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The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

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The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-06-11, 9:33 am

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I find myself in a,”Was it all worth it”, mood and looking at facing the question we don't really want to face,”Have Al-Qaeda won”?

The attack on he twin towers in 2001, 13 years ago, was never about war, it was all about fear.

Around 3,000 people died because of the 9/11 attack and it sent the UK and USA on a determined quest for justice, or retribution, maybe revenge.

In March 2003 the USA led phase 1 of the Iraq invasion to route out those weapons of mass destruction that were never found.

How many loves have been lost in Iraq, well that's impossible to say, it depends on who you ask, but it seems a fair assumption that its near 500,000 if we include military, insurgents and civilians.

The invasion of Afghanistan started 2 weeks after 9/11, a fact that surprised me and from that small invasion with the aim of capturing  Osama bin Laden a war started that is drawing to a close now, 13 years later.

The cost in life, 453 UK deaths, so far, 2165 USA deaths, so far,15,000 plus civilian deaths, so far.

We then add in the deaths around the world attributed to Al-Qaeda or off shoots of Al-Qaeda and the numbers become just that, numbers.

We forget hat each number is a person, a son, daughter, mother, son, brother, sister.

We then look at this week and fears of schools in Birmingham being infiltrated by Muslim extremists, young British men going to fight in Syria, drummer Lee Rigby and a growing tension between Muslim and none Muslim.

Was it all worth it, well for me it has to be a no, however, if we stop there we run away from the problem and we fail to ask the next question, “What do we do then”?

It was never going to be the case that 3000 lives would be lost on New York and the world would just continue without any action being taken so, what action should have been taken?

Many will come out with the well meant and often repeated,”I blame religion”, well OK lets blame religion, that's easy but what do we do, close down all churches and ban all religions? I can see that going without any trouble, can you?

I mention the Muslim against us but is that fair, are all Catholics IRA supporters?

All around you can see trouble brewing, the BNP are all but dead in the UK but in their place are others and their support grows. I don't put UKIP in that category but many do and TBH IMO who is right is not the problem, the problem is that we have two sides on a radical argument and that for me is the recipe for trouble.

Before 9/11 I like many took no real notice of Al-Qaeda , dont think I had even heard of them.

Today in Iraq Al-Qaeda have taken control of Iraq's second city, Mosul with 500000 civilians, men, woman and children fleeing in fear.

Pakistan are the subject of daily attacks by groups linked to Al-Qaeda and we hear of 20 there, 200 here, all human beings who no longer live.

In Syria death is a daily occurrence but its rarely reported on the news these days, death again being sanitised and life losing its value.

I seem to remember, 13 years ago, words about making the world a safer place, does it feel safer to you?

I am not blaming Bush or Blair, again that's to easy, I may not agree with what they did but I struggle to find anything I could have done in their position.


I hear that Saddam Hussain was a very bad man and I think he was but, was that a reason to invade and is what's left better?

I don't know the answers my friends, not a supporter of war in any way and never been in one.

I'm hoping I can generate debate because I am genuinely interested to hear your views.

At my age I think I am safe now and will be gone in mind if not body before it gets to much worse but, my son and grandson, well I do worry for them

I doubt we will put the world to right on here but lets have a go, if you are reading this on Facebook or Twitter then why not join up on www.sundermad.com and join in the debate, you will be very welcome.


Last edited by cyprussyd on 2014-06-12, 9:56 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  Hieronymus on 2014-06-11, 10:34 am

Good article Syd.

No, the world is not a safer place but, even if 9/11 had been foiled and Iraq and Afghanistan never invaded, would we be any better off? Thing is no one knows.

The issue is the need of some men (sorry to sound sexist but it is virtually always men) to say that THEIR way is best, and who crave the power of life and death over others. Mohammed never did, Jesus never did. In fact they generally preached peace, love and cooperation. But these men twist their teachings, and usually use criminality to implement their own prejudices on populations, generally quite poor, who only want to be allowed to live, work and raise their children in peace.

So for the world to be a safer place we need to ensure that the weak and vulnerable are protected from criminals who often use 'religion' as a lever, but who really only desire personal power and the trappings that come with it. Look at the palaces of the President of Ukraine, Saddam Hussein, President Assad and others as examples of what men like that are REALLY interested in.

Yet we also know that Osama Bin Laden was not that sort of man, in fact he was much more dangerous because he was a rich, educated and already powerful man, who rejected all those capitalist accoutrements and became a religious zealot. But he would never have been able to attract other zealots to his cause if his source of income and support to pay for the training, explosives and other necessities of the horrific bombings and plots to kill innocent civilians.

