UK: Action stations over Afghanistan


[Is it just me or do you find the following quote from this newsletter offensive and opportunist?]

“- Stop the War groups will be organising protests and vigils around the country on the tragic day when the hundredth British soldier this year dies. The figure now stands at 95.”

[I don’t normally comment like this but I feel so strongly about this as I think this is basically dishonest politics. Opinions anyone? WB]

The war effort in Afghanistan is starting to fall apart at the seams. We will shortly reach the hundredth British soldier’s death this year, and there is talk in military circles of withdrawing British troops from the frontline.

There is growing opposition amongst MPs as well as unease amongst senior military figures. The Independent on Sunday called for the end of the war on its front page yesterday and other papers are becoming very critical of the war.

Most important of all, 73% of the population now believe the troops should be brought home soon and there is growing opposition to the war amongst the troops. Now is the time to step up the pressure on government to bring the troops home.


-We have produced a ‘Bring the Troops Home’ postcard designed to send to your local MP. It is available from the office. Please phone if you want us to send you some.

– Stop the War groups will be organising protests and vigils around the country on the tragic day when the hundredth British soldier this year dies. The figure now stands at 95. Please contact your local Stop the War group for details. You can find the contact details for the groups on the website.

-On December 21st, members of soldiers, ex-soldiers and military families will be taking our Bring the Troops Home Petition to Gordon Brown in Downing Street. More than 15,000 have already signed, but we want to get many more signatures before December 21st.

You can sign online at, but we are also asking everyone to download a hard copy of the petition, get your colleagues and friends to sign and return to the office.

Also mark down the date December 21st, and get ready to come down and support the families at Downing Street that evening.

SPECIAL LONDON ACTIVIST MEETING ON AFGHANISTAN We have called an urgent activist meeting to discuss thecrisis and the campaign tomorrow night (Tuesday 10th November). We are asking as many of our supporters as possible to attend.


Tel: 020 7801 2768

My Cancer: The Waiting Game by Sarah Meyer – Index Research

9 November, 2009 — Index Research

The language applied to cancer sounds like Obama’s wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. We hear about “battles” – “Fighting the Enemy” and the “War on Cancer.” Constructively discussing the actual process of life and death can often be a no-go zone. Even the word ‘death’ is replaced by the awful term, “passing away.”

I am almost 73 now, and I am ready for death. The suffering of peoples on our planet is a burden for me. I have tried for much of my life to be useful, but of course one cannot ‘cure’ this central crux of life itself.

Some people emailed that they were “shocked” at my cancer news. Why is this? Cancer is a big reality in our times. 1 in 3 people die of cancer in the UK.

On the Ruins of the Berlin Wall: From the Past to the Future By Dmitriy BAKLIN

8 November, 2009 — Strategic Culture Foundation

Germany is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, an event of enduring significance which transformed not only the German mentality but also the post-war European security system and the entire global architecture.

The operation aimed at constructing the Berlin Wall, code-named Chinese Wall II, was carefully planned and executed with remarkable promptness, and West Berlin found itself encircled by the 202-km concrete structure. Since August 13, 1961 the Wall – perhaps the best-known architectural piece of the Cold War epoch – became the symbol of the partitioned city for years.

In terms of the purpose of its existence the Berlin Wall was a complete analog of the Great Chinese Wall whose construction began in the III century BC (475-221). The Chinese Wall was meant to fortify the frontiers of the Chinese civilization and to help unite the enormous Empire. The second wall – described as the anti-fascist defensive structure at the interface of socialism and capitalism in the DDR – embodied for nearly three decades the frontier of the socialist world and separated the two worlds and socioeconomic systems. In this quality, the Berlin Wall turned into a symbol of stability sustained by confrontation in the era marked with the dormant conflict of the Western and the Eastern blocs.

US president J. Kennedy said about the Wall quite philosophically that the solution, however disturbing, was still better than a war, and at that time almost anybody could subscribe to the point of view. Having divided the world, the two socioeconomic systems with their blocs and the Wall between them had to find a way to coexist.

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No worries at Iran uranium site: IAEA chief

6 November, 2009 — By Staff Write

Mohamed-ElBaradei.jpgVienna (AFP) — UN experts found ‘nothing to be worried about’ during their first inspection of a previously secret uranium enrichment site in Iran, UN atomic watchdog chief Mohamed ElBaradei said Thursday.

In an interview with the New York Times, International Atomic Energy Agency chief ElBaradei said inspectors had found ‘nothing to be worried about’ at the site, which is being built inside a mountain near the Shiite holy city of Qom.

‘The idea was to use it as a bunker under the mountain to protect things. It’s a hole in a mountain,’ ElBaradei told the newspaper.

A team of four IAEA inspectors flew to Iran on October 25 for a first visit of the site, a month after the revelation of its existence had triggered widespread outrage in the West, which suspects Iran is enriching uranium with an ultimate goal of using it to make atomic weapons.

Tehran strongly denies the charge.

Iran has already been enriching uranium — in defiance of three sets of UN sanctions — for several years at another plant in the central city of Natanz.

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Global Research: Global Finance and the Criminalization of War Selected Articles 2-8 November, 2009

8 November, 2009 — Global Research

Crisis of America’s Healthcare System
– by John Kozy – 2009-11-08

Breaking The Australian Silence
– by John Pilger – 2009-11-08

How to End Wars
– by David Swanson – 2009-11-08

U.S. State Department: Israel is not a tolerant society
– by Akiva Eldar – 2009-11-08

Republic of Fools: The Evil Empire
– by Pail Craig Roberts – 2009-11-08

Rising Military Expenditure: The Coming U.S. Budget Attack
– by Shamus Cooke – 2009-11-08

Spying on Americans: Obama Endorses Bush Era Warrantless Wiretapping
– by Tom Burghardt – 2009-11-07

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MidEast Dispatches: Where Will They Get the Troops? Preparing Undeployables for the Afghan Front

8 November, 2009

In a grim November 3rd Wall Street Journal piece (buried inside the paper), Yochi Dreazen reported record suicide rates for a stressed-out U.S. Army. Sixteen soldiers killed themselves in October alone, 134 so far this year, essentially ensuring that last year’s “record” of 140 suicides will be broken. This represents a startling 37% jump in suicides since 2006 and, for the first time, puts the suicide rate in the Army above that of the general U.S. population.

After eight years of two major counterinsurgency wars (and various minor encounters in what used to be called the Global War on Terror), with many soldiers experiencing multiple tours of duty, with approximately 120,000 U.S. troops still in Iraq and almost 70,000 in Afghanistan, with the Afghan War clearly in an escalatory phase, commanders in the field calling for 40,000-80,000 more American troops, and base construction on the rise, the military’s internal problems are clearly escalating as well.

As Dahr Jamail, author of The Will to Resist: Soldiers Who Refuse to Fight in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Sarah Lazare report, under these circumstances, the Army is digging deep for deployable troops; in fact, it’s dipping into a pool of soldiers who have already been damaged or even broken by their experiences in our war zones — and that’s just to meet present deployment needs. Perhaps it’s not surprising then that Dreazen included this striking passage in his report: “At a White House meeting Friday, the Joint Chiefs of Staff urged President Barack Obama to send fresh troops to Afghanistan only if they have spent at least a year in the U.S. since their last overseas tour, according to people familiar with the matter. If Mr. Obama agreed to that condition, many potential Afghanistan reinforcements wouldn’t be available until next summer at the earliest.”

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