Tony Blair this week attempted to head off yet another weekend of anti-war protest in Britain by announcing 'a drawdown' of troops from Iraq. Although the troops are retreating into a couple of strongholds around Basra, and 3,000 soldiers will be leaving Iraq, they will probably not be on R&R for long - just long enough for the trauma to creep in . . .
Already, Friday 22nd Febuary, there has been announcement of another 1,000 British troops being sent to Afghanistan, and of course, there is grave suspicion that the lunatic Bush and his puppet-master Cheney have already decided to 'smite' Iran for being cheeky enough to develop a nuclear industry.
The spread of nuclear fuel inevitably leads to weaponry, so the theory goes - and no-one should know this better than the British Government and our 'allies', the USA, who have both indulged in this risky and contagious practice for 60 years.
One of their main benificiaries of course, was Israel; who have probably done more to persuade the Iranians that this is the way to proceed than anyone else. Jericho II missiles and a nuclear-armed submarine fleet have a way of making other people nervous . . .
So we are stuck in Afghanistan for the duration, with the US helicopters being brought down at an increasing rate by people who can disappear into the crowds or the shadows of a mountain - the reason that however many men the Soviets poured into the country, they were never safe enough outside of their bases to 'occupy' the country. Why?
The most insulting piece of war propaganda this week was the news that the not-too-bright and banal 'Prince' Harry Windsor is being sent to Iraq- a man who spends £11,000 on a round of cocktails for him and his chinless 'mates', with £800 on 'bar snacks' - swan-burger, anyone? (Doesn't that sicken anyone, who has to work for a pittance, 40 hours a week?).
As proof of how unhealthy this cod-medieval caste system really is; a charade for tourists, oligarchs and the ever-so-humble 'subjects'; a young man who was cursed with being born into the country's most dysfunctional family and losing his mother before he was a teenager, is now being used to advertise the 'duty' of serving in an illegal, aggressive war, occupying a foreign land.
No wonder he seems to have a death-wish, with such an empty life; going off to a bad war, taking up the time of a number of highly trained SAS men, who have to make sure he doesn't get zapped - or even worse, kidnapped.
Although he is probably unconscious of the way that his political masters will be using him to encourage the next wave of willing victims to the quagmire. Kids from no-hope estates and with a life of shelf-filling or call-centres, persuaded that it might be a good alternative; risking being blown to bits, or left as a vegetable and abandoned to their fate once the state has used them and discarded them.
No SAS watching out for them, the cannon-fodder for the Yankee Corporate Empire.
Armies of nation-states are meant to be there to protect the people, aid them in disasters, and preserve the territorial integrity of the state. Not be used as the boot-boys of venture-capitalist corporations, extending their invisible Empires and not even paying the taxes to the State to finance these imperial exploits.
Tragedy and farce woven together, presented as something honourable . . .
Blair has also given his unconditional support to the renewal of the Trident system, (£20 billion, and going up by the minute, no doubt), a cash-cow for 'defence-technology' contractors, and a way to inexorably tie Britain into the US military system and nuclear 'defence' shield. So much for the non-proliferation treaties. . .
It has also been announced today that the British Government are 'considering' offering the Bush regime final proof that we, along with the Czech Republic and Poland are truly the USA's European colonies, by becoming part of the American missile defence shield.
The Russian Foreign Minister has already made it clear that this marks out these countries as targets in any future conflict - which must be obvious to anyone - but of course, a US Administration would not be foolish enough to make war on anyone their size - would they?
Anyway, a few reasons to get along to your nearest demonstration, taking place YESTERDAY !!!!!
(and there's always Faslane if you missed that one . . .)