Syrian Chemical Weapons Attack Please Take Action

Please take the following actions concerning this horrific crime against humanity: the chemical attack on the people of Syria including at least 30 children who were the first ones to die.‘Victims reached us in different states – some had muscular and respiratory paralysis, which we tried treating with tranquilisers and Atropine. They had secretions from the mouth and nose that were white. Some were completely unconscious. Some had severe muscular pain. Children are the first ones to die, they cannot fight this back. We only had one child who, thank God, survived.’  from an Amnesty International interview with a doctor working at the specialised surgery hospital thirty miles from the attack. In one heartbreaking incident one man tragically lost 22 members of his family including baby twins

All petitions are quick sign, so will take only a few moments to complete. I am sure most people are appalled by the horrendous gas attack on these long suffering people whose lives have been torn apart by war and devastation few of us have ever experienced or can ever begin to imagine.

If you do not have time to read the information below please at least sign the petitions:

Sign now to urgently call on Europe to act.
https://secure.avaaz.org/campaign/en/syria_idlib_gas_attack_loc/

Demand that the UN Security Council take decisive action today.
https://www.amnesty.org.uk/actions/demand-justice-victims-syria-idlib-chemical-gas-attack?

War is NOT the Answer, Don’t Bomb Syrian Civilians!
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/810/975/596/war-is-not-the-answer-dont-bomb-syrian-civilians/

For more information about the petitions and related issues please continue reading and take the suggested actions if you have not already done so:

Please read the following from the global on-line activist network, Avaaz :

“These kids have suffered such extreme trauma that a top doctor has created a new name for their pain — ‘Human Devastation Syndrome’. For six years the world has failed to protect them. Now, with Trump’s policy unpredictable, and Putin fully backing the regime, immunity for the perpetrators of these crimes is a real possibility.

But Europe can be the world’s conscience. Already brave victims and prosecutors in Spain and Germany are using universal jurisdiction law to take cases against the highest officials of the regime. Europe can now make clear that Syria will not get away with war crimes.

The message Europe sends right now could give Assad the green light to keep gassing civilians, or let him know he will face justice. Let’s send a resounding message to Europe’s leaders fast that there will be a massive public backlash if they don’t stand up for humanity”:

Abdel Hamid, a Syrian father, cradles his two dead baby twins, reportedly gassed to death with chemical weapons by the Syrian regime — just days after Trump officials said the US will no longer go after President Assad as a war criminal.

The regime that has murdered, tortured, starved, and raped hundreds of thousands of its own people, now feels it can slaughter its way to victory, get off scot free, and stay in power.

One bloc can stop that — Europe.

The EU is deciding right now what to do on Syria, and there are rumours some countries could push for a ‘deal with the devil’. But if enough of us demand Europe’s leaders lock up the monsters who commit these crimes, it could be the only threat that stops more murder. Sign now to urgently call on Europe to act.

Please add your name to a petition to urge European leaders to act.

https://secure.avaaz.org/campaign/en/syria_idlib_gas_attack_loc/

Action and information From Amnesty International

‘Children are the first ones to die, they cannot fight back…’
Syrian doctor describing the aftermath.

Please read the following from Amnesty International

“On Tuesday, Syria suffered the deadliest use of chemical weapons since 2013, with more than 70 people – many of them children – killed, and hundreds more injured.

This crime cannot go unpunished.

Using chemical weapons is a war crime. Russian and Syrian authorities say they are not responsible. The UN must investigate this gruesome attack now and bring the perpetrators to justice.”

Demand that the UN Security Council take decisive action today.

Please sign and share the action below which is to send a message to the Secretary General of the United Nations .

https://www.amnesty.org.uk/actions/demand-justice-victims-syria-idlib-chemical-gas-attack?

More from Amnesty International

By now many of you may have seen the horrific footage and images from on the ground. Children and civilians gasping for air, unable to breathe from the chemical gas suffocating their airways, burning away at their skin.

One piece of footage, which is consistent with other available evidence, shows nine children lying lifeless in the back of a pick-up truck. The children are naked or partially dressed; they appear to have died in their beds.

Chemical weapons experts working with us have confirmed that victims are very likely to have been exposed to a nerve agent or compound, such as Sarin. This is one of the deadliest weapons of warfare, causing its victims to vomit, convulse, suffocate from respiratory failure and in many cases, lose their lives.

The conflict in Syria has caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands and led millions of people – more than half the population – to flee their homes, either abroad or within Syria.

It’s time to deliver justice for victims and their families. It’s time to ensure that war crimes and crimes against humanity do not go unpunished.

Without justice and accountability, attacks like yesterday’s could happen again.”

Care2 Petition 

War is NOT the Answer, Don’t Bomb Syrian Civilians!

“Trump made an impulsive and irresponsible decision to go ahead and strike Syria with missiles. He was responding to the horrible chemical attack earlier this week, but according to experts in international relations, this move will not actually stop chemical warfare. Instead, this reactionary strike will make it harder for international coalitions to form to actually stop terrorism. And, it was an escalation tactic that will only make matters worse for those suffering the most: innocent Syrian civilians. “

Sign to tell Trump: war is not the answer, stop bombing Syrian civilians!

Please read more and sign and share the petition:
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/810/975/596/war-is-not-the-answer-dont-bomb-syrian-civilians/

Please sign and share widely all three petitions

Related Links

Assad has unleashed horror on Syria. The EU must not make a deal with him:
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/apr/04/syria-assad-white-helmets-torture-eu-prosecute?CMP=oth_b-aplnews_d-2

Here’s how German courts are planning to prosecute Syrian war crimes (Washington Post)
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/democracy-post/wp/2017/04/04/heres-how-german-courts-are-planning-to-prosecute-syrian-war-crimes/?utm_term=.52bb8abef5e9

Spanish court to investigate complaint against Syrian security forces (Reuters)
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-syria-spain-idUSKBN16Y1KD

 

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The Tory Government is no Longer Accepting Disabled Refugee Children Escaping the War in Syria

Just when you think this government could not get more callous, more cruel, more indifferent.

The Tory Government is on longer accepting disabled refugee children escaping the war in Syria and elsewhere because it says it cannot cope with their needs.

syrian-wheelchair

According to the following article in the Independent the Government’sVulnerable Children’s Resettlement Scheme, which is supposed to rehome 3,000 children with their families from countries including Syria, Libya, Yemen and Iraq, is not accepting young people with complex needs, including disabilities and learning difficulties.”

Shantha Barriga, director of Human Rights Watch’s disability rights division, said: “Shutting the door on vulnerable children is an affront to British values.

“People with disabilities endure unimaginable hardship during conflict, and many faced huge hurdles in escaping the violence. That the UK now says it’s not prepared to accept refugees with disabilities is unthinkable.

“It’s an indefensible decision and blatant discrimination. The UK is not simply lacking ‘suitable accommodation’ in this case, but seems to be lacking political will.”

Read more:
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/disabled-child-refugees-uk-suspend-entry-home-office-resettlement-unhcr-united-nations-lord-dubs-a7571451.html

So many of the comments following the above article are just appalling, how people can say such things so openly, particularly when it concerns the welfare of children is shocking, their selfishness and bigotry is so palpable.

Shame on the government, a new low even by Tory standards. The UK is one of the richest countries in the world, of course we can care for these disabled children. It is just that the government does not want to, they would rather give tax concessions to corporations. The Tories have no humanity, no compassion. These long suffering and very vulnerable children should be taken in and given refuge, we are more than able to provide the care these children need here in the UK as we are the care that our own disabled children and adults need but which they are often denied .

Sadly we do not take care of disabled people already living in this country. In both cases it is not the lack of finances or the inability to provide for disabled people whether refugees or otherwise, it is simply that the government do not want to do so. With cuts in services and to benefits life is a struggle for disabled and sick people here in the UK. This latest decision to deny access to the UK for disabled refugee children confirms the government’s callous uncaring attitude to disabled and sick people.

Not only the government of course it seems that as a country we have become less caring, ignoring the plight of others with callous indifference even outright hostility, not only of people from other countries but at home also. So few have stood against the government’s assault on disabled people, the cuts in  benefits and services which have left disabled people struggling, making already difficult lives more miserable.

If we – as a nation – get used to being mean-spirited to refugees, then we will end up being increasingly mean-spirited to others ‘closer to home’.  The ‘not my problem’ mantra will turn into a habitual mindset, which will eventually include (or exclude) all of us.

The above comment on the independent article sums this up nicely. It is one of the very few supportive compassionate comments.

Also the UK the UK government announced it will end a scheme that allows unaccompanied child refugees to come to the UK.

Action you can take – petition, tweet, send e-mails/letters

Stand up for the right of unaccompanied child refugees to seek a safe home in the UK.

Please sign petitions and take the other actions below, while they do not specifically relate to disabled refugee children they nonetheless concern refugee children the UK had previously promised to allow entry in the UK

Petition

UK: Don’t abandon Syrian child refugees

“The Syrian war has left thousands of children without a family. Alone in the world, carrying the trauma of the horrors they have been through, many of these children still have nowhere safe to call home. Please sign this petition to demand that the UK government honour its pledge to give sanctuary to 3,000 Syrian child refugees.

Please read more and sign the petition:
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/711/816/620/uk-dont-abandon-syrian-child-refugees/

Please read the following from   Global Citizen and take the suggested actions

“On Wednesday, our government announced it will end a scheme that allows unaccompanied child refugees to come to the UK.

I believe this is shameful – and requires immediate public outcry. Click here to send a tweet to Home Secretary Amber Rudd calling for reversal of this decision.

The scheme was devised by a former child refugee – Alfred Dubs – who was rescued from the Nazis and brought to London as a 6-year-old by the ‘Kindertransport’ in 1939. He now says he owes his life to Sir Nicholas Winton, who started the scheme.

We are not talking about terrorists. We are talking about children who are alone, with no family, home, or safe place to go. If we, as one of the richest countries in the world, cannot find the compassion to help, who will?

I believe Britain is better than this. If you agree, click here to tweet Amber Rudd calling on her to keep this scheme running and allow unaccompanied child refugees a safe home in the UK.

With hope,

Zoe and the Global Citizen team

PS. Not on Twitter? Click here to write a letter to a refugee instead.

There are just 3000 children, a small number.

Write to Amber Rudd and Teresa May voicing your concerns about the abandonment of lone refugee children along with the UKs’ recent rejection of disabled children. Both shockingly shameful acts. Please be polite. I know it makes those of us who care about others very angry, we cannot understand the cold indifference to suffering, particularly to vulnerable children, which of course all children are whether able or disabled.

You can contact Amber Rudd here:
http://www.parliament.uk/biographies/commons/amber-rudd/3983

You may wish also to send your comments to Teresa May:
http://www.parliament.uk/biographies/commons/mrs-theresa-may/8

Related Link

50,000-name petition against the scrapping of asylum scheme for child refugees is delivered to Downing Street

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/50000-name-petition-against-scrapping-9800408  It is so good to see that many people care about this grave social injustice.

Warmonger

“I’m fed up to the ears with old men dreaming up wars for young men to die in.” 
George S. McGovern
 
22745907644_bd0abb886b_h
 
Graphic Byzantine_K
 
Looks like this b****** got what he wanted. Safe in his home in the Cotswolds this Christmas while the young die in a war, not for the sake of the people of Syria, not for the sake of people here in the UK, not for the sake of justice but for the sake of greed and power. 
 
“All wars are fought for the acquisition of wealth”
Socrates
 
Most of us wherever we live, be it in Syria, the UK, France, the USA, Turkey … just want to live out our lives in peace. Instead our lives are destroyed by these power hungry sociopaths, mostly as a result of the insatiable quest for power and acquisition. 
 
O soldier who is sentenced by man’s cruel law to forsake his mate and his little ones and kin to go out of the field of death for the sake of greed in its guise of duty.
Gibran Kahlil Gibran, from A Tear and a Smile
 
If this power hungry greed driven sociopath wants air strikes let him be amongst the first. Those who are sent into war, for war is what it is of course, put their lives at risk, it surely goes without saying; these are people whose individual lives matter, not statistics and vagaries but real people. Maybe misguided into joining the armed forces, maybe even willing to do so knowing the full significance of the actions they take. But whatever their reasons their lives are as important as Cameron’s is to him.
 
Also consider the civilian population, the Syrian people, thousands of innocent people will die. A sad day and a shameful one for the UK.
 
I wonder how keen Cameron would be if he like the Kings of times past was expected to lead his troops into battle. Would he be so all fired up to go to war if he had to leave his home and his family and put his life on the line? I doubt it. Like the coward he is he sends others to die with the callous indifference typical of the sociopath that he is.
 
In this time of so called austerity when allegedly there is not enough money to pay for benefits for sick and disabled people or the unemployed, where 3.7 million Children live in poverty and people have to rely on food banks and endless austerity measures such as cuts to public services there is always money for war.
 
“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who are hungry and are not fed, those who are cold and not clothed.” 
Dwight D. Eisenhower
 
Here is what Cameron said in October this year:
tumblr_nyr99ecDJH1r6v6bdo1_540
 
The dust had not even settled after the debate –  as the result was announced MPs cheered – as four Tornado jets took off from RAF Akrotiri, Cyprus, after the vote. 
 
More quotes 
“No war has ever won in the history, because people died in every single war! Where there are deaths, there is no victory!” 
Mehmet Murat ildan
 
My first wish is to see this plague of mankind, war, banished from the earth.”
George Washington
 
“A people free to choose will always choose peace.”
Ronald Reagan
 
“In all history there is no war which was not hatched by the governments, the governments alone, independent of the interests of the people, to whom war is always pernicious even when successful.” 
Leo Tolstoy 
 
Colorful demonstrations and weekend marches are vital but alone are not powerful enough to stop wars. Wars will be stopped only when soldiers refuse to fight, when workers refuse to load weapons onto ships and aircraft, when people boycott the economic outposts of Empire that are strung across the globe. ” 
Arundhati Roy, Public Power in the Age of Empire
 
Related Links

The Ballad of Aslan and Rose

AslanRose

Below is a guest post by the animal and human rights activist and supporter of free software Luis Leonel.

THE BALLAD OF ASLAN AND ROSE

Aslan, a 17-year-old Syrian teenager refugee has walked more than 300 miles (500 kilometers) to the Greek Island of Lesbos in his quest for a new life with Rose, his puppy.

“I love my dog. I need her,” Aslan said.

GOOD LUCK, ASLAN AND ROSE!

A teenager walked more than 300 miles to escape war-torn Syria with his puppy. 

Refugee Aslan, 17, took his dog Rose all the way to the Greek island Lesbos as he felt he couldn’t leave his pooch behind.

The Syrian teenager is one of 300,000 migrants who have arrived in Greece this year, even making a passport for Rose.

Read more:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3245224/Syrian-teen-refugee-walked-300-miles-puppy-Lesbos.html

Greece: Syrian Aslan and his puppy Rose

 

Please Take Action to Help Refugees

o-AYLAN-AND-GALIP-KURDI-570

Aylan Kurdi (left) and his brother Galip (right), who died fleeing war and persecution.

This made me want to cry. If this does not break your heart you haven’t got one. Imagine if these children were your son or daughter. Young lives lost forever, so tragic, so sad. The UK needs to take action now! All these people want is somewhere for their children and themselves to be safe, to have the opportunity for a peaceful and fulfilled life just as we all do. I don’t fully understand what is happening in the middle east but know we cannot take everything at face value, the only thing any of us can be sure of is that innocent people are suffering and need help, a sanctuary, a safe haven from the turmoil of war.

If you are not familiar with this awful tragedy, though I rather think there are few who aren’t, please read the information from the Huffington Post. Most importantly please take action by signing as many of the following petitions as you can, contacting your MP and David Cameron (contact details further down). Please everyone, including non UK residents, take as much action as you can.  Cameron is rather reluctant to do his part, at least compared to Germany which has taken in over 800,00 , Turkey over 1.8 million, Jordan 600,000 and 1 million to Lebanon – a country whose population is just 4 million.

