FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

My Son Died for a Lie

Tony Blair says we are now fighting a “new war” in Iraq. That may suit him, to distract people from questions about the “old war” there. The one which killed my son Gordon at the age of 19. Sent to Iraq with just six months training at Catterick, with inadequate protection, he was killed by a bomb in Basra in June.

Gordon wanted to be a soldier to defend his country. Not to die in a war of aggression. My family is one of nearly 70 grieving for a lost son because of this war. Two more families joined the list yesterday. Many more of our soldiers are suffering from serious injuries.

Some people say that soldiers have to expect to die or be injured when they sign up for the armed services. Maybe so. But they also have the right to expect that they will only be sent to fight for a proper cause, by a government which tells the truth.

These poor boys are being sent to Iraq to die for this government’s lies. Where are the chemical and nuclear weapons they were supposed to be looking for? And if the war was about upholding the UN, why has the UN secretary general now said it is unlawful? Blair hasn’t answered that either.

He said our troops would be welcomed by the Iraqis. Instead, it is all endless bloodshed and chaos there. Yet he hasn’t apologised. If my children had the same regard for honesty as the prime minister, I would be ashamed.

It seems to me that Blair cares more about George Bush than about British soldiers. He made secret promises to the president behind our backs, without a thought for people like Gordon, or like my daughter Maxine, deprived of her brother.

If he cares, why doesn’t he bring our troops back home before more are killed? After all, power is supposed to have been handed over to the Iraqi government. There are no more weapons of mass destruction to look for. The Iraqis should be allowed to sort out their own problems now.

Instead, I heard Geoff Hoon talking about sending more of our lads and lasses over to Iraq. That will mean more dead, more injured, to stop the government facing up to what it has done. I am working with other service families to ensure that our voice can be heard too. Many have already got in touch.

I grieve also for all the Iraqis who have died in this war. It all seems to have been completely unnecessary.

Blair may be let off the hook by Lord This and Justice That in their inquiries. The establishment will stick together. But I do not believe the ordinary people will forgive him so easily.

I want the government to be held to account. The prime minister says he wants a democracy for Iraq. If we had a proper democracy here, we would never have got into this war. And Gordon would be with us at Christmas.

ROSE GENTLE is the mother of Gordon Gentle, a British soldier killed in Iraq this year. She can be reached at: office@stopwar.org.uk

 

More articles by:
Weekend Edition
April 20, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Ruling Class Operatives Say the Darndest Things: On Devils Known and Not
Conn Hallinan
The Great Game Comes to Syria
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Mother of War
Andrew Levine
“How Come?” Questions
Doug Noble
A Tale of Two Atrocities: Douma and Gaza
Kenneth Surin
The Blight of Ukania
Howard Lisnoff
How James Comey Became the Strange New Hero of the Liberals
William Blum
Anti-Empire Report: Unseen Persons
Lawrence Davidson
Missiles Over Damascus
Patrick Cockburn
The Plight of the Yazidi of Afrin
Pete Dolack
Fooled Again? Trump Trade Policy Elevates Corporate Power
Stan Cox
For Climate Mobilization, Look to 1960s Vietnam Before Turning to 1940s America
William Hawes
Global Weirding
Dan Glazebrook
World War is Still in the Cards
Nick Pemberton
In Defense of Cardi B: Beyond Bourgeois PC Culture
Ishmael Reed
Hollywood’s Last Days?
Peter Certo
There Was Nothing Humanitarian About Our Strikes on Syria
Dean Baker
China’s “Currency Devaluation Game”
Ann Garrison
Why Don’t We All Vote to Commit International Crimes?
LEJ Rachell
The Baddest Black Power Artist You Never Heard Of
Lawrence Ware
All Hell Broke Out in Oklahoma
Franklin Lamb
Tehran’s Syria: Lebanon Colonization Project is Collapsing
Donny Swanson
Janus v. AFSCME: What’s It All About?
Will Podmore
Brexit and the Windrush Britons
Brian Saady
Boehner’s Marijuana Lobbying is Symptomatic of Special-Interest Problem
Julian Vigo
Google’s Delisting and Censorship of Information
Patrick Walker
Political Dynamite: Poor People’s Campaign and the Movement for a People’s Party
Fred Gardner
Medical Board to MDs: Emphasize Dangers of Marijuana
Rob Seimetz
We Must Stand In Solidarity With Eric Reid
Missy Comley Beattie
Remembering Barbara Bush
Wim Laven
Teaching Peace in a Time of Hate
Thomas Knapp
Freedom is Winning in the Encryption Arms Race
Mir Alikhan
There Won’t be Peace in Afghanistan Until There’s Peace in Kashmir
Robert Koehler
Playing War in Syria
Tamara Pearson
US Shootings: Gun Industry Killing More People Overseas
John Feffer
Trump’s Trade War is About Trump Not China
Morris Pearl
Why the Census Shouldn’t Ask About Citizenship
Ralph Nader
Bill Curry on the Move against Public Corruption
Josh Hoxie
Five Tax Myths Debunked
Leslie Mullin
Democratic Space in Adverse Times: Milestone at Haiti’s University of the Aristide Foundation
Louis Proyect
Syria and Neo-McCarthyism
Dean Baker
Finance 202 Meets Economics 101
Abel Cohen
Forget Gun Control, Try Bullet Control
Robert Fantina
“Damascus Time:” An Iranian Movie
David Yearsley
Bach and Taxes
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail