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September 21, 2009


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Paul Flynn

I promise you I am doing all I can. I will be speaking to three public meeting in the next fortnight. We cannot have a vote with parliament in recess. There are many obstacles in having one when we are back. But I will certainly be very vocal on the subject when parliament resumes.


It now appears we are allowing British troops to continue dying to support a corrupt government (the words of General MacCrystal) "elected" after a fraudulent vote. It seems incredible that MPs of any party would allow that to continue.

Nobody can seriously believe it is making the UK a safer place as Al-Quada now appear to be operating not from Afganistan but from Pakistan (and I assume no-one wants to send troops there?).

There is no conceivable way we can "win" this war and there there seems no likelihood that under the current strategy we could ever exit the country.
To paul Flynn and John Redwood

Why are MPs not doing their job in overseeing the government and forcing a vote on the issue?

There can no longer be any excuse to leave troops in harm's way > we should withdraw as soon as possible - only MPs can make that happen which is why i once again ask both of you to push more strongly for this to occur.

Paul Flynn

For saving the world economy, Tony. You take credit when it's offered. Not a lot from the British media.


I nearly fell off my chair this morning when I read that Gordon Brown is going to accept a 'world statesmen' award while he is in the US ? I was confused as to what for ?

Paul Flynn

Thanks Huw. I don't disagree with a word that you say. These are the things that I hope to develop at the public meeting on Thursday. I have no idea who will come along. It would be great to have contributions like yours in the discussion.

I have blogged about the Afghan casualties and raised the issue in questions and speeches in Parliament. There are many estimates of the numbers killed by 'collateral damage'. 3,000 is probably near the mark.

Paul Flynn

Thanks Aidan. I did not know that Jan Morris had written anything on 'Our First Leader". But I should know. I greatly admire her writing. What did she say?


Rhodri will be missed on a political, cultural and social level. Talking of Welsh leaders, have you read Jan Morris's tongue-in-cheek novella, Our First Leader? Worth a look.


What Huw said


The battle was lost when the "legal" but utterly unjustified and immoral invasion was started.

I still take issue with how you will quote the loss of life of invading and occupying soldiers without at least noting the loss of life for at the very least Afghan civilians although I personally would prefer if you simply showed in as far as it is possible the total number of Afghan deaths which vastly outweigh the occupying armies losses and diminish into irrelevance the tragic loss of lives due to a similar outrage in New York on 11/9/2001.

Although Afghanistan has probably suffered the equivalent of what the Americans call 9/11 every year since 2001.
Roughly 3000 killed, vastly more injured of course and even more disposessed.

If 9/11 was a crime, and indeed it was, then what has been done to Afghanistan is worse by orders of magnitude and we should all be deeply ashamed of our part in it.

I understand, Paul, your reason for looking for hope in the public's attitude towards the war but still detest the fact that for us to do the right thing we have to blame Afghans for it.
"Karzai is corrupt", he may be, but then so are and were Blair & Bush et al, those are the people that soldiers have really been dying for after all.

Afghans are too tribal, too vicious, too violent, too backward to take up the wonderful opportunity that we have harmed so many of them to offer them.

It makes me sick to my stomach to see these kinds of claims made. We were the ones who invaded, we are the ones who have caused enormous loss of life, we are the vicious violent ones, just because our explosive devices are expensive and made in highly specialised factories does not make them more civilised.
They are not somehow more gentle because they are dropped from planes, or fired from helicopters nor more humane because they are used by people getting paid to do a job far from their homes, they still rend and kill and maim, perhaps more efficiently than IED's, perhaps having provided more employment than IED's, perhaps having contributed more to western national coffers than IED's but bombs are bombs, if one is wrong all are wrong.

The attitudes of many people in Afghanistan may be medieval, we may perceive them as cruel,callous and corrupt but I think we have proven, especially in the last 8 years that we are no better, and given that we have more options, we have shown that we are worse.

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