There can be no doubt that the UK political hierarchy thought hard & long before belatedly committing last week to join America & some Arab allies and others in undertaking military action in Iraq (and inevitably Syria?) to confront jihadist ISIS (or whatever name you want to know them by). But are we embarking on another ‘looser’ escapade that will cost us many billions of pounds, will last for perhaps half a decade or more, will achieve nothing in the end, will inevitably cost the lives of many more of our forces’ men & women, and will simply leave an ongoing legacy of resentment & hate in other countries?
Nobody, just nobody, even those that have initiated things, claim now that our past interventions have been fruitful, nor indeed deny that they have been a widespread & unmitigated disaster, do they? Some of us on the sidelines look-on in disbelief and amazement at decisions that have been taken by those in charge of our Country’s affairs, and their total lack of even basic common sense, logic, or factual basis for action.
Let’s start with Afghanistan shall we? We went in there thirteen years ago to surprise-surprise stop al-Qaeda terrorism germinating there under the Taliban and infecting the UK. Anyone with a brain would appreciate that trying to sort-out Afghanistan was a task too-too far. We had the example staring us in the face of Russia, who had spent years and years there taking a bloody beating, and finally had to slink away with their tail between their legs (and this was at a time when Russia was a real World superpower with armed forces to be mesmerised by).
Oh no, the USA & Britain hawks convinced themselves we were the superior force that could finally tame that lawless heroin generating land & peoples. Then we had the gall and audacity to put everything on the back burner after a couple of years and turn our attention & priorities to Iraq instead. We have now at long last to all intents and purposes pulled out of that conflict in Afghanistan (unbelievably claiming ‘mission accomplished’!), the Taliban unabated, and having had nearly five hundred Brutish killed & thousands maimed & injured, at a financial military cost alone of perhaps some forty billion pounds – what could that kind of sum of money have done for our home economy do you think?
Then turn to Iraq perhaps? The public misinformed & fooled into believing that we faced the evil organization of Saddam Husain, possessing weapons of mass destruction that threatened us and the West. So we wiped-out his cruel dictatorship, one that controlled his people with an iron fist and committed numerous atrocities against his own citizens, and we achieved regime change – which surely was the real & true objective? The cost in terms of our British troops and finances in eight years of war operations? Some two hundred dead & up to five thousand injured, and at least ten billion pounds spent. [should we mention that probably seventy thousand Iraqi civilians also paid with their lives?].
We destroyed their Iraqi army of course and also their government’s security ability to run their country. We nurtured a democracy which then enacted policies that disenfranchised other religious groups, so it created a vacuum which attracted extremists like moths to a light. The country became a killing ground for suicide bombers & the like, to become a totally unsafe land in which to live – with many more thousands of innocent civilians killed. The country is today totallly ungovernable (and in the shit as they say).
Britain & the Americans trained a new army, which then when faced with danger and a fight against ISIS simply ran away to save their own skins, leaving all the expensive & sophisticated weaponry we had provided them with, to be deployed by the jihadists against them. NOW WE ARE BACK THERE IN IRAQ TO FIGHT A BATTLE WHICH IS NONE OF OUR BUSINESS, simply through a fully deserved feeling of GUILT, don’t you think? Oh yes, we have an obligation to be there, even if only on humanitarian grounds, but it certainly won’t do any good in the long term will it?
Let’s not forget though our escapade into Libya three years ago (albeit under UN auspices), where our intervention on behalf of the rebels fighting against Colonial Gaddafi certainly did the job didn’t it (and he was murdered)? The mission cost us quite a bit though (possibly five hundred million pounds but the actual spend well covered up by the Treasury). What state is the country in nowadays since revolution though? Well, the country is in deep crisis now with unprecedented violence between rival armed forces, at least a quarter of a million people displaced, vital infrastructure destroyed, and the process of political transition in turmoil. Was that what our intervention was really intended to achieve, do you think?
We backed-off though didn’t we in Syria, when many thought we should not, and have allowed a civil war and State crimes against humanity, to run on for four years with unbelievable suffering of the innocent population at the hands of a true tyrant Assad, who has used aircraft to bomb civilians and has even deployed chemical weapons (which we have tried to confiscate – did we get them all?) against his population – but he is a friend of Russia so we daren’t rattle their cage do we? Had we acted then ISIS would not have got a foothold and wouldn’t have amorphised into Iraq either, would it? Nevertheless we have still managed to spend a lot of money in the process already (sixty million pounds?), are highly likely to get involved in future air attacks on ISIS – as well as having to deal with returning British jihadists.
Why do we in Britain pretend that we are some kind of World power? Act as if we are an appointed & designated police force with a responsibility for enforcing rightful behaviour around the World? Why do our politicians constantly proudly claim that we “punch above our weight”? We are in reality a poxy little island nation fighting to survive in an increasingly completive and changing World, aren’t we? Why don’t we get on with that, and mind our own bloody business?
[Who should nevertheless be the Policeman of the World? That comatose’d organisation which has failed time and time again, indeed for over half a century to do its duty – THE UNITED NATIONS no less?]