Opinion » Columnists

New information on the atrocities of British troops

British Army slaughters kids.
New evidence has arisen which points towards the fact that British troops shot harmless Iraqi civilians when there was no threat posed to their security. In one incident, an eight-year-old girl was shot dead, murdered as she stood in her street in front of her house in her country.

Amnesty International UK investigated allegations in Iraq in February (there had been a desperate attempt to cover up the systematic abuse of prisoners by both the US and British regimes) and presented its findings to the authorities.

However, the attitude from Tony Blair's government seems to he "speak no evil, see no evil, hear no evil" since only a sample of the alleged cases are being investigated. Kate Allen, Director of Amnesty International UK, has claimed that the investigations are being conducted "in secrecy behind closed doors", with the authorities no doubt trying damage limitation
tactics by ignoring evidence.or lying, again.

Out of 37 cases presented to the authorities, only 18 are being probed by the Ministry of Defence. AI wants a full independent inquiry. One of the civilians murdered by British forces was eight-year-old Hanah Saleh Matrud, shot dead by a "soldier" from the King's Regiment B Company in August.

Eye witnesses claim that this "soldier" aimed his gun at her and fired from 60 metres away. The British Army claims she was killed as a result of a stray warning shot. Killed? She was murdered. Lies again.

Another case was 22-year-old Ghanem Kadhem Kati, slaughtered in the door of his house as he celebrated a wedding. He was murdered as a response to gunfire coming from the house, although a neighbour had warned the troops
that wedding ceremonies are celebrated in this way in Iraq.

The excuse, by Major General Patrick Cordingley, in an interview with BBC's Today programme: "Most of these incidents happen in incredibly high temperatures [50C plus], temperatures we just don't understand in this country, in a country where the rules of society have broken down". Oh dear, it's a bit too hot, what? That's OK then, just shoot eight-year-old girls and the temperature will come down.

What are the British troops doing in Iraq in the first place? They are involved in an illegal act of butchery, based on a tissue of lies, based on the greed of the corporate elite which dictates White House policy and forces its lap-dogs to tow the line. Shooting dead eight-year-old girls and torturing prisoners only adds to the notion that the Blair and Bush regimes must go.

They have overstepped the line drawn by each and every concept of human decency.

John ASHTEAD

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