The Illegal War in Afghanistan

The unlawful nature of military action by HM Armed Forces in Afghanistan 2001 - 2009

by Chris Coverdale of Make Wars History commissioned by John Tipple of Linn & Associates for presentation to the military court at Bulford in defence of L/Cpl Joe Glenton October 2009

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“War between nations was renounced by the signatories of the Kellogg-Briand Treaty. This means that it has become throughout practically the entire world an illegal thing. Hereafter, when nations engage in armed conflict, either one or both of them must be termed violators of this general treaty law.... We denounce them as law breakers."

Henry Stimson, USA Secretary of State 1932

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CONTENTS
Page Introduction The Brief. 3 Summary of Findings. 3 Author 3 The Duty to Disobey Unlawful Orders 4 The legal duty to disobey unlawful orders 4 Identifying a manifestly unlawful order 6 What is an unlawful order? 6 Examples of manifestly unlawful orders 7 A soldier’s duty to disobey unlawful orders 7 The Laws of War 8 All war is illegal. Threatening or attacking a nation state is always illegal The UN Security Council cannot authorise the use of armed force. 9 10 10 The only legitimate use of armed force is self defence Pre-emptive attacks are prohibited Taking part in a war of aggression is a universal crime 11 12 is genocide national group is genocide crimes of subordinates 12 13 14 Wilful killing is a war crime Killing a person because of their nationality Deliberately destroying members of a Leaders are responsible for the war Aiding or abetting a war or 8 9

the use of armed force is a crime 15 Every citizen has a legal duty to disobey illegal orders 15 Unlawful superior orders 17 Prime Ministerial orders to attack Afghanistan [2001 – 2009] 17 False justification for war 20 War Crimes 23 A Crime Against Peace 23 Genocide 24 A Crime Against Humanity 24 War Crimes 25 Conspiracy 26 The Offences Against the Person Act 1861 27 Proving intent 27 Conclusions 28 Appendices 30 UN Charter – Chapter VII 30 UNSCR 1386 33 UNSCR 1510 35

4 Tony Blair’s Statement on military action in Afghanistan – October 7th 2001 Gordon Brown’s speech on Afghanistan – September 2009 37 39

Brief
1) I was asked to prepare a report on the legality of UK military action in Afghanistan to be presented to the military tribunal at Bulford in defence of L/Cpl Glenton’s claim that he has a lawful duty to disobey orders as the war with Afghanistan is unlawful.

Summary of findings
2) Having researched the duty to disobey unlawful orders, the laws of war, the legality of HM Government’s orders relating to the war with Afghanistan and the legality of HM Armed Forces’ actions in Afghanistan, I confirm that: • every member of HM Armed Forces has a legal duty to disobey unlawful orders; • the conflict taking place in Afghanistan is manifestly unlawful; • the claim by HM Government that the war with Afghanistan is authorised by the UN Security Council is false; • the orders by the CiC and the Chiefs of the Defence Staff to take part in the war with Afghanistan are manifestly unlawful; • the actions of individual members of HM Armed Forces in taking part in the wilful killing of Afghan citizens constitute the criminal offences of ‘genocide’, ‘crimes against humanity’, ‘war crimes’, ‘murder’ and ‘a crime against peace’; • every British citizen has a legal duty to disobey the orders of the UK Government whilst it continues to violate the laws of war and commit war crimes.

Author
This report has been written by Chris Coverdale, a behavioural scientist, governance consultant and peace campaigner with expertise in war law and the emerging science of memetics [cultural change]. Between 1969 and 1998 he worked as a consultant and company director in the management of behaviour change, transforming individual, group and organizational behaviour. In 2002 he helped to set up Legal Action Against War to use the justice system to halt British involvement in the wars with Iraq and Afghanistan and hold leaders to account for their war crimes. In 2008, having conducted extensive research into violations of the domestic and international laws of war, he founded Make Wars History, a voluntary organisation promoting non-violent direct action to end and prevent war. Papers - The Laws of War 2005 - The Iraq Conspiracy 2006 - Accounting for Genocide 2009 Contact: Tel 020 8540 2865 or by e-mail to ccovers@googlemail.com

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The Duty to Disobey Unlawful Orders
1) After the horrific consequences of two world wars the Nuremburg and Tokyo War Crimes Trials made it clear that every citizen and in particular every soldier has a legal duty to humanity to prevent governments from waging aggressive war and causing injury or death to innocent people. “The very essence of the [London] Charter is that individuals have international duties which transcend the national obligations of obedience imposed by the individual State. He who violates the laws of war cannot obtain immunity while acting in pursuance of the authority of the State, if the State in authorising action moves outside its competence under international law…” “That a soldier was ordered to kill or torture in violation of the international law of war has never been recognised as a defence to such acts of brutality, though, as the Charter here provides, the order may be urged in mitigation of the punishment. The true test, which is found in varying degrees in the criminal law of most nations, is not the existence of the order, but whether moral choice was in fact possible…”
Nuremburg War Crimes Tribunal 1946

2)

That these international duties apply to every member of HM Armed Forces was confirmed with the publication of The Manual of Military Law in 1955 which states: “If a person, who is bound to obey a duly constituted superior, receives from the superior an order to do some act or make some omission which is manifestly illegal, he is under a legal duty to refuse to carry out the order and if he does carry it out he will be criminally responsible for what he does in doing so…
Manual of Military Law, Pt I, Chapter VI, Article 24

3)

Article 24 of the Manual of Military Law makes it quite clear that members of the armed forces have a lawful duty to disobey orders from their superior officers if they believe that

6 those orders are unlawful. It also makes it quite clear that if they do carry out an unlawful order they will be held criminally responsible for the consequences of the order. 4) The publication of the Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict by the Ministry of Defence in 2004 reconfirmed the principle and made it quite clear that the duty to disobey a manifestly unlawful order applies to all superior orders from wherever they originate. 16.47.3 Orders from a superior in this context include those of a government, a superior - military or civilian - or a national law or regulation. A serviceman is under a duty not to obey a manifestly unlawful order.
Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Chapter 16, Article 47

5)

That a soldier can be held criminally responsible for his actions when following unlawful orders was confirmed after the Vietnam war when the US Court of Military Appeals rejected the plea of superior orders and confirmed the guilty verdict on Lt William Calley for his part in the My Lai massacre. “A determination that an order is illegal does not, of itself, assign criminal responsibility to the person following the order for acts done in compliance with it. Soldiers are taught to follow orders, and special attention is given to obedience of orders on the battlefield. Military effectiveness depends upon obedience to orders. On the other hand, the obedience of a soldier is not the obedience of an automaton. A soldier is a reasoning agent, obliged to respond, not as a machine, but as a person. The law takes these factors into account in assessing criminal responsibility for acts done in compliance with illegal orders. The acts of a subordinate done in compliance with an unlawful order given him by his superior are excused and impose no criminal liability upon him unless the superior's order is one which a man of ordinary sense and understanding would, under the circumstances, know to be unlawful, or if the order in question is actually known to the accused to be unlawful. Whether Lieutenant Calley was the most ignorant person in the United States Army in Vietnam, or the most intelligent, he must be presumed to know that he could not kill the people involved here… An order to kill infants and unarmed civilians who were so demonstrably incapable of resistance to the armed might of a military force as were those killed by Lieutenant Calley is, in my opinion, so palpably illegal that whatever conceptual difference there may be between a person of "commonest understanding" and a person of "common understanding," that difference could not have had any "impact on a court of lay members receiving the respective wordings in instructions," as appellate defense counsel contend.”
United States Court of Military Appeals, December 21, 1973

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Identifying a manifestly unlawful order
6) When receiving an order from an officer, a soldier, as a reasoning agent, is obliged to respond not as a machine but as a person, as a human being. This means that instead of automatically responding to orders without thinking he must stop and think and use his reasoning ability to deliberate on the issue and decide for himself whether or not the order is lawful. In making high quality choices or decisions a soldier needs to undertake several distinct thought processes. • In the first place he needs to consider what an order entails, the actions and activities that he will be involved in. • Then he needs to consider the likely or expected outcome, the results or consequences of the order. • Then he needs to examine his conscience and establish whether or not the action he is being asked to take or the consequence he is being asked to bring about is right or wrong and complies with his own moral values and standards. • If it does, he then needs to consider whether or not the order and its likely consequences complies with his own understanding of the law and whether it is or is not a criminal offence. • If after thinking it through he is happy that his conscience is clear and that the consequences of his actions will be lawful then he has a duty to follow the order. • If however his thought processes have thrown up moral or legal questions or concerns then he is obliged in law to raise his questions and concerns with his ‘superior’ officers. If a soldier believes that by following an order he will transgress his own moral code of conduct or international or domestic law then he has a lawful duty to disobey the order.

