Yesterday, was mental, mental, chicken oriental! I was up at 4.30am and I dropped my poor little Menace at her childminders at 5.45am (I dropped her in jimmie jammers, you’ll pleased to know that she went straight back to sleep as soon as I handed her over) so that I could nip up to London town to join Gaby Roslin and Paul Ross in the BBC London Breakfast studio to be part of their regular morning slot and go through the day’s papers with them at 7am!!
Just as an aside, I was so pissed off, when I joined the M3 and discovered that I was actually driving away from London and drove a whole junction in the wrong direction at 6am, with only an hour to spare. I needed to be there to prepare and read the stories in advance! Aaaarggh!! It was fairly stressful.
I have uploaded the segment onto You Tube – so you can listen if you like. It’s only 8 minutes.
In summary, just in case you can’t be arsed to listen. I was invited because it was Remembrance Day and they wanted a military connection on the show. I decided that I was thinking of re-naming the day Realisation Day because I hoped a few people may realise that we are a nation at war. There is a war raging in Afghanistan and the people of Great Britain need to get behind it. I don’t think the nation as a whole really understands why we are there, what the military are trying to achieve and what does success look like.
I hear this a lot – I support the soldiers but I don’t support the war. The soldiers are the war. The Armed Forces want to achieve the mission. The Armed Forces want victory in Afghanistan. The people of Britain need to pick a team and it should be Team ISAF.
I did an interview with Heather at NotefromLapland and I am going to copy some of that across so you can get the gist.
[H] I guess most people, myself included, don’t know what they should be doing though. Reading reports about soldiers dying in the press isn’t going to change the fact that they are dead and there seems little else we can do.
As a nation we have responsibility to support our serviceman and look at the conflicts our democratically elected Government sends them too and say is this what we want as a nation. If it is what we want as a country then we need to get behind them and support a victorious campaign. Death is a loss to an organisation that bases success on gains, yet we only look at the conflict when someone dies. What about all the successes of the campaign? The British people need to demand to know about our victories in Afghanistan because there are many.
[H] You said earlier that we don’t know what success looks like, that’s true, us civilian bystanders hardly understand what it is exactly we are supposed to be acheiving in Afghanistan except the woolly concept of peace. What does success look like?
For example, one Tribal Elder wrote in English to the family of a serviceman who had died serving his country in his village. In his letter, he mourned the loss of their son but said he had brought many great things to his village and they would be forever in debt to him. The Elder wanted his family to know that the soldier had not died in vain. These are the stories that the British public should be reading not just watching an attrition meter and hang their head in mourning for another soldier who has given his life.
[H]What is the one most important thing about that Afghanistan conflict you have come away with, the one thing you would like everyone to understand?
We are there now and regardless of whether that is right or wrong we can’t turn back the clock. If we don’t support the campaign then every loss of life of an ISAF soldier would have been lost in vain. I think that we can resolve this conflict and stabilise Afghanistan. If we as a nation don’t believe in the campaign then we should state that as a whole, but if we do believe in the campaign then we have to get behind it, pull our heads out of the sand and unite as a country to support our armed forces. The time for apathy is over – it is time as country take responsibility for our choices and start using our voices.
[H]Start using out voices for what? Exactly what can we be doing other than to support them in our minds?
We the community of Britain can ask questions about the campaign and actually be interested in what is going on. We can ask ‘what does success look like?. We can demand that our troops are adequately equipped to engage in the conflicts our Governments send them so that they can be victorious on behalf. We can want them to achieve success and believe in that success – maybe even cheer when we achieve it. Can you imagine a crowd at a football match with their heads down, their mouths shut, thinking they want their team to win. This is where the majority are sitting at the moment. Do you think in the Second World War nobody cared if we won or lost? The nation rallied – we need to rally again.
For the full interview click here
So, Decision Points by George ‘Water Torturer’ Bush. I was offered a copy by Ebury to review it. I hesitated at first and then decided, ‘ok. I’ll take the book.’ Then I felt a bit sick. On Wednesday it arrived. Now, it’s in the house, I feel sick just having it inside my home. It’s very difficult to put into words what I think of George W Bush. I have read some of what those who have read it have said. I was hoping that the book might be an honest account of his time in orifice. I thought that it might say the following:
1.) It’s true I fixed the Florida ballot and I robbed Al Gore of his presidency
2.) I used Sept 11th as an excuse to bully Saddam Hussein out of power so that I could have his oil, finish my Daddy’s unfinished business and incite further rage about American Imperialism amongst the Muslim community.
3.) I knew all along there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq
4.) I am Christian Fundamentalist and I am raging a personal war with Islam
5.) Tony Blair is part of my Christian Fundamentalist cult and he thinks he is the Messiah born again and he said he would be my brother in arms in raging war against Islam
6.) Even though most of the 9/11 bombers come from Saudi Arabia and were trained in Pakistan, I decided not to get into it with the Saudi’s because we have a shared love of oil, and also, Pakistan has nukes so I decided not to get into it with them either.
7.) I am a compulsive, pathological and shameless liar
8.) I genuinely believe that tying jumpers loosely around my shoulders over my shirt makes me look like a knobhead but it’s good look for the club and it goes down well with my fellow WASPs (white anglo saxon protestants) that keep my ego oiled.
9.) My love of oil, money and power goes beyond rational behaviour
10.) I didn’t write this book myself, Babs did it for me.
11.) I am actually a Bonobo Monkey
Having flicked through it and read some of the talk of to ‘water torture’ or ‘not to water torture’ that is the question I am pretty confident that all of the above is not likely to appear in the book I agreed to read, so I have come to a decision point of my own which is that I can’t be bothered to read this book.
I once watched a recording of George Bush addressing a ship full of sailors (One of those big mother fuckers, you know like the SS Harry Truman that is manned by over 5000 folk – an aircraft carrier thingy) and where he said that Saddam Hussein was responsible for September 11th.
I have therefore decided to run a competition to giveaway my copy of the book and purge my body of the sickness that it has brought upon me.
To win a copy of the book all you have to do is answer this question:
What does the ‘W’ in George W Bush stand for?
Clue: The answer is NOT Walker.
– Jane Trueman won all the toys!
– Staff Sgt Sal Giunta on Tuesday will receive the Medal of Honor from President Obama
“On October 25, 2007, taking part in a company wide combat operation named “Rock Avalanche,” then Specialist Giunta set in with First Platoon, Battle Company, of the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, on a rugged mountain ridge in the Korengal Valley of northeastern Afghanistan. Everyone knew the enemy was tenacious—a couple of days earlier, they had overrun U.S. lines manned by Second Platoon and the Scouts, killing Staff Sergeant Larry Rougle and injuring two others. Giunta’s platoon had been near enough to hear the battle but too far away to help. On the 25th, as night fell, they withdrew from their position and walked into a deadly L-shaped ambush. “There were more bullets in the air than stars in the sky” is how Giunta describes the moment he knew they were being attacked at close range. “A wall of bullets at everyone, at the same time, with one crack and then a million other cracks afterwards.”
For Tim Hetherington’s full Vanity Fair article click here
To watch a spectacular, chilling and allegorical interview with Staff Sgt Giunta click here