Are Buddhists “Insurgents” Too?

Who's killing who?

American forces in Afghanistan say more than a dozen insurgents have been killed in a joint US-Afghan operation in the southern province of Uruzgan.
The forces say they were returning fire after coming under ambush.

(Source: BBC News)

Let’s change this around:

Replace “US” with “China”

Replace “insurgents” with “Buddhist monks”

There… now will it get similar TV coverage? Endless hand-wringing and condemnation from the bourgeois commentators?

No… thought not.

It seems it’s okay to kill some people who are protesting against invasion and occupation of their country by an evil superpower as long as they’re Iraqis.

So remember: if you’re an Iraqi trying to get rid of the the US invaders, you’re an “insurgent,” a terrorist, probably backed by some international terror organisation. The US can kill scores of you every day and it won’t ever be on the TV.

If you’re a Tibetan trying to get rid of the vicious Chinese invaders, you’re a freedom fighter and a shining example of democracy in action. The TV news will pore endlessly over the details of your heroic struggle against the evil invaders.

Here endeth the lesson…

World Against War Demo

World Against War London Demo
Click the pic for a gallery of shots I took yesterday!

Wow. What an amazing demo. I’m guessing that I marched alongside 40 – 50,000 other people yesterday, maybe more. The police say 10,000 so, if you go by their usual lying rate, 50k sounds about right. This was part of the World Against War international protest:

World Against War International Protests

Those were the protests (so far, they carry on till the 22nd). Yep, another enormous worldwide day of protest and zero coverage on the telly. Funny that, innit?

This is the route we marched in London:

Route of the demo

Now, if it had only been 10,000, as the coppers are saying, could we really have marched across Westminster Bridge, around to Lambeth Bridge and then looked back to see marchers still on the first bridge?

And when the rally assembled in Parliament Square, marchers kept arriving for at least an hour. But, of course, you didn’t see anything about that on the telly either.

Perhaps if we’d all dressed up as Teletubbies or something, the criminally complicit British mass media might have reported another huge antiwar protest? Still, I’m sure a footballer fell over somewhere or some other crucially important news was going on…

The march atmosphere was completely peaceful and positive. This was, in every sense, a peace march. And the rally at Parliament Square was similarly focussed and passionate. The speakers were all moving but, for me, ex-SAS soldier Ben Griffin spoke the most eloquently:

“As of 1940hrs 29/02/08 I have been placed under an injunction preventing me from speaking publicly and publishing material gained as a result of my service in UKSF (SAS).

I will be continuing to collect evidence and opinion on British Involvement in extraordinary rendition, torture, secret detentions, extra judicial detention, use of evidence gained through torture, breaches of the Geneva Conventions, breaches of International Law and failure to abide by our obligations as per UN Convention Against Torture.

I am carrying on regardless.”
(Ben Griffin, source Stop The War)

Think of the sacrifices a soldier like Griffin has had to make to do the right thing. He’s a true British hero. But I doubt he’ll be getting any medals.

Every day, the news from Iraq grows worse and despite the bleatings of war criminals like Bush, Blair and now Brown, we know the truth. As the Red Cross states, in a report issued just today:

Millions of Iraqis have little or no access to clean water, sanitation and healthcare, five years after the US-led invasion, according to the Red Cross.

The Swiss-based agency says Iraq’s humanitarian situation is “among the most critical in the world”.

It warned that despite better security in some areas, millions had been left essentially to fend for themselves.

Some families spend a third of their average monthly wage of $150 (£75) just buying clean water, the report found.
(Source: BBC News)

Of course, that report will be dismissed like every other report pointing out the horror of Iraq. American neocons and British New Labour toads will just ignore the bloodbath. The bloodbath they engineered.

But the truth of the disaster in Iraq, a disaster which the ordinary, peaceful people of the world abhor, continues to unfold. That’s why, in so many countries around the world, we keep marching for peace and freedom.

We’re not going away. We won’t give up.

World Against War

World Against War

On his recent trip to the Middle East, George Bush said: “Iraq is now a different place. Levels of violence are significantly reduced. Hope is returning to Baghdad.”

Try telling that to residents of the southern outskirts of Baghdad, whose homes were flattened on January 10, when US bombers unleashed 40,000 pounds of explosives in the biggest aerial attack since March 2003, killing or injuring dozens of civilians, many of them women, children and the elderly.

