Stop the War is an exceptionally bad, exceptionally immature critique of the War on Terror. For a better one, go and listen to Dan Hind speaking at the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts on How Enlightenment was Hijacked and How We Can Reclaim It.
Critiques don’t come nicely packaged. Just because the war for Iraq was wrongly-premised, it doesn’t mean we should pull out of Afghanistan. It doesn’t mean that Hesbollah are heros.
Why is our speaker Caroline Lucas associating with StWC in such a desperately populist way? Why, in this video, does her bid for the mainstream sound so much like the futile, robot anti-Imperialism of the Socialist Worker Party and RESPECT? Where is the environmental critique? Where, since she has stepped up to the podium in her capacity as a politician, a policy-maker, are the answers? Her only answers: demand justice for the people of Afghanistan, Iraq and Palestine. Suspend the EU agreement with Israel. There has never been a time like the present time for British Greens, but Caroline Lucas is looking vaguely abroad without insight.
StWC is a bad association. It is an organisation that suppresses dissent, whitewashes Iran – indeed Caroline Lucas whitewashes Baathist Iraq before 2003 as a “proud country” – which invites speakers from antisemitic terrorist organisation Hesbollah, and one of whose central personalities is George Galloway, a demagogue who supports lying, upholds the values of Stalin and courts the votes of ultra-conservative Muslims by selling out on gay people and evolutionary theory.
StWC, Respect, Respect Renewal, the Socialist Workers Party and Caroline on behalf of the Greens all blame UK foreign policy for the London bombings (while neglecting to consider the role of, say, Saudi Arabia and its funding of hard Islam for September 11th, Madrid or London acts of terror to name only three). Here’s what Hassan Butt, former Al Quaeda member who now works to argue young men out of Al Quaeda, has to say about people who do this:
‘How we used to laugh in celebration whenever people on TV proclaimed that the sole cause for Islamic acts of terror like 9/11, the Madrid bombings and 7/7 was Western foreign policy,’ Butt recalled in an outburst that stuck in my mind. ‘By blaming the government for our actions, those who pushed the “Blair’s bombs” line did our propaganda work for us. More important, they also helped to draw away any critical examination from the real engine of our violence: Islamist theology.’
[I decided that my comment on London Greens recommendation about the mayoral elections was out of my remit for this site. MV]