Sunday, March 10, 2013

Let's start a war: ten years on


Hard to believe that it's ten years since 100 000 took to the streets in Glasgow to protest, outside London Labour's conference, at Tony Blair's plans to invade Iraq with his right-wing Christian buddy, George W Bush. Labour tried at first to thwart plans for the demonstration and, when that failed, made sure that precious Tony was nowhere near events.

I never actually made it. I was part of some 2000 protesters left stranded on Edinburgh Waverley's concourse as trains from the capital to Glasgow mysteriously didn't materialise. Point made anyway, I guess.

Around a million marched in London Labour's spiritual home to voice their opposition to Labour's plans for an illegal war. Millions more marched in other European capitals.

Ten years later and we know all about the lies and propaganda. This time though, the propaganda is being aimed at Scotland's efforts to gain independence. Devolution proved no barrier to Scotland and her armed-forces being involved in another illegal war. More bizarrely, it seems many in the so-called 'Labour movement' and most in the so-called 'Labour Party' still want to wrap themselves in the Union Jack and hanker for Britain to rule the waives and retain her status as a 'major' world power.

Funny how the lines between Labour, Tory, UKIP, Ulster Unionists and the BNP become even more blurred when it comes to Britain's place in the world and more pertinently, her role as apprentice world-polisman - the US calls the shots as always. Previous objections to and principled stances against imperialism, xenophobia and warmongering are conveniently forgotten. The nation comes first, right or wrong - though it's 'wrong' to be 'nationalist' if you favour Scotland taking her place alongside other small nations who harbour little or no imperialist ambitions.

Fighting poverty, either home or abroad, comes somewhere down the list of priorities.

Tony Blair's reputation as a war criminal is one that should follow him, and Labour, wherever they go to seek votes. That goes for Labour in their own right or as a part of the Better Together anti-independence front with right-wing British Nationalists.

It's also ten years since Gay Bar. Enjoy.