Sunday, 15 March 2009

punishing a machine gun

Thursday frontpages had a lot of coverage on the Luton protest to the regiment that just came back from Iraq. if you look carefully at the protest, there is only one thing that essentially differentiate that protest from a lot of the others that had gone on - the fact that these are muslims protesting. forget about the placards and shouting of "butchers, war criminals, murderers" etc, I do not believe that these guys invented the usage of these words to describe the people - whether they be politicians or soldiers - who are involved in this war.
what made this protest to the head line, apparently, is that it generated divide between the british and the muslim comunity, because the way the protest was conducted was "offensive."
what was the war for? why did the soldiers go to iraq? in the past, the public sees the soldiers as brave and glorious after a war because they have defended their country, they sacrifice their life for their country, or sometimes the soldiers had conquered other parts of the world and the public sees it as ligitimate. in the current case, none of these applies. the war on iraq is not a glory, it's a shame on the countries involved, it is illigitimate. above all, the war has been offensive to the muslims everywere.
offensive, firstly because the british (I dare not to say aout the general public but at least the government) is in effect discriminating muslims, my previous housemate was in fact a subject of that discrimination - he was arrested because he downloaded materials from the american government web site on al qaida for research in university, he was detained for over 20 days, interogated about the cartoons he drew, books he read etc and of course nothing came out of it. who has generated the divide between the british and the muslim comunity?
secondly, people fail to understand that (correct me if I'm wrong), muslims really do see their remote people as brothers. if your brothers are killed, will you go call the guys who killed them murderers? I'm sure that the british soldiers tried their best to avoid killing civilians but the fact is that they did. and since the war is illigitimate in the first place, accidental killing of civilians is just unjustifiable.

there is one aspect that the protest should have been done better however, which is that the protest should really be directed more tot eh politicians, not to the soldiers. after all, you do not punnish a machine gun after it has been used to kill someone. you punish the person who used the machine gun. soldiers are like machines n a way, but they are of course also individuals with feelings.

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