Yesterday I posted briefly (15 back; 4 more not coming back) about the safe return of the 15 sailors and contrasted this with the deaths of 4 more UK soldiers. Not only must this contrast be taken further there are other contrasts to make.
However badly the 15 were treated they are all alive and their story continues to dominate. We worry and complain about their treatment but we let slip by less noticed the ultimate sacrifice others make and the trauma their loved ones suffer.
Even within the four who died yesterday there is difference: Prince William was friendly with one of the four at Sandhurst and so she is singled out for more prominence. For God’s sake! They worked together and they died together. Let them be equal in death.
Our government complains about the 15’s treatment in Iraq which, while unpleasant to say the least, bears no comparison with that undergone by those in Guantanamo or those subject to extraordinary rendition. Blair remains virtually silent and by his silence (virtual) he condones the methods employed by the USA.
Hypocrisy of the highest order but we expect nothing else from Blair.
Let me be clear here: I do not condone the Iranian treatment of the 15 and where it breaches convention, protocols or the law I condemn it. Where the treatment breaches the standards I believe are acceptable I condemn that too. At the same time I expect the UK and USA to work to the same standards and where they fail I condemn them and there is much much more to condemn in the actions of UK and USA.
I digress for a few moments here as I remember words spoken by Bush and Cheney:( along the lines of) the USA is fighting the war in Iraq to prevent the war coming to the USA. This message alone should be sufficient for the standing of the USA to plummet. Effectively the US message is: it is better that Iraqis die than Americans because American lives are worth more than Iraqi lives.
Finally,if Blair wants rescue a tiny amount from his failed premiership then he should:
Ensure death matters
Ensure truth matters
Ensure justice matters
And until then
Let him remain silent about our values
Let him get down on his knees and beg forgiveness