Time for UKIP’s ‘Afghan veteran’ Chairman to set the record straight?

By Searchlight Team

Fresh embarrassment for UKIP as their chairman, Ben Walker, is discovered not to have been a Petty Officer, as has been reported. Searchlight understands that ‘Barnacle’ Ben’s Royal Navy discharge paperwork shows him as having left the service not as a PO, but at the (lower) rank of LSA. Oops! Blushes all round.

For those all at sea with Navy ranks, PO is the equivalent of the Marines, Army and RAF rank of Sergeant. The rank of LSA was (it has since been replaced) Leading Stores Accountant. Don’t worry about the ‘SA’ part for the moment. Focus on the ‘L’. A Leading Seaman in any role is the equivalent of Corporal.

Still, it’s something, we suppose. He fought his way up to LSA from Stores Accountant 2nd and then 1st Class. So two promotions (equivalent of Private to Corporal) in six years or so. Gliding so smoothly through the ranks, he might have made it to Admiral – though he’d have been an Ancient Mariner indeed by the time he did.

Now, to be fair, we have yet to see any evidence that Walker has publicly described himself as a PO. But other people have made the inflated claim on his behalf. It was first spotted in September 2017 in ‘Team UKIP United’ press releases, where he was described as “Former Royal Navy Petty Officer Ben Walker”.

Team UKIP United was a ‘slate’ of four UKIP members in the Autumn 2017 internal party elections. All were originally wannabes for the role of Leader, but three – David Coburn, Marion Mason and Walker – dropped out and endorsed Home Affairs spokesperson Jane Collins through to election day.

Though he was the slate’s putative UKIP Chairman, Walker was very much the junior man in TUU. Collins and Coburn (the other half of the leader-deputy ticket) were both Members of the European Parliament. So, it is possible that the two officer grade candidates ran the whole show, while the other-ranks Walker was kept in the dark about matters like press releases, and didn’t know how he was being described. In the end, it probably didn’t matter very much. Like many another before it, the slate ended covered in guano, picking up a little over 4% of the vote.

But just a week or so after the election, on 6 October 2017, Barnacle Ben was quoted extensively by RT UK (often referred to as ‘Russia Today’) about his thoughts on the Royal Navy, which he compared unfavourably to “the fishing and rowing boats during our retreat from Dunkirk.” The Putin mouthpiece described Walker as “a petty officer who served in Afghanistan”.

This seems, to us, to be pushing the envelope too far in two fronts. As we have seen, Walker was not a petty officer. He was also not in Afghanistan. While he was aboard (counting potatoes or whatever) his ship, the destroyer HMS Southampton, it was deployed in the Gulf screening the aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious. This certainly counts as being part of the Afghanistan Campaign – and probably entitles him to the Campaign Medal – but IN Afghanistan kind of implies being face-to-face with the Taliban, and he wasn’t that.

He can’t even claim to have been IN Afghan territorial waters. Afghanistan is landlocked.

Now, again there is no way of knowing what Walker actually said to the RT reporter that he spoke to. It may have been “I was a Royal Navy Leading Seaman and served in the Afghanistan Campaign” and the reporter for some reason ‘bigged it up’. It would certainly be better than to admit that the man you are selling to the public as a “Naval expert” was about as high-ranking as Klinger in MASH.

But you know, even as we try our hardest to be fair to Walker, we do have a nagging worry. No, we’ve seen no evidence that Walker has actively claimed to have been a petty officer or to have been in Afghanistan. But we’ve equally seen no evidence that he has ever tried to correct any of the references to him that he knows as well as we do to be utter… er… barnacles.

Perhaps it’s time for him to at least set the record straight.

11 responses on “Time for UKIP’s ‘Afghan veteran’ Chairman to set the record straight?

  1. TM

    So, Blistering Barnacles Walker jay-Pee is a congenital liar ?

    And that is News ??

    Sure, you are having a slow day, I understand.

    More than a few of us had seen his own unequivocal 2017 statement that he had been a Petty Officer in the Navy. He made it both as a Leadership candidate in his own right in https://www.FACEBOOK.COM/BenWalker4Leader and then again as the candidate Party Chairman in the Gang of Four in a printed Press Release.

    Unfortunately, due to a wardrobe malfunction, he accidentally deleted the whole of that web page long ago.

    But tarry a while, he will blame the original “innocent” oversight on a “Tricksy”.

    Or say he meant he was a petty officer, not a Petty Officer.

    However, I cannot find anywhere him claiming to have actively served in the Afghan War. Only in the Afgan War. Was that the fictional one in Final Fantasy XI ?

    The Conservative Local Association in TIverton and Honiton, now renamed, wondered if Walker chickened out from attending the June 2022 Westminster hustings there because he feared he would face a question from the floor about his brave active service for Queen and Country in the Falkland Islands, which too he had mentioned in his Flights.

    The little problem with that is that the Falklands War ended in June 1982, and Walker was born in December 1978. Which must make him the bravest Stores Clerk in British Navel History.

    And, what about those DNO signatures?

    Walker is a Perfect Fit and Icon for what UKIP has become, with only his kind left in it.

  2. Side of Gart

    “Perhaps it’s time for him to at least set the record straight.”
    “straight”? Walker can’t possibly grasp the meaning of that word. It isn’t in his genes.
    Did you mean it’s time for BEN to set the record BENT? Walker walks only the bent and narrow.
    The acorn didn’t fall far that from the tree, did it? But there could be a sunny side to all these fresh revelations.

