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Bush and Blair in Britain

Long version: mp3, 3.13 MBs, 3:56
Short version: mp3, 2.40 MBs, 3:56

Robert Meeropol's statement about Mumia; mp3, 1.15 MBs, 1.23

[Col. Recorded 11/22/03]

... There was no corner of the known world where some interest was not alleged to be in danger or under actual attack. If the interests were not Roman, they were those of Rome's allies; and if Rome had no allies, then allies would be invented. When it was utterly impossible to contrive such an interest — why, then it was the national honor that had been insulted. The fight was always invested with an aura of legality. Rome was always being attacked by evil-minded neighbors, always fighting for a breathing space. *The whole world was pervaded by a host of enemies*, and it was manifestly Rome's duty to guard against their indubitably aggressive designs. — Joseph Schrumpeter, "The Sociology of Imperialism," *Two Essays by Joseph Schrumpeter* (NY: Meridian, 1955).

While the U.S. President dines with princes and monarchs, and traipses to London to support his closest political ally (Tony Blair), the people of England gather in truly impressive numbers, to proclaim their steely opposition to the man who claims to speak for what he calls, 'the free world.'

From trade unions, to antinuclear groups, to Muslim groups, well over a quarter of a million people filled Trafalgar Square to denounce the Bush-Blair alliance, and, in the words of many of the speakers, send a message; "Go Home Bush!"

Caroline Lucas, a Member of the European Parliament (Greens), spoke for many when she said, "While Bush may have the support of Tony Blair, he does *not* have the support of the British People!"

Alex Salmond, Member of the House of Commons (Scottish National) blasted the "disastrous leadership" of both George Bush and Tony Blair in Iraq. "Half the world fears Bush," he argued, "the other half loathes him."

Parliamentarian Lucas argued that the demonstration was the "largest" single, workday protest in London's history.

Bush, who often claims to love democracy, went out of his way to avoid the voices of working Britain. He wouldn't even speak to Parliament, for fear that some heckler would embarrass the 'head of the free world.' Thus, he attended a few, well-staged
photo ops. What was largely unseen, however, was the virtual army of cops thrown up as a barrier between him and the people of Britain.

The real tragedy is that millions of Americans only received passing glimpses of the vast anti-Bush march in London. With some estimating the number at over 350,000 people, complete with a papier-mâché, gilded, 15-foot statue of Bush brought down,
the average American could only see the ridiculous spectacle of hundreds of reporters stationed to spy the whereabouts of pop star Michael Jackson, but the latest figure of entertainment masquerading as news in America.

Hundreds of thousands of average, everyday Britains gather to protest the coming of an American President; in a nation said to be 'our closest ally', no less, and it gets 15 seconds of reportage. Three live hours is dedicated to the possible appearance of
Michael Jackson in handcuffs! And yet, we wonder why Americans know next to nothing about foreign policy!

Jeremy Corbin, a Labour M.P. from the House of Commons, dismissed the claim that the marchers were (as the U.S. press is fond of claiming) 'Anti-American.' "We send a message to the American poor," said Corbin, "to the 40 million who are
without health care, our message: Stand with us against your government! Stand with us against this ghastly war!"

Tony Woodley, head of the largest union in Britain (called the T & G) called Bush and Blair, "Lunatics!", and exhorted the throng to demand, "Bush Go Home!" (several times!).

In the ill-fated Iraq Adventure, the voices of people in the nation said to be the American's "closest ally" bodes ill for its success. The demonstration revealed that the war has not diminished the antiwar sentiment amongst the British. One wonders, how does the average Turk feel about it? The average French person? The average Saudi? The average citizen of the world?

With growing corporate control over the world's media, we may hear or see less of those voices; yet we cannot deny they are there, in vast numbers, away from the cameras of capital.

Though unseen, they are there; and they are growing. Where are their counterparts among the Americans?

Copyright 2003 Mumia Abu-Jamal


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Submitted by: Sis. Marpessa

Text © copyright 2003 by Mumia Abu-Jamal.
All rights reserved.
Reprinted by permission of the author.