From the World Socialist Web Site in Britain:
UK protesters speak out against war on Iran
By our reporters
13 January 2020
WSWS reporters spoke to attendees at Saturday’s demonstrations in the UK against the danger of war in Iran.
“The thought of us fighting against Iran is terrible,” said Carol, who attended the London protest with her friend, Titch.
Carol had planned to protest at Belmarsh prison in support of imprisoned WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, but decided to attend the Iran war protest in London at the last minute. “It’s very dangerous,” she said. “You’ve got the Iranians on the other hand who have come out and said that they did shoot down the passenger plane and that it was a mistake. But either way, the blood is still on Trump’s hands. This was all because of Trump. It was started long before him, but he has kicked it to another level.”
Titch referred to the regime change operation orchestrated by the US and UK in Iran. “It all began in 1953 when we overthrew the Iranian government to strengthen the Shah. In 1979 the Iranian people overthrew him. Ever since then, America and the UK have had it in for Iran. They’re going to do whatever they can to get in there and tear up that country. Everyone knows it.”
Maddy, who attended the protest with her friend Tia, noted, “We’ve seen this all happen before, with the Iraq war. We saw how that went. It was a complete tragedy.”
Tia said, “The thought of there being more destruction in an area which has just been decimated over and over is really heartbreaking. There’s no chance of any resources being put into recovery, or into making positive change, when warmongering is the only option that our leaders seem to go for.”
“I’m on the demonstration to highlight the persecution of Julian Assange,” Jane noted. “Julian is locked up in Belmarsh prison because he spoke out against war crimes, and the fight to save him is the fight against war as well. I think all the terrible political and environmental issues we’re facing are connected. A consciousness is starting to emerge in the world, where people know there is something terribly wrong and it’s getting to the point where it’s either ‘do or die’.
“I think all our problems are caused by a system that sits above and beyond the government, which is about money and power and oppression, with a few very rich and very powerful people in charge.”
Labour Party member Diane noted, “Donald Trump is being impeached and it is a perfect diversion to start a war; historically that is what they do. [Former US President Bill] Clinton did it.” Asked her opinion of the US Democratic Party, she said, “I think ideologically they are the same [as the Republicans]. I think big corporations, big business, is behind what’s going on in the world. It is terrifying … how far it has gone to the right.”
John Kelsey stated, “I’m here today to stop war and because it’s been a US strategy for the last 30 years to dominate the Middle East.”
Lucia, a student visiting the UK from Spain, said, “I don’t believe in war with anybody. People need to come together to solve all our problems, including climate change. Trump caused the problem, to create division between other countries to impose American imperialism.”
Deanna remarked, “I am definitely against what Trump is doing. People don’t understand what’s going on, but they need to know.’’
About 100 people demonstrated on the steps of a bombed-out church in Liverpool, St Luke’s, which is preserved in memory of the devastation inflicted during World War Two.
David and Stephen, 16-year-old school students attended to express their opposition to war on Iran. “I am here because I’m against war, I’m against violence,” David explained. “Suleimani was visiting Iraq to sort out peace so it wasn’t good that he was murdered.
“Most people don’t want war. I saw on the media that Iranian people like people in America, they just don’t like the president … I imagine they don’t want to go to war with America. America would probably use nuclear weapons [against Iran], like in World War Two, in Nagasaki and Hiroshima. They didn’t need to drop the bomb. Japan were already on the verge of surrender. America killed Suleimani to prove they have the power to destroy. They want the oil. With how advanced weapons are today, there’s no future if war breaks out.”
“It’s my first rally,” Stephen noted. “I agree with stopping tension and war. It will affect the higher up people, but it affects the working class more and future generations, and ruins things for everyone. They won’t listen to us, what we want.”
Jennifer, a qualified social worker at a mental health charity said, “I feel strongly that the Iran war is detrimental and I think we’re going into it blindly with America. We can’t just sit back. We all need to get out there and say ‘no’.”
About 60 protesters gathered in Bradford City centre on Sunday. Performing arts student Carol brought her own banner reading, “Don’t Attack Iran.” She said, “Ever since the news first appeared, I was thinking, ‘What do we expect from a president who’s got a mindset for war?’ There are lots of tensions between lots of places which could get out of hand.
“A lot of the attacks in the Middle East are based on lies. They are trying to find excuses to get more power and more money as that’s all that matters to them. Talking to my friends on social media, we are all opposed to what’s happening but feel a bit helpless about what to do.”
ESPER ‘DIDN’T SEE’ SPECIFIC EVIDENCE OF IRAN THREAT Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Sunday defended President Donald Trump’s order to assassinate Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani, but admitted he “didn’t see” any specific evidence backing up the president’s claim that Soleimani had been planning imminent attacks on multiple U.S. embassies. [HuffPost]
The assassination of General Qassem Suleimani, regarded as the second most powerful figure in the government of Iran, was planned more than six months before he and nine others were murdered in a January 3 US drone missile strike at Baghdad’s international airport, NBC News reported Monday: here.
US SECRETARY of State Mike Pompeo has spilled the beans about the murder of top Iranian General Qassem Soleimani. He has revealed that it was part of a ‘bigger strategy of deterrence’ – dumping President Trump’s claim that the murders by drone were carried out to prevent an ‘imminent’ attack: here.
Yesterday, the foreign ministries of Berlin, London and Paris said that they would submit a complaint against Iran for allegedly violating the 2015 Iranian nuclear treaty. This would allow them to then repudiate the treaty, which Washington repudiated in 2018, and support the reimposition of UN sanctions—aligning them with the US campaign against Iran that threatens to provoke all-out war in the Middle East: here.
Pushing the lie propagated by Donald Trump that the assassination of Iranian general Qassem Suleimani was aimed at combating terrorism, the government of Brazil’s fascistic President Jair Bolsonaro was one of the first to defend Washington’s war crime. Just one day after the attack, Itamaraty—the Brazilian Foreign Ministry—issued a note stating that “the Brazilian government expresses its support for the fight against the scourge of terrorism”: here.