Afghanistan Debate 9th September 2010, The Writing on the Wall, in Gloucester
Tuesday September 21, 2010 19:49 by Bristol Ian
"England is an open air psychiatric hospital!" (sic)
Just a couple of weeks ago, on Thursday the 9th of September 2010, there took place in Westminster an important debate. It was a debate close to the hearts of many in the West Country, not least because of the thought-provoking return of Loved-Ones to Wotton Bassett. The debate was entitled, "Commons debate on UK armed forces in Afghanistan". It lasted all Thursday afternoon and many speakers spoke passionately on a subject that affects our society at a fundamental level.
"At 1.14 pm Mr Peter Bone (Wellingborough) (Con): I beg to move:- "That this House supports the continued deployment of UK armed forces in Afghanistan.""
The writing is on the wall, a stones throw from Gloucester City Centre.
This was a debate on a questionable "war", that has at best the support of only one quarter of the population of the UK, a debate on a topic that has affected so many in so many ways. And the importance of the debate should have ensured a nigh on full attendance from our elected representatives, those MPs that "work for you".
Also, the importance of this debate should have ensured that it was faithfully reproduced and broadcast to the British people, the majority of whom were unable to follow this debate as it happened.
So the BBC reporting on this debate later, (not on main TV News, of course), led with the story:-
"MPs have overwhelmingly backed keeping UK troops in Afghanistan, in the first vote they have held on the issue."
Overwhelmingly? How on Earth can the BBC claim that there was overwhelming support for the continued invasion of Afghanistan when only 324 MPs, less than half the 650 total MPs in Westminster, had any opinion whatsoever on this most important topic.
And if it hadn't been for a Division, a Division is called when the speaker, Dawn Primarolo in this case, has difficulty in deciding between the "ayes" or the "noes" called out by MPs, if it hadn't been for a division, the vote would even have been much less. The vote would then have only comprised of the shouts of "aye" or "noe" of those MPs who were actually there, debating the issue.
Following this vote that was so close as to make a division necessary, party whips began the usual coersion process on the MPs who may not even have taken part in the debate, or listened to the arguments for and against the troops in Afghanistan.
And after this coersion, the vote changed from an inconclusive result to a vote of 310 for the motion and 14 against.
This is our democracy in action, a democracy dominated by war hawks and the Arms Industry.
It is true that the hawks didn't get all their own way as only 324 MPs out of a total of 650 voted definitively, the rest, over half of them either abstained or absented themselves from the vote.
The problem with this distortion of policy and distortion of reporting by the BBC, is that we the masses are getting the message that democracy isn't working, that there is an unbridgable gap between the sheeple and the policymakers, and ultimately that observing due process and law is totally ineffective, a waste of time, and for wimps.
We have been led into illegal wars against our will by war criminals, some of them even subsequently profit from their crime by selling their memoirs in W H Smiths and Waterstone's in Bristol.
We have MPs who are ineffective at conveying the wishes of the people, but are experts at tax evasion and expense fiddling.
We have Bankers whose actions contributed to the bankrupting of our country yet still persist in awarding themselves grotesquely high salaries and bonuses.
And now we have an Income Tax Department clawing back millions from unsuspecting ordinary folk, all the while admitting that the Tax Office computer system had errors.
We are all affected on a fundamental level by unresolved injustices, and when we in the UK are helpless to prevent our MPs from voting with the hawks and arms dealers for the continual devastation of poor people in other lands, (its all good for business, don't you know!), well, little wonder that there is written on a wall, not a stones throw from Gloucester City Centre:-
"England is an open air psychiatric hospital."
"Shocking suicide toll on combat veterans
Britain faces a "ticking timebomb" of mental illness and suicide among young Army veterans who return from hand-to-hand combat in Afghanistan, the Conservatives will warn today."
"The US Soldier Who Committed Suicide After She Refused To Take Part in Torture
There is no harder rock for a soldier to stumble over than orders they know to be illegal; there is no harder place than the knowledge that those orders come from the White House, itself.
To be caught between that rock and that hard place...
If there is an afterlife - and soldiers have more cause to dwell upon that question than most - then I have no doubt that God gave her an Honorable Discharge from life before He promoted her on Up."
Man-made hell on earth for many as war is too easily sanctioned in Westminster.
Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans bring home their never-ending nightmares. - Survivors?