Socialist Worker

Meetings renew the movement in Scotland

by Josh Brown, Aberdeen Stop the War Coalition
Issue No. 1976

Over 80 people attended the first ever Military Families Against the War (MFAW) public meetings in Aberdeen and Inverness last week.

The meetings took place as nearly 1,000 soldiers from the region were being sent to Iraq as part of the Highlanders and the Dragoon Guards.

There were enthusiastic discussions as people debated how to increase the participation of military families in their area and how to continue to build and strengthen the anti-war movement.

Speakers reflected on the growing breadth and international nature of the movement. MFAW letters and petitions addressed to soldiers were taken away to be circulated.

Former soldiers said that there is not adequate support and counselling provided to help soldiers cope with post traumatic stress and the difficulties of reintegrating into society.

People were revitalised with energy and confidence by the idea of reaching out to military families.

Both meetings agreed to hold a vigil at 5.30pm the day after the hundredth British soldier is killed and to encourage as many local groups as possible to organise delegates to attend the International Peace Conference.

Yvonne Stewart, whose 19 year old son is currently in Basra, said, “I spoke to my son on the phone after the meeting in Aberdeen and I told him, Rose Gentle is not going to stop fighting until you are all brought home... I support Rose 100 percent. Something has to be done. We want our boys brought home before any more are killed.”

Bring the troops home protest, 12 noon, Saturday 12 November, Parliament Square, High Street, Edinburgh. Called by Edinburgh Stop the War Coalition

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