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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 1/5/10

UK's Middle East Wars --" Unjustifiable and Unaffordable

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Jim McCluskey
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UK's Middle East Wars Unjustifiable and Unaffordable

Albert Einstein and Bertrand Russell warned us in their 1955 manifesto that the human race has a choice. We can renounce war or we can bring about our own end.

This is even clearer now than it was half a century ago. Knowing this, countless millions round the world ardently want peace. The people of Britain want peace. Yet the British government and our allies, the Americans, insist on trying to have their way through war. This is intolerable. By what right do our leaders continue to impose the curse of war on an unwilling world?

The arguments for our wars are transparently false.

Even proponents of war generally consider that a violent response should be proportional to the offense. Our government's justification for our wars in the Middle East is that they are necessary to make British citizens at home safe from terrorists.

War, conducted primarily by the Americans and the British, has been waged in Iraq since 2003 and in Afghanistan since 2001. Since these wars began 52 British citizens have died in the UK in a terrorist attack.

Since no official record is published listing the number of Iraqi civilians killed ("We do not do body counts' General Tommy Franks) estimates for the current total vary widely from an absolute minimum of 94,7081 to 1,366,3502

In 2006 the medical journal, The Lancet, published an article that estimated the number of Iraqis who had died since the war began was 600,000.

But even if we take the very lowest figure for the Iraqi deaths, the relationship between 52 civilian deaths in the UK and 94,708 in Iraq quite clearly exposes the truth.

These wars are NOT a proportional response to any threat to British citizens.

(The estimates of civilian deaths as a result of the war in Afghanistan range between 12,400 and 32,0573.)

The terrorist atrocity in Britain which resulted in the death of 52 citizens took place in 2005.

In the same year 3,201 people were killed in UK road accidents; 28,954 people were seriously injured and the total number of casualties was 271,0174.

Moreover the 52 terrorist killings has been, to date, a one-off event; the figures for death and injury on the roads are similar every year.

In addition, every year the number of deaths in the UK due to hospital infections alone is variously estimated to be between 5,000 and 20,0005.

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I have had a career in Civil Engineering and Landscape Architecture and had a consultancy firm which spanned these two disciplines. I have had books on design published by the Architectural Press and E. and F.N. Spon. I am a member of the (more...)
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