Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Greens reject war with Russia

The recent announcement by Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon that Nato 'is waking up to the challenge of Kremlin aggression' and could confront Vladimir Putin's forces in a showdown, is both dissembling and either theatre or a worrying escalation in a new cold war.
 
there are a number of moves which could mean we are being set up for war with Russia like we were set up for war with Iraq.
 
Fallon is pretending when he says Nato is waking up to Russian aggression. Nato has been busily encroaching on eastern Europe for years and areas in the former Russian sphere of influence. What we see now is Russia beginning to stand up to Nato's aggressive stance.
 
This comes in a long list of anti-Russian positions and propaganda which may lead to something other than a cold war. If you look at the Cuban Missile Crisis in the 60s, you know putting missiles near a nation's border is asking for trouble. And Nato has been doing precisely that with so-called Missile Defence for a number of years now.
 
Add to that the US' success in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya – as they regard them – as well as its unparalleled military spending and you have a recipe for a new major war.
 
Fallon noted that Britain would be able to fight a war against Russia within two years.
 
Fallon may talk tough on a British war with Russia, but everyone knows we rely on America power – even for Trident. But the message is clear – our warmongers are getting ready  for war with Russia.
 
"We need to be prepared for a constant media presentation (as if it wasn't constant enough) of Russia as the bad guy, the threat, the clear and present danger, about which something must be done.
 
And we need to reject this now.

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Thursday, 27 October 2016

Teeth are improving everywhere, fluoride is incidental, poverty is involved

National 2012 child dental health study -
 
Regarding the threat of fluoridation for Hull (and the East Riding), Martin Deane of the Green Party says:
 
"Teeth are improving everywhere. This study shows that by 2012 Yorkshire and Humber had caught up with London in dental health.
 
"In the 4 years to the 2012 study, our region made one of the biggest improvements in the country.
INFO: graph relates to data in 2012 dental survey [attached]
 
"In our region, five authorities perform worse than Hull: Barnsley, Wakefield, Kirklees, Calderdale and Bradford.
 
 
INFO: graph shows relative dental health of 21 LAs in Yorkshire and Humber region, from data tables in the 2012 study.
 
"Clearly any effect of fluoride is highly arguable. Only North Lincs is fluoridated and it's not the best in the region.
 
"Hull comes 16th in the league, or 6th from bottom. Worse dental health can be found in: Barnsley, Wakefield, Kirklees, Calderdale and Bradford. Hull councillors might consider what methods were successful nationally and what authorities worse than us intend doing."
 
Ryedale has got the best teeth in Y&H (0.30) on a negligible 0.05 mg/l of fluoride in the water supply.
Harrogate is next (0.55) with similar low natural fluoride in the water.
North Lincs is next (0.60) and is fluoridated at 1mg/l (or 1ppm).
Selby is 4th (0.62) with 0.07 mg/l in its water supply.
Craven is 5th (0.64).
East Yorkshire is 6th with 0.74 and, like Hull, has 0.12 mg/l natural fluoride.
You can check your fluoride level by entering your postcode here.
 
"However, there's a high correlation between well–off authorities and areas which have high index of multiple deprivation – and health decay.  Generally speaking, the worse off an authority, the higher the level of tooth decay."
 
 

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Martin Deane
Hull and East Riding Green Party
07935 036211
 

Wearing a White Poppy

The White Poppy and the Red Poppy are two sides of the same coin. But how will we use it?
 
Both poppies have a great history.
 
The White Poppy began to be sold in 1933. It was to stand for all war deaths, an end to wars, and for peace. This came after the 1928 international Kellogg Briand Pact where leading nations agreed to renounce and outlaw war.
 
A 100 years ago, 90% of the deaths in war were of soldiers. Now, the case for the white poppy is stronger than ever, as 90% of deaths in modern wars, are deaths of civilians. Of those 'dying for their country' now, only 1 in 10 are soldiers.
 
A lot of people don't know the backstory to the Red Poppy.
 
In 1918 when the men came back from war, they were furious. They had watched so many of their friends die - in slaughter - in murder as the last veteran told us a few years ago - in the 'war to end all wars' - and which didn't. They had seen so many of their brave comrades cut down, lions led by donkeys.
 
Officials recognised that something had to be done to help defuse the anger of the hundreds of thousands of men, all trained in arms, who were returning to their country – and to be forgotten by the ruling system.
 
General Haig was very aware of this anger and wished to support ex-soldiers but also to protect the status quo. So the British Legion was born.
 
The British Legion soaked up the other ex-servicemen's organisations - except, notably, the NUX, the National Union of Ex-servicemen, which survived until 1922.
 
Soon Haig and the British Legion adopted the red poppy - via America and France - and this was first sold around the country in 1921, in memory of the military dead.
 
In 1922 the hundreds of thousands of NUX members were encouraged to join the Labour Party, and others, to work for a fairer country.
 
