Socialist Worker

'We must act to stop this sacrifice for oil'

FIVE FORMER members of the armed forces in Portsmouth have joined Rose Gentle’s campaign to bring the troops back from Iraq. They have written this open letter:

Issue No. 1918

ROSE GENTLE, the mother of 19 year old Gordon Gentle who was killed in Basra in June of this year, was pictured outside 10 Downing Street having just left a meeting with the deputy prime minister in disgust.

She and her 14 year old daughter Maxine are disgusted at the illegal war in Iraq.

They are disgusted by the fact that Gordon was the latest casualty due to the lack of basic training equipment.

They are disgusted that Tony Blair, whose own sons sleep safely at home each night, took so long to send a simple letter of condolence. And they were disgusted that Gordon was killed for someone else’s gain.

They aren’t the only ones. Reg Keys, whose son Thomas was killed in June 2003, has written, “Mr Blair owes me the life of one son, a debt he can’t repay.”

Margaret Evans, aunt of 20 year old Lee O’Callaghan, also killed in Basra, says, “My message to Tony Blair is that we should not be in Iraq. Why are we there? They should get the rest of the kids home.”

Christine Morgan, mother of Marc Ferns, 21, killed last month, asks, “How many more? It’s 64 just now. I do not want that number to get any higher. Get them home.”

As ex-servicemen we have “served our country”. We have seen conflict.

We have seen the effects of conflict and we totally agree with these distressed families.

Why should their sons have been sacrificed for George W Bush and his oil companies?

Their lives were squandered, and unless our troops are brought back now more lives will be wasted. More families will be grieving.

We are currently searching for similar UK-based ex-servicemen groups, and are planning to contact US and Australia based groups of veterans.

The actions of the Gentle family finally took us, as a group, from talking to “doing”.

We offer our support in their struggle.

As well as signing the Gentle family’s national petition calling for the return of British troops, we ask any ex or serving members of the armed services, and/or their families, who have had enough of the slaughter and would like more information about our campaign to get in touch.

  • Ed Cherrie, Lance Corporal, Royal Military Police

  • Richard Lines, Chief Petty Officer, Royal Navy

  • John Snape, Petty Officer Weapons Electrical Mechanic

  • Dunkan Tickner, cook, Royal Navy

  • Rob Waterfield, private

    Get in touch by phoning Dunkan on 07870 943 519 or e-mail pompxservices@yahoo.co.uk


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    News
    Sat 11 Sep 2004, 00:00 BST
    Issue No. 1918
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