What is an unlawful order ?
1) An unlawful order is: • • • • Any order which if followed will cause physical injury, mental harm or death. Any order which if followed will break the law. Any order which if followed will lead to the commission of a criminal offence. Any order to take part in an unlawful activity

Examples of manifestly unlawful orders

8 1) Any political, civil or military order to • • • • • • • • • • Use high-explosive weapons against inhabited villages, towns and cities. Take any action that could cause injury or death to children or unarmed civilians. Take part in a war of aggression. Use armed force other than in defence of the nation. Take part in an armed attack in foreign territory. Take part in the invasion or occupation of an independent sovereign nation state. Kill an enemy combatant. Take any action that could result in the destruction of others’ property. Drop bombs or fire rockets or cruise missiles at enemy positions. Prepare or train to use nuclear weapons.

A Soldiers Duty to Disobey Unlawful Orders
1) Ever since the end of the Second World War every citizen and every member of a military force has had an international legal duty to disobey superior orders when the orders they receive from their government or their political, civil and military leaders and officers are obviously unlawful. Unfortunately neither the British Government nor HM Armed Forces have made any efforts to help soldiers, sailors and airmen to decide for themselves when an order is unlawful. On the contrary, members of the armed forces are taught to follow orders without questioning them and in many cases they are punished if they dare to question an order. As a result ordinary human beings become brutalized to such an extent that they accept without question that killing men, women and even children in their thousands is all part of the job. This has to change. All of us have a duty to mankind to take a stand and force our leaders and governments to stop the killing and adopt a peaceful approach to the resolution of difficulties.

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The laws of war
“The law of war is to be found not only in treaties, but in the customs and practices of states which gradually obtained universal recognition, and from the general principles of justice applied by jurists and practiced by military courts.”
Nuremburg War Crimes Tribunal 1946

All war is illegal.
2) War was outlawed in 1928 by the General Treaty for the Renunciation of War [Kellogg-Briand Pact]. Sixty three nations, including Britain, America and Afghanistan, ratified the Pact condemning recourse to war and agreeing to settle all disputes peacefully. This treaty is still in force. ARTICLE I The High Contracting Parties solemnly declare in the names of their respective peoples that they condemn recourse to war for the solution of international controversies, and renounce it, as an instrument of national policy in their relations with one another. ARTICLE II The High Contracting Parties agree that the settlement or solution of all disputes or conflicts of whatever nature or of whatever origin they may be, which may arise among them, shall never be sought except by pacific means.
The General Treaty for the Renunciation of War [Kellogg-Briand Pact]

3)

The Kellogg-Briand Pact formed the legal basis for the Nuremburg War Crimes Trials. Under its terms armed attacks on any independent nation state violate this binding treaty and render a nation’s political, civil and military leaders criminally liable for the same offence of waging aggressive war for which Germany’s leaders were convicted and hanged in 1946. “In the opinion of the Tribunal, those who wage aggressive war are doing that which is equally illegal, and of much greater moment than a breach of one of the rules of the Hague Convention. In interpreting the words of the Pact, it must be remembered that international law is not the product of an international legislature, and that such international agreements as the Pact have to deal with general principles of law, and not with administrative matters of procedure.” “After the signing of the Pact, any nation resorting to war as an instrument of national policy breaks the Pact. In the opinion of the Tribunal, the solemn renunciation of war as an instrument of national policy necessarily involves the proposition that such war is

10 illegal in international law; and that those who plan and wage such a war with its inevitable and terrible consequences are committing a crime in so doing.” “The charges in the indictment that the defendants planned and waged aggressive wars are charges of the utmost gravity. War is essentially an evil thing. Its consequences are not confined to the belligerent states alone, but affect the whole world. To initiate a war of aggression therefore, is not only an international crime, it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.”
Nuremburg War Crimes Tribunal 1946

Threatening or attacking a nation state is always illegal
4) The UN Charter is widely recognised as the world’s premier war law. When a nation state signs and ratifies the UN Charter it makes a binding agreement never to threaten or attack another member state and to settle all international disputes peacefully. 2.3 All members shall settle their international disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace, security and justice are not endangered. 2.4 All members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.

The UN Security Council cannot authorise the use of armed force.
5) The UN Security Council is a peacekeeping body and it may never use armed force. Claims by UK and US governments that the Security Council can authorise armed attacks on another state under Chapter VII of the UN Charter are false. Whatever peacekeeping measures the Security Council decides to implement they may not involve the use of armed force. 41. The Security Council may decide what measures not involving the use of armed force are to be employed to give effect to its decisions, and it may call upon members of the United Nations to apply such measures. These may include complete or partial interruption of economic relations and of rail, sea, air, postal, telegraphic, radio and other means of communication, and the severance of diplomatic relations.

42. Should the Security Council consider that measures provided for in Article 41 prove to be inadequate, it may take such action by air, sea or land forces as may be necessary to maintain or restore international peace and security. Such action may include demonstrations, blockade and other operations by air, sea, or land forces.

11 6) The Security Council is a peacekeeping body committed to the non-violent resolution of conflicts and the preservation of human life. It may not under any circumstances plan or undertake any action that could result in injury or death to another human being.

The only legitimate use of armed force is self defence
7) The only occasion when a limited and proportional use of armed force is lawful occurs when a nation is forced to defend itself from an armed attack. Under Chapter VII, Article 51 of the UN Charter, if a nation is attacked it may legitimately use armed force to defend itself, but it may do so only until the UN Security Council implements measures to resolve the conflict. 51. Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security. Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self defence shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary to maintain or restore international peace and security. 8) Under the UN Charter the only people authorised to use armed force in the Afghan conflict are the people of Afghanistan. Under Article 51 they have the right to defend themselves from unlawful attacks by ISAF forces and if they notify the UN Security Council of the attacks they can use armed force until the UN Security Council implements peacekeeping measures. Every one of the suggested measures for the resolution of conflicts listed in Articles 41 and 42 of the UN Charter is non-violent and although the measures may involve the use of air, sea or land forces [blue beret troops] they may NOT involve the use of armed force.

9)

Pre-emptive attacks are prohibited
10) All pre-emptive attacks were outlawed 150 years ago as a result of Britain’s underhand preemptive attack on an American vessel “The Caroline” at Niagara.

Taking part in a war of aggression is a universal crime

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11)

The seven international war laws known as the Nuremburg Principles, derived from the Nuremburg and Tokyo War Crimes Tribunals by the International Law Commission, were adopted as universal statute war law by the United Nations General Assembly in 1950. I. II. Any person who commits an act which constitutes a crime under international law is responsible therefor and liable to punishment. The fact that internal law does not impose a penalty for an act which constitutes a crime under international law does not relieve the person who committed the act from responsibility. The fact that a person who committed an act which constitutes a crime under international law acted as Head of State or responsible Government official does not relieve him from responsibility. The fact that a person acted pursuant to order of his Government or a superior does not relieve him from responsibility under international law, provided a moral choice was in fact possible to him. Any person charged with a crime under international law has the right to a fair trial on the facts and law. The crimes hereinafter set out are punishable as crimes under international law: Crimes against peace: (i) Planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances; (ii) Participation in a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any of the acts mentioned under (i). War crimes: Violations of the laws or customs of war which include, but are not limited to, murder, ill-treatment or deportation to slave-labor or for any other purpose of civilian population of or in occupied territory, murder or ill treatment of prisoners of war, of persons on the seas, killing of hostages, plunder of public or private property, wanton destruction of cities, towns, or villages, or devastation not justified by military necessity. Crimes against humanity: Murder, extermination, enslavement, deportation and other inhuman acts done against any civilian population, or persecutions on political, racial or religious grounds, when such acts are done or such persecutions are carried on in execution of or in connection with any crime against peace or any war crime. Complicity in the commission of a crime against peace, a war crime, or a crime against humanity as set forth in Principle VI is a crime under international law.

