The question arose from a discussion of whether (British) soldiers (getting ready to bomb Iranians..or not as per Tory govt policy) are heroes (or not). The idea is there being no forced conscription, you are by choice inflicting pain on innocent civilians in distant lands.
In effect the soldiers are being accused of being mercenaries without mercy (MWM).
This is a familiar leftist group-think (LGT) trope. In India the added implication would be that if you are an upper caste MWM you are a born oppressor and if you are lower caste, you are getting “sanskritized”. Indeed in the case of Britain, LGT would mark out for special contempt, Muslim MWMs who elect to fight on behalf of the “crusaders.” Perhaps such people should be called anti-heroes?
One distinctive feature of LGT spokesmen (like Mr Moussavi) is that they feel incumbent to speak on behalf of the whole world. This includes the 99% of the Iranian people who are getting oppressed by the mullahs.
(Here it may be noted that LGT-stamped oppression comes in many forms. One of the most heroic people in 20C was Norman Borlaugh who enabled the green revolution in SA. But to environmentalists he is not praiseworthy because he was using chemical fertilizers)
So who is a hero? From a LGT perspective, George Galloway who took money from Gadhafi/Iranians to speak out against his own country.* Tony Blair’s sister-in-law etc. But the gold medal surely goes to Brit-Paks who have chosen to fight in Afghanistan against the British army. They are taking money from Saudi/Gulf (in part derived from oil sales to the British Army) to serve the interest of ideologues who keep women enslaved (and shoot free women). But they are all heroes.
*Tony Blair took the money but did not speak out against his country. He is not counted.