Against UK Air Strikes in Syria

My MP Stella Creasy has agreed to meet people tomorrow, Sunday 29th November 2015 (12.30 Vestry House) to hear residents’ views on Syria. This is amazing and I’m delighted — but I can’t make it as am not in London. This is what I will share by email and I urge other Walthamstow constituents to do the same.

Firstly, Stop the War’s rebuttal of David Cameron’s case. The case lacks strategy, it’s illegal, it will result in yet more civilian casualties, it will not decrease the terrorist threat.

Second, a clearly explained comment piece by Giles Fraser, a priest. “If we really thought destroying Isis would be the end of it, we would be sending in ground troops, rather than just poking them with a stick from the air.”

Third: public opinion is against it, (ITV Poll)

And there are service men and ex servicemen who know firsthand, and have told us, aerial bombardment CREATES terrorists.

Their actual cover letter to Obama is here, they have now had their bank accounts frozen for telling the truth.

Additions to this:

Many Syrians are opposed to aerial bombardment, (“ selectively bombing ISIL from the air will not win the support of those on the ground who want to defeat it.”) but they do want a ‘no-bomb’ zone. I have thought lots about this and I think I have a fairly sound knowledge of how much my country can by trusted in creating a ‘no-bomb’ zone (which think means shooting down other countries’ planes, which is pretty robust behaviour.) These are the reasons I personally don’t think the UK can make a no-bomb zone:

  1. we are allies with the US, their idea of warfare for many years has been to view their enemy as animals to be tortured and defiled. They have their own evidence of this, and we have countless examples of our complicity in this. We are tarred with that brush and reactions to our military behaviour will take that into account
  2. we do not have the resources to follow this up with ground troops
  3. there are too many other countries’ air forces flying in that area.

The alternatives:

  1. STOP ARMING THE REGION.
    Look at this list of Arms Export Licences granted by the UK Government. I am told time and time again that this is ‘not the issue’ in crises of terrorism, refugee flight, war. We ARM THIS REGION, we do it with our taxes, and we are unlawfully killing innocents. Until this ends, the terrorism will continue.

2) MASSIVE humanitarian aid in place of weapons to the region.

3) Changes to immigration policy that are QUICK and will lead to ultimate goodwill and peaceful relations with the majority of the Syrian people, who will eventually wish to return to their nation and live with respect and dignity.

Abolish the minimum earnings stipulated for family reunion.
Immediately allow Syrian family reunion.
Establish immediately a sponsorship programme so those ordinary British people that want to help are able to do so. Promised by the Home Secretary, not delivered as yet.

The modern style of warfare that the UK and the US have championed for 30 years causes terrorism. If we continue in this way we will consign our children to a lifetime of terrorist activity and a desperately insecure future.

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