III.

IV.

V. VI.

VII.

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Since 1950 when the Nuremburg Principles were agreed by the United Nations General Assembly, the supreme governing body of the UN, it is not only unlawful to take part in a war of aggression but it is a criminal offence of a ‘crime against peace’.

Wilful killing is a war crime

13 13) Whether in a time of war or peace it is never lawful, legal or right to kill another human being. The wilful killing of nationals [combatants or civilians] of another state is never lawful and is a crime. The first and foremost war crime specified in the Geneva Conventions, the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and the International Criminal Court Act 2001 is ‘wilful killing’. For the purposes of this Statute “war crimes” means: Grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, namely, any of the following acts against persons or property protected under the provisions of the relevant Geneva Convention: (i) Wilful killing; (ii) Torture or inhuman treatment, including biological experiments; (iii) Wilfully causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or health; (iv) Extensive destruction and appropriation of property, not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly; 14) In addition to the prohibitions on wilful killing the UK Human Rights Act specifies: Everyone’s right to life shall be protected by law. No-one shall be deprived of his life intentionally save in the execution of a sentence of a court following his conviction of a crime for which this penalty is provided in law. 15) It is never lawful for a serviceman to wilfully [deliberately] kill an enemy. Whenever a person dies as a result of an act of aggression those responsible for giving, transmitting or executing the orders that caused the death commit a crime and become criminally liable for murder.

Killing a person because of their nationality is genocide
16) Setting out to kill a person because of their nationality, race, religion or ethnicity is a crime of genocide under the Genocide Convention1, the Rome Statute and the International Criminal Court Act 2001. For the purpose of this Statute, “genocide” means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such: (a) Killing members of the group; (b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; (c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part… 17) The widely held assumption that it is lawful to kill an enemy during times of war is incorrect. It must be stressed that it is always a crime to wilfully kill or deliberately cause the death of a person even if they are described by our political leaders as ‘the enemy’. The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court was enacted with the specific purpose of preventing Heads of State, Governments, Parliaments and political leaders from waging wars and killing human beings because of who they are, because of their nationality, ethnicity, race or religion. Killing

1 In the USA The Genocide Convention Implementation Act 1988 [known as The Proxmire Act] applies

14 a person as part of a state policy [war] because they happen to be Iraqi, Afghani, Hutu, Tutsi, Palestinian, Israeli, British or American is an act of genocide.

Deliberately destroying members of a national group is genocide
18) When George Bush and Tony Blair launched the shock and awe attack on Iraq in 2003 using missiles and rockets to attack targets in Baghdad, they knew that innocent Iraqis would be killed. By intentionally choosing and following a course of action that they knew would destroy members of a national group for no other reason than their membership of that national group they committed an act of genocide. The only reason that the victims died was that they were living or present in the area under attack. None of them had done anything to warrant being attacked and all of them had the right to expect that the Governments and people of developed nations would abide by their solemn and binding agreements never to wage war or attack another nation state. It is not only Heads of State who are criminally liable for the crime of genocide when launching an armed attack on another state, but every person involved with the attack. In law under Article 25 of the Rome Statute every resident of every State which takes part in an armed invasion or occupation in which citizens of the nation under attack are injured or killed is criminally liable for the consequences and can be charged with genocide, conduct ancillary to genocide, accessory to genocide or conspiracy to commit genocide. Rome Statute - Individual criminal responsibility Article 25 3. In accordance with this Statute, a person shall be criminally responsible and liable for punishment for a crime2 within the jurisdiction of the Court if that person: (a) Commits such a crime, whether as an individual, jointly with another or through another person, regardless of whether that other person is criminally responsible; (b) Orders, solicits or induces the commission of such a crime which in fact occurs or is attempted; (c) For the purpose of facilitating the commission of such a crime, aids, abets or otherwise assists in its commission or its attempted commission, including providing the means for its commission; (d) In any other way contributes to the commission or attempted commission of such a crime by a group of persons acting with a common purpose. Such contribution shall be intentional and shall either: (i) Be made with the aim of furthering the criminal activity or criminal purpose of the group, where such activity or purpose involves the commission of a crime within the jurisdiction of the Court; or
2 Genocide, Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes.

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15 (ii) Be made in the knowledge of the intention of the group to commit the crime; (e) In respect of the crime of genocide, directly and publicly incites others to commit genocide; (f) Attempts to commit such a crime by taking action that commences its execution by means of a substantial step, but the crime does not occur because of circumstances independent of the person's intentions. However, a person who abandons the effort to commit the crime or otherwise prevents the completion of the crime shall not be liable for punishment under this Statute for the attempt to commit that crime if that person completely and voluntarily gave up the criminal purpose.

Leaders are responsible for the war crimes of their subordinates
“The principle of international law, which under certain circumstances protects the representatives of a state, cannot be applied to acts which are condemned as criminal by international law. The authors of these facts cannot shelter themselves behind their official position in order to be freed from punishment in appropriate proceedings. Nuremburg Crimes Tribunal 20) Article 27 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court makes it clear that no matter who launches the rockets, fires the cruise missiles, drops the cluster bombs or deploys depleted uranium shells, responsibility for the resulting deaths, injuries and destruction lies with the political, civil or military leaders who ordered the attack. 27. This Statute shall apply equally to all persons without any distinction based on official capacity. In particular, official capacity as Head of State or Government, a member of a Government or Parliament, an elected representative or a government official shall in no case exempt a person from criminal responsibility under this Statute, nor shall it in and of itself, constitute a ground for reduction of sentence. 21) The British legislation makes it quite clear that it is a nation’s political, civil and military leaders who are primarily responsible for the criminal offences associated with a war of aggression. 65. A military commander, or a person effectively acting as a military commander, is responsible for offences committed by forces under his effective command and control or his effective authority and control… A person responsible under this section for an offence is regarded as aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring the commission of the offence.
International Criminal Court Act 2001

War

22)

It is a common error in Britain to believe that the law is different or not applicable in times of war. This is not the case. That a nation is at war provides no legal protection, excuse or defence to these crimes. Since September 2001, when the International Criminal Court Act was enacted, if one or more persons is injured or killed through the deliberate action of Britain’s

16 military forces against a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, then a crime of genocide has been committed and those responsible for it are criminally liable and may be indicted and tried for the offence. So for example, if an RAF officer under orders fires a rocket or drops a bomb that causes death or injury to men, women and children, then he or she together with the political, civil and military commanders who commissioned the bombing can be charged with a war crime. If any member of HM armed forces intentionally kills or injures one or more persons who are members of a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as part of a widespread or systematic attack on that group, then both the individual killer and all those in the chain of command responsible for giving the orders to use armed force are criminally responsible for the crimes of ‘genocide’ or ‘conduct ancillary to genocide’ under Sections 51 and 52 of the International Criminal Court Act 2001.

Aiding or abetting warfare or the use of armed force is a crime
23) Whenever a government embarks on illegal warfare, citizens and particularly members of the armed forces, arms manufacturers, suppliers and taxpayers become criminally liable for complicity in the crimes of their government and subject to the sanctions of domestic and international law. Actions such as fighting, supplying weapons, paying tax, voting in Parliament, speaking or writing in favor of a war of aggression are all criminal offences. Whosoever shall aid, abet, counsel, or procure the commission of any indictable offence, whether the same be an offence at common law or by virtue of any Act passed or to be passed, shall be liable to be tried, indicted and punished as a principal offender.
Accessories and Abettors Act 1861

Every citizen has a legal duty to disobey illegal orders
24) Article 24 Chapter VI of the Manual of Military Law applies to every British citizen and taxpayer as well as to servicemen and women. This means that if a government embarks on an illegal war everyone is duty bound to refuse all government orders associated with the war. Servicemen and women must refuse active service orders, armament suppliers must refuse to supply weapons and taxpayers must withhold taxes.

