The first day of the Rome talks to secure peace in Lebanon has demonstrated yet again the role played in international diplomacy by the Bush/Blair alliance. The majority of the countries engaged in the talks and those outside the Rome forum have called for an immediate ceasefire and truce to save lives and avoid further human suffering. Only Bush and Tony Blair have refused to call for an immediate truce. It is accepted in diplomatic circles that of course where Bush leads Tony Blair automatically follows but it is not acceptable in the eyes of a majority of people in this country. This week's latest poll demonstrates that a majority believe Blair is too close to Bush.
The Bush strategy has been to refuse to intervene in order to give the Israelis sufficient time to invade Southern Lebanon. This cynical manouevre has been disgracefully supported by Tony Blair. The result is the scenes of heartrending suffering as civilians are killed, wounded and rendered homeless by Israeli bombs and Hezbollah missiles. The killing of UN peacekeepers by the Israelis is an appalling crime against the civilised world. Given the Israeli use of precision missiles in this attack and the numerous appeals by the UN prior to the assault it is difficult to believe that this was an accident as the Israelis now claim.
The world will not forget or forgive the role played by George Bush and Tony Blair at this time. When there was a desperate need for the rest of the world to stand together to secure an immediate peace to save lives they not only failed but connived to allow Israel to prosecute a savage invasion of Lebanon.
We must all now do all we can to press our Government to act and call for an immediate ceasefire. If Tony Blair will not make this call the British people will have to do it together themselves, using every form of media available to us, particularly by using the internet to get our message across.