Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

From The Socialist newspaper, 12 February 2008

War and occupation in Iraq

Five years of death and destruction

International Socialist Resistance demonstrate against war

International Socialist Resistance demonstrate against war

NEXT MONTH will see the fifth anniversary of the US-led war against Iraq that started years of bloody, destructive imperialist occupation. A hellish half decade has seen unending death and destruction for the people of Iraq.

Niall Mulholland, East London Socialist Party

Up to a million have died, so far, as a result of the invasion. Thousands are held illegally in prisons. The country's infrastructure is destroyed. The health service and education sectors are in tatters. Unemployment is rampant. Over two million Iraqis were forced to flee the country.

The country is divided along sectarian, ethnic and national lines. The rich resources of Iraq have been plundered: oil wealth is being handed over to the domination of Western multinationals and the economy is being privatised. The Iraqi 'government' is a US-dominated puppet.

Despite overwhelming opposition to the occupation in Britain and the US, Gordon Brown continues Blair's wars and all the main US presidential candidates call for more years of bloody occupation.

In opposition to these horrors, a 'global protest' will take place on 15 March, including a mass demonstration in London, organised by the Stop the War Coalition, CND and the British Muslim Initiative (BMI). The event will also highlight the occupation of Afghanistan, the threat to bomb Iran and the ongoing agony of the people of Gaza.

Demonstration against Trident Feb 24 2007, photo Pedro

Demonstration against Trident Feb 24 2007, photo Pedro

Following the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq, the mighty US military appeared invincible. But now a number of imperialist powers are bogged down in both countries, in conflicts that can go on for decades. So bad is life for impoverished Afghanis under Western occupation that the armed Taliban is growing in support again.

The enormous burden on Western powers, fighting extremely unpopular wars, is reflected in sharp clashes between Nato member states.

The US Defence Secretary, Robert Gates, sent an "unusually stern" request to Germany to send combat troops to volatile southern Afghanistan. Angela Merkel replied that the German troops' mandate was "not up for discussion". On top of this, Canada threatens to bring home its 2,500 troops from Afghanistan, unless other Nato allies send reinforcements.

Low troop morale

Thousands of soldiers have died in the conflicts and troop morale is rock bottom. This was brought home graphically at a Stop the War Coalition (STWC) public meeting in Newham, on 7 February. Ben Griffen, a former SAS soldier who served in Iraq, described how British soldiers in barracks in Afghanistan and Iraq openly discussed why they did not believe in the wars any more.

Lindsay German (Convenor of STWC) and Harry Cohen, the anti-war Labour MP, also addressed the East London meeting. From the floor, local Socialist Party members called for open discussion and debate on the way forward to develop the anti-war movement.

Lois Austin pointed out that over the last five years, magnificent anti-war protests, in Britain and internationally, rocked the pro-war governments. The mass anti-war movement was also an excellent opportunity to launch a viable political alternative to New Labour, the Liberals and the Tories, with mass support across all working-class communities.

Unfortunately, such an initiative was not taken. But anti-war youth and millions of working class people still want an alternative to New Labour. Lois appealed for Harry Cohen, and other Labour MPs who say they do not agree with Brown's foreign or domestic policies, to draw the necessary conclusions and leave New Labour.

Along with others on the left, including the Socialist Party, and union activists and radical youth, they can play a role helping to create a new mass party for working people - a powerful ally for the anti-war movement.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.

In The Socialist 12 February 2008:

Stop NHS privatisation now!

Local Government workers

Birmingham council workers' biggest strike for decades

'Single status' in the West Midlands

Bosses prepare to force through more cuts

Newham workers angry at councillors

Socialist Students

Uni Fees must be fought!

Feature: The great university swindle

War and terrorism

War and occupation in Iraq

Socialist Party news and analysis

Defend abortion rights

Millionaire welcomes economic recession!

Northern Rock

Liverpool's tale of two cities

Cardiff marches to save schools

100 people pack London world economy meeting


Cuts and backlogs cause delays

Tangled web at Metronet

International socialist news and analysis

Polish miners gain strike victory due to iron determination

Chad conflict - part of a wider power struggle


Prison officers: Fighting for trade union rights

Building the Campaign for a New Workers' Party


Comment: Opportunist blunder further splits Church of England

Workplace news and analysis

Land Registry staff vote for action

London Underground: Strike ballot in safety row

Campaign Against Climate Change trade union conference

Organise and fight back!

Shelter staff ballot for action


Home   |   The Socialist 12 February 2008   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  

Related links:


triangleRussia, spies and nerve agents

triangleGripping spy thriller exposes hypocrisy of Falklands/Malvinas war

triangle15 years since the invasion of Iraq: what we said

triangleCardiff West Socialist Party: Is Trump up a new trade war?

triangleCorbyn's left must seize the advantage in Labour's civil war


triangleSyria: No ceasefire for 'hell on earth' eastern Goutha

triangleOpinion: British imperialism can take no credit in fight against Isis

triangleMovement challenges Iranian regime

triangleKurdish referendum declared illegal


triangleStrike continues: set dates for next national action

triangleSave Our Square occupation: "This land is our land!"

trianglePunishment of Tamimi family awakens wave of international solidarity


triangleSocialist anti-war exhibition opens in Kingston

triangleVietnam War: 50 years since the Tet Offensive


triangleBristol South Socialist Party: US gun control


triangleSalford Socialist Party: The history of the Labour movement in Ireland

Socialist Party:

triangleBirmingham Central Socialist Party: France in May 1968


triangleSocialist Party congress 2018


triangleSyria: Is an end to the war in sight?

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns



Refugee Rights campaigners on the 17.3.18 anti-racism demo - pics


Socialist Party

Socialist Party congress 2018



Strike continues: set dates for next national action


Socialist Party

Members dig deep into their pockets to support the party


North West

Campaigners continue to demand Chorley A&E is fully reopened



Swansea Labour council votes for cuts



Derby public meeting: Women's Lives Matter



Seeing-off the bigoted, billionaire toff!



Continuing the fighting tradition of working class women



Workplace news in brief



Leicester: Blairites block Labour Party democracy



Leaked pay deal: fight for a genuine pay rise



We feel that we will win - a striker speaks



Woolwich ferry workers win automation campaign



UCU strike: bosses on the run

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube



Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777


Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0191 421 6230

North West 07769 611 320

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551



Alphabetical listing

March 2018

February 2018

January 2018