British pro-peace demonstrators against war on Iran

Jeremy Corbyn speaking at the London, England anti-Iran war rally

From the World Socialist Web Site in Britain:

“We’ve seen this all happen before, with the Iraq war. We saw how that went. It was a complete tragedy

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.

“Exposing lies is very important … I believe Dr David Kelly [UN weapons inspector in Iraq] was murdered, but our government will never admit that. He said there were no weapons of destruction.”


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.”

Tia (left) and Maddy

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 from Spain

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.

Australia’s Pine Gap spy base likely involved in the assassination of Qassem Suleimani: 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.

Flooding disaster in Britain

This 8 November 2019 Channel 4 TV video from Britain says about itself:

North of England flooding: Woman’s body pulled from water in Derbyshire

In some areas, a month’s worth of rain fell in just one day.

Hundreds of people were forced from their homes and the transport network is paralysed. Tonight there are more than 100 flood warnings still in place across England – and along the River Don, there are six severe weather warnings – meaning a possible danger to life.

The United States nazi site Daily Stormer blames the floods on God being angry at gay people in England. Like a politician of the right-wing UKIP party did doing earlier floods.

While the real causes are, eg, years of Conservative governmental neglect of flood control, and rich, mostly Conservative toff grouse shooters ruining moorlands’ capability of absorbing water.

Corbyn condemns government’s ‘woeful’ response to flooding as he announces £5.6bn fund: here.

39 migrants dead in truck in England

This 24 October 2019 South Korean TV video says about itself:

All thirty-nine victims that were found dead in a truck near London on Wednesday turned out to be Chinese, Beijing’s foreign ministry confirmed.

British police also confirmed the nationality of the victims.

Police are currently questioning the 25-year-old driver suspected of murder.

Thirty-one men and eight women were found dead on Wednesday inside a truck container near London.

By Laura Tiernan in Britain:

Thirty-nine migrants found dead in lorry trailer in UK

24 October 2019

The bodies of 39 migrants were found yesterday in the back of a freight lorry parked in Grays, Essex, in the United Kingdom. The deaths have evoked public outrage and revulsion toward the British government’s brutal “deterrence” regime against migrants and refugees.

Police were called to the Waterglade Industrial Park in Essex by East of England Ambulance Service at 1.40am. All 39 people—adults and a teenager—were pronounced dead at the scene.

Police forensic teams last night transported the truck’s cabin and trailer to Tilbury Docks to begin the process of formal identification. Deputy Chief Constable Pippa Mills told reporters this would be “a lengthy process”.

Details of the truck’s movements remain unclear. Police have confirmed only that the trailer arrived via ferry from Zeebrugge, Belgium, docking at Purfleet on the River Thames at 12.30am. The truck cabin and trailer left the port shortly after 1.05am.

It is not known where or at what time the 39 victims entered the truck’s freight container. Richard Burnett, chief executive of the Road Haulage Association, told the BBC the container appeared to be a refrigerated unit and that temperatures could reach as low as -25C. Conditions for anyone inside would be “absolutely horrendous”. Even if the container was not refrigerated, trucking experts explained that such cabins are sealed tight and lengthy confinement can lead to suffocation.

The truck’s cabin is registered in Northern Ireland. The driver, 25-year-old Mo Robinson from a village in County Armagh, was immediately arrested on suspicion of murder.

But the real authors of this immense crime reside in 10 Downing Street, along with the government and opposition parties in Westminster Palace and their accomplices in every European capital.

Their statements of condolence and crocodile tears are rank hypocrisy. Conservative Party Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s statement was issued via Twitter: “I’m appalled by this tragic incident in Essex… My thoughts are with all those who lost their lives & their loved ones.”

Home Secretary Priti Patel, whose entire career is built on anti-immigrant xenophobia, told parliament, “I’m shocked and saddened by this utterly tragic incident in Grays. My heart goes out to all those affected.”

Only last month, a smirking Patel told the Tory Party conference she was proud to be part of a Brexit government that was “taking back control of our borders” and “ending the free movement of people once and for all.” Johnson has described veiled Muslim women as “bank robbers” and “letter boxes”, deliberately stoking anti-immigrant racism.

The latest horrifying deaths are the direct outcome of a regime of deterrence that has involved a police-military operation on the English Channel and at key ports including Dover.

The truck allegedly driven by Robinson is believed to have arrived at Purfleet to avoid increased police checks and anti-migrant measures put in place at Dover … Five people have drowned in the English Channel this year.

