Sunday, 19 July 2009

Helicopters to Afghanistan?

Letter to the Kent on Sunday based on their headline story:

Of course we should ask why the government is ignoring Army calls to be provided with the equipment necessary to operate effectively, but surely it is time to ask some even bigger questions about our involvement in Afghanistan.

The purpose of the US led invasion of Afghanistan was to capture Bin Laden and put an end to al-Qaida, Britain also wanted to end the opium production. Sadly, opium production has increased twenty fold since 2001, the threat of terrorism has risen, world opinion is against the NATO led occupation and the majority of British people want troops home by the end of the year.

It seems then that discussions about how many helicopters the troops need miss the wider point that we have followed the US into a war that has little legitimacy. We should not have invaded Afghanistan and it is time for our troops to return.

Furthermore, NATO should not be the organisation in charge of security in Afghanistan. NATO bizarrely supports some Middle Eastern states with appalling records on human rights while adopting an aggressive stance against others. The United Nations should take the lead in restoring a peaceful democracy and rebuilding the country.

Let's hand Afghanistan to the UN and withdraw from this pointless war.

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