Western Australian ad queries Australia’s Afghanistan war

Australia is at war. Why?

The United States and its allies are spending more than $US720 million a day or $US 500,000 per hour waging war amongst the poorest communities on earth.

A full-page advertisement in today’s West Australian newspaper, asks this question. It suggests readers write to Foreign Minister Stephen Smith and urge him to bring Australian troops home.

The advertisement, prepared by former WA Premier Peter Dowding with support from MAPW WA, also urges support for MAPW’s work for peace – see suggested actions below.

The advertisement reads:
(download the full colour version)


Each year on November 11 at eleven o’clock in the morning - the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month – Australians acknowledge Armistice Day, the anniversary of the symbolic end of World War I on 11 November 1918.

Australians are urged to take a moment of silence at 11:00 am today, as a sign of respect for the millions who have died in wars.

At 11.01am, please take another moment to consider why Australia is involved in a war in Afghanistan. During this moment consider Australia’s freedom, our democracy, our independence, our courage, our strength and the unique Australian spirit that binds us together as a country, and a nation of good people. Consider what we are doing, making war in Afghanistan.
Australia has been at war in Afghanistan since 2001. The war has claimed, and continues to claim, the lives of thousands of innocent Afghans.

 Did you know that two months ago 60 Afghan children were killed by “friendly fire”? The Allies have “apologised”! Did you know that Britain’s top military commander in Afghanistan says “We are not going to win this war”?

The Australian Government has given no indication that it is willing to withdraw Australian troops from this war?

WE NEED YOUR HELP TO END THIS SENSELESS WAR, PLEASE.

Australians, take action today by emailing Mr. Rudd’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Stephen Smith at Stephen [dot] Smith [dot] MP [at] aph [dot] gov [dot] au In the subject line please type; “Bring our troops home. Invest in Peace”.

And for the innocent men, women and children of Afghanistan, we urge you to please sign on and support MAPW at www.mapw.org.au  

Invest in Peace - bring our troops home
Medical Association for Prevention of War
Paid for and authorised by Peter Dowding, in memory of Rev. Keith Dowding. PO Box 1262 Fremantle WA 6959.


Action:

  • Write now, to Stephen Smith: Stephen [dot] Smith [dot] MP [at] aph [dot] gov [dot] au – please copy your letter to MAPW at 11November [at] mapw [dot] org [dot] au.  
  • Donate or join MAPW – click "donate" or Join now" at top of page
  • Let us know your views at 11November [at] mapw [dot] org [dot] au 
  • Download the full colour advertisement and use it as a poster in your workplace, school or community centre 
     

Read more: 

UN websites:

UNICEFi on the humanitarian crisis:
http://www.unicef.org/infobycountry/afghanistan_31224.html

WHO for health statistics including  life expectancy at birth of 42 for men, 43 for women:
http://www.who.int/countries/afg/en/

UNDP human development reports:
http://www.undp.org.af/

Recent news

See RAWA: http://rawa.org/temp/runews/  

Australia’s role

Documentated at Australian Forces Abroad website:
http://nautilus.org/publications/books/australian-forces-abroad/afghanistan/

Opinion:

Robert Fisk in the Independent, Sept 08

Tariq Ali in the Guardian and a longer item: Afghanistan: Mirage of the good war, New Left Review, No.50, March/April 2008:
http://www.newleftreview.org/?page=article&view=2713