Following the disastrous wars on Iraq and Libya and the ongoing war on Afghanistan – which have all resulted in massive death and destruction – there are now dangers of new wars being launched by the Western powers in the Middle East.
The United States and Britain are particularly turning their attention to Syria and Iran with moves to weaken both states with sanctions, which as the Stop the War Coalition puts it “have never been an alternative to war as much as a prelude to it, acclimatising public opinion to the “inevitability” of war.”
The people of Syria and Iran have the right to self determination – they should be free to exercise their own democratic rights and determine their own system of government without external forces interfering with bombs and guns in the way which proved so disastrous in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya.
The Student Broad Left supports the Stop the War Coalition’s forthcoming protest against western intervention in the Middle East.
Stop the War Coalition protest
No Western intervention – Hands off Iran & Syria
Saturday 28 January, 2-4pm
US Embassy, Grosvenor Square, London W1A 1LQ
The article ‘Iran: Ten Reasons to protest against war and sanctions‘ gives a persuasive case against war on Iran which we highly recommend.
Below we share a statement from the Stop the War coalition opposing intervention in Syria which was published last month.
No foreign intervention in Syria Statement by Stop the War Coalition
Published in December 2011
There is a clear danger of yet another war in the Middle East. The United States and Britain are turning their attention to Syria, with the intention of engineering regime change in their favour.
Stop the War Coalition fully supports the right of the peoples in all the countries of the Middle East to determine their own future and assert democratic rights. We are therefore implacably opposed to any external intervention, especially military intervention, in Syria.
In relation to Syria, any military intervention will most likely be even more destructive and costly than it was in Libya. It will increase Arab and Muslim alienation from the western powers. Most Syrian people, while demanding democratic rights, would oppose any such interference.
Public opinion in Britain would not support any further military adventures of the type seen in Iraq, Afghanistan or Libya, especially at a time when government austerity policies pose a growing threat to living standards.
NATO is already manoeuvring to weaken Syria through sanctions, which have never been an alternative to war as much as a prelude to it, acclimatising public opinion to the “inevitability” of war. It is also interfering politically, trying to ensure that the Assad regime is replaced by one with a pro-western orientation, rather than one based on those forces which have struggled for years to create a democratic and anti-imperialist alternative.
Stop the War Coalition believes the Syrian people should assert their own democratic rights and determine their own system of government without the kind of external interference which has proved so disastrous in Iraq and Afghanistan, and looks like working no better in Libya. We therefore oppose any foreign attempts to create an unrepresentative “government-in-exile”, which would have no purpose beyond further legitimising the case for military intervention.
World opinion, as expressed at the United Nations, is also clearly against any interference in Syria, with China, Russia, India and Brazil among those opposed. The US and Britain are therefore looking once more to the Arab League, and in this case Turkey, to provide a cover for their war policy. However, the world will not get fooled again after the experience of Libya, where a supposed intervention “to save civilians” developed into a regime change war which cost at least 30,000 lives.
Stop the War Coalition therefore opposes all foreign military intervention in Syria.