06 May 2010

Brit elections: the elephant in the room

I watched a couple of the televised debates between the three front-runners in the UK election, and I've read several British blog posts about the hustings in various constituencies, and one thing that has struck me is that they all seem to be silent about the elephant in the room -- that the Labour Party, since it came to power in 1997, has led Britain into not one, but three imperialist wars.

Nick Clegg of the Liberal Democrats did, to his credit, make a passing reference to the fact that the war in Iraq was illegal, but he did not follow it up, and Gordon Brown and David Cameron did not respond to it.

As an Australian journalist notes, t r u t h o u t | Voting for War. Take Your Pick:
All three party leaders are warmongers. Nick Clegg the Liberal Democrats leader and darling of former Blair lovers says that as prime minister he will 'participate' in another invasion of a 'failed state' provided there is 'the right equipment the right resources.' His one condition is the standard genuflection toward a military now scandalized by a colonial cruelty of which the Baha Mousa case is but one of many.

For Clegg as for Gordon Brown and David Cameron the horrific weapons used by British forces such as clusters, depleted uranium and the Hellfire missile which sucks the air out of its victims lungs do not exist. The limbs of children in trees do not exist. This year alone Britain will spend £4 billion on the war in Afghanistan and that is what Brown and Cameron almost certainly intend to cut from the National Health Service.

One other thing that all three front-ronners studiously avoided mentioning, and none of the public questions mentioned either, was the Labour Party's attempts to destroy civil liberties and turn Britain into a fascist police state. Both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown tried to introduce 90-day detention without trial.

In the 1960s, when South Africa introduced 90-day detention, Harold Wilson's Labour Party imposed military sanctions, and cancelled an order for Buccaneer aircraft destined for the South African Air Force. Now the British media laud Blair's and Brown's attempts to turn Britain into a Vorsterstan as "taking the moral high ground".

My, how the mighty have fallen!


Shane said...

It is amazing how effectively the people have been brainwashed. It seems as if they don't even connect the warmongering actions of their government to reality. I watched the debates as well and was pleased that Clegg at least brought up the illegal war in Iraq and that his party had voted against it but it barely even registered. The selling point seemed to be ensuring the troops are better equipped to go around the world killing brown people from countries we no longer like.

James Higham said...

1997, Steve.

Steve Hayes said...

Thanks James, fixed a couple of other typos too.

Casper said...

The difficulty in the 2005 election the war was a big plank of the LD election strategy and this failed to make a significant dent in the political make-up of the UK.

I certainly regret the the war has not played a more significant part, particularly Iraq, but think the wars as across the board 'imperialist' is an overstatement.

The LD's are the only main party who can raise it since the other 2 have acted in unison in regard to the latter two conflicts.


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