24. If a person who is bound to obey a duly constituted superior receives from the superior an order to do some act or make some omission which is manifestly illegal, he is under a legal duty to refuse to carry out the order and if he does carry it out he will be criminally responsible for what he does in doing so. 25) Anyone who co-operates with a government that wages a war of aggression is complicit in a crime against peace and is criminally liable as an accessory to war crimes. As the judges at Nuremburg explained when convicting Germany’s leaders for breaches of the laws of war: “The very essence of the [London] Charter is that individuals have international duties which transcend the national obligations of obedience imposed by the individual State.

17 He who violates the laws of war cannot obtain immunity while acting in pursuance of the authority of the State, if the State in authorising action moves outside its competence under international law…”

Unlawful superior orders

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Prime Ministerial orders to attack Afghanistan [2001 – 2009]
26) On October 7th 2001 the Prime Minister, Tony Blair announced3 to the nation that Britain’s armed forces were operating in Afghanistan. He made the following statements: “As you will know from the announcement by President Bush military action against targets inside Afghanistan has begun. I can confirm that UK forces are engaged in this action… … No country lightly commits forces to military action and the inevitable risks involved but we made it clear following the attacks upon the United States on September 11th that we would take part in action once it was clear who was responsible. There is no doubt in my mind, nor in the mind of anyone who has been through all the available evidence, including intelligence material, that these attacks were carried out by the al-Qaeda network masterminded by Osama bin Laden. Equally it is clear that his network is harboured and supported by the Taliban regime inside Afghanistan. It is now almost a month since the atrocity occurred, it is more than two weeks since an ultimatum was delivered to the Taliban to yield up the terrorists or face the consequences. It is clear beyond doubt that they will not do this. They were given the choice of siding with justice or siding with terror and they chose to side with terror. … The military action we are taking will be targeted against places we know to be involved in the operation of terror or against the military apparatus of the Taliban. This military plan has been put together mindful of our determination to do all we humanly can to avoid civilian casualties. … We have set the objectives to eradicate Osama bin Laden’s network of terror and to take action against the Taliban regime that is sponsoring it. As to the precise British involvement I can confirm that last Wednesday the US Government made a specific request that a number of UK military assets be used in the operation which has now begun. And I gave authority for these assets to be deployed. They include the base at Diego Garcia, reconnaissance and flight support aircraft and missile firing submarines. Missile firing submarines are in use tonight. The air assets will be available for use in the coming days. … People are bound to be concerned about what the terrorists may seek to do in response. I should say there is at present no specific credible threat to the UK that we know of and that we have in place tried and tested contingency plans which are the best possible response to any further attempts at terror. … This, of course, is a moment of the utmost gravity for the world. None of the leaders involved in this action want war. None of our nations want it. We are a peaceful people.
3 The complete statement is attached as Appendix 1

19 But we know that sometimes to safeguard peace we have to fight. Britain has learnt that lesson many times in our history. We only do it if the cause is just but this cause is just. The murder of almost seven thousand innocent people in America was an attack on our freedom, our way of life, an attack on civilised values the world over. We waited so that those responsible could be yielded up by those shielding them. That offer was refused. We have now no choice so we will act and our determination in acting is total. We will not let up or rest until our objectives are met in full.”
Prime Minister Tony Blair 7/10/2001

27)

Eight years later on September 4th 2009 Prime Minister, Gordon Brown made a statement4 on the UK Government’s strategy in Afghanistan which included the following points. “Our aim in 2009 is the same as in 2001. We are in Afghanistan as a result of a hard-headed assessment of the terrorist threat facing Britain. … It is right that eight years ago Britain with America and our allies, on behalf of the international community as a whole, helped to remove from Afghanistan a regime which enabled Al Qaeda to plot terror around the world, and which culminated in the attacks on September 11th, not just on America, but of course attacks on the freedoms and values of us all. … But we knew that as we removed the Taleban from power and drove Al Qaeda from Afghanistan, so Al Qaeda would relocate – and they did so, on the remote mountains of Pakistan. A new crucible of terrorism has therefore emerged. The Director-General of our security services has said that three quarters of the most serious plots against the UK have had links that reach back into these mountains. At present the threat mainly comes from the Pakistan side, but if the insurgency succeeds in Afghanistan, Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups will once again be able to use it as a sanctuary to train, plan and launch attacks on Britain and the rest of the world. The advice I receive from the security agencies is clear. The sustained pressure on Al Qaeda in Pakistan combined with military action in Afghanistan is having a suppressive effect on Al Qaeda’s ability to operate effectively in the region – but despite these difficulties, the main element of the threat to the UK continues to emanate from Al Qaeda and Pakistan. … In Afghanistan, the Afghan army and police are not yet ready to take on the Taleban purely by themselves. That is why the international coalition must maintain its military presence… we will have succeeded when our troops are coming home because the Afghans are doing the job themselves. From that day on we will be able to focus our efforts on supporting the elected government on security and on development and on human rights. The right strategy is one that completes this job, which is to enable the Afghans to take over from international forces and to continue the essential work of denying the territory of Afghanistan as a base for terrorists.
Prime Minister Gordon Brown 4/9/2009

4 The full text of the statement is attached as Appendix 2 to this report

20 28) A recent letter from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister Bill Rammell attempts to justify Britain’s occupation of Afghanistan on the grounds that it is authorised by the UN Security Council. “I can only reiterate here that the UK is in Afghanistan at the invitation of the democratically elected government of that country, operating along with the other partner nations under United Nations Security Council Resolution Nos 1386 (2001) and 1510 (2003). The UN authorisation was most recently extended in UNHCR 5 No 1833 (2008).”
Letter from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office 17/6/09

False justification for war
5 Presumably this should read UNSCR as the UNHCR [UN High Commission on refugees] cannot authorise action.

21

29)

When Tony Blair committed Britain’s armed forces to the conflict in Afghanistan he did so at the request of George Bush. It was NOT at the request of the Afghan Government or the UN Security Council. When giving the reasons for the war he explained that we were attacking Afghanistan with the stated purposes to “eradicate Osama bin Laden’s network of terror and to take action against the Taliban regime that is sponsoring it.” These two objectives have nothing whatsoever to do with defending Britain from an armed attack [the only basis on which the Prime Minister is authorised to order the use of armed force]. This armed attack on the men, women and children of Afghanistan, none of whom had had anything to do with the attack on the twin towers, was a blatant violation of international treaties and the laws of war. At no stage did Tony Blair claim that Britain had been attacked by Afghanistan and was acting in self-defence [the only lawful justification for the use of armed force]. On the contrary he made the specific point that “there is at present no specific credible threat to the UK that we know of” Compare this with the statement made by Gordon Brown eight years later in September 2009 when he attempted to justify Britain’s illegal presence in Afghanistan. “Our aim in 2009 is the same as in 2001. We are in Afghanistan as a result of a hard-headed assessment of the terrorist threat facing Britain.

30)

31)

32)

This claim that our aim in 2009 is the same as in 2001 is false and is a blatant example of the lies and propaganda that the UK and US Governments use to deceive the armed forces and the public into believing that the war with Afghanistan is lawful. Gordon Brown contradicts himself when he states, the main element of the threat to the UK continues to emanate from Al Qaeda and Pakistan. If this is the case then why are we fighting in Afghanistan killing innocent Afghani citizens when the threat comes from Pakistan? It is never lawful to attack another nation on the grounds of a potential threat from a group of its’ citizens. If it was possible to justify the war on the grounds of preventing the terrorist threat, which it isn’t, then logically we should be attacking Pakistan not Afghanistan. The argument that Britain is in Afghanistan at the invitation of the democratically elected government of that country operating under UNSC resolutions 1386 and 1510 is false and misleading. Tony Blair announced that British forces attacked Afghanistan at the request of President Bush not at the invitation of the democratically elected government of that country. British and American forces began bombing Afghan cities and killing innocent men, women and children on October 7th 2001 more than ten weeks before resolution 1386 was put before the UN Security Council on December 20th. To claim that Britain’s forces were in Afghanistan authorised by UN Security Council resolution 1386 is palpably false.