Please sign the following petitions. These are simple quick sign petitions pleases sign as many as you can.

Britain must accept its fair share of refugees seeking safety in Europe
https://www.change.org/p/david-cameron-britain-must-accept-its-fair-share-of-refugees-seeking-safety-in-europe

No more drownings. Immediate sanctuary for those fleeing from war
https://www.change.org/p/rt-hon-theresa-may-mp-no-more-drownings-immediate-sanctury-for-those-fleeing-from-war?recruiter=284550806&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=autopublish&utm_term=mob-xs-share_petition-no_msg&fb_ref=Default

80 Syrian war refugees are waiting in Calais for their rightful and legal asylum in the UK! Please open the border for them!

https://www.change.org/p/david-cameron-mp-80-syrian-war-refugees-are-waiting-in-calais-for-their-rightful-and-legal-asylum-in-the-uk-please-open-the-border-for-them-2

We are willing to house Syrian refugees; please rescue more of those fleeing the conflict.
https://www.change.org/p/david-cameron-mp-rt-hon-theresa-may-mp-we-are-willing-to-house-syrian-refugees-please-rescue-more-of-those-fleeing-the-conflict

Tell the UK Government to accept a fair share of refugees and migrants

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/264/119/557/?z00m=26055224

Accept more asylum seekers and increase support for refugee migrants in the UK.
https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/105991

Create a compassionate Euro-wide policy to deal with refugee migrants in Calais
https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/105590/signatures/new

Please share petitions widely

Scroll down for Cameron’s and MPs contact details including twitter and e-mail and other ways you can help.

From the Huffington Post

Haunting Image Of Drowned Boy Sums Up Consequences Of ‘The Syrian War In One Photo’

o-SYRIA-570

A Turkish gendarmerie soldier moves the body of the Syrian boy who was one of 11 people to die after a boat sunk while trying to reach Greece

“Lying facedown on the shore of a Bodrum beach this haunting image of a drowned Syrian toddler illustrates the perilous risks, and heartbreaking consequences, of the journey tens of thousands of migrant families have undertaken, chasing a better life in countries shuffling responsibility for taking them in.

Yvette Cooper, Shadow Home Secretary, who made a desperate plea on Tuesday for towns and cities up and down the country to each take in ten migrant families, said: “When mothers are desperately trying to stop their babies from drowning when their boat has capsized, when people are being left to suffocate in the backs of lorries by evil gangs of traffickers and when children’s bodies are being washed to shore, Britain needs to act.

“It is heartbreaking what is happening on our continent. We cannot keep turning our backs on this. We can – and must – do more. If every area in the UK took just ten families, we could offer sanctuary to 10,000 refugees. Let’s not look back with shame at our inaction.”

Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron told The Independent “enough is enough”.

He said: “These pictures are beyond horrific. They are the wake-up call David Cameron needs.””

Give Cameron a wake up call

Take Action

Write to your MP and David Cameron

David Cameron – e-mail, telephone, letter or send a tweet

E-mail form
https://email.number10.gov.uk/

Other contact details

Postal

Parliamentary
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 3475
Fax: 020 7219 0918
Constituency
West Oxfordshire Conservative Association, Waterloo House, 58-60 High Street, Witney, Oxfordshire, OX28 6HJ
Tel: 01993 702302
Departmental
10 Downing Street, London, SW1A 2AA
Tel: 020 7270 3000
Web & Social media
Website Website: http://www.davidcameronmp.com…

Website Website: http://www.gov.uk/government/…

Twitter Twitter: @david_cameron

http://www.parliament.uk/biographies/commons/mr-david-cameron/1467

Contact your MP
http://www.parliament.uk/get-involved/contact-your-mp/contacting-your-mp/

Other ways to help

Five practical ways you can help refugees trying to find safety in Europe
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/5-practical-ways-you-can-help-refugees-trying-to-find-safety-in-europe-10482902.html

Related Link
So David Cameron, is this dead Syrian child one of the ‘swarm’ of migrants you fear so much?

Those who have decided not to care will not be moved – but this should be moment when Britain finally finds its compassion

“He looks asleep, far away in dreamland, as if he dropped off after a long day of play and fun, of tricks and naughtiness. His trainers are still on his feet. Did he pester mum and dad until they bought them? His red T-shirt and trousers have rolled up to reveal his tummy. I want to touch his soft, plump tummy, to hold him, wake him gently and dry him off.

But the boy is dead. He drowned in the foaming, blue sea, just off Bodrum in Turkey, a tourist destination for Europeans seeking sun and fun. The waves delivered him to the beach, gently it seems, so intact is the little body.”

“Look at the picture of the washed up toddler if you can bear to. He is a little person, an innocent, who died before he could grow.  Think of the chances his parents took and why they felt they had no other choice. How frightened they must have been when they got on to the packed, unsafe boat. Did they drown too? They might have seen their child sink. Imagine that. If they survived, they must wish they hadn’t.  We don’t know their names. Maybe we never will. But this is our child now, whoever we are. Even those who support hardline anti-immigration policies, must, I think, feel pity and some urge to help.”

Read More of this moving article:
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/so-david-cameron-is-this-dead-syrian-child-one-of-the-swarm-of-migrants-you-fear-so-much-10483298.html

 

Please Sign Petitions to Tell Prime Minister David Cameron to Help Refugees

20517791226_156b6ff527_z

Graphic Home Truths by Flickr user Byzantine_K
https://www.flickr.com/photos/november5/20517791226/in/dateposted/

There are three petitions for you to sign to help refugees trying to escape with their families to safety from war-torn countries.

