Sunday, March 20, 2011

'Britain seeking to launch new war'

Source: Press TV

The UK government has been accused of launching a new war in North Africa despite failing to secure Iraq and Afghanistan, where Britain participated in their occupation.

The British-based Stop the War Coalition condemned Britain and its allies for launching a "new war" after the "bloody and failing" occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan.

"Air attacks on Libya will not help end the civil war but will escalate it and could be the prelude to a much wider war,” said a spokesman for the campaign.

“They will not help bring the downfall of Qaddafi. He is already portraying the UN's decision as an act of western colonization and himself as the defender of Libyan sovereignty. Air strikes by the US and Britain will strengthen, not weaken, his position," he added.

"History shows us that the consequences of western intervention are almost always disastrous and not in the interests of those it claims to support.”

Andrew Murray, national chair of the coalition, wrote that the decision to "attack Libya and impose regime change" was "instigated by the despots of the Arab League, desperate to secure deeper western involvement in the region to save them from their own peoples".

Labour MPs Jeremy Corbyn, John McDonnell and Paul Flynn and the Green Party's only MP, Caroline Lucas, supported the Stop the War Coalition's stance.

"Is the prime minister now suggesting we should develop a foreign policy that would be prepared to countenance intervention elsewhere where there are attacks on civilians, such as Saudi Arabia, Oman or Bahrain? I hope he has thought this whole thing through," Corbyn, MP for Islington North, told the House of Commons.

MP McDonnell also told the Commons, "I support the freedom struggle and I'm a supporter of the United Nations but I have grave and serious concerns about the use of force by western powers in this region, both the short-term and long-term consequences. In the short term, in the interest of conflict resolution, is there to be a final offer from the United Nations to Gaddafi for peace talks?"

Lucas said Britain had "lost the moral authority" when it came to military intervention in the wake of Iraq and Afghanistan.

"I very much worry that this would be portrayed by Qaddafi as yet more neocolonial exploits," whether there is a UN resolution or not, she said.

The Stop the War Coalition said it has organized a series of protests in London and across the UK to warn the government against rushing to military intervention elsewhere in the world.

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