HUNDREDS OF local people and anti-war campaigners joined a “Bring the troops home by Christmas” march in Pollok, Glasgow, last Saturday. Rose Gentle, the mother of British soldier Gordon Gentle who was killed in Iraq, called the protest.
Rose Gentle told the rally at the end of the march, “Tony Blair sent my boy to be murdered. Sending the Black Watch to near Baghdad proves he’s a killer. The man’s disgusting. He should be out of parliament.”
Peter McGowan from Pollok told Socialist Worker, “The army is targeting low income areas and young kids looking for a way out of poverty. There are lots of boys from Pollok over in Iraq. We want to see them home.
“There is a deep feeling here that we want justice, and what we’re doing today is positive.”
Hannah Tallis said, “Two of my cousins are going to Iraq. They don’t want to be there. It’s time to bring the troops home.”
Former British soldier Barry Donnan told Socialist Worker, “I fought in the 1991 Gulf War. I have fought to get justice for sufferers of Gulf War Syndrome ever since. The government has ignored us.
“Our sons and daughters are being sacrificed for the people at the top.”
Ed Cherrie, a former soldier and member of UK Veterans and Families for Peace, travelled from Portsmouth to join the protest. He said, “This is about working class solidarity. All the stuff about ‘back our boys’ from the politicians makes me sick.
“Soldiers return and suffer from mental health problems and homelessness, and there is no safety net there for us.”
Other speakers at the rally included Reg Keys, the father of British soldier Thomas who was killed in Iraq, Billy Hayes, the general secretary of the CWU union, and Tommy Sheridan, Scottish Socialist Party MSP.
E-mail messages of support to firstname.lastname@example.org