33)

34)

35)

22 36) The Security Council is a peacekeeping operation governed by Articles 39 to 51 [Chapter VII] of the UN Charter. Article 41 restricts the Security Council to using measures not involving the use of armed force. For Bill Rammell and the FCO to claim that the use of armed force in Afghanistan is authorised by the UN Security Council under UNSC resolutions 1386 and 15106 is false and misleading. Neither resolution 1386 nor resolution 1510 could or did authorise Britain’s presence in Afghanistan and neither resolution authorises the use of armed force. UN Security Council resolutions are not international law. They are the non-violent operational decisions of the Security Council and they do not and cannot apply to the armed forces of Member States acting independently of the Security Council. They apply solely to [blue beret] peacekeeping forces operating under the auspices and command of the Security Council and they cannot authorise independent action by UK or US forces. The statement by Tony Blair that “this military plan has been put together mindful of our determination to do all we humanly can to avoid civilian casualties” is false and thoroughly misleading. The military plan to open hostilities against Afghanistan by using high explosive weapons such as cruise missiles, rockets and bombs on Kabul and other villages and towns was designed to cause maximum civilian casualties. With several hundred non-violent lawful civil and military options open to Tony Blair and George Bush to arrest and punish the perpetrators of the 911 atrocity, the indiscriminate bombing of the capital city of Kabul was the single choice short of using nuclear weapons that was most likely to cause civilian casualties. NATO [The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation] was set up in 1949 to provide mutual defence against the potential threat of the Soviet Union. It was never meant, and has certainly never been authorised to wage aggressive war. To use its massive resources for armed attacks on one of the world’s poorest countries, injuring, maiming and killing hundreds of totally innocent men, women and children is a gross violation of international law and an atrocity. The truth of the matter is that there is not now and has never been any lawful reason for attacking Afghanistan. It was an ill considered unlawful retaliatory attack on totally innocent people in one of the poorest most undeveloped countries in the world. Not one of the victims had attacked Britain or British interests; not one was allowed to plead for their lives in court and not one was shown any mercy before they were massacred in a show of military might by the British and American Governments. The only legitimate lawful use of armed force in international affairs occurs under Article 51, Chapter VII of the UN Charter when a nation state has suffered an attack from another nation state and it responds to that armed attack with a proportionate use of armed force. Not only is there no evidence of an attack by the Afghan Government on either Britain or America, but there is no evidence whatsoever that the attack on the twin towers on Sept 11th was ordered or even instigated by the Afghan Government.

37)

38)

39)

40)

41)

6 For the full text of Resolutions 1386 and 1510 see Appendices Nos. 2 and 3

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War Crimes

24 42) In attacking Afghanistan British, American and ISAF forces violated international treaties and the laws of war and in doing so British and American citizens committed many of the most serious crimes associated with warfare and armed conflict. They committed:-

A Crime Against Peace
Crimes against peace: (i) Planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances; (ii) Participation in a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any of the acts mentioned under (i).
Article VI, The Nuremburg Principles 1950

43)

The orders in October 2001 from George Bush and Tony Blair to attack, invade and occupy Afghanistan using high-explosive weapons to bomb Kabul and other undefended Afghan cities killing and injuring hundreds of innocent men, women and children violated the laws of war. These actions constitute a ‘crime against peace’ under Article VI of the Nuremburg Principles and all those involved in planning, preparing, initiating or waging this war of aggression in violation of the General Treaty for the Renunciation of War are complicit in the crime and can be charged with a ‘crime against peace’ or ‘complicity in a crime against peace’. Offenders include Heads of State, Government Ministers, Members of Congress and both Houses of Parliament, civil servants, members of the Armed Forces, law enforcement officers and taxpayers all of whom are criminally liable for the resulting deaths and injuries.

Genocide
For the purposes of this Statute “Genocide” means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such: killing members of the group; causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; forcibly transferring children of the group to another group. 44) The number of Afghan civilians [men women and children] known to have been killed as a direct result of this war is between 12,460 and 32,057. With the number of ‘insurgents’ killed estimated at 22,500, the total number of violent deaths of Afghan citizens caused by ISAF forces is at least 35,000. Intentionally killing 35,000 people all of whom are members of the Afghan national group is an act of genocide under section 51 of the International Criminal Court Act 2001 and Article 25 of the Rome Statute as well as a crime of genocide in the USA under the Proxmire Act 1988. All of those who have taken a direct part in the killing are

25 criminally liable for the deaths and can be charged with ‘genocide’, whilst all those who have had an indirect part in the crime are also criminally liable for the deaths and can be charged with ‘conduct ancillary to genocide’ under section 52 of the International Criminal Court Act.

Crimes against Humanity
For the purposes of this Statute “Crime against humanity” means any of the following acts when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population with knowledge of the attack: murder; extermination; enslavement; deportation or forcible transfer of population; imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law; torture; rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced sterilization, or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity; persecution against any identifiable group or collectivity on political, racial, national, ethnic, cultural, religious, gender as defined in paragraph 3, or other grounds that are universally recognized as impermissible under international law, in connection with any act referred to in this paragraph or any crime within the jurisdiction of the Court; enforced disappearance of persons; the crime of apartheid; other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health. 45) Bombing Kabul and other towns and villages using indiscriminate weapons of mass destruction such as cruise missiles, rockets, cluster bombs, mortars and depleted uranium artillery shells in the knowledge that anyone in the vicinity would be injured or killed constitutes a crime against humanity under section 51 of the International Criminal Court Act 2001 and article 25 of the Rome Statute. Every planned attack in which civilians are killed and which has taken place as part of the war in Afghanistan constitutes a crime against humanity and renders all those involved in conducting or aiding and abetting the attack criminally liable for the consequences.

War Crimes
For the purposes of this Statute “war crimes” means: (a) Grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, namely, any of the following acts against persons or property protected under the provisions of the relevant Geneva Convention: (i) Wilful killing; (ii) Torture or inhuman treatment, including biological experiments; (iii) Wilfully causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or health; (iv) Extensive destruction and appropriation of property, not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly; (v) Compelling a prisoner of war or other protected person to serve in the forces of a hostile Power; (vi) Wilfully depriving a prisoner of war or other protected person of the rights of fair and regular trial; (vii) Unlawful deportation or transfer or unlawful confinement; (viii) Taking of hostages. (b) Other serious violations of the laws and customs applicable in international armed conflict, within the established framework of international law, namely, any of the following acts: (i) Intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population as such or

26 against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities; (ii) Intentionally directing attacks against civilian objects, that is, objects which are not military objectives; (iii) Intentionally directing attacks against personnel, installations, material, units or vehicles involved in a humanitarian assistance or peacekeeping mission in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, as long as they are entitled to the protection given to civilians or civilian objects under the international law of armed conflict; (iv) Intentionally launching an attack in the knowledge that such attack will cause incidental loss of life or injury to civilians or damage to civilian objects or widespread, long-term and severe damage to the natural environment which would be clearly excessive in relation to the concrete and direct overall military advantage anticipated; (v) Attacking or bombarding, by whatever means, towns, villages, dwellings or buildings which are undefended and which are not military objectives; (vi) Killing or wounding a combatant who, having laid down his arms or having no longer means of defence, has surrendered at discretion; (vii) Making improper use of a flag of truce, or of the flag or of the military insignia and uniform of the enemy or of the United Nations, as well as of the distinctive emblems of the Geneva Conventions, resulting in death or serious personal injury; (viii) The transfer, directly or indirectly, by the Occupying Power of parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies, or the deportation or transfer of all or parts of the population of the occupied territory within or outside this territory; (ix) Intentionally directing attacks against buildings dedicated to religion, education, art, science or charitable purposes, historic monuments, hospitals and places where the sick and wounded are collected, provided they are not military objectives; (x) Subjecting persons who are in the power of an adverse party to physical mutilation or to medical or scientific experiments of any kind which are neither justified by the medical, dental or hospital treatment of the person concerned nor carried out in his or her interest, and which cause death to or seriously endanger the health of such person or persons; (xi) Killing or wounding treacherously individuals belonging to the hostile nation or army; (xii) Declaring that no quarter will be given; (xiii) Destroying or seizing the enemy’s property unless such destruction or seizure be imperatively demanded by the necessities of war; (xiv) Declaring abolished, suspended or inadmissible in a court of law the rights and actions of the nationals of the hostile party; (xv) Compelling the nationals of the hostile party to take part in the operations of war directed against their own country, even if they were in the belligerent’s service before the commencement of the war; (xvi) Pillaging a town or place, even when taken by assault; (xvii) Employing poison or poisoned weapons; (xviii) Employing asphyxiating, poisonous or other gases, and all analogous liquids, materials or devices; (xix) Employing bullets which expand or flatten easily in the human body, such as bullets with a hard envelope which does not entirely cover the core or is pierced with incisions; ....... (xxi) Committing outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment; (xxii) Committing rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy as defined in article 7, paragraph 2(f), enforced sterilisation, or any other form of sexual violence also constituting a grave breach of the Geneva Conventions; (xxiii) Utilizing the presence of a civilian or other protected person to render certain points, areas or military forces immune from military operations; (xxiv) Intentionally directing attacks against buildings, material, medical units and transport, and personnel using the distinctive emblems of the Geneva Conventions in conformity with international law; (xxv) Intentionally using starvation of civilians as a method of warfare by depriving them of objects indispensable to their survival, including wilfully