Seamus Leheny, Northern Ireland policy manager for the Freight Transport Association, told the press, “People have been saying that security and checks have been increased at places like Dover and Calais, so it might be seen as an easier way to get in by going from Cherbourg or Roscoff, over to Rosslare, then up the road to Dublin. It’s a long way around and it’ll add an extra day to the journey.”

In recent months, migrant rights organisations have warned that the British government’s harsh deterrence regime is forcing refugees to resort to riskier methods of entry to the UK, including lorries. In December 2017, a 15-year-old Afghani boy was crushed by a truck he tried to jump on board at Calais, while an Iraqi man’s legs were severed by a train near Dunkirk. In June this year, the frozen body of a stowaway from Kenya fell from a plane onto a London garden. An investigation last November by BBC South East found there was a “pre-Brexit rush”, with people-smugglers warning migrants to enter now before “the borders shut properly.”

In January, former Tory Home Secretary Sajid Javid met with his French counterpart to agree new anti-migrant measures along the English Channel including £3.2 million for drones, radar, night goggles and number plate recognition along with additional border patrol boats.

One year earlier, the Sandhurst Treaty was negotiated by then Prime Minister Theresa May with French President Emmanuel Macron. Signed at Britain’s premier military academy, the treaty saw the UK commit an extra £44.5 million for fencing, CCTV and detection technology in Calais and other Channel ports.

The police measures agreed by the French and British governments were aimed at bolstering the European Union’s “Fortress Europe” policy against desperate migrants and refugees fleeing wars in the Middle East and North Africa and economic deprivation across large parts of Eastern Europe.

Yesterday’s atrocity was the worst in Britain since 2000, when the bodies of 58 Chinese people were found in a sealed airless container at Dover, Kent. An inquest was told the migrants banged frantically on the inside of the container as they suffocated.

More recently, in August 2015, 71 bodies were found decomposing in an abandoned lorry on the A4 motorway in Austria, near Parndorf. This produced a mass outpouring of sympathy for refugees across Europe. Overnight, thousands of ordinary people organised accommodation, transport, food, clothing and medical supplies, turning out to greet and welcome the convoys of refugees arriving from across the Mediterranean, from Turkey and North Africa.

It was this public sentiment which forced Angela Merkel’s government to open Germany’s borders and allow refugees right of entry. But the sympathy for refugees cut across the plans of the German ruling class for remilitarisation and for deepening austerity. Powerful forces in the government and intelligence services set about smothering and reversing this social opposition through the promotion of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) and manufactured scares such as the Cologne New Year’s Eve “sex attacks”.

Yesterday’s events in Britain are not only a tragedy for the family and loved ones of the 39 people who have perished. They are a crime perpetrated by the capitalist governments of Britain and Europe against the international working class. Over 19,000 people died or went missing in the Mediterranean between 2014 and October this year. A total of 92 migrant deaths were recorded on land in Europe in 2018. The 39 people murdered yesterday brings this year’s total to 91.

Vigil for the victims in London, EPA photo

This EPA photo shows a vigil for the victims in London.

Scourge of modern slavery in 21st-century Britain. The tragedy of the 39 people who died in the back of a lorry in Essex has brought the whole issue of modern slavery to the forefront, writes PAUL DONOVAN.

US spy kills English teenager, flees from justice

Flowers at the spot in England where a United States 'diplomat 'killed teenager Harry Dunn

Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

Wife of US American diplomat flees England after killing a teenager with her car

Media reports describing this Ms Sacoolas as a ‘diplomat’s wife’ may give an impression that she is some stay-at-home housewife. That impression may well be misleading. I would not be that surprised if she is some senior CIA or NSA etc. official, with ‘licence to kill‘, including teenager Harry Dunn.

From Sky News in Britain:

Police told Sky News that initial findings showed [killed teenager] Harry was on the correct side of the road, but that a woman who pulled out of the [Croughton espionage] base onto the wrong side hit him head-on. …

It is understood that someone on the American side told the [Sacoolas] family to go back to the US.

So, it looks like this fleeing from justice is not purely Ms Sacoolas’ individual action, but some higher government level decision.

According to the (Conservative) Daily Telegraph in Britain:

In the aftermath she got out of the car and admitted liability, sources suggest.

But the following day, when police visited her home at Croughton, which is being used as a US intelligence base, to inform her the teenager had died in hospital, lawyers and embassy officials stepped in. …

Dominic Raab, the foreign secretary, personally intervened, urging US ambassador Woody Johnson to grant a waiver of immunity [of Ms Sacoolas diplomatic immunity], which was declined.

