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August 05, 2008


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Huw O'Sullivan

Paul I know there were a few votes before the war, but the actual vote for the declaration of war was 254 labour for and 84 labour against, you Paul were and it does you credit one of the 84.

Unfortunately the vote was carried 412 to 149
Plaid voted against
SNP voted against
Lib Dems voted against.

The Tories in their natural jingoistic fervour only had 2 who voted against so as a party are even more contemptible than New Labour (no surprise there).
The Unionists of the 6 counties of Ulster that are within the UK , always and forever doomed to support the inexcusable due to the seriously warped vision they have of themselves, voted fully in favour.

It was democracy at its worst.
Which is when people are being manipulated by semi truth and outright lies from their own representatives but choose not to bring their critical faculties to bear.

It struck me as astounding at the time that people who generally and often without reason will distrust the government or politicians in general with regards to the cost of postage stamps or the train timetables or any other minor and often unimportant non issues; would give their unquestioning support when faced with the drumbeat of war.
Presumably they believed that something that would cost the lives of many was too important for politicians to play political games with, the naivety is appalling and the abuse of their trust despicable.
No politician can dream to excuse themselves by claiming naivety on this, if they are that naive they should not be in politics.

Even at that point though, the populace, the electorate could on some levels disclaim responsibility as they had not had the opportunity to vote on it themselves.
Then came the next general election and while New Labour lost seats, they retained power. In part due to those Labour MP's who were on one level or another opposed to the war not withdrawing their support utterly from those who had conned, connived and colluded to produce an appearance of a case for war where none existed.

Those who actually voted against the war of course deserve credit for their courage and conviction at the time, I will never be able to understand though, why they could go so far but no further.

We are all sullied by this aggressive, disastrous war, we all bear responsibility for it and every month, day, hour it continues buries us deeper in debt and dishonour.
To my mind there is blood on all our hands due to our inaction and the duplicity of a relatively small number of people. Until we face up to our responsibilities and ensure those who led this crime face the consequences under international law we cannot begin to move on.
In reality the option is not there for us to declare Tony Blair-like that we shall just draw a line under it and discount it from then on.

I am sorry I am sure I seem as repetitive and pointless on this issue as the ardent anti ban smokers seem to be on theirs but the many thousands and potentially millions of lives that I share in the responsibility for destroying, the families that I share in responsibility for devastating, do not sit easy with me.

This is the work of evil men, not just, perhaps surprisingly, the acts themselves but how they drag everyone else down into the same latrine they have made their home.

The western world in its entirety then managed to heap on further insult to their many victimes by appointing the British lead criminal and warbringer as middle eastern "peace" envoy.
If not for Kissinger before him, satire would have been declared dead then.

I want the Iraqi's to have peace and a chance at a decent life. For that reason I would like all fighting to stop.
But I fear that if the American's get control of the oil as they wish and get to keep their permanent military bases as they wish and get to run Iraq from their enormous "embassy" as they wish, then there would be nothing to dissuade them trying to do the same trick again in every other country they turn their greedy eyes on.
The UN cannot stop them, the EU will not stop them, the British would help them, even "neutral" Ireland will allow them to transport their troops and armaments through them. So what is the point.

We declared at Nuremberg that the crime Blair and Bush et al are guilty of is the worst that there is, aggressive war. I guess we only meant that for our enemies and in that case, trying to defend yourself against us is also the worst crime that there is.

It is a pity that I cannot stop believing that the law applies to us all or it applies to no one. We are not exempt because we are the "good guys". We are certainly not exempt when we are not the good guys and we most definitely are not.

I am lucky I am not religious as if there were a hell I know we would all find ourselves there because of this and there would be no excuses and no get outs because of our chosen naivety,wilful ignorance or stubborn stupidity.

My views on this are probably too extreme, my attitude too unbending. So perhaps I am myself doomed to make a fool of myself decrying reasonable actions as the work of evil men, Perhaps my belief that having a vote in a democracy means you share in the responsibility for the actions of the government you pay taxes to, perhaps that attitude is ludicrous. I try and try but simply cannot see it any other way.
This is about as wrong as it gets short of having an extermination policy for an entire race of people but measuring evil only by the extremes of Nazi Germany or Stalin's Russia or Pol Pot's Cambodia is perhaps setting the bar far too low.


