Socialist Worker

Millions more turn against Gordon Brown's war

As Gordon Brown's Afghan strategy lies in tatters, millions more people want the troops brought home now, writes Siân Ruddick

Issue No. 2177

Mourners grieve as another dead soldier is brought home from Afghanistan
 (Pic: http://www.guysmallman.com/» Guy Smallman )

Mourners grieve as another dead soldier is brought home from Afghanistan (Pic: » Guy Smallman)


Something has changed in British politics. Gordon Brown and Labour ministers now appear almost entirely isolated in their support for the brutal war in Afghanistan.

A growing number of military families are adding their voices to the anti-war movement and casualties are continuing to rise.

Brown’s strategy appears more threadbare than ever. Some 232 British soldiers have now been killed in Afghanistan, 95 this year alone. Public support for the war is at an all-time low.

The war has brought death, destruction and misery to Afghans and led to greater destabilisation in the region.

People are not convinced that the war is worth the blood of British forces or the Afghan people.

A recent BBC poll showed that 63 percent of British people want the troops brought home as quickly as possible.

And more and more people within the military are raising their doubts too. The chief of defence staff, Sir Jock Stirrup, described the situation in Afghanistan as “painful, slow and halting” last week.

Gordon Brown is desperately trying to argue that we need more troops and more years of bloody war to turn the situation around.

But since 2001 the war has lurched from one disaster to another. Meanwhile the stated aims of the war—to fight the “war on terror” and bring “democracy” to Afghanistan—have been lies.

On Tuesday of this week the bodies of five British soldiers killed by an Afghan police officer were flown home. The killings have added to the sense of chaos and lawlessness in Afghanistan.

Brown should listen to the majority of people in Britain and bring all the troops home now before more British and Afghan people die in this endless and futile conflict.


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