Saturday, December 13, 2008

Brown's Sickening 'Taste For War'

The sickening spectacle of Brown paying tribute to brave soldiers killed in action while presiding over an unwinnable war is difficult to stomach. Using the lame excuse of a war on terror, the government is spinning its way out of the Iraq frying-pan into the Afghanistan fire.

As Brown prepares to make his glorious announcement of troop withdrawals from Iraq as part of his election campaign, he's been forced to resurrect the once discredited 'war on terror' excuse for sending scores of soldiers to their deaths in what is now the new Vietnam.

With blood on his hands, a change in political mood and waning public support, Brown was forced to think up another excuse as he paid tribute to the four Royal Marines killed in this hugely expensive and totally pointless war. 

Trying to rationalise why UK troops will continue to be sent to the killing fields, he said the men "died in the front line of terror" and "would never be forgotten" for what they had achieved on behalf of Britain. 

Playing the "terror" card and arguing that "we are safer in Britain" because of the work they do there is a nonsense. The threat from fundemental Islamic terrorism is worldwide. Tribal Afghans, Tailban or not, are not preparing to invade this country. 

Using the bogyman of the Tailban, he told troops they were "operating as the front line against them, making sure that they cannot make advances, holding them in, and holding al-Qaeda in as well."

It is no coincidence that Brown is in Afghanistan with a weak case for keeping troops there and increasing numbers, while preparations are being made for a withdrawal from Iraq. 

Only history will explain why the legacy of this Bush-Blair war has been allowed to escalate, going down as one of the most expensive and politically disastrous follies of recent decades with the most outrageous loss of life and human suffering.

Now, as the number of UK military personnel kiled in Afghanistan since 2001 has risen to 132, we are in danger of reporting death by numbers. A tally of the dead, followed by a heartfelt tribute and then forgotten. 

The Orange Party has warned on numerous occasions the parallels with Vietnam are deeply disturbing. 

As in Vietnam, it is the elite troops which will bear the brunt of casualties as they operate with scant cover, well outside the heavily fortified bases, making them easy targets to be picked off. Deaths in the elite 45 Commando regiment are just the latest example of this. 

The Orange Party is proud to be part of the band of journalists like seasoned Sunday Times corespondent Christina Lamb and political journalist Simon Jerkins, making a powerful case for troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, along with the growing number of like-minded politicians.

But sending troops to Afghanistan will continue to escalate, until Brown and his ministers stop copying Blair and his infamous "taste for war". 

The Orange Party is equally proud of our armed forces. But the waste of human life in this "bloody, hopeless, mad war" is shameful. 

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