Anglo American AWOLs Alarm ...
Apparently, there's an awful lot of it about, lately.
A.W.O.L., that is.
In other words: Absent Without Leave. A la the young George W. Bush.
Though 'This Old Brit' would argue that since Bush never ever did return to his duties, his was a clear cut case of desertion -- even though he had the cushiest of numbers safe back home, and was never in any danger of anything except his own bad 'habits'. Nor was he ever expected to 'dirty' his high class hands in any 'action' at all.
However, the growing numbers of UK and US servicemen deciding they've had enough of their lying political leaders' illegal invasions, occupations and sundry war crimes against humanity, have far greater grounds for such 'actions' than dumb-ass, chickenhawk Dubya ever did.
His bosom buddy Blair, of course, never even made any pretence of 'serving' his country, in the strictest sense of the word. Nor, as far as we're aware, did/have/will any of his smart-arse family.
But before we digress further from the point we planned to make -- take a look at this.
When AWOL Is the Only Way Out
By Peter Laufer, AlterNet. Posted June 2, 2006.
As explained in a new book, Mission Rejected, the sight of U.S. troops kicking the heads of decapitated Iraqis around 'like a soccer ball' made Army soldier Joshua Key desert to Canada.
Former U.S. Army Soldier Joshua Key. Image by Kate Gridley
The following text is an excerpt from Peter Laufer's new book, "Mission Rejected: U.S. Soldiers Who Say No to Iraq" (Chelsea Green, 2006).
"We was going along the Euphrates River," says Joshua Key, a 27-year-old former U.S. soldier from Oklahoma, detailing a recurring nightmare -- a scene he stumbled on shortly after the U.S. invasion of Iraq in March 2003. "It's a road right in the city of Ramadi. We turned a real sharp right and all I seen was decapitated bodies. The heads laying over here and the bodies over here and U.S. troops in between them. I'm thinking, 'Oh my God, what in the hell happened here? What's caused this? Why in the hell did this happen?' We get out and somebody was screaming, 'We fucking lost it here!' I'm thinking, 'Oh, yes, somebody definitely lost it here.'"
Joshua says he was ordered to look around for evidence of a firefight, for something to rationalize the beheaded Iraqis. "I look around just for a few seconds and I don't see anything." But then he noticed the sight that now triggers his nightmares. "I see two soldiers kicking the heads around like a soccer ball. I just shut my mouth, walked back, got inside the tank, shut the door, and it was like, I can't be no part of this. This is crazy. I came here to fight and be prepared for war but this is outrageous. Why did it happen? That's just my question: Why did that happen?"
He's convinced there was no firefight that led to the beheading orgy -- there were no spent shells to indicate a battle. "A lot of my friends stayed on the ground, looking to see if there was any shells. There was never no shells, except for what we shot. I'm thinking, Okay, so they just did that because they wanted to do it. They got trigger happy and they did it. That's what made me mad in Iraq. You can take human lives at a fast rate and all you have to say is, say, 'Oh, I thought they threw a grenade. I thought I seen this, I thought I seen that.'
You could mow down 20 people each time and nobody's going to ask you, 'Are you sure?' They're going to give you a high five and tell you that you was doing a good job."
He still cannot get the scene out of his head. "You just see heads everywhere," he says. "You wake up, you'll just be sitting there, like you're in a foxhole. I can still see Iraq just as clearly as it was the day I was there. You'll just be on the side of a little river running through the city, trash piled up, filled with dead. Heads and stuff like that.
I don't sleep that much, you might say. I don't sleep that much."
His wife, Brandi, nods in agreement and says he cries in his sleep.
You can, nay you should, read the revolting rest of this soldier's sorry story at Alternet.
(Hat tip to Current Era for the above).
And it's not just American troops who are sick and tired of the ongoing horrors.
Far from it in fact.
Examine for example this enlightening excerpt -- pathetically played down by the MOD, as usual of course -- from a piece recently published by the BBC News website.
At least 1,000 UK soldiers desert(Hat tip to Gorilla's Guides for the above).
Cases of soldiers deserting the army are said to be rising
More than 1,000 members of the British military have deserted since the start of the Iraq war, the BBC has learned.
Figures for those still missing are 86 from 2001, 118 from 2002, 134 from 2003, 229 from 2004, 377 from 2005, and 189 for this year so far.
The news comes as Parliament debates a law that will forbid military personnel from refusing to participate in the occupation of a foreign country.
The MoD insists "absent without leave" figures have remained constant. A Ministry of Defence spokeswoman said the soldiers currently missing were considered to be "absent without leave" and would have to be court martialled before they could be found guilty of deserting.
She added only one person has been found guilty of deserting the Army since 1989. According to MoD figures 2,670 soldiers went "absent without leave" in 2001, with the figure rising to 2,970 in 2002 and falling in 2003 to 2,825. In 2004 it rose to 3,050, falling back again in 2005 to 2,725.
See what we mean by 'played down'?
Spin, it seems, still reigns supreme in Blair's British Mili-Politco World.
But do they still not understand what their soldiers are saying?Read the rest of this revealing report, right here.