27 impeding relief supplies as provided for under the Geneva Conventions; (xxvi) Conscripting or enlisting children under the age of fifteen years into the national armed forces or using them to participate actively in hostilities. It is quite clear from press reports and the reports of soldiers returning from Afghanistan that several of the thirty three separate war crimes specified in the legislation have been committed by ISAF forces. Although those responsible for the crimes are primarily the political, civil and military leaders responsible for the war they rarely if ever are held to account for the crimes and the blame often falls on the shoulders of the lower ranks. If these crimes are ever brought to court strenuous efforts will need to made to ensure that the political, civil and military leaders responsible for the crimes are prosecuted rather than the soldiers, sailors and airmen following the unlawful orders.

Conspiracy
“If a person agrees with any other person or persons that a course of conduct shall be pursued which amounts to or involves the commission of any offence or offences by one or more of the parties to the agreement, he is guilty of conspiracy to commit the offence or offences in question.”
The Criminal Law Act 1977

46)

The crime of conspiracy applies to all criminal offences. It therefore applies to the planning and preparation of wars of aggression, genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, murder and any of the other crimes associated with war and military conflict. If anyone takes part in the planning, commissioning or support of any of these crimes they become criminally liable for conspiracy to commit the crime.

The Offences Against the Person Act 1861
“Whosoever shall solicit, encourage, persuade, or endeavour to persuade, or shall propose to any person, to murder any other person, whether he be a subject of Her Majesty or not, and whether he be within the Queen’s dominions or not, shall be guilty of an offence, and being convicted thereof shall be liable to imprisonment for life.”

47)

Any Government Minister, MP, civil servant, serviceman or woman, journalist, political advisor, commentator or taxpayer who says or does anything in support of a war of aggression or an armed attack that results in the death of one or more persons, commits a serious crime under the Offences Against the Person Act 1861. This applies at all times, and the fact that we are at war provides no legal excuse or defence to offenders.

Proving ‘intent’

28 48) Individuals will undoubtedly attempt to argue that they had nothing to do with the war and the crimes committed by Britain’s armed forces. However since the end of WWII this argument will not wash with the courts. Wars cannot take place without the willing consent and support of a majority of a nation’s population. Citizens may say that they did not intend to commit a crime, but as the meaning of intent is defined in the legislation they will find it hard to argue that they did not know that the British government was fighting a war or that they were not aware that anyone might be killed. (a) a person has intent:(i) in relation to conduct, where he means to engage in the conduct, and (ii) in relation to a consequence, where he means to cause the consequence or is aware that it will occur in the ordinary course of events; and (b) “knowledge” means awareness that a circumstance exists or a consequence will occur in the ordinary course of events. 49) That the perpetrators intended to destroy part of a national group as such is proven by their choice of tactics and their use of high-explosive weapons. The deliberate choice to use cruise missiles, rockets and bombs on cities such as Kabul demonstrates the intent to destroy Afghan nationals. They knew that innocent people would be killed. After the first attacks they knew that innocent people had been killed and yet knowing this they chose to repeat the tactic over and over again. This deliberate planned repetition of a criminal act will demonstrate to even the most biased court that George Bush, Tony Blair, Barack Obama and Gordon Brown as well as all the civil political and military leaders involved in these atrocities intended to destroy part of the Afghan national group and by doing so committed the worst crime known to mankind.

Conclusions
50) Having researched the duty to disobey unlawful orders, the laws of war, the legality of HM Government’s orders relating to the war with Afghanistan and the legality of HM Armed Forces’ actions in Afghanistan, I confirm that:-

29 51) There is widespread ignorance amongst British citizens of international treaties and the laws of war. With very little knowledge or understanding of domestic and international war law it is no surprise that no more than a small minority of citizens know of the existence of The General Treaty for the Renunciation of War, understand the implications of the Nuremburg War Crimes Trials or have heard of the Nuremburg Principles and the Rome Statute. It is less understandable why so few servicemen and women know of their duty to disobey unlawful orders as it has been included in military law manuals for more than fifty years. It is quite clear from the research included in the first part of this report that every member of HM Armed Forces has a legal duty to disobey an unlawful order, that few if any of them know of this duty and none of them is able to recognise when they have been given unlawful political orders associated with war and the use of armed conflict. It is also quite clear that the Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict issued by the Ministry of Defence in 2004 is faulty and gives a misleading account of the laws governing the relationships between nations. This has led to Ministers of State, Parliamentarians, members of the armed forces and law enforcement officers having a partial and incomplete knowledge and understanding of the laws of war. This state of ignorance causes people to assume that Governments know what they are doing, and leads them to obey orders despite their misgivings. This ‘obedience’ syndrome is so powerful that it leads soldiers and others to ignore their personal moral values and standards and willingly take part in such heinous acts as the waging of war and the mass murder of women and children. An analysis of the political orders from the British Government relating to the war with Afghanistan indicates quite clearly that it is unlawful on every count. There is not now and never has been a lawful reason for attacking Afghanistan and murdering its people. It is clear that Tony Blair and Gordon Brown are following ‘instructions’ from George Bush and Barack Obama to destroy the Taliban in Afghanistan and have put out false and misleading propaganda to persuade HM Armed Forces and the public that the war and the fighting is lawful and is authorised by the UN Security Council. There is no getting away from the facts that all war is illegal, the UN Security Council can never authorise the use of armed force and that the only time when the use of armed force is lawful is in defence of a nation suffering an armed attack. For these reasons all the orders emanating from the Chiefs of the Defence Staff relating to the war with Afghanistan are unlawful and must be disobeyed. The effect of following unlawful orders is that every action that leads to harm being done to an innocent person is a crime in both domestic and international law, and renders all those involved criminally liable for the consequences. This means that every former and current member of the Armed Forces who has served or is serving in Afghanistan has committed a crime against peace, genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. In order to end this atrocity it is the duty of every serving member of the Armed Forces to report these facts to their superior officers at once and refuse to follow all unlawful orders.

52)

53)

54)

55)

56)

57)

30 58) The duty to rebel and refuse unlawful orders is not confined to HM armed forces. Every citizen of Britain and every nation state involved in the war with Afghanistan has a duty in international law to refuse to obey the orders of their Government as the actions of ISAF forces in Afghanistan are unlawful and in breach of international war law.

