'Let Them Eat War' is taken from the title of a song by Bad Religion.
The UK is a significant exporter of arms, especially to the Middle East, the arms industry being facilitated by the state (1,2).
In 2001 Britain, with USA, attacked Afghanistan.
In 2003 Britain, with other states, invaded Iraq.
In 2011 Britain, with other states, attacked Libya.
In 2015 Britain, with USA, trained Syrian anti-government forces (3).
In 2015-18 Britain continued to sell arms to Saudi Arabia despite the deaths of many civilians in Yemen due to the Saudi's bombing campaign (4).
British culture has militarism entwined in it; through state rituals and commemorations, through entertainment, through education.
The British state is active in purveying, prosecuting and portraying war, the latter as a means of manipulating it's domestic population via civil religion and the media.
This assemblage seeks to convey the above, the black fluid in the beaker acting as a reminder of the role of oil in recent military action.
When exhibited it would be interesting to have a reserve of soldiers so that the viewer can interact with the piece-either adding or subtracting a soldier depending on their position vis-à-vis Britain's military involvement in the world.
(1) Ross, A. (2016) 'UK government works 'hand in glove' with arms firms, say campaigners' (The Guardian)
(2) 'UKTI: Armed and Dangerous' (CAAT)
(3) Blair, D. (2015) 'Britain sends 85 troops to train Syria rebels.' (Daily Telegraph)
(4) Dearden, L. (2016) 'Britain to review arms sales to Saudi Arabia after military blames ‘wrong information’ for funeral air strike. (The Independent)