  3. Side of Gart

    After disgraced Tories Ben Walker, Neil Hamilton and their bootlickers sunk HMS UKIP came Tar Walker’s brainchild, UKIP’s brilliant strategy to Stop The Boats.
    It is a Floating Maritime Wall plonk in the middle of the world’s busiest shipping seaway.
    It isn’t only us who we were gobsmacked at the Official Policy’s stupidity!
    It read like Pirate Walker stole Simon Harris’ mock fundraiser idea.

  4. Side of Gart

    Found the links https://shorturl.at/bEma7 https://shorturl.at/u3gx2
    No one who’d ever been on a real ship upon the seas could think for a second this expensive floating Channel fiasco could survive even for one Watch. It wouldn’t need an invader with a Stanley or boltcutters to breach it. Have faith in Rough Waters, as Team Anne Marie said, before quitting UKIP in disgust.
    Harris had made it clear it was no more than a prank.
    All concluded the Pirate’s claim that he’d served in the Navy was yet another of his pork pies.

  5. Side of Gart

    But this article shows we were mistaken.
    Apols, Ben, for Rating you as thinner a short plank than you are!
    Though only a clue-less landlubber pen-pusher would believe this floating barrier could work.
    Or, could all the association UKIP now has with the cocaine and other hard drugs trade explain why this party policy is still, er, afloat, instead of being keelhauled, together with its originator? Walking the plank wouldn’t be enough.
    There are only floaters left in the shipwreck you made of our party.
    Will UKIP ever benefit from all those Big Fat Legacies, instead of only you?
    You spend a few morsels from what you embezzle on your ever-changing harem of inappropriate inadequate ignorant young females. You procure them by misusing your position and awarding them the highest orifices in UKIP. The poor things were suffering from mental illnesses and even suicidal ideations which get worse under your ‘care’, or should that be ‘abuse’?
    Stavroula Tomara and Treasure Okwu and Rebecca Jane and Joanna Grezsiak and Zayna Iman and others we won’t name yet got away.
    What a curse to your little’uns when they grow up and search the internet for dad.

  6. goliath-slayer

    You may wait for a month of Sundays before you get any response to ‘always-bullied’ Walker, as he was known in BS.
    ‘Bradley Stoke’.
    While I parted company with the party eight years ago, I still keep an eye on the dead donkey. Curiosity and for a laugh.
    I had a role in vetting its candidates for the ’15 General Election. A couple of incidents made me jumpy about passing Walker. Some things did not add up, he was ‘inventive’ and his reputation locally was, well, bad to very bad.
    Others such as RJ Ford, T McIntyre, L Phillips and even P Reeve were on to him.
    But in ’15 we wanted all constituencies to be represented and I was generous, Nigel knew him.
    Now I see my inclination to Block was ‘On Point’.
    I read since there’s the little matter of signature forgery (alleged).
    This Traveller (through life) earns the public loathing that so many feel for politicians. Scum rises to the top.
    Several of those I mentioned are likely to have kept the document you seek.

  7. goliath-slayer

    An afterthought anecdote.
    During vetting, when we didn’t have a clue that Walker’s armed forces record pudding, both in rank reached and non-combat admin-only role played, was over-egged, another confirrmed candidate caused embarrassment about military service.
    In Afghanistan!
    The lady who’d stood for us in ’10 and was back in the same target seat of Great Grimsby in ’15, explaining her poor attendance record at meetings by saying her son had been blown up in Afghanistan when serving there and she had to tend for him.
    Her son, however, had not been blown up, anywhere.
    The detail is prosaic.
    The coincidence sprang to mind, lying about the Afghan War and UKIP?

  8. Just A Pleb

    I talked to UKIP’s leaver a little before Anne Marie, and asked why its NEC continued to tolerate a blackguard who again and again embarrasses the party. It has no reputation left.

    Came the response -> can’t speak about honeymooner Lois and deputy, but by intuition about the rest, fear, stupidity, senility, being cut from similar cloth, for a few, believing it is impossible to kick him out. All but two hate him with a passion

    When I explained what “arschleckers” means, she laughed in agreement.

    Already, the official speech-writer in the shadows spins why they’ll have almost no candidates in July. The greedy rogue who nicks all the money won’t pay for even one deposit !

  9. Free Beer

    Heard from the cowardly little rat as yet?

    Surely this is a matter for the Royal Navy’s legal department too?

  10. Michael Guff VI

    @ Free Beer

    “Suspended chief constable who ‘wore bogus Falklands medal’ was only 15 when war started. Nick Adderley of Northants Police created a ‘military naval legend’ about himself which ‘wasn’t true’, a Misconduct Panel Tribunal is told. He is accused of exaggerating his rank, length of service and achievements in the Royal Navy. He may also be prosecuted over lying about his service record.” ~ https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/other/chief-constable-who-wore-bogus-falklands-medal-was-only-15-when-war-started/ar-BB1ncH7u

    So this Got Nicked was only seventeen when that war ended. But your man was more spectac’lar, for he was only three at the time.

    So if phewKIP needs a new Chairman due to the erstwhile one going missing, you now know who may be qualified to replace him after Nick too acquires a criminal record for dishonesty and scamming.

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