Veterans to throw down medals, urge disobedience in Downing Street Syria protest
Special Forces veteran Ben Griffin has called on military personnel and munitions workers to disobey and block the bombing of Syria ahead of a Downing Street protest in which ex-services personnel will throw down their medals in disgust at the war.
“If you work in a bomb factory, walk out. If you fill up bombers with fuel, stop it. If you fly missions over Syria, don’t release your bombs,” Griffin, who served with the Parachute Regiment and SAS in Iraq, Afghanistan and Northern Ireland, told RT on Monday.
“Our attack on Syria will make things worse. You only need to look at the outcome of our attacks on Iraq and Libya to see that.”
“We have no confidence in the government of this country to do the right thing, so we call on the public to resist participation in the ongoing slaughter,” he added.
Griffin made his comments ahead of a planned protest by other decorated British military veterans of the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Northern Ireland and Libya.
According to a blog by ex-services group Veterans for Peace UK (VFPUK), four military veterans of recent wars will cast off their medals outside Downing Street on Tuesday in protest at MPs’ decision to bomb Syria.
The action is set to take place at 1:00pm GMT on Tuesday and aims to oppose what the group terms “yet another attack on a Middle Eastern country.”
MPs voted on Wednesday to extend UK airstrikes from Iraq into Syria, despite widespread public opposition to the move.
Writing on the VFPUK website, Daniel Lenham, a Royal Air Force (RAF) veteran of Iraq and Libya, said he was casting off his decorations “in protest at the decision to bomb Syria.”
“We will hand back medals given to us for participating in previous attacks on the Middle East,” he said.
David Smith, who served with the Royal Green jackets infantry regiment, said: “I want to express my utter disgust at the decision to unlawfully bomb Syria, god help all those who are likely to suffer as a result of this action.
“I renounce all forms of state sanctioned warfare and violence.”
VFPUK claims to have 265 members, some of whom served as along ago as D-Day. The group hopes “to convince people that war is not the answer to the problems of the 21st century,” according to its website.