Chris Coverdale

The Campaign to Make Wars History

September 2009

APPENDIX 1 UN Charter Chapter VII - Action with Respect to Threats to the Peace, Breaches of the Peace and Acts of Aggression
Article 39 The Security Council shall determine the existence of any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression and shall make recommendations, or decide what measures shall be taken in accordance with Articles 41 and 42, to maintain or restore international peace and security. Article 40 In order to prevent an aggravation of the situation, the Security Council may, before making the recommendations or deciding upon the measures provided for in Article 39, call upon the parties concerned to comply with such provisional measures as it deems necessary or desirable. Such provisional measures shall be without prejudice to the rights, claims, or position of the parties concerned. The Security Council shall duly take account of failure to comply with such provisional measures. Article 41

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The Security Council may decide what measures not involving the use of armed force are to be employed to give effect to its decisions, and it may call upon the Members of the United Nations to apply such measures. These may include complete or partial interruption of economic relations and of rail, sea, air, postal, telegraphic, radio, and other means of communication, and the severance of diplomatic relations. Article 42 Should the Security Council consider that measures provided for in Article 41 would be inadequate or have proved to be inadequate, it may take such action by air, sea, or land forces as may be necessary to maintain or restore international peace and security. Such action may include demonstrations, blockade, and other operations by air, sea, or land forces of Members of the United Nations. Article 43 1. All Members of the United Nations, in order to contribute to the maintenance of international peace and security, undertake to make available to the Security Council, on its call and in accordance with a special agreement or agreements, armed forces, assistance, and facilities, including rights of passage, necessary for the purpose of maintaining international peace and security. 2. Such agreement or agreements shall govern the numbers and types of forces, their degree of readiness and general location, and the nature of the facilities and assistance to be provided. 3. The agreement or agreements shall be negotiated as soon as possible on the initiative of the Security Council. They shall be concluded between the Security Council and Members or between the Security Council and groups of Members and shall be subject to ratification by the signatory states in accordance with their respective constitutional processes. Article 44 When the Security Council has decided to use force it shall, before calling upon a Member not represented on it to provide armed forces in fulfilment of the obligations assumed under Article 43, invite that Member, if the Member so desires, to participate in the decisions of the Security Council concerning the employment of contingents of that Member's armed forces. Article 45 In order to enable the United Nations to take urgent military measures, Members shall hold immediately available national air-force contingents for combined international enforcement action. The strength and degree of readiness of these contingents and plans for their combined action shall be determined within the limits laid down in the special agreement or agreements referred to in Article 43, by the Security Council with the assistance of the Military Staff Committee. Article 46 Plans for the application of armed force shall be made by the Security Council with the assistance of the Military Staff Committee. Article 47 1. There shall be established a Military Staff Committee to advise and assist the Security Council on all questions relating to the Security Council's military requirements for the maintenance of international peace and security, the employment and command of forces placed at its disposal, the regulation of armaments, and possible disarmament.

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2. The Military Staff Committee shall consist of the Chiefs of Staff of the permanent members of the Security Council or their representatives. Any Member of the United Nations not permanently represented on the Committee shall be invited by the Committee to be associated with it when the efficient discharge of the Committee's responsibilities requires the participation of that Member in its work. 3. The Military Staff Committee shall be responsible under the Security Council for the strategic direction of any armed forces placed at the disposal of the Security Council. Questions relating to the command of such forces shall be worked out subsequently. 4. The Military Staff Committee, with the authorization of the Security Council and after consultation with appropriate regional agencies, may establish regional sub-committees. Article 48 1. The action required to carry out the decisions of the Security Council for the maintenance of international peace and security shall be taken by all the Members of the United Nations or by some of them, as the Security Council may determine. 2. Such decisions shall be carried out by the Members of the United Nations directly and through their action in the appropriate international agencies of which they are members. Article 49 The Members of the United Nations shall join in affording mutual assistance in carrying out the measures decided upon by the Security Council. Article 50 If preventive or enforcement measures against any state are taken by the Security Council, any other state, whether a Member of the United Nations or not, which finds itself confronted with special economic problems arising from the carrying out of those measures shall have the right to consult the Security Council with regard to a solution of those problems. Article 51 Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective selfdefense if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security. Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defense shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security.

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APPENDIX 2

UNSC 1386
Adopted unanimously by the Security Council at its 4443rd meeting, on 20 December 2001 The Security Council, Reaffirming its previous resolutions on Afghanistan, in particular its resolutions 1378 (2001) of 14 November 2001 and 1383 (2001) of 6 December 2001, Supporting international efforts to root out terrorism, in keeping with the Charter of the United Nations, and reaffirming also its resolutions 1368 (2001) of 12 September 2001 and 1373 (2001) of 28 September 2001, Welcoming developments in Afghanistan that will allow for all Afghans to enjoy inalienable rights and freedom unfettered by oppression and terror, Recognizing that the responsibility for providing security and law and order throughout the country resides with the Afghan themselves, Reiterating its endorsement of the Agreement on provisional arrangements in Afghanistan pending the re-establishment of permanent government institutions, signed in Bonn on 5 December 2001 (S/2001/1154) (the Bonn Agreement), Taking note of the request to the Security Council in Annex 1, paragraph 3, to the Bonn Agreement to consider authorizing the early deployment to Afghanistan of an international security force, as well as the briefing on 14 December 2001 by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on his contacts with the Afghan authorities in which they welcome the deployment to Afghanistan of a United Nations authorized international security force, Taking note of the letter dated 19 December 2001 from Dr. Abdullah Abdullah to the President of the Security Council (S/2001/1223), Welcoming the letter from the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to the Secretary-General of 19 December 2001 (S/2001/1217), and taking note of the United Kingdom offer contained therein to take the lead in organizing and commanding an International Security Assistance Force, Stressing that all Afghan forces must adhere strictly to their obligations under human rights law, including respect for the rights of women, and under international humanitarian law, Reaffirming its strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of Afghanistan, Determining that the situation in Afghanistan still constitutes a threat to international peace and security, Determined to ensure the full implementation of the mandate of the International Security Assistance Force, in consultation with the Afghan Interim Authority established by the Bonn Agreement, Acting for these reasons under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,

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1. Authorizes, as envisaged in Annex 1 to the Bonn Agreement, the establishment for 6 months of an International Security Assistance Force to assist the Afghan Interim Authority in the maintenance of security in Kabul and its surrounding areas, so that the Afghan Interim Authority as well as the personnel of the United Nations can operate in a secure environment; 2. Calls upon Member States to contribute personnel, equipment and other resources to the International Security Assistance Force, and invites those Member States to inform the leadership of the Force and the Secretary-General; 3. Authorizes the Member States participating in the International Security Assistance Force to take all necessary measures to fulfil its mandate; 4. Calls upon the International Security Assistance Force to work in close consultation with the Afghan Interim Authority in the implementation of the force mandate, as well as with the Special Representative of the Secretary-General; 5. Calls upon all Afghans to cooperate with the International Security Assistance Force and relevant international governmental and non-governmental organizations, and welcomes the commitment of the parties to the Bonn Agreement to do all within their means and influence to ensure security, including to ensure the safety, security and freedom of movement of all United Nations personnel and all other personnel of international governmental and non-governmental organizations deployed in Afghanistan; 6. Takes note of the pledge made by the Afghan parties to the Bonn Agreement in Annex 1 to that Agreement to withdraw all military units from Kabul, and calls upon them to implement this pledge in cooperation with the International Security Assistance Force; 7. Encourages neighbouring States and other Member States to provide to the International Security Assistance Force such necessary assistance as may be requested, including the provision of overflight clearances and transit; 8. Stresses that the expenses of the International Security Assistance Force will be borne by the participating Member States concerned, requests the Secretary-General to establish a trust fund through which contributions could be channelled to the Member States or operations concerned, and encourages Member States to contribute to such a fund; 9. Requests the leadership of the International Security Assistance Force to provide periodic reports on progress towards the implementation of its mandate through the Secretary-General; 10. Calls on Member States participating in the International Security Assistance Force to provide assistance to help the Afghan Interim Authority in the establishment and training of new Afghan security and armed forces; 11. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

APPENDIX 3

UNSC Resolution 1510
The full text of resolution 1510 (2003) reads, as follows: “The Security Council, “Reaffirming its previous resolutions on Afghanistan, in particular its resolutions 1386 (2001) of 20 December 2001, 1413 (2002) of 23 May 2002 and 1444 (2002) of 27 November 2002, “Reaffirming also its strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of Afghanistan, “Reaffirming also its resolutions 1368 (2001) of 12 September 2001 and 1373 (2001) of 28 September 2001 and reiterating its support for international efforts to root out terrorism in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations,