So to my mind there are several threads to the 'war on terror':

1) Universal education, to widen the horizons of everyone from childhood, and steer them away from religious hatred and other prejudices. This is naturally a long term project and will likely take several generations but should be a central plank of the UN's remit.
2) Support for poverty reduction policies and projects. It is much harder for despots and criminals to succeed if the population they seek to dominate have independent means and are not in constant fear for their families survival.
3) A global investigation force with the power to impose strong penalties on financial institutions and private backers who are proven to have supported terrorist activities.
4) Outside military intervention in extreme cases, under the auspices of the UN, and only where the local population has asked for help and/or there is the risk of genocide. (I note the issue of Egypt and Syria however, where much of the population wanted change and yet many still supported the president. No one said this was easy!)

Very thought provoking for a Wednesday morning.


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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-06-11, 10:57 am

I knew I could rely on you H for a well thought out reply.

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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  canary-dave on 2014-06-11, 12:06 pm

A well thought out blog and an excellent response!

God I love this site!

 cheers

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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  Silvers on 2014-06-11, 12:18 pm

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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-06-12, 9:51 am

Well the smelly stuff is sure hitting the fan now with ISIS taking a second city and only miles from Baghdad, bad feelings

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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-06-12, 10:24 pm

Well the danger is rising with Obama now getting twitchy

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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-06-13, 4:28 pm

ISIS

The aim of the militants, once deemed too extreme even for al Qaeda, is to create a new state reaching from western Syria across Iraq to the eastern border with Iran.
The Washington Post has translated the 'Contract of the City' issued to citizens in the northeast province of Ninevah. It describes the ISIS fighters as "soldiers of Islam who took on our responsibility to bring back glory of the Islamic Caliphate" and it includes the following decrees.

  • Women are told they should not go outside unless necessary, because their place is to provide stability at home.

  • They must wear full, wide Islamic dress

  • Stealing or looting will result in the amputation of limbs

  • Criminals can be crucified (this law quotes a verse from the Quran)

  • Muslims must participate in group prayers at mosques 'on time'

  • Muslims will be well-treated, unless they are allied with oppressors

  • Drugs, alcohol, and cigarettes are banned

  • Rival political or armed groups are also banned

  • Police and military officers will be given the chance to repent

  • Apostasy is punishable by death and carrying flags, except those of the Islamic state, is not allowed

  • Graves and shrines are forbidden, and will be destroyed


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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  Nostalgic on 2014-06-13, 11:27 pm

The disturbing part of this whole scenario is that there just not appear anyone who can stop them. The only possible salvation would be an Iranian intervention - supported by the USA who actually opened this sore in the first place.

Good for their arms industry though. Sad

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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-06-13, 11:35 pm

I normally sit here in my quiet corner of the world and let the rest of the world pass me by, my political activity is well behind me, I thought.

Age affects us in different ways but for me, I guess, it was well I will be long gone before any more shit hits any fans.

Now I find it hard to just sit and watch, I see good people having it rough around me, proud people suffering in silence then around the world tensions increase day by day.

I fear for the future and I may well be still here when that fan is turned on.

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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cuteybuns on 2014-06-14, 8:28 pm

Ha, believe me, Syd, I am trying quite desperately to avoid spitting blood here.  As you know, I’ve always tried to be a civil man.  But at times like this, it isn’t easy.

Y’see, I spent the first couple of years of life in an air-raid shelter, sleeping in a make-shift cot with the neighbours farting, coughing and wretching just feet away while dull thuds were occuring and the ground sort of shaking as the Lufwaffe entertained themselves above.  In the corner, there was a large enamel bucket, placed behind an old bedsheet strung along a string, where people relieved themselves with not a little tinkling to keep me awake.  Once my mother grasped me quite hard and said “Jeeeesus, that was close” (my first conscious memory in life).  Next morning, all the area two streets to the west of us had vanished.

I’m not alone with these memories.  All the way down the Tyne, at Hull, in the east end of London, in the naval dockyards of Portsmouth and Plymourth, in the great railyards of York, Crewe and Swindon, in the motor centres like Coventry, they all could tell the same story.

How many people on here have walked down to Jackie White’s Market in Sunderland and noticed that two-thirds of the houses between Crowtree Road and Union Street for three streets deep were no longer there, like my mother once did?  There was nothing but rubble, pans, knickers and broken glass left of it!  From that rubble, my mother picked up a teddy bear’s head, took it home and from the rag box (rags were kept in case the need arose for makeshift bandages, or other projects) made a roughly oval body in paisley pattern and yellow arms and legs without hands and feet.  And for some years, that teddy bear was the best friend of a little boy not a million miles from here, until his sister was born and it was passed to her care.

