Afghanistan: Blood on Labour's Hands #2

Monday, 13 July 2009

We all know what is happening, what has been happening for some time. In Afghanistan and Iraq, troops have been sent out to do the government’s dirty work – although Afghanistan arguably has (or had) a worthwhile war aim despite all the spin and lies surrounding both campaigns.

In both theatres, war planning was largely kept under wraps and procurement postponed until the last possible minute, resulting in enormous supply problems. Even chemical warfare equipment was under-supplied –with WMD supposedly capable of use in 45 minutes. Body armour, 5.56mm rifle ammunition (bought from India), chemical warfare suits – all were in short supply, leading in some cases to loss of life.

In many other instances, equipment was not up to the job. Snatch Land Rovers, Viking snowmobile(!) personnel carriers, AS-90 mobile artillery without sand filters, Warrior Armoured Fighting Vehicles without air conditioning, chronic battery problems with the Bowman radio system, individual weapons (L85-A1 “SA80” rifle system) eventually upgraded because of chronic problems (now A2 variant), obsolete body armour, Hercules without equipment suppressive foam leading to the loss of lives, clapped out Nimrods unfit to fly leading to the loss of lives…the list is long indeed.

Blood on Their Hands

Tony Blair. Sent troops out to Iraq and Afghanistan to pay the “blood price”. Promised whatever equipment would be necessary to do the job. A bare-faced lie.

Gordon Brown. The Treasury has fought tooth and nail to avoid spending the money required in Afghanistan. The Treasury has driven round after round of cuts.

Geoff Hoon. Known as “that C*nt Hoon” or “TCH” by everyone in uniform, bent over backwards to let the Treasury have their way, lied at every opportunity. Fell asleep during a brief on IEDs in Iraq.

John Reid. See “Hoon” above. Expressed the grandiose hope that troops would leave without a “shot being fired” and bristled when asked to compare the “rag bag fascists” in Iraq and Afghanistan to the “national liberation struggle of the Vietnamese people”.

Des Browne. See “Hoon” and “Reid” above. Picked because he would do as he was told. Eventually had the sense to get out of the job.

John Hutton. See “Browne” above. Had the sense to get out of the job.

Bob Ainsworth. See “Hoon”, “Reid”, “Browne” above.

Chris Mullin. Lickspittle apologist and traitor.

David Crausby. Lickspittle apologist and traitor.

Tom Watson. Lickspittle apologist and traitor.

Shortages, inadequacies and cutbacks are continuing to this very moment. Everyone knows what is happening – commanders are told via the media they will have everything they ask for, but the message in private is not to ask for it as they won’t get it. Commanders are gagged from speaking out and have to brief anonymously. They could resign but then someone else would be appointed and there would be an impact on morale. This hasn’t stopped some from resigning – Lt Col Tootal of the Parachute Regiment, for one. But still, the government will not listen.

Ministers and Labour MPs are conspiring to this very moment to maintain equipment shortages and the pretence that all needs are being met. Brown claims a 60% increase in helicopters since 2006. Well, the troop numbers have increased by over 100% so that is an equivalent net 40% decrease in the number of helicopters. Another lie! Overall, defence spending has fallen in real terms - as a percentage of GDP - to a mere 2.5% compared with 4.4% some twenty years ago. The government claims the Treasury is picking up the costs of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan but this is clawed back from the defence budget leading to further cuts. All of this is the result of ministerial connivance, backbench supinity and the gagging of the military. By placing loyalty to political party above loyalty to the troops, they are traitors to the Armed Forces, to their relatives and to this country and should be treated as such.

Traitorous scum - they should be put up against a wall and shot. Blood on their hands.



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