Get out of Iraq and Afghanistan to end terrorism

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NEWS LINE sends its condolences to the families of those who were killed in Thursday’s terrorist attacks on London, and its best wishes for a speedy recovery to those who were injured.

The Marxist movement has always opposed terrorism as playing into the hands of the class enemy, giving it the opportunity to strike huge and bloody blows at the masses of the world.

September 11 2001 created the conditions for Bush and Blair to assault Afghanistan and Iraq and to inflict hundreds of thousands of casualties.

There is no doubt that many of those killed and injured on Thursday would have been opponents of the imperialist wars that are taking place.

There is also no doubt that Bush and Blair will use the bombings to select domestic and foreign targets for the most violent assault.

However, what Thursday’s attacks did show, was the complete failure of all of the Blair government’s draconian anti-terror measures, and all of its spying policies to even gain a whisper of what was about to happen.

It is a fact that the threat of terrorist attack was downgraded from ‘severe general’ to ‘substantial’ just days ago.

As well, after all of the exercises against biological, chemical and even nuclear attack on the transport system, the planting of four small 10 pound bombs brought the capital to a halt, and a good part of the country around it.

All traffic on the motorways was warned not to enter London – one of the greatest cities in the world was closed down, by four ten pound bombs.

The conclusion reached by the Metropolitan Police Chief, Sir Iain Blair, yesterday from all this, was to observe that it was ‘blindingly obvious’ that a terrorist cell was operating in Britain.

It was even more ‘blindingly obvious’ that this was going on despite all of Labour’s draconian anti-terror measures, which proved to be useless.

In fact, thousands of police, including over a thousand of the Metropolitan Police, had been diverted to Edinburgh to protect the G8 – while the attack came in London.

The same police were rushed to the capital after the event, so blind was British intelligence.

Home Secretary Charles Clarke even admitted that identity cards would have made no difference, and said that looking for potential bombers was like searching for ‘needles in haystacks’.

He admitted that the failure to predict Thursday’s bombs ‘certainly was a failure of intelligence in the sense that we didn’t know this was coming’.

So here you have British imperialism setting Iraq and Afghanistan ablaze, at the same time as it has no means of defending its own civilian population from counter-attack. The oil prize is obviously too great to worry about collateral damage.

The entire knowledge of British intelligence seems to have been that at some stage or other there would be a ‘terrorist attack on Britain’, and that nothing could be done about it.

Bush and Blair have now called to step up the ‘war on terror’, in other words to further attack the peoples of the Middle East and central Asia, while no doubt setting out to mass arrest ‘terrorist suspects’ in the UK, bringing in a new form of internment.

The logic for that would seem to come from Clarke – that if you cannot find the needles in the haystack, then burn the haystack down.

The trade unions in Britain must support the struggle of the Iraqi and Afghan peoples for their national liberation from imperialist occupation.

They must oppose any attempts to mass arrest terrorist suspects in Britain and to incite violence against Muslim people.

The best contribution that the British workers can make towards a terror free world is to bring down the Blair government, and bring in a workers’ government that will withdraw troops from Iraq and Afghanistan at once.

This would constitute a body blow against imperialist terrorism and cement the unity of the British workers with the oppressed nations.