Why deceive yourselves about possible concessions? Nothing will change until 2010 - and probably not then.
The parliament vote was a free one for all parties. There were no party whips and members of all parties voted for and against. In those circumstances a majority of 200 is a very large one indeed.

The chances of that decision being reversed is nil. The chances of an amendment is slight now. By 2010 the public would be even more used to smoke free pubic places. Public opinion would not support any change in 2010. I am convincd that the ban is irreversible.

The evidence of the popularity of the ban is everywhere from smokers and nonsmokers. Stop talking only to one another in your group. Views have hardened in favour of the ban.

Smoking yobs who threw a middle aged lady off a station platform are not winning friend for your cause.


Huw, All the 50 signed motions or EDMs opposing the war. The whips worked on them with the argument about WMD and the imminent threat to our soldiers in Cyprus. The political blackmaail was that if Tony Blair lost the vote, he would resign and there would be a General Election. Some MPs are daunted at the prospect of the oncoming P45s. Other genuinely believed in M15 and were convinced that they could not be wrong on WMD.

Nearly all of them now feel cheated and fooled on the most important vote of their political lives. If the 50 had voted against, British troops would not have gone to Iraq. Quite a thought.

Huw O'Sullivan

Hmm Paul, not quite sure what to say about the 50 easily conned Labour MP's, not sure they can be counted as a plus for anyone.

I think it is a pity that the 139 who voted against the war with Iraq should have made more of an issue of it. It was and is I believe to big a wrong, to vote against it but continue to remain in the party/ government that commits that wrong and live with it.
But of course not all who voted against it voted against it for the same reasons.
Some did not have a problem with the act but with the timing or the manner of the act.
For myself I need to see stronger opposition to the concepts, execution and of course more relevant right now the continuation of what I can only see as a crime of the higher orders of magnitude.

Of course there are those who argue that a crime is not a crime unless the perpetrator is punished in some way by the properly appointed authority.
Tricky when the criminals have the power to veto what comes before the proper authority.


Thanks Huw.

Old, Classic, Real Labour is still alive and voting. There were 16 Tories who voted against the Iraq War and 139 Labour. At least 50 other Labour MPs abstained or voted in favour reluctantly after being conned by the whips.

One of my main motivations that keep me fired up is that I was the only MP who made a speech in the Commons against the Helmand incursion. My first allies in opposing this disaster were all from the Labour ranks. I have no doubt which party will challenge other futile military gestures n future.

Huw O'Sullivan

The outright opposition changing to support once in place is typically tory and should be trusted as all tories should be trusted, not at all.
Any tory is a member of party not unlike "New Labour" a parasitic opportunistic organism.
They will say whatever they think will play well and seem to believe in nothing other than the privilege of the well to do.

It is terrible to hear many fools, talking about switching to vote Tory, a week may be a long time in politics but apparently it takes just over a decade for people to forget what the tories are.

Such a shame that old labour has vanished, then at least there would be a choice. With Tories or New Labour, policies will be much the same but style will be different, much as the system works in the US.

As for me Paul, you know where I stand, I will not vote for a party that waged aggressive war, nor would I ever vote for the party that gave them their full support despite their being no evidence convincing or otherwise supporting a case for war.
As far as I am concerned the country would be better off if New Labour and the Tories merged and a new party, genuinely left wing, formed.

Improvements in health care funding and fiddling about at the edges of social issues will never make up for the lives ruined and lost in Afghanistan and Iraq.


I'ts tina. There is no alternative in this situation. It has always been the choice between a bad decision and a catastrophic one. Nationalisation or a run on banks?.

I'm keeping optimistic with the early repayment.


Paul, what is going on at Northern Rock? Is the £3bn taxpayers money being written off by converting it into equity to keep the bank afloat? Why is the bank being shielded from the results of its crazy business model? And why are tax payers picking up the tab again?

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