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Friday, October 05, 2007

Lost in Translation: Dan Hardie and his pal Ed Vaizey

"It seems almost incredible that after the catastrophe of the Iraq war, but the signs are growing that the Bush administration wants to do it all over again- this time to Iran", writes Seumas Milne in today's Guardian.

It is indeed incredible, but what is even more incredible is that a group of self-styled 'anti-war' bloggers, led by a attention-seeking drama queen named Dan Hardie, seem to think that the most urgent issue facing the anti-war movement is not stepping up public pressure to prevent a war on Iran, but linking arms with pro-war neo-cons in a campaign to grant asylum to Iraqi interpreters who worked for an illegal occupying army.

I've already commented on the rather dubious 'anti-war' credentials of those promoting this particular campaign, here and here. But whatever credibility Hardie et al do have as 'anti-war' campaigners, have surely gone for good when it's been revealed that among the speakers at the group's meeting next week is the notoriously pro-war MP for Wantage, and signatory to the principles of the Henry Jackson Society, Ed Vaizey.

There are, as Mick Hall comments here, much wider implications to this story that go beyond the translators in question.
The campaign takes the focus away from the disastrous invasion of Iraq, and holding those responsible accountable in a court of law- and also, just as importantly, away from the plans being hatched, right at this very minute, for another illegal assualt on Iran.
And, as The Exile has pointed out, the campaign gives the warmongers a last chance to claim a 'victory' and a propaganda coup out of the collosal death and destruction they have caused in Iraq.
A propos of the interpreters campaign, Mick Hall asks:
"It would be interesting to know who originally dropped this particular pebble into the WWW/media pond. Could it have been someone at the heart of the US or UK Administrations?".

The involvement of the Henry Jackson Society in the campaign strongly suggests that Mick's suspicions could be right.

UPDATE. Surprise, surprise: it seems that the government has caved in and will be offering asylum to the intepreters. Little matter that the public has had no say in the matter, and that the cost will be met by taxpayers, the majority of whom never wanted the Iraq war in the first place. And of course, there will no rights of asylum for the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, who did not collaborate with an illegal, occupying army and whose lives have been turned upside down by the invasion.


David Lindsay said...

The new party is here. Read all about it on my blog.

The Exile said...

I am running a competition at my place to decide if Ollie Kamm is thick as pigshit, trying it on, or just lost his pretty boy rag.

Join in the fun.

Anonymous said...

Fuck off and die, Clark, you useless fucking crank piece of shit. The public hate you.

Neil Clark said...

I've posted your comment anonymous because I think it will tell readers, if they didn't know beforehand, just what charming, and polite people we are up against.

Your IP address has, you can rest assured, been recorded.

a maiden aunt said...

just what charming, and polite people we are up against.

"Charm" and "politeness" are not qualities that I'd immediately ascribe to your friend The Exile - the man you think is "brilliant" and "seldom, if ever, wrong".

Here's the conclusion of his latest post:

No word from Ollie as yet. Like so many of his class, he comes over as having more gob than a cow's got cunt - until someone comes along who is always up for a ruck. Then he runs like the nesh bugger that he really is.

I trust you'll be having a quiet word with him about his intemperate language? I certainly won't be inviting him to our vicarage tea party any time soon.

Neil Clark said...

'a maiden aunt' I'm afraid you're missing the point. I didn't think I need to spell out the difference between someone who sends in anonymously, highly abusive comments calling for someone to 'fxxx off and die', with someone, like the Exile, who, while regularly using colourful language, has the honesty to reveal his real name (Ken Bell).
What you see with Ken is what you get, he is a very honest blogger, unlike those malicious individuals who use the cloak of anonymity/pseudonymity to smear journalists whose views they disagree with.

The Exile said...

You are not going to believe this, Neil, 'cos I'm not even sure that I do...

Ollie Kamm - or some bugger claiming to be him - has just commented at my place.

Is his mother really a "famous translator"?

m.mak revilo said...

Kamm's mother is indeed a famous translator (Anthea Bell*), but I'm prepared to bet a sizeable quantity of gold bullion that that wasn't Kamm behind those posts.

The first one is a total giveaway, and the rest are equally obviously fake if you look hard enough.

*Hence his concern that the two of you might be related.

**If you haven't heard of her, you'll certainly have come across her work, even if it's only via an English edition of Asterix.