Please everyone carefully read and sign the following petitions and please share widely. Anyone worldwide may sign these petitions. Refugees need our support.

Care 2 Petition:

Tell Prime Minister David Cameron to Protect Refugees

“Imagine your country spiralling into violence and warfare. Watching everything around you fall to chaos. Fearing you or your children may be killed at any moment.

This is the devastating reality for millions of refugees around the world. They are faced with an incredibly difficult decision: stay in a war-torn country where their lives are at risk, or flee to safety even though the journey in front of them is equally dangerous.

Which would you choose?

This year, over 2,000 men, women and children have drowned in the Mediterranean Sea. Just last week, a boat capsized off the coast of Libya. Around 200 people lost their lives.

We call on Prime Minister David Cameron to take action and save lives today by increasing resettlement places for refugees.”

Please read more and sign the petition
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/866/382/203/      This petition needs at least 5,000 signatures, so far only just over 300 so please sign and share widely.

Change Org Petition

Provide urgent medical support to vulnerable people in Calais

“We’ve all seen the news of desperate migrants trying to cross the channel. But few people know about the conditions people are living in. There is no less than a humanitarian crisis on our doorstep and western governments are turning their backs on it.

I know because I’m a nurse out here in Calais, giving medical support to migrants who have fled their countries because of war and persecution and are now living in horrendous conditions. Whole families are crammed into small tents with poor access to food and water, leading to all sorts of terrible health problems. These include serious skin problems, gangrene, breathing difficulties, diarrhoea and scabies. Many have shattered bones after falling from trucks, have been slashed by razor wire climbing fences or have been beaten up.Some are extremely vulnerable, including children and pregnant women.”

Please read more and sign the petition

https://www.change.org/p/rt-hon-david-cameron-mp-provide-urgent-medical-support-to-vulnerable-people-in-calais?utm_source=action_alert&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=366052&alert_id=ucQoLHdmPC_Cbapp9zz2XvpWmgrNepwzPu8QBHtZQNqVs8LbQ6vZW4%3D

Tell the UK Government to accept a fair share of migrant refugees

“Thousands of men and women are currently stranded in Calais, Italy and Greece, and across Europe after a treacherous journey from their home countries. These refugees often come from war-torn countries with poor human-rights records. In their home countries they may have suffered or be at risk of torture and rape, and fear for their lives and those of their children. They are desperate to reach safety and they are risking their lives. Many have already died. More than 1,800 perished at sea in the first five months of 2015*.

Other countries in the EU take on much larger numbers of migrant refugees even when considering capacity to do so**. ”
Please read more and sign the petition
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/264/119/557/

More Action you can take

If you have time please consider contacting David Cameron:
http://www.parliament.uk/biographies/commons/mr-david-cameron/1467

Email: https://email.number10.gov.uk/

And or your MP:
http://www.parliament.uk/get-involved/contact-your-mp/contacting-your-mp/

These people need our help urgently; the UK should not turn its back on people who have been through so much, who are fleeing from war and persecution hoping to find safety not abandonment. The UK government has a moral obligation to direct funds to help refugees, sadly in recent years our governments seem to lack basic morality humanity and compassion. Health care and shelter should be a basic human right, the UK is a rich country and has the resources to supply medical and other aid. It is shameful that there are people seriously ill and not receiving medical care in rich countries such as the UK and France.

There is a lot of anti-immigration feeling among the misguided British Public that is nothing short of monstrous, shocking in the extreme. For an example of the lack of compassion to our fellow human beings from war-torn countries fleeing for their lives read the comments at the end of the article below.
http://cars.aol.co.uk/2015/07/31/department-for-transport-releases-calais-driving-advice/?icid=maing-grid7%7Cuk%7Cdl15%7Csec1_lnk3%26pLid%3D371839

At such times I am ashamed to be British, though a generality we appear to be a nation of xenophobic racists lacking compassion but displaying plenty of stupidity and ignorance fueled by right wing propaganda.

For a more realistic perspective please read the following article

“When you’re facing the world’s biggest refugee crisis since the second world war, it helps to have a sober debate about how to respond. But to do that, you need facts and data – two things that the British migration debate has lacked this summer. Theresa May got the ball rolling in May, when she claimed on Radio 4 that the vast majority of migrants to Europe are Africans travelling for economic reasons. The media has followed suit, one example being the Daily Mail’s unsubstantiated recent assertion that seven in 10 migrants at Calais will reach the UK.

Foreign secretary Philip Hammond this week not only repeated May’s claims about African economic migrants, but portrayed them as marauders who would soon hasten the collapse of European civilisation. Hammond, like many people, could do with some actual statistics about the migration crisis. Here are 10 of the key ones:

Please continue reading the 10 truths about the so-called immigration crisis:

10 truths about Europe’s migrant crisis
http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/aug/10/10-truths-about-europes-refugee-crisis  – again many of the comments at the end of the article convey public prejudice and lack of compassion. One person writes “You can call them what you like, Europe is being overwhelmed and it is not Europe’s responsibility to take on the world’s troubled.”

Besides the fact that  many of them – especially those from Eritrea, Darfur, and Somalia – have legitimate claims to refugee status don’t we have a moral responsibility?

The fact of the matter is that Cameron is not only not allowing refugees into the country he is actively thwarting their attempts to seek asylum.