In 1923, the Labour Party helped form the government for the first time, and former servicemen became part of the first attempt to create a 'land fit for heroes'.
 
The question now is: in a country at war for most of this century, so far, and daily taught to hate enemy countries, and many groups of people, what do we know about peace?

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Martin Deane

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Syrian refugees - we need to see your teeth

The BBC, DM, S*n etc, want us to feel outraged today at Syrian refugees who dare to come to this country and dare to lie about their ages. The sooner we see the corporate media as tools of the state like some Machiavellian Dick Dastardly tempting us like lemmings over a cliff, the better.
 
There are clues in the headlines: Syria and refugees. The first thing we should think when we hear Syria is the Middle East, the pre-eminent centre of oil energy in the world. The second thing we should think is The List. Syria is on America's list going back to the 90s. This is basic modern history with one proviso - it has to get beyond the propaganda.
 
If the corporate mainstream media were doing their job, there wouldn't have been an Iraq war. Nor a million deaths on our collective conscience. Instead, we have dark actors like Tony Blair trotted out to say he'd do it all over again, as if the amount of death his view of the world depends on were remotely acceptable.
 
The US DOD List means almost certainly that the Syrian 'civil war' was no accident. Were the media committed to anything like the truth, there would be no war in Syria. By media now I mean not only our mainstream media, which is craven, but America's, even more a basket case, and probably France's (since they're joining our hegemonic foreign policy). The List, post-9/11, was aimed at destroying 7 countries in 5 years. They're behind schedule. 
 
The second clue is 'refugee'. The word goes back to one of our most gloried times: postwar Britain. The surge of national pride carried on for years and included the 1951 Refugee Convention where we would take in people fleeing war.
 
Now we want to know how old they are! Or examine their teeth! Or leave it to Ealing Council to take some in! But even this probably reflects the pressure of ordinary people across the country wanting us to do our bit, and not leave it to Germany - or Greece. So keep the pressure up. WE should clear the Calais camp, not the French bulldozers. Why? Because we can and 5000 won't kill us.
 

Martin Deane

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Cameron's actions destroyed Libya and promoted ISIL


Cameron's actions destroyed Libya and promoted ISIL
"Cameron's actions destroyed Libya and promoted ISIL" says Martin Deane of the Green Party.
"These aren't my words but the words of MPs in Parliament studying what we did to Libya in 2011 and what's happened since.
"This is Libya's Chilcot. Like Blair over Iraq, the MPs blame Cameron's haste for war, intelligence that was flawed, and lack of political engagement to reach a diplomatic solution.
"Instead violence was pursued,  in this case seeking a UN resolution to provide cover, and then NATO airstrikes estimated to have killed 30,000 people.
"British and French actions quickly became a push for regime change – something America has wanted in Libya for a long time – surely no coincidence.
"Now one of the best functioning countries in Africa, and its oil richest one, is reduced to chaos and ruins.
"This is Cameron's legacy and, like Iraq and Blair before him, part of Britain's footprint on the 21st century."
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Amnesty: FREE NAZANIN JAILED IN IRAN - she has been jailed for 5 years on secret charges.

14 Sep – Mirror
David Cameron 's intervention in Libya left the country in ruin and spurred the growth of ISIS , MPs say today.
The Foreign Affairs committee says the 2011 military operation to oust Colonel Muammar Gaddafi was based on 'erroneous assumptions' and flawed intelligence.
In a scathing report they slam an 'opportunist' Mr Cameron for taking the country to war without a clear strategy to support post-Gaddafi Libya.
Britain and France were the ringleaders behind the air strikes launched in 2011 to protect Libyan civilians.
But the committee says the operation turned from a limited intervention into an 'opportunist policy of regime change'.
Britain failed to 'identify that the threat to civilians was overstated and that the rebels included a significant Islamist element', the report says.
The committee concludes: "The consequence was political and economic collapse, inter-militia and inter-tribal warfare, humanitarian and migrant crises, widespread human rights violations and the growth of ISIL in North Africa."
The MPs said weapons from the Gaddafi regime were seized by terrorist groups in Algeria, Egypt, Mali and Tunisia as well as Boko Harem in Nigeria.
The UK Government 'could not verify the threat posed to civilians by the Gaddafi regime'
The report says: "The international community's inability to secure weapons abandoned by the Gaddafi regime fuelled instability in Libya and enabled and increased terrorism across North and West Africa and the Middle East .
"The UK Government correctly identified the need to secure weapons immediately after the 2011 Libyan civil war, but it and its international partners took insufficient action to achieve that objective."
It adds: "We have seen no evidence that the UK Government carried out a proper analysis of the nature of the rebellion in Libya.
"It could not verify the actual threat to civilians posed by the Gaddafi regime; it selectively took elements of Muammar Gaddafi's rhetoric at face value; and it failed to identify the militant Islamist extremist element in the rebellion.
"UK strategy was founded on erroneous assumptions and an incomplete understanding of the evidence."
The MPs say the UK and France, having led the military action, are responsible for failing to help rebuild post-Gaddafi Libya.
Committee chair, the Tory MP Crispin Blunt, said: "This report determines that UK policy in Libya before and since the intervention of March 2011 was founded on erroneous assumptions and an incomplete understanding of the country and the situation.
"Other political options were available. Political engagement might have delivered civilian protection, regime change and reform at a lesser cost to the UK and Libya.
The UK would have lost nothing by trying these instead of focusing exclusively on regime change by military means.
"The UK's actions in Libya were part of an ill-conceived intervention, the results of which are still playing out today.
"The United Nations has brokered an inclusive Government of National Accord. If it fails, the danger is that Libya will sink into a full scale civil war to control territory and oil resources."
A Foreign Office spokesman said: "The decision to intervene was an international one, called for by the Arab League and authorised by the United Nations Security Council .
"Muammar Gaddafi was unpredictable, and he had the means and motivation to carry out his threats. His actions could not be ignored, and required decisive and collective international action.
"Throughout the campaign we stayed within the United Nations mandate to protect civilians. After four decades of Gaddafi misrule, Libya undoubtedly faces huge challenges.
"The UK will continue to play a leading role within the international community to support the internationally recognised Libyan Government of National Accord."