Try telling it to the thousands of Iraqis who were the victims of US bombing raids in 2007, which quadrupled compared to 2006, rising from four attacks a week to four attacks a day. It’s the same story in Afghanistan, where the Washington Post reported recently the number of air strikes doubled in 2007 to a staggering 3,572 — an average of close to 10 per day. In 2005, by comparison, there were around 200 air strikes.
(Source: Stop The War)

Think of the human cost in Iraq. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis dead, probably a million if we were actually counting accurately. Refugees, orphans, chaos and suffering everywhere.

Five years on and this is our legacy.

Now think that we, the British taxpayer, funded this misery. Think of the thousands of millions of pounds we’ve spent on murdering hundreds of thousands of innocent people. We’ve done that, we’ve paid for that.

What kind of fucked-up world do we live in that we’re expected to run in charity events to raise money for schools and hospitals but the money for war, the funds for slaughter never dry up? Why are our taxes given to guns and bombs but Sport Relief is the only way to fund essential services?

Why is there always money for war?

This Saturday, you can stand up and make your voice heard. You can shout that you do not wish to take part in the slaughter, that this war is not carried out in your name, with your approval. You can join the millions of people around the world who all want peace.

We have to march, to shout, on this unhappiest of anniversaries. We have to show our government of war criminals, liars and scoundrels that we want our troops out of Iraq and we will not tolerate an invasion of Iran.

It doesn’t matter if you’ve been on every demo or you’ve never marched in your life: this is what you have to do to stop our government dragging us into further US-sponsored invasions.

If nothing else, march for selfish reasons: do you want to end up living in the police state our government is assembling, where we’re DNA-tagged and ID-carded, our every freedom removed to protect us in the phoney War On Terror?

March for yourself, for your own liberty. March to end the occupation of Iraq. March to prevent our future involvement in the USA’s insane warmongering.

This Saturday, the world will unite in a global demonstration of our desire for peace and freedom.

See you there?

Who’s Doing The Killing In Iraq?

An Iraq war veteran, due to fight in Afghanistan, has been fined for shouting racist abuse.
Thomas McFarlane, 20, from Grangemouth, boasted that he was “going to kill Pakis” just weeks before his next tour of duty.
(Source: BBC News)

Fine, upstanding soliders like this charmer.

And they wonder why people don’t respect people in British uniforms any more?

Psychologist Refuses To Participate In US Torture

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After two years of working to reform the position of the American Psychological Association, which supports psychologist participation in the interrogations of detainees at Guantanamo, CIA “black site” prisons, and elsewhere, I realized that I had been pursuing a utopian objective. On January 27th, I penned my resignation to APA. The rationale for my choice is outlined in the resignation letter, which is reproduced here.

–Jeffrey S. Kaye, Ph.D
(Source: AlterNet)

Once upon a time, Dr. Mengele had the same choice to make. Jeffrey Kaye has chosen not to follow in his footsteps.

What will other American psychologists involved in war crimes and torture decide?

Please read his letter of resignation, reproduced in full at the above link.

US Kills Yet More Civilians

US Kills More Iraqis

The US military in Iraq says American and Iraqi forces killed nine suspected al-Qaeda fighters in a raid near Talafar in Ninewa province last Sunday.
In another operation, US soldiers shot and killed a man who was said to have drawn a pistol and then tried to detonate an explosives vest.
(Source: BBC News)

Let’s decode this US propaganda…

The US murdered nine “suspected” al-Qaeda fighters from a “suspected” militant camp and then another Iraqi who, they claim, pulled a gun.

Now, of course, the US military might be telling the truth… But why should we believe them when they’ve lied so many times before? Like here and here and here.

So, I think it’s fair to say that the US illegal occupation of Iraq is now notorious for murdering innocent Iraqis and framing them after the fact as militants or “insurgents.”

I don’t know what happened in this case but, unlike the BBC, I’m not going to swallow the US version of events without even a raised eyebrow. Or a link to previous atrocities carried out by US forces.

All we can say is that the US has killed yet more Iraqis in its grand liberation of Iraq. Well done, US of A! Iraq will soon be a gleaming field of whitened skeletons, all celebrating their liberation from Saddam!