Can’t we all learn to live together as one species, one country, one world. I am sick of all the hatred, the prejudice and discrimination. We are all human beings regardless of race, gender, age, sexual orientation religious persuasion or whatever prejudice misguided ignorant people can conjure up. Make no mistake were we all the same race, colour, gender, age and so on someone would find some difference albeit small to aim their misguided prejudice against.

The biggest enemy comes not from refugees or any one the other scapegoats targeted by government propaganda, even our own citizens if they happen to be unfortunate enough to need benefits,  as a distraction from the real cause of much of the misery in this country and indeed worldwide – namely capitalism and the greed of the one percent. Throughout the world the proliferation of wars, persecutions and increased poverty is a result of the capitalist crisis. Many people are desperate to escape their situation over which they are powerless and seek safety within the EU.

The UK and other rich nations caused the poverty that drives people from Africa and elsewhere to find a better life.

It is not “marauding” African migrants, but the UK and other wealthy nations that are threatening living standards and causing poverty for people in Africa and across the world. Sub-Saharan Africa loses $192bn to the rest of the world each year. In return it receives just $30bn back in aid. Whether it is our network of tax havens that allows the theft of billions from countries in Africa each year, the costs we save by recruiting health workers from the world’s poorest countries, the aid we give as loans which contribute to the looming debt crisis, or our carbon emissions which force African countries to pay out billions to adapt to the climate change we cause, it is the UK and our wealthy allies, not African migrants, doing the marauding.

Read More:
http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/aug/10/uk-and-its-allies-are-the-real-marauders-not-african-migrants?CMP=share_btn_tw

Britain it seems has only welcomed immigrants when required for Labour.

Read a very revealing article about the history of  Britain’s immigration policies
Racism and immigration in Britain
http://pubs.socialistreviewindex.org.uk/isj68/brown.htm

Time to stand up for what is right and speak out for the vulnerable.

Please sign all petitions if you have not already done so

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/866/382/203/

https://www.change.org/p/rt-hon-david-cameron-mp-provide-urgent-medical-support-to-vulnerable-people-in-calais?utm_source=action_alert&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=366052&alert_id=ucQoLHdmPC_Cbapp9zz2XvpWmgrNepwzPu8QBHtZQNqVs8LbQ6vZW4%3D

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/264/119/557/

To end on a positive note please read the following which shows that people do care.

How grassroots groups are supporting Calais migrants
http://www.theguardian.com/voluntary-sector-network/2015/aug/14/calais-migrant-how-grassroots-groups-are-helping?utm_source=change_org&utm_medium=petition

The Worldwide Tribe in Calais
https://www.facebook.com/theworldwidetribe

What life is like in the Calais migrant ‘jungle’ – by young Brit who visited them
http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/what-life-like-calais-migrant-6233953

Related Links

The real criminals, however, are not immigrant workers, but the corporate chieftains and politicians who, in their insatiable lust for profits, plunder the natural resources of poor countries, set up sweatshops, and wage wars for oil and empire. It is their policies that create the grinding poverty and social breakdown throughout the neo-colonial world which forces millions to flee their home countries in search of work here.
http://www.socialistworld.net/doc/2255

Why refugee deaths in the Mediterranean are a global problem
http://fusion.net/story/124692/why-refugee-deaths-in-the-mediterranean-are-a-global-problem/

The New Global Capitalism and the War on Immigrants
http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/18623-the-new-global-capitalism-and-the-war-on-immigrants#

The Futility of War: When Will We Ever Learn?

O soldier who is sentenced by man’s cruel law to forsake his mate and his little ones and kin to go out of the field of death for the sake of greed in its guise of duty.
Gibran Kahlil Gibran, from A Tear and a Smile

“All wars are fought for the acquisition of wealth”
Socrates

 

Slide140

Right now it seems that most of the world is embroiled in war or serious conflict. There is no peace to be found anywhere as men struggle against one another in the quest for power, for resources, for wealth and maybe for justice, or at least what they perceive as justice. Yet I firmly believe that most of us just want to live our lives in peace, finding fulfilment in relationships, our families, our pastimes our pleasures and general day to day living. Most of us basically want to get on with our lives not face the horror, the turmoil and terrifying consequence of conflict forced upon us by those who take little part in the actual suffering and misery of war. Many of us feel helpless to stem the tide of violence, disruption and insecurity into which we or our fellow human beings are plunged seemingly at the whim of those who have little regard for our lives.

It goes without saying that if no one participated in war, war could not happen, yet millions join the armed forces for reasons that to my mind are unfathomable, leaving those they love, risking their lives, their health and their security. Why? Torn from their families and their way of life… for what I have to ask?

Here in the UK you may find in your local supermarket a collection point for toiletries, sweets and such like to be sent to solders engaged in conflict in far off places, fighting in wars that most of us do not fully understand. Surely military personal should not need the charity of others, yet increasingly so this is the case. Often service men and women live in unsatisfactory conditions or are not adequately provided for when maimed in a war supposedly fought for their country. Such as the ex soldier who died because his benefits were stopped. Having no income he did not have enough money for the electricity to keep his diabetic medicine cool in his fridge.

I will state now that I am a pacifist and vegan and would not take part in or condone war, particularly modern wars which to my perspective are fought for greed and power under the guise of justice or liberation. Nonetheless this does not prevent me from respecting those who have made sacrifices for what they consider to be a noble cause, nor does it prevent me from protesting the recent treatment of people who have served or are serving in the armed forces here in the UK, were it seems that those who have “served their country” have been discarded and rendered homeless, destitute.

