Video Games depicting non-white involvement in the World Wars isn't ‘politics’, it’s history
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This has lead to many on Reddit to become outraged at alleged cultural marxism where DICE have to over-included non-white characters to appease the new climate of political correctness. Reddit user ‘LordoftheBanter’ (no, I am not making that up) told me that "precisely zero of the empires had such enormous numbers of colonial troops".
When I confronted him with the statistic that in the British Empire’s forces 70,000 Indian troops died in the war and over one million served he informed me that "Indians were fucking pack mules and a minority of them at that. They weren't trusted to fight on the front as many of them were ‘barbarian Mohammedans’ who were feared to side with Turkey." Like many who fear their white-dominated narrative of history being taken over, ‘The Lord’ has butchered a fact to justify his opinion that their participation was meaningless.
Where he has something partly right was in the Indian’s primary
You may think that I am just assuming this Reddit user only cares about the white narrative of history being changed. But if ‘The Lord’ wasn't actually annoyed DICE were ‘attacking’ the primarily White narrative of World War One, he must be solely concerned with historical accuracy in the
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Above: Screenshot of Battlefield 1 gameplay (credited to IGN)In multiplayer, you can play a battle set in 1914 with most players running around with the MP-18 submachine gun. This was developed and almost solely used by German Stormtroopers in 1918, basically making this situation impossible and not at all accurate. Another submachine gun, the Hellriegel, was a prototype, with only one ever being manufactured, but as many players can use this weapon as they want.
Things like tanks are way too maneuverable, the abundance of semi-automatic rifles isn't accurate and mustard gas dissipates after 20 seconds: the game isn't accurate. It is designed to be fun but is also trying to reflect the general atmosphere of the conflict. So why does anyone actually care that there are more Africans running around in the German army than there should be, when you can play as the British army, in 1914, with a German submachine gun four years before it was ever used? Obviously, this argument doesn't hold and it’s simply a case of people being irked that non-whites are finally being represented in a larger way. This was a colonial war above all else and this is what the racial makeup of the factions represents - it is not trying to alter history.
This sort of thinking has carried over to new heights with Call of Duty: WW2 and what will be depicted in its campaign. Not shying away from generic World War Two shooters of yesteryear, it follows the 1st Infantry Division of the US Army, from the landings at Normandy to the fall of Berlin. What is interesting is that they are going to dive into racial elements of the war. One of your
But people should remember the African-Americans who served couldn’t fight side by side with their white comrades. They also faced institutional racism back home. There was still almost endemic segregation in America, particularly in the South, where they didn’t have access to the same facilities and opportunities as whites. They could not access the best schools, most never went to University and most grew up in impoverished areas. They faced police brutality and also the threat of lynchings from groups like the Klu Klux Klan. America was largely an institutionally racist nation in the 1940’s and it’s not too hard to see the irony that African-Americans were willing to fight and die for an even more racist nation but they were not treated equally back home. Showing the racism of the war is a bold step by Sledgehammer and as we move even further past the Second World War hopefully more people will be able to
Again this has annoyed people on Reddit, with Reddit user ‘ConcernTro11’ writing "because racism against blacks is
Racism is generally underplayed in the media, particularly in the US, but including the institutional racism of the US Army in a World War Two game isn't ‘politics’. The only political aspects of it are that right-wingers tend to ignore the history of minorities in their own nations, while liberals often want to include
Above: Screenshot of Call of Duty: World at War Gameplay (credited to BBC)For many like ‘Tro11’, even shedding a small light on the more negative aspects of the war is too outrageous and everything should just conform to the white heroic narrative of the past, and as another Reddit user ‘880cloud088’ perfectly summed up "it is ridiculous that the changing of HISTORY is in question nowadays to spare feelings".
That is exactly right, it shouldn't be changed or shied away from and you must question the views of those who don’t want the struggles of non-whites in the World War’s to be represented in any media.
In this age of Trump, Le Pen, Norbert Hofer and Brexit, the far right have been giving a new voice and this is evident on social media. They shout down any diversity as ‘globalisation’ and call out any new attempts to showcase minorities history as ‘white genocide’. This made up phenomenon causes people like ConcernTro11 and LordoftheBanter to become annoyed that events like World War One and Two are now being told in a way that