» Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Soldier’s Deaths in Iraq

Asked if there was any comment on the 97th British military fatality in Iraq, the PMOS said that the Prime Minister believed that the people of Iraq had showed at the weekend by turning out to vote in a democratic election that what they wanted to see was the future of Iraq decided by democratic means. The insurgents did not want to see the future of Iraq decided by democratic means and sadly another British soldier had been killed as a result of the insurgency’s attacks. What the Prime Minister believed and what the British people would expect was that we saw the job done. That meant getting to a situation where the Iraqis themselves could look after their own security. The future of Iraq should be decided by democratic means not by the use of insurgent force. Asked if the Prime Minister’s view on getting the job done was an open ended, non-time limited offer, the PMOS said that as they had heard when the Iraqi President was here the Iraqi Government believed that our presence was necessary at the moment to allow them to build up their capacity. Not just in terms of numbers but also in terms of quality so that they could deal with the insurgency. As the Prime Minister had himself said at the press conference with the President the irony was that it was the insurgency that was keeping our troops there longer rather than the other way round. It was necessary to protect Iraq’s emerging democracy and this was only necessary because of the attacks from the insurgency.

Briefing took place at 9:00 | Search for related news


  1. We should make Mr Byers secretary of state for peace(ie war;)alongside Mr Clarke at the mimistry of truth and justice he could then see to it that the british electorate learned of UK forces’ deaths in the best and most productive manner, that is to say not at all, or, to coin a phrase; today is a good day to bury british soldiers (and not tell anybody about it).

    The present incumbent at the ministry of peace, Professor Dr John Let-them-smoke-cigarettes Reid, is not up to the job; hospitalised by the Scottish variant of Napoleon by proxy syndrome Glaswegian midget Dr Reid, who holds honorary degrees in street-fighting and fried Mars Bar studies from Gorbals Polytechnic was taken into a place of safety after attempting to authorise an SAS strike against his rival for the NewLabour throne and fellow haggis-muncher, His Grace the (socialist) Earl of Kircudbright (and young parent) Gordon Brown (56.)

    Given that Professor Reid is deeply sedated, emerging only fitfully from a deep sleep to mutter a few lines to the effect that he is Jumping Jack Flash and its a gasgasgas it seems appropriate that his position be filled by a man who has distinguished himself in just about nothing he has tackled; a seasoned, if defeated veteran of the NewLabour Moustache Wars of the late 90s Byers has all the qualities of a NewLabour Secretary of State for Peace through Bombing and Torture( a wholly owned subsidiary of Haliburton plc). It is true, of course that he will never have the aplomb and gravitas of his eminent predecessor Lord Hoon of Wolverhampton who famously hadn’t the foggiest idea of what or where his department was, who worked there, what they did and displayed only the scantiest knowledge of anything at all, really. Lord Hoon (family motto: it wasn’t me, Governor) set a very sharp benchmark for his successors but what Mr Byers lacks in legerdemain he more than makes up for in a dazzling ability to tell lides in such a shifty manner that not even his own mother would believe him, to look as though he is wearing his big brother’s suit, to be estranged completely from the idea of truth and to be divinely blessed with the ability to turn everything he touches to shit; slimy deceitful cowardly maladroitness, NewLabour personified. Cometh the hour, cometh the man, I think Ho Chi Minh said that.

    Lets have no more distressing stories about slaughtered squadies spilling their guts in the sand, Britain never got to be great by counting the deaths of its soldiers; its what the poor are for. And anyway, there’s the war graves commission tidying them up, that doesn’t come cheap and then there’s all those marching bands and cripples in wheelchairs and the Cenotaph and all that every November. Lets hear no more of casualties. AS long as they’re not sons of cabinet ministers or newpaper editors its a price worth paying to free Istanbul. Or wherever.

    Forward with NewLabour. Destiny calls not Byers of Tyneside, nor Byers of Railtrack but, yes, Byers of Arabia.

    Comment by Tasty Macfadden — 20 Oct 2005 on 2:44 am | Link
  2. One of the milestones which we will pass soon is the death of soldier number 100. Doubtless the press will have a little flurry of headlines, but that’s not going to make any real difference.

    Maybe the people of Iraq ‘want to see their future determined by democratic means’, but do the people of Britain want the same thing at the continuing expense (in every sense) of our people? And why is it really necessary for us to protect Iraq’s democracy? After all, we deal with many other non-democratic regimes.

    The Iraqis will never be in a position to manage their own affairs whilst the occupation continues, and whilst we and others continue to pour our forces’ blood and our national resources into that country.

    What’s keeping the troops in Iraq is Blair. We could just pack our tents and steal away into the night, but Blair does not have sufficient courage to do that.

    When the departure date is finally set we can expect to see a major increase in the blood-letting. This time however it will be Iraqis killing each other with even greater ferocity than at present. Either that, or we’ll be there for the next five years, being attacked by ‘insurgents’

    Comment by Chuck Unsworth — 20 Oct 2005 on 9:00 am | Link
  3. Remembrance day would seem like a good time to celebrate that particular milestone; they’ll be in good company with all the rest killed in senseless wars. That would also would serve as a fitting reminder that in 50 years nothing has really changed.

    Comment by PapaLazzzaru — 21 Oct 2005 on 9:42 pm | Link
  4. Now the US Military are being told that the occupation will continue until ‘2007 or 2008’, leading to much concern in the ranks. One General has remarked that this will lead to the loss of their best and most experienced personnel. He did not explain how this might happen but at current casualty rates that won’t take too long. Admittedly they operate by rotation, but this amounts to second, third or even fourth tours of duty for some, with all of the inherent dangers of changeovers.

    It follows that we can certainly expect the same periods of service for our people. The difference being that US personnel do not have the same contractual ties as do ours.

    Exit strategy? Presumably we’ll leave just as soon as Bush tells us we can go. In the meantime the costs (in every sense) escalate.

    Comment by Chuck Unsworth — 27 Oct 2005 on 2:21 pm | Link

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