Although, I do not condone or support war under any circumstances, I wholeheartedly condemn the lack of support for veterans. It is not just here in the UK that veterans are thrown on the scrap heap, left homeless without money or compensation for the sacrifices they have made, the same situation occurs in the USA. Who would have thought there would be a click to donate website for homeless veterans in the USA?

http://thehungersite.greatergood.com/clickToGive/vet/home?link=ctg_vet_home_from_ars_thank-you_sitenav

In fact in both the USA and the UK there are a growing number of on-line support and charities or non profit organisations for veterans. Here are a few examples:

Veterans Inc
http://www.veteransinc.org/about-us/statistics/#homelessness

National coalition for homeless veterans
http://nchv.org/

Coats for veterans USA:
https://www.facebook.com/events/510002689098720/

A charity for veterans UK:
http://www.veterans-aid.net/

http://www.homelessveterans.co.uk/

Shocking but true service men and women are being abandoned to homelessness and all the misery that entails

9,000 ex-service personnel homeless after leaving the military

The Sunday Mirror this week heard harrowing stories from veterans who fought on the front line but now sleep in doorways, graveyards and parks, begging from the passers-by whose freedom they defended.

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/9000-ex-service-personnel-homeless-after-2071049

Why the hell are veterans homeless, after laying their lives on the line they are now left to the vagaries of charities.  Albeit well intentioned charities cannot offer the support that is needed and which should be provided by the country they served.

Many service personal are disabled and unable to support themselves yet here in the UK welfare reforms leave many destitute:

A record number of wounded war veterans have been denied disability benefits in the past year after undergoing tests carried out by the Government’s controversial assessment company.

Hundreds of injured ex-soldiers are being declared fit for work by Atos Healthcare in spite of physical and mental injuries they suffered in the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Read more:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2334390/Anger-record-number-maimed-troops-denied-disability-benefit-Governments-controversial-assessments.html

Severely wounded veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan, who were once entitled to incapacity benefits, are being told they no longer qualify under new assessments carried out by Atos on behalf of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

Read more:
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/benefits-crackdown-humiliates-disabled-army-war-veterans-8633610.html

Former lance corporal wounded in grenade attack in Iraq says he is being accused of faking his injuries:
http://www.theguardian.com/society/2013/jan/24/disabled-grenade-soldier-benefits

A similar pattern exists in the USA

  • Between 529,000 and 840,000 veterans are homeless at some time during the year.
  • On any given night, more than 300,000 veterans are living on the streets or in shelters in the U.S.
  • Approx. 33% of homeless males in the U.S. are veterans.
  • Veterans are twice as likely as other Americans to become chronically homeless.
  • Veterans represent 11% of the adult civilian population, but 26% of the homeless population, according to the Homeless Research Institute (2007).
  • Veterans are more at risk of becoming homeless than non-veterans
  • The number of homeless Vietnam-era veterans, male and female, is greater than the number of soldiers who died during the war.
  • Primary causes of homelessness among veterans are:
  1. Lack of income due to limited education and lack of transferable skills from military to civilian life (especially true of younger veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan)
  2. Combat-related physical health issues and disabilities
  3. Combat-related mental health issues and disabilities
  4. Substance abuse problems that interfere with job retention
  5. Weak social networks due to problems adjusting to civilian life
  6. Lack of services.

Read More:
http://www.veteransinc.org/about-us/statistics/#homelessness

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) states that the nation’s homeless veterans are predominantly male, with roughly 8% being female. The majority are single; live in urban areas; and suffer from mental illness, alcohol and/or substance abuse, or co-occurring disorders. About 12% of the adult homeless population are veterans.
Read more:
http://hrexach.wordpress.com/2014/11/01/this-should-never-happen-in-any-country/

Is this the thanks they get? The futility of war enhanced by the callous indifference of the country for which they supposedly served, though these days one has to wonder who is behind war and what the real agendas are. Is so called liberation merely an excuse to plunder the country’s resources as is I firmly believe the real reason for the invasion of Iraq?

Shame on the UK and the USA and any other country that does not care for the needs of veterans

I am appalled at how easily the decision makers start wars – usually the rich and powerful, the global political elite be they presidents, prime ministers, ministers, parliamentarians and dictators . These people who remain in security and safety while sending others to die take from us our precious lives in the meaningless struggles here in our modern world while rarely if ever sacrificing anything. Perhaps some of our war mongering leaders should do as the kings of old and actually participate in their war mongering escapades instead of sending others , mostly the young, to die or be injured.I wonder how keen they would than be to wage war.

It is of course not only soldiers that lose their lives but millions of men, women and children who are caught up in the increasing complex conflicts worldwide with seemingly hidden agendas, such as in the Middle East and more recently Ukraine.

Take time to reflect on the appalling casualties of conflict

Numbers of people killed in various conflicts since and including ww2

It is not easy to acquire statistics of civilian deaths only and some of the links below may include military personnel

World War II was the deadliest military conflict in history. Over 60 million people were killed, which was over 2.5% of the world population:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_II_casualties

The United States most likely has been responsible since WWII for the deaths of between 20 and 30 million people in wars and conflicts scattered over the world. (often aided and abeted by the UK)
http://www.countercurrents.org/lucas240407.htm

Among the latest conflicts

Syria

Death Toll in Syria Estimated at 191,000:
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/23/world/middleeast/un-raises-estimate-of-dead-in-syrian-conflict-to-191000.html?_r=0   This was the estimate in August 2014, the toll has of course risen.

