PEACE campaigners angrily condemned the Blair government yesterday as it looked set to bow once more to the will of warmonger US President George Bush by handing hundreds of British troops over to US control in Iraq.
Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon told Parliament that "no decision" had been made on whether to hand over the troops following a US request.
However, activists warned that Mr Bush wants the British soldiers to back up a "revenge" attack on rebel stronghold Fallujah after the US failed to kill off resistance to the occupation there earlier this year.
Under the US plans, some 650 British soldiers will be moved up towards Baghdad to fill the gap when US forces launch the latest stage of their bloody crusade against the Iraqi people.
Peace campaigners stressed that the Fallujah offensive - just like the war itself - has been planned and calculated to serve the political interests of the US Republican government.
Muslim Association of Britain spokesman Anas Altikriti warned that Mr Bush aimed to give Fallujah "as a gift to US voters."
In the run-up to the US presidential elections, the capture of the city will play out in the media as a "demonstration of strength" by the Texan president.
"It is sickening that this will happen at the cost of many human lives," Mr Altikriti said.
And he slammed the British government for propelling its troops further into a conflict that is destabilising the Middle East.
"The war and occupation has inflamed Iraq, causing a surge in violence with people now being killed every day."
Pushing British troops closer to the centre of the conflict can only make it worse, he added.
"The problem is the occupation. The problem is our troops and the solution is immediate withdrawal," Mr Altikriti stressed.
Stop the War Coalition convener Lindsey German noted that resistance to the illegal invasion was growing day by day, making the war look more like the ill-fated US crusade in Vietnam.
Yet the coalition's response "has not been to deal with the cause of the resistance but to escalate the war," she noted.
If Tony Blair and George Bush collude on a fresh invasion of Fallujah, "they will be complicit in the murder of thousands of Iraqis.
"I have no doubt that this is what will happen and that the bloodshed will get even worse if Bush wins the election in two weeks time," she added.
Anti-war MP and former CND chairwoman Joan Ruddock echoed the concerns of many when she told Mr Hoon that confusing the armies of the coalition would be "utterly unacceptable."
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