Stop the War Coalition needs less self-congratulation and more critical reflection
[imperialism has changed its timing and delayed its bombing of Syria, and probably the extent of the bombing due to the preparation of Resistance forces in the region and importantly the Russian warships off the Syrian coast, and more to follow. I outline this here - Sukant Chandan, Sons of Malcolm ]
I’m pleased that the Commons voted against British involvement in military action against Syria (for now). I don’t think it’ll make a huge amount of difference in the grand scheme of things, but I’m pleased. I even celebrated with a perfectly-brewed cup of tea.
Now I’m going to ruin that brief moment of happiness. Sorry.
Dear Stop the War Coalition, stop congratulating yourselves! You have not AT ALL prevented war on Syria. Not even a little bit! There’s already a war on Syria - financed and armed by, among others, the British and US governments. YOU fed into the propaganda for this war. You demonised the Syrian government from the very beginning. You fully bought into the mainstream narrative of “brutal dictator” and “repressive regime”. You NEVER told people why Syria might be worth defending. You NEVER called for an alliance of progressive/nationalist forces (including the Syrian army and government) to defeat the very real UK/US/French/Turkish/Saudi/Qatari intervention, in spite of the fact that this is very obviously the ONLY sensible strategy given the circumstances. Your leading people pretty much ALL called for regime change in one way or other (“Assad must go”, said Tariq Ali; “Adios, Assad (I hope)”, said Owen Jones; indict “loathesome” Assad at the International Criminal Court, said Mehdi Hassan; “Give the revolutionaries the chance to shake off their pro-western leaders and defeat Assad”, said John Rees). You merely organised a few not-very-well-attended meetings opposing western intervention. Well done (for the record, there are a few of us who did a lot more than that, but we aren’t claiming any big victories right now). Such actions did NOT mobilise the population to oppose the war, and were easy for mainstream politicians to ignore.
Am I just being mean and nasty and sectarian? I don’t think so. I really (like… desperately) want to see a viable, thriving, effective movement in this country that can oppose imperialist wars. We don’t have that, and therefore I sincerely believe Stop the War Coalition could do with a bit less self-congratulation and a whole lot more critical reflection.
Stop Congratulating Yourselves on Stopping the War Coalition, more like.