Gaza

Between 8 July and 27 August, more than 2,100 Palestinians were killed in the Gaza Strip, along with 66 Israeli soldiers and seven civilians in Israel.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-28439404

Iraq

Civilian death toll in Iraq

Documented civilian deaths from violence

134,712 – 152,068
https://www.iraqbodycount.org/database/

Ukraine

More than 5,400 people have died since the conflict began
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-31392473

It is not only our fellow humans of course who suffer in our war mongering escapades, animals too bear the brunt of our insanity:
http://www.care2.com/causes/extreme-bravery-from-the-women-saving-ukraines-dogs-of-war.html

Did you know that the USA abandons its military dogs in conflict zones?

Here is a petition to tell the Defense Department you support the call for service dogs to retire on U.S. soil!:
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/279/131/337/urge-that-all-military-dogs-retire-on-us-soil/?z00m=21529761

I wish to live in peace, it is my hope that future generations will live in peace. Sadly though until we take a stand against war it will continue while men and increasing women sign up to the armed forces, while war is glorified there will never be peace.

I would like to present a number of thought provoking quotations, poetry and song concerning the futility of war beginning with the moving poem Disabled by Wilfred Owen

Disabled

He sat in a wheeled chair, waiting for dark,
And shivered in his ghastly suit of grey,
Legless, sewn short at elbow. Through the park
Voices of boys rang saddening like a hymn,
Voices of play and pleasure after day,
Till gathering sleep had mothered them from him.

About this time Town used to swing so gay
When glow-lamps budded in the light blue trees,
And girls glanced lovelier as the air grew dim,-
In the old times, before he threw away his knees.
Now he will never feel again how slim
Girls’ waists are, or how warm their subtle hands.
All of them touch him like some queer disease.

There was an artist silly for his face,
For it was younger than his youth, last year.
Now, he is old; his back will never brace;
He’s lost his colour very far from here,
Poured it down shell-holes till the veins ran dry,
And half his lifetime lapsed in the hot race
And leap of purple spurted from his thigh.

One time he liked a blood-smear down his leg,
After the matches, carried shoulder-high.
It was after football, when he’d drunk a peg,
He thought he’d better join. – He wonders why.
Someone had said he’d look a god in kilts,
That’s why; and maybe, too, to please his Meg,
Aye, that was it, to please the giddy jilts
He asked to join. He didn’t have to beg;
Smiling they wrote his lie: aged nineteen years.

Germans he scarcely thought of; all their guilt,
And Austria’s, did not move him. And no fears
Of Fear came yet. He drought of jewelled hills
For daggers in plaid socks; of smart salutes;
And care of arms; and leave; and pay arrears;
Esprit de corps; and hints for young recruits.
And soon, he was drafted out with drums and cheers.

Some cheered him home, but not as crowds cheer Goal.
Only a solemn man who brought him fruits
Thanked him; and then enquired about his soul.

Now, he will spend a few sick years in institutes,
And do what things the rules consider wise,
And take whatever pity they may dole.
Tonight he noticed how the women’s eyes
Passed from him to the strong men that were whole.
How cold and late it is! Why don’t they come
And put him into bed? Why don’t they come?

Here is a good analysis of the poem Disabled
http://www.socialsciencemedley.com/2011/04/analysis-of-disabled-by-wilfred-owen.html

The sad fact is no matter how undervalued are their endeavours, or how many have died or have been maimed for their country, or the stark reality of war which can no longer be denied still thousands give their lives and their health to support a country that soon forgets them.

WHERE HAVE ALL THE FLOWERS GONE
words and music by Pete Seeger

Where have all the flowers gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the flowers gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the flowers gone?
Girls have picked them every one
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

Where have all the young girls gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the young girls gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the young girls gone?
Taken husbands every one
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

Where have all the young men gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the young men gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the young men gone?
Gone for soldiers every one
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

Where have all the soldiers gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the soldiers gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the soldiers gone?
Gone to graveyards every one
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

Where have all the graveyards gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the graveyards gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the graveyards gone?
Covered with flowers every one
When will we ever learn?
When will we ever learn?

©1961 (Renewed) Fall River Music Inc
All Rights Reserved.

The song above was written in the 1960s by Pete Seeger and made famous by the Kensington trio and used as a protest of war particularly the Vietnam war. The lyrics though have a wider meaning. The song is really about the cycle of history and how impossible it is to break.

Read more about the cycles of history and the fact that awareness of such cycles even one as destructive as war fail to bring about an end to this insanity that takes the lives of the young and serves the purposes of the minority in this world who are greedy only for power and wealth

http://www.indepthinfo.com/culture/where-have-all-the-flowers-gone.htm

“An eye for eye only ends up making the whole world blind.”
Mahatma Gandhi

“I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.”
Albert Einstein

“Older men declare war. But it is youth that must fight and die.”
Herbert Hoover

“It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.”
Voltaire

War does not determine who is right – only who is left.”
Bertrand Russell
“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. This is not a way of life at all in any true sense. Under the clouds of war, it is humanity hanging on a cross of iron.”
Dwight D. Eisenhower

“Never think that war, no matter how necessary, nor how justified, is not a crime.”
Ernest Hemingway

Note this article was written in August some of the statistics will most certainly have changed concerning current deaths as a result of ongoing conflicts.