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Cameron's positive legacy: gay marriage

Cameron's positive legacy: gay marriage

There is almost nothing I can think of that I approved of among Cameron's policies, writes Martin Deane

"In almost every arena, education, health, welfare, economy, defence, foreign relations, he has failed by most people's reckoning.

"Apart from allowing gay marriage, Cameron has left the majority of the country more insecure, poorer, slashing survivability for those on welfare, more medically insecure, a higher national debt, lost the nation's top credit rating and promoted crises of staff among major like teachers, nurses and doctors. In addition, he made a deadly gamble to tackle the Ukip attack on the Conservatives by holding a simplistic binary referendum – which he lost.

"Some might praise his win of the Scottish referendum. But even making the Queen purr won't deter a new referendum post-Brexit.

"His is a toxic legacy. Good riddance."

David Cameron leaves a Britain with -
Water charges up 20%
Loses UK AAA economic rating (first time since 1978)

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

MPs voting for Trident fail UK international commitments


Martin Deane put himself forward for arrest twice over the Trident issue at national protests in 2006 at Faslane near Glasgow where the Vanguard submarines are based. Here he comments on the Trident vote:

The UK is committed by international treaty to a world without nuclear weapons, but you wouldn't know it from last night's vote.

The 80% of MPs voting for Trident have failed to honour the UK's international commitments since 1970 and signing the Nuclear non-Proliferation Treaty.

The renewal of Trident is the second UK scandal this century. Instead of developing Britain's stance towards peace in the world, MPs have chosen to promote fear and war, in preparing for probably the worst war we will ever see.

Britain's second ever female Prime Minister underscored this in stark terms, when she confirmed she is prepared to launch Trident and "kill hundreds of thousands of people". I don't think any Prime Minister has gone that far before. Honest, staggering and frightening.

But that's the logic of these weapons. And it is WHY they should be banned. And it is WHY we promised in 1970 to eliminate them. There has been some progress. But look at what happened last century! And tell me what we've learned!

Behind the fake fear is a really stark point. We have committed to keep the worst weapons ever invented knowing that, in all human history, if these terrible weapons were NOT used, then that would be the first time! At some stage, we use them, and that should scare everybody and make us all disarmament nuts.

Trident is a theft! £205 billion could be spent in any number of ways, in the Britain of overstretched hospital wards, chronically underfunded NHS, foodbank Britain, the recent 5% cuts demanded of all schools. Trident is therefore a choice. A choice of war over peace.

As the late great Tony Benn often said:  If you can find money to kill people, you can find money to help people.

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NOTES
472 MPs voted to renew Trident. 117 against (20%), but including very few Labour MPs.
138 Labour MPs (60% of the PLP) voted with Theresa May to spend £205 billion on weapons of mass destruction.
One solitary Tory voted no to Trident: Crispin Blunt MP
In 1970 we signed the NPT, Nuclear non-Proliferation Treaty, committing Britain to ridding the world of nuclear weapons.Proliferation - has happened, notably after Iraq, with India, Pakistan, etc, acquiring nuclear weapons. There's two good states to give nukes to: at war for decades over Kashmir!
Trident is aimed at becoming a first strike weapon - and it's American! UK defence documents confirm that Trident is essentially an American weapon and almost certainly would require their permission to launch. The document spells out that, like Iraq, the UK use of Trident would be on the basis of Britain joining in an American-led war.