Many years later, as a member of the War Office, later a rather shady department somewhere between Foreign Office and Ministry of Defence, I had occasion to talk to a couple (x [male] and y [female] who I will not name because I understand both are still alive).  X was a resistance worker from the Sudetenland in the north of Czechoslovakia (now Czech Republic) and was arrested as the Nazis swept south in 1936.  Y was a resident of Minsk, and of similar nationalistic persuasions as they swept eastwards into Belorussia.  X and Y met each other, did their courting, and fell in love in a ‘nice little spot’ called Auschwitz!  No aroma of lavender and roses, no walks down the side of romantic streams hand in hand for them I‘m afraid – the prevailing smell at the time was of smoke from the chimneys of nearby Belsen!  Their prevailing aroma was of burning human flesh.  X and Y survived – I was never quite so indiscrete as to ask how, and I’m glad – and brought to Britain by H.M. forces in 1946.

Y’know, 3,000 people senselessly lost their lives in New York, a city 3,000 miles from here, fully ten years ago, and we’re still going on about it.  Now, I’m not making light of 9/11, nor of the human misery it caused to so many living relatives.  But has it occurred to you that close on 20,000 died in the first day of the Somme in 1916?  And then there was another day of it, and another, and another?  Jesus, if five British soldiers are lost in Afghanistan in one week, it’s the top item on the 9 o’closk news today.  Can you imagine 20,000 in one day?

I saw a grey wagtail a couple of weeks ago.  I’d never seen one before – they don’t often come this far north to breed.  And I thought of those two streets that lay between being lucky and being dead.  I might never have seen a grey wagtail, and I’m so grateful that I did.  Tomorrow morning you will go for your walk with Osca, and then you’ll return to your computer and tell me how god-damned awful things are.  You’re wrong, Syd, I’m sorry but you’re very wrong.

I assure you, the world I live in and will no doubt die in, is a damned site better than the one I was born into.  And that’s a fact.

ISIS? - don't they have the right to run their own country?  After all, we fought hard enough for it, didn't we?
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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-06-14, 8:36 pm

A good post cutey, not sure why you are spitting blood mind.

Without any doudt the world today is a million times better than it was in the past, advances in every way has made it a far better place.

To end there, for me, would be wrong, I question our politicians, the mess we seem to be making of so many things, the conflict around the world, the rape, suffering, homelessness of so many.

The people here in our far better world who rely on foodbanks, the world is far more advanced but there is still a lot far form right.

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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cuteybuns on 2014-06-15, 7:00 am

Morning Syd.  Fell asleep, and apologize for cutting you short.  I spit blood sometimes when people tell me how much worse things are getting in the world.  We have conflicts, but they are tiny compared to the ones we had.  We talk about poverty, people finding life hard, etc., but literally millions want to enter this country so that they can be better off than they were!  I have a state pension I can live on, I have a doctor who gives free medical help, I have a pass that allows me to ride buses for free, and when I go somewhere I can buy myself a cup of coffee that costs a Nepalese weekly wage!  Impoverished? - It's a joke.  I like the world, I'm happy here.  I could be happier, sure, but it's been worse.  It'll do.
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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-06-15, 7:07 am

cuteybuns wrote:Morning Syd.  Fell asleep, and apologize for cutting you short.  I spit blood sometimes when people tell me how much worse things are getting in the world.  We have conflicts, but they are tiny compared to the ones we had.  We talk about poverty, people finding life hard, etc., but literally millions want to enter this country so that they can be better off than they were!  I have a state pension I can live on, I have a doctor who gives free medical help, I have a pass that allows me to ride buses for free, and when I go somewhere I can buy myself a cup of coffee that costs a Nepalese weekly wage!  Impoverished? - It's a joke.  I like the world, I'm happy here.  I could be happier, sure, but it's been worse.  It'll do.
and I agree with that, I live a similar life but my fear, and it does frighten me, when I look around we are in real danger, IMO, of blowing it.

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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  cyprussyd on 2014-06-15, 7:20 am

Sorry, couldn't resist


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Re: The SunderMad Blog, war and peace, when do we get the peace

Post  talcnturnip on 2014-06-15, 7:51 am

Okay syd first off ISIS are not playing by the rules that govern our Armed Forces and many other countries Armed Forces so are to put it in terms you WW2 kids will understand they are Bltzkreiging their way along.
These people if you can call them that are not freedom fighters or religious zealots they are as H says mostly men who crave power and the trappings of power. They wage war against the West yet wear Nike trainers and drive Mercs wear jeans and t shirts and, if they did have a cause worth fighting for they would not be covering their faces.
The Kurds in Iraq are doing their bit and will hopefully get help from UN/NATO.
As to your question was it worth it? Yes I believe it was.
Are Al Quaeda winning? No they are not and as long as there are decent people on this planet they never will.

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