Archive for February, 2011

Supporting soldiers: 19 February

February 19, 2011

A round robin email shows photos of American troops in Afghanistan and the extremely uncomfortable conditions they have to live in. Readers are urged to remember that these soldiers are fighting for our freedom, to pay tribute to their fallen comrades, to honour the pride they have in serving our country. We are urged to support them, in word and finance, and what they are doing.

Reading this, my heart flared. These poor soldiers are not defending my freedom – they are endangering my freedom and yours. I will not pay literal tribute – a phrase straight out of Roman pagan religion – to any humans, dead or alive. I bow the knee to Jesus. Their pride in serving their country has been cynically manipulated by war-mongering, oil-hungry, leaders in commerce and politics.

There are two ways of ‘supporting’ soldiers in Afghanistan. One is to support them and what they are doing. This is what this email does. The other is to support them by campaigning to get them out of there now.

Why are the soldiers in Afghanistan? Because America wanted revenge for 9/11 and our leaders were scared by 9/11. Because the West cannot cope with nations who oppose them vehemently and threaten their economic interests. British soldiers are in Afghanistan now for much the same reason as they were there years ago as part of the British Empire – to defend our insistence that Britannia has to rule the waves and the lands.

What is the effect of British soldiers in Afghanistan? Terrorists are more motivated to hit back at us. We need far more security at our ports and airports than any other country in Europe. Money that should be spent on paying nurses and teachers goes on soldiers. Cuts in all non-military government spending are harsher and deeper than they need to be.

Don’t support what the soldiers are doing in Afghanistan, even if this makes them feel bad about sacrificing their comfort and lives for the wrong cause. They are better disillusioned and alive than conned and dead or maimed.

Support the soldiers by campaigning to take them out of Afghanistan now, even if this means that we recognise failure and stupidity, maybe even fault. Let’s get the soldiers out of danger and into their own beds. And let’s not replace them with ‘military consultants’ as is planned at present.

What can you do? Pass this email on. Consider supporting www.stopwar.org.uk or a local group.

Roger Harper

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