Gordon Brown in Afghanistan

This video from the USA is called Labor International Conference To Stop The War 10/20/2007 San Francisco.

From British daily The Morning Star:

Political epitaph

(Thursday 21 August 2008)

WHICH genius dreamed up the idea of sending Gordon Brown off to Afghanistan to meet puppet president Hamid Karzai and to mimic Tony Blair‘s previous media stunt of posing in brilliant white shirt surrounded by British soldiers?

President Karzai could only have been the answer to the question of what international leader’s grip on his job is more tenuous than our Prime Minister’s.

Commentators used to joke that his writ only ran as far as the outskirts of Kabul. This overstates his real influence.

The Afghan president continues to be guarded by US contractors because he distrusts his own armed forces and he is utterly dependent on NATO military power, which remains incapable of suppressing resistance to the occupation of Afghanistan.

Mr Brown’s lavish praise of British troops, likening them to Olympic heroes on a daily rather than a four-yearly basis, is unlikely to have endeared him to them, knowing, as they do, that he is responsible for placing them in the dangerous and unwinnable situation that faces them.

British troops were originally dispatched to Afghanistan in what was said to be a cross between a peacekeeping and a nation-rebuilding mission.

It has turned out to be an all-out war, especially since they were redeployed, at Pentagon insistence, to Helmand province, where resistance is fierce and where casualty levels have inexorably risen.

Despite this reality, the Prime Minister claims that “substantial progress” is being made against the Taliban and the proof for this is that the Afghan resistance is having to adopt tactics “more of a guerilla nature than head-on confrontation with our forces.”

How very unsporting. Wouldn’t it be so much better if the Afghans formed up into massed ranks to charge tanks and heavy machineguns or to present a clear target to the occupiers’ aerial power rather than using roadside bombs and suicide attacks.

The government’s advisers should have known that such guerilla tactics would be favoured in a long-lasting war of attrition, but new Labour put subservience to the White House before any concern for British troops, to say nothing of the Afghan civilian population, who are the real sufferers in this US imperial aggression.

Still, it’s an ill wind that blows no-one any good and the arms traffickers of BAE Systems aren’t doing too badly at all, thank you very much.

Our government’s slavish determination to support every Made in Washington war has meant a bonanza for the company’s private shareholders, with the latest contract to supply ammunition to our armed forces over the next 15 years weighing in at £3 billion.

That should guarantee plenty of bonuses and dividends for senior civil servants and new Labour ministers who jump on board after being deservedly turfed out at the next general election.

Armed Forces Minister Bob Ainsworth is delighted that this programme will ensure “a modernised, sustainable munitions industry which will support British jobs.”

What a pity that such concern for industry and jobs has never extended to the rest of Britain’s manufacturing sector, which new Labour has allowed to disintegrate without lifting a finger.

And it is this obsession with war and private profits that will be new Labour‘s political epitaph.

From British daily The Guardian:

As more and more British soldiers are killed and wounded, their commanders are becoming increasingly frustrated by the failure to make a breakthrough in Afghanistan.

Cartoon on Brown’s Afghanistan trip: here.

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