not necessarily) as a term of abuse.

“Jihad” in Islam means to “strive in the way of Allah” – although in the West it’s often described as a Holy War. Compare this to the term ‘Crusade’ – which is often used non-pejoratively in the West to refer to a just or moral campaign, but does in fact have its origins in religiously sanctioned military campaigns against Muslims (or ‘infidels’).

Is it any wonder that people misunderstand each other ?


January 31, 2010 - Posted by | blogs, news, racism, Religion | , , ,


  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by nilsinela boray, nilsinela boray and nilsinela boray, nilsinela boray. nilsinela boray said: Johnny Seven’s One Man Army & the Mujahideen: […]

    Pingback by Tweets that mention Johnny Seven’s One Man Army & the Mujahideen « Northernheckler's Blog -- | February 3, 2010 | Reply

  2. Hiya, I’m 50 years old. I had a Johnny Seven courtesy of my Dad, a serving Grenadier Lance Sergeant through the 60s. I was later a 13 year old Army Cadet. I used browning 50 cal and 30 cal lee enfield 303, SLR rifle. Bren Gun, Stirling Submachine gun and GPMG. I had a skeleton martini henry sniper rifle beacause I qualified as a “baby” sniper. used thunder flash explosives and used 2inch mortars (with flares only)We also once trained with a ?3.5 inch rocket launcher. Once involved in “wiping out a contingent of TA SAS” who had wandered into our training area while we trained to ambush the enemy.
    This is the crux… one ever mentioned who the enemy was. No indoctrination in the hatred of others, just an overwhelming desire on the part of our adult instructors to instil discipline and awareness of our responsibilities as a small part of a community.
    Even the targets we shot at were refered to as the running man. (He was a russian). You also have to take into account the education and increasingly secular upbringing most of us had through the 50s and 60s. Many other cultures frown upon education unless it involves the study of a holy book to the exclusion of much else. No I never shot anyone or wish to nor can I find it in my heart to hate another culture. Cheers!

    Comment by Chris Gallagher | October 6, 2010 | Reply

    • thanks for dropping by, and for your comments. This post is one of the most frequently viewed on my blog, I’m at a loss to understand why – I put it together on a boring Sunday afternoon, more or less in response to a challenge to see what I could come up with in response to the BBC News article

      Comment by northernheckler | October 7, 2010 | Reply

  3. Yes i owned a johnny seven in 1970 to my great pleasure loved it long grass and hot summer kept me entertained for ever totally agree with you we let children grow up and believe that we know the answers to the world’s probs by force if needs be and yet if anybody else does use force they are evil personified well there not, just human and we are all capable of killing in the most inhuman way poss but the majority of us dont we just get some other human to do it shame we cant be kids forever.

    Comment by harrybhoy | March 17, 2012 | Reply

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