British anti-war veteran Glenton on the election

This video from Britain says about itself:

Veteran Joe Glenton‘s talk, “Rebel British Soldiers Through the Ages”, at the Veterans For Peace UK annual gathering in London, England on November 12th, 2016.

When the War on Terror began, Joe Glenton signed up to serve his nation. He passed through basic training and deployed to Afghanistan in 2006. What he saw overseas left him disillusioned, and he returned manifesting symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. Refusing a second tour, he went AWOL and left the country, but returned voluntarily to fight his case, with the military accusing him of desertion. Despite being threatened with years in prison, he continued to speak out and won the support of many of his fellow soldiers.

Unsparingly honest and powerfully written, Glenton’s account of his personal war against an unjust occupation is the true story of an ordinary soldier standing up for his convictions, refusing to take part in a pointless conflict, and taking on the military establishment.

Joe Glenton is an RT UK journalist covering war, defence and security. He was a British soldier for six years, serving in Afghanistan. His book Soldier Box was published in 2013.

By Joe Glenton in Britain:

Labour‘s policies will best serve Britain’s veterans

Saturday 13th May 2017

The country needs the anti-imperialist foreign and welfare policies that Jeremy Corbyn can deliver, writes JOE GLENTON

THE value of Jeremy Corbyn’s ideas on defence and foreign policy can be judged by the character of those who line up to attack them: Tories, Blairites, hawkish liberals, even serving generals have raged against him.

The causes of this hatred are diverse.

Certainly the prospect of a Corbyn-led Labour government threatens Britain’s sponsorship of violent Gulf-state theocracies and Britain’s virtually unfettered and highly inefficient arms trade.

He also clearly intends a clear break from the long-standing British habit of invading and occupying other countries and could reset relations with rogue states like the US and Israel.

A terrifying prospect for those enriched by war and instability.

It is also possible that his envious track record on predicting the outcomes of major international controversies may also be a factor in the anger against him.

Here is man who laughs as he admits he failed his exams at college and yet shows more grasp of international relations than an entire generation of plastic patriots in Parliament, brass-hat officers in the military and pompous Oxbridge “journalists.”

The evidence for this? Corbyn has correctly predicted the result of every war of the post 9/11 era — chaos and death — while those who cheered the bloodshed in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya, bayed for more in Syria and looked on at the horror in Yemen have been forced to eat their words.

It is interesting to note that when questioned on his views on international politics, and I have had a chance to do so on a number of occasions, Corbyn doesn’t sound that much different from, say, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon.

Putting aside the MoD chief’s bluster, Fallon regularly — if rather selectively — references the need for states to adhere to a “rules-based system.”

The difference between the two politicians is that Corbyn actually means it when he says, for example, that Britain should resolve international conflict through the UN and that the country should act in accordance with the treaties it has signed.

Among those who would benefit from an anti-imperialist foreign policy are British military personnel. It is a tragedy that so many veterans, for example, have come to parrot the baseless, oft-repeated Murdoch press headlines that Corbyn is somehow an apologist for terrorism.

Having had the opportunity to press Corbyn on veterans’ issues on several occasions, I have always come away with the impression he is determined to deliver the services they need, albeit without descending to the kind of “our boys” jingoism which has become the habit of most politicians.

The truth of the matter is that Corbyn is the most likely to deliver what veterans, who are overwhelmingly working class, and their families really need to thrive: a properly funded NHS, decent homes to live in, decent jobs with good wages, education and retraining opportunities and a nationwide mental health initiative of the scale that only the Islington MP is discussing seriously.

Corbyn’s Britain could be many things and the man himself will be the first to say that it is down to us all to deliver it.

But it seems certain that it would be a country less inclined to choose violence to resolve its conflicts, one which carefully considers how to use force internationally and a place in which military veterans stand some chance of getting the fair settlement they need.

Joe Glenton is a British Army veteran and author.

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