Anne Sacoolas writes about that woman:

The 42-year-old Sacoolas is married to Jonathan Sacoolas, public records show. It is not clear what position he holds in the U.S. government that has provided him and his wife diplomatic immunity. The couple lives near RAF Croughton, a British Royal Air Force base currently being used by the U.S. Air Force as a communications station. Sky News referred to it as a “spy base”. …

At the time of her wedding, Sacoolas was working for the U.S. State Department in Washington D.C. It is not clear what role she had at the State Department. She and her husband, Jonathan Sacoolas, were married on April 12, 2003, at Wakefield Chapel in Annandale, Virginia. …

Jonathan Sacoolas … at the time of his wedding, he was working for the Department of Defense in Washington D.C.

Radd Seiger, a lawyer representing the Dunn family, told The Sun that Sacoolas was a senior spy based in the U.K. “He was working at Croughton, which is a communications base, so he was working with intelligence which is, I guess, why it has been handled in the way that it has,” Seiger told the British newspaper.

According to Sky News, the only diplomats with immunity in the U.K. are typically those stationed in London. But a special arrangement between the U.S. and the U.K. has been in place since 1994 for RAF Croughton. …

The [Sacoolas] couple owns a home in Fairfax County, Virginia, according to a home sales list from The Washington Post. They purchased the house in the Vienna area in 2015 for $770,000. …

Public records show that Sacoolas and her husband are both Republicans.

Their children in England went to an expensive private school. Probably too expensive for CIA or NSA employees who are not high level spies.

This 6 October 2019 Sky TV video from Britain is called US diplomat’s wife who fatally hit British teen named.

The NOS article continues:

The wife of an American diplomat fled Great Britain after a fatal collision. She succeeded in that thanks to her diplomatic immunity.

According to British media, this is the 42-year-old Anne Sacoolas. She is associated with the death of 19-year-old Harry Dunn. He was killed during a ride on his motorcycle in August by a motorist who, according to police, was driving on the wrong side of the road.

The accident occurred near RAF Croughton, a British military base in the Oxford area where US intelligence services also work.

A clue that Ms Sacoolas was no run-of-the-mill stay-at-home housewife. If her husband and she would really be what people usually expect of United States diplomat couples in Britain, then one would expect Ms Sacoolas to drive her Volvo car in London; not coming out of RAF Croughton espionage base.

The British police officially asked for their immunity to be withdrawn, but the US refused.

Although the suspect promised to remain available for investigation, she has now left the country. The boy’s parents hope that President Trump will revoke her immunity so that she must cooperate in the investigation.

Harry Dunn's grieving parents

I hope with these parents. But I also fear about Trump’s decision, knowing about his pardons for war criminals.


Harry Dunn’s family has started a GoFundMe and a Facebook page to raise awareness, calling them “Justice 4 Harry.”

His mother, Charlotte Charles, told Sky News, “If we don’t get justice we’ll try and use money to get the law changed so people can’t kill and go away.”

According to the GoFundMe, “Harry leaves behind a devastated mother and father Charlotte and Tim, twin brother Niall, step-parents Bruce and Tracey and a large close-knit family who are struggling to come to terms with the tragic and abrupt end to Harry’s life. The police have now confirmed that Harry was riding perfectly safely on the night of the crash travelling on his own side of the road when he collided with an oncoming vehicle being driven on the wrong side of the road. …

According to the GoFundMe, “Harry’s loss has left an enormous hole in the lives of the family and they are understandably going through a shattering and life-changing time. This funding page is being set up to help the family and his twin brother Niall through these traumatic times and to build up a fund as the family embark on a campaign to search for Justice for Harry as the legal process unfolds. We will update this page as frequently as we can. In the meantime, we would like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for any amount of money you are able to donate, no matter how big or small.”

The teenager Harry Dunn, from Charlton, Banbury, died in hospital after his motorbike crashed with a Volvo driven by Ms Sacoolas. Family photo

From the BBC today:

A chief constable has written to the US Embassy in London demanding the return of an American diplomat’s wife who is a suspect in a fatal crash inquiry.

Harry Dunn, 19, died when his motorbike collided with a car near RAF Croughton in Northamptonshire on 27 August.

The diplomat’s wife, named as Anne Sacoolas, left the UK despite telling police she did not plan to.

Nick Adderley, of Northamptonshire Police, has urged the embassy to waive her diplomatic immunity.

He said he had appealed to US authorities “in the strongest terms”.

Mr Dunn’s mother, Charlotte Charles, said leaving the country was “such a dishonourable thing to do” and urged Ms Sacoolas to “come back”. His father, Tim Dunn, said they needed to get the truth. …

The US Embassy previously said “security and privacy considerations” precluded it from naming the suspect.

These ‘security considerations’. once again, suggest that Ms Sacoolas is not some stay-at-home housewife.