Freethinkeruk’s Weblog

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Archive for the category “War on Terror”

Red Poppy Remembrance Scam

7f7b62a06ac86f36924fd6fccd32ad38¬†Here we go again ‘wear your poppy with pride, remember, lest we forget’ and other such jingoistic entreaties. Out trot the masses to chuck a few coins in a tin, pin on the poppy replica and walk away thinking ‘I’ve done my bit’ when actually they are just another sheep running with the flock. The Remembrance Sunday do in London will be carried out with all solemnity and pageantry choreographed to perfection as it is every year and few will notice that it represents in microcosm the conducts of the wars they pretend to remember. The massed ranks of military personnel, past and present (& don’t miss the Chelsea Pensioners,”Arh bless ’em” brought in for a bit of colour and to tug at the patriotic heartstrings) who will stand for hours, perform their attentions and marching on cue whether they are freezing cold or soaking wet before finally getting get a mug of hot tea and making their journey back in the following hours. Meanwhile the royals, the politicians, the military top brass will arrive just in time to perform their wreath laying with sad solemn faces before walking stiffly away to their clubs, offices, pubs, for a double Scotch and a warm up to discuss the Sunday papers or, in the case of the royals to wave briefly at the adoring crowds from a balcony at Buckingham Palace.

So it is with all wars, rich men sending young men out to die protecting their wealth.

If we’re going to remember let us remember what we know from history, not the myth of our lads going bravely over the top for king and country but that the choice they had was go over when the whistle blew to take a chance on survival or the certainty that if they didn’t obey their own officers would shoot them there and then or have them taken away for a perfunctory court martial and shot at dawn by their mates who, if they didn’t, would be shot themselves. I would argue the really brave ones were those said they will not kill, the conscientious objectors, who suffered terribly for their stand. Let us recall too that the UK, France and the USA following the end of WW1 stole the resources of Germany, the iron, steel and coal leaving the German people destitute and starving that soon paved the way for the rise of Hitler, Nazism and WW2.

Coming more up to date let us remember the war against Iraq to seize back control of the oil fields to feed the greed of the richest in the West. Let us remember the war in Afghanistan yet another war for greed and a natural gas pipeline running from Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan¬†through Afghanistan to Pakistan and so bypassing Russia.¬† Can’t have a pipeline that the Taliban would be likely to blow up!

Let us also be aware that we are one of the evil nations of the World that supply weapons for others to kill millions just for the rich man’s profit.

Whenever there is a war there is no problem finding Billions of Pounds to fight it, there is no problem finding Billions to prepare for the next war, because there always is one, war is profitable, so there should be no problem in finding the money to care for those who are damaged in fighting those wars. The only problem is that the rich men, the faceless corporations who benefit, want the people to fight for them, to die for them on the cheap.

I remember but I don’t wear that damned poppy.

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Another Mistake in the Making?

Attacking Iraq (twice) was a mistake, attacking Libya was a mistake and gave rise to IS, ISIL, Daesh, whatever you want to call the power hungry, heinous, murdering hordes that are rampaging in the Middle East and giving rise to deluded religious fanatics in Europe and elsewhere.

The US and UK are engaged in air strikes against ISIL in Syria and Iraq in the US case and currently only in Iraq by the UK. The UK government is about to consider expanding strikes into Syria also. Another mistake? I think so. Attack by air can never defeat these thugs and more importantly thousands of innocent people will be killed in the process giving rise to even more hatred of the West and so becoming a recruiting sergeant for more terrorists. There is an argument that troops on the ground is the only way to defeat them but as we have seen in Iraq and Afghanistan, you can defeat a nation and impose a new government under the guise of a flawed democracy but you cannot impose peace. Thousands of bombs have been dropped in the last year and yet ISIL is unmoved and the lack of western triumphalist videos and news reports rather make the case for me.

So if air strikes can’t ‘win’ and using western troops on the ground is politically unacceptable to the electorate, as is the case at present, what should the West do? This is always the question asked but never the question “Should we do anything?” We first have to accept the fact that the West is Capitalist and Capitalism cares nothing about the suffering of people and only has an interest in money. Having accepted that point we can move on and see that the death and destruction wreaked upon the Middle East was not to free a people from Saddam Hussein or the Taliban but to ensure reliable cheap oil supplies from Iraq and the hope of building an oil and gas pipeline across Afghanistan. The result as we can see has been utter chaos; we may be getting cheap oil by way of repayment of Iraqi debt (incurred by the war) but the pipeline is still too risky a project and ISIL has been born and is a bigger threat to Capitalist hopes than before.

As I said and history has shown, peace in the region cannot be forced by western arms so just suppose we pulled right out and indeed did nothing. Middle Eastern nations are awash with wealth and stocked to the skies with armaments, supplied by us of course. Leave them all to get on with it and maybe, just maybe, the two wings of Islam might cease their squabbling and co-operate against the common threat of ISIL and with the excuse of Western infidels removed it would focus their minds. We may have to cut down a little on oil imports which is no bad thing but the Arab need and greed for cash would ensure it kept flowing. In addition by removing ourselves as a perceived threat to the region and also to Islam we would vastly lower or remove the risk of terrorist attacks in our own cities. We would of course, be morally bound not to supply arms to any other nation and perhaps there is the rub. Arms sales equals deaths equals Capitalist profits.

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