British troops home by Christmas – MP
The British politician told RT that he believes the only way for Afghanistan to achieve stability is for the Afghan’s to manage their own affairs and for America and Britain to stop invading other countries, which he reasoned only makes them more unstable.
RT: With Afghan’s angrier than ever, the Taliban bolder than it has ever been in years and more British troops dying, would you say you finally have a chance of getting the troops home earlier than planned?
George Galloway: I think there’s a critical mass developing in the country, in Westminster both in Whitehall and inside the parliament building itself, there was a kind of collapse of war morale going on, a kind of sense of panic, both at the unpredictability of the American decision tostop patrolling with Afghan security personal, which doesn’t seem to have been communicated with the British before the Americans announced it and of course it undercuts the entire strategy that the British government says it’s been following these last years of the Afghanistanization of the conflict. But morale was collapsing because it’s clear the insurgency, the resistance in Afghanistan is winning the war, its everywhere, its setting up courts, its collecting taxes, all of which will be familiar to Russian viewers of this program because this is history repeating itself.
RT:You talk about morale collapsing in parliament but what about the efforts and the calls for an early withdrawal, would that not demoralize the troops and undermine their efforts?
GG: Well, the troops are coming home in boxes, two young soldiers from Yorkshire where I represent the city of Bradford.Just this week young men were coming home in boxes for no purpose. They died in vain. The war will end on exactly the terms that it could have ended last year or ten years ago and I think more and more people in the country are seeing that. This is an absolutely futile exercise, it was wrong from the start, I said so at the time and indeed I framed my motion today deliberately saying that the troops should be home by Christmas, not just because that’s what the British government promised in the first world war but it’s what Jack Straw, the then British foreign minister told me in 2001. In the House of Commons, he said that the British forces should be home by Christmas, of course 11 Christmases have passed since then.
RT:What about the Afghan people though, do they deserve to be abandoned now when the security situation is so dire?
GG: Well, foreign occupation of Afghanistan has never worked, it didn’t work when Alexander the great tried it, it didn’t work when Leonid Brezhnev tried it and the current crop of world leaders are certainly not greater than those. The reality is, that Afghanistan cannot be successfully occupied. The people of Afghanistan will have to finis away of organizing their own society without foreign interference and occupation. We have a right to be concerned if Afghanistan is harming us, we have a right to be concerned for example if there is extreme terrorism going on in Afghanistan but the way Afghanistan is governed is a matter for the Afghans and moreover may I say, there were only ever international terrorists in Afghanistan because Britain and America sent them there in the 1980’s on the principle that my enemies enemy is my friend .
RT:What sort of support do you hope to get for your motion, where you want troops home by Christmas, not just the support of parliament but front the British public, what is the support there?
GG: Well the British public were against this war right from the beginning and against it in an overwhelming number now, as are a vast number of service men’s families, the wives and children and fathers and mothers of the young men being sent out there to die for no purpose. Lions led by donkeys, sent by donkeys into their deaths in Afghanistan. There is a huge number of those. And many service personnel just want out. This idea that we are there because we were there, because we were there, this belongs to the mindset of the 1914-18 Great War.
RT:What about the consequences for worldwide security though, if troops do leave and the Taliban return. Everything has been a failure, all in vain, what about the future consequences?
GG: Well, this wasn’t about worldwide security, this was from the start a western military adventure, George Bush thought he’d be on a role, first Afghanistan then Iraq maybe Syria then maybe Iran, he was going on and cap role, and it’s all gone sour because the resistance of the Iraqi people, which drove the American soldiers and the British under fire out of that country and now they are being driven out under fire from Afghanistan. I think myself that is a good thing if Britain and America realize that they cannot go around the world invading and occupying other people’s countries whenever they feel like it, that the Empire strikes back. Now I’m against international terrorism or any other kind, and we have a right to be concerned if Al Qaeda were to go back to Afghanistan but of course they’re not in Afghanistan any more, they’re in Syria where the British and Americans have sent them next. They were in Libya last year, they’re in Syria this year and low and behold they’re allies just as they were in the 1980’s of Britain and United States. The very people who murdered the American ambassador in Benghazi were the same people that we sent into Libya and bombed Libya so that they could come to power there, so they could amass their force there and everybody knows, even the Americans acknowledge that Al Qaeda are in Syria in very significant numbers.