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“Recognizing that the responsibility for providing security and law and order throughout the country resides with the Afghans themselves and welcoming the continuing cooperation of the Afghan Transitional Authority with the International Security Assistance Force, “Reaffirming the importance of the Bonn Agreement and recalling in particular its annex 1 which, inter alia, provides for the progressive expansion of the International Security Assistance Force to other urban centres and other areas beyond Kabul, “Stressing also the importance of extending central government authority to all parts of Afghanistan, of comprehensive disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of all armed factions, and of security sector reform including reconstitution of the new Afghan National Army and Police, “Recognizing the constraints upon the full implementation of the Bonn Agreement resulting from concerns about the security situation in parts of Afghanistan, “Noting the letter dated 10 October 2003 from the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan (S/2003/986, annex) requesting the assistance of the International Security Assistance Force outside Kabul, “Noting the letter dated 6 October 2003 from the Secretary-General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to the Secretary-General (S/2003/970) regarding a possible expansion of the mission of the International Security Assistance Force, “Determining that the situation in Afghanistan still constitutes a threat to international peace and security, “Determined to ensure the full implementation of the mandate of the International Security Assistance Force, in consultation with the Afghan Transitional Authority and its successors, “Acting for these reasons under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations, “1.Authorizes expansion of the mandate of the International Security Assistance Force to allow it, as resources permit, to support the Afghan Transitional Authority and its successors in the maintenance of security in areas of Afghanistan outside of Kabul and its environs, so that the Afghan Authorities as well as the personnel of the United Nations and other international civilian personnel engaged, in particular, in reconstruction and humanitarian efforts, can operate in a secure environment, and to provide security assistance for the performance of other tasks in support of the Bonn Agreement; “2.Calls upon the International Security Assistance Force to continue to work in close consultation with the Afghan Transitional Authority and its successors and the Special Representative of the Secretary-General as well as with the Operation Enduring Freedom Coalition in the implementation of the force mandate, and to report to the Security Council on the implementation of the measures set out in paragraph 1; “3.Decides also to extend the authorization of the International Security Assistance Force, as defined in resolution 1386 (2001) and this resolution, for a period of twelve months; “4.Authorizes the Member States participating in the International Security Assistance Force to take all necessary measures to fulfil its mandate; “5.Requests the leadership of the International Security Assistance Force to provide quarterly reports on the implementation of its mandate to the Security Council through the SecretaryGeneral; “6.Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.”

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APPENDIX 4 Tony Blair’s statement on military action in Afghanistan
7 October 2001
The full statement is set out below: Prime Minister Tony Blair: "As you will know from the announcement by President Bush military action against targets inside Afghanistan has begun. I can confirm that UK forces are engaged in this action. I want to pay tribute if I might right at the outset to Britain’s armed forces. There is no greater strength for a British Prime Minister and the British nation at a time like this than to know that the forces we are calling upon are amongst the very best in the world. They and their families are, of course, carrying an immense burden at this moment and will be feeling deep anxiety as will the British people. But we can take pride in their courage, their sense of duty and the esteem with which they’re held throughout the world. No country lightly commits forces to military action and the inevitable risks involved but we made it clear following the attacks upon the United States on September 11th that we would take part in action once it was clear who was responsible. There is no doubt in my mind, nor in the mind of anyone who has been through all the available evidence, including intelligence material, that these attacks were carried out by the al-Qaeda network masterminded by Osama bin Laden. Equally it is clear that his network is harboured and supported by the Taliban regime inside Afghanistan. It is now almost a month since the atrocity occurred, it is more than two weeks since an ultimatum as delivered to the Taliban to yield up the terrorists or face the consequences. It is clear beyond doubt that they will not do this. They were given the choice of siding with justice or siding with terror and they chose to side with terror. There are three parts all equally important to the operation of which we’re engaged: military, diplomatic and humanitarian. The military action we are taking will be targeted against places we know to be involved in the operation of terror or against the military apparatus of the Taliban. This military plan has been put together mindful of our determination to do all we humanly can to avoid civilian casualties. I cannot disclose, obviously, how long this action will last but we will act with reason and resolve. We have set the objectives to eradicate Osama bin Laden’s network of terror and to take action against the Taliban regime that is sponsoring it. As to the precise British involvement I can confirm that last Wednesday the US Government made a specific request that a number of UK military assets be used in the operation which has now begun. And I gave authority for these assets to be deployed. They include the base at Diego Garcia, reconnaissance and flight support aircraftand missile firing submarines. Missile firing submarines are in use tonight. The air assets will be available for use in the coming days. The United States are obviously providing the bulk of the force required in leading this operation. But this is an international effort as well as UK, France, Germany, Australia and Canada have also committed themselves to take part in the operation. On the diplomatic and political front in the time I’ve been Prime Minister I cannot recall a situation that has commanded so quickly such a powerful coalition of support and not just from those countries directly involved

37 in military action but from many others in all parts of the world. The coalition has, I believe, strengthened not weakened in the twenty six days since the atrocity occurred. And this is in no small measure due to the statesmanship of President Bush to whom I pay tribute tonight. The world understands that whilst, of course, there are dangers in acting the dangers of inaction are far, far greater. The threat of further such outrages, the threat to our economies, the threat to the stability of the world. On the humanitarian front we are assembling a coalition of support for refugees in and outside Afghanistan which is as vital as the military coalition. Even before September 11th four million Afghans were on the move. There are two million refugees in Pakistan and one and a half million in Iran. We have to act for humanitarian reasons to alleviate the appalling suffering of the Afghan people and deliver stability so that people from that region stay in that region. Britain, of course, is heavily involved in actually (indistinct) effort. So we are taking action therefore on all those three fronts: military, diplomatic and humanitarian. I also want to say very directly to the British people why this matters so much directly to Britain. First let us not forget that the attacks of the September 11th represented the worst terrorist outrage against British citizens in our history. The murder of British citizens, whether it happens overseas or not, is an attack upon Britain. But even if no British citizen had died it would be right to act. This atrocity was an attack on us all, on people of all faiths and people of none. We know the al-Qaeda network threaten Europe, including Britain, and, indeed, any nation throughout the world that does not share their fanatical views. So we have a direct interest in acting in our own self defence to protect British lives. It was also an attack (indistinct) just on lives but on livelihoods. We can see since the 11th of September how economic confidence has suffered with all that means for British jobs and British industry. Our prosperity and standard of living, therefore, require us to deal with this terrorist threat. We act also because the al-Qaeda network and the Taliban regime are funded in large part on the drugs trade. Ninety per cent of all the heroin sold on British streets originates from Afghanistan. Stopping that trade is, again, directly in our interests. I wish to say finally, as I’ve said many times before, that this is not a war with Islam. It angers me, as it angers the vast majority of Muslims, to hear bin Laden and his associates described as Islamic terrorists. They are terrorists pure and simple. Islam is a peaceful and tolerant religion and the acts of these people are wholly contrary to the teachings of the Koran. These are difficult and testing times therefore for all of us. People are bound to be concerned about what the terrorists may seek to do in response. I should say there is at present no specific credible threat to the UK that we know of and that we have in place tried and tested contingency plans which are the best possible response to any further attempts at terror. This, of course, is a moment of the utmost gravity for the world. None of the leaders involved in this action want war. None of our nations want it. We are a peaceful people. But we know that sometimes to safeguard peace we have to fight. Britain has learnt that lesson many times in our history. We only do it if the cause is just but this cause is just. The murder of almost seven thousand innocent people in America was an attack on our freedom, our way of life, an attack on civilised values the world over. We waited so that those responsible could be yielded up by those shielding them. That offer was refused, we have now no choice so we will act. And our determination in acting is total. We will not let up or rest until our objectives are met in full. Thank you."

APPENDIX 5

Gordon Brown’s speech on Afghanistan
Monday 7 September 2009 The Prime Minister outlined the Government’s long-term strategy in Afghanistan and answered questions during a speech at the Institute of International Strategic Studies, London on Friday, 4 September 2009.

38 Read the speech Let me say first of all how grateful I am to Dr Chipman, to the renowned and august International Institute of Strategic Studies, and to its distinguished members who are with us today, not just for hosting the speech that I am giving today but for your long-term interest in Afghanistan and for your leadership in addressing problems of terrorism round the world. We meet here in the week we commemorate the 70th anniversary of the beginning of the Second World War, and it is impossible not to feel an overwhelming sense of awe and humility at the scale of achievements and the record of service and sacrifice that has defined our British armed forces for generations. It is a history of extraordinary courage and of dedication, often in the face of the greatest of adversity. It is a history of a spirit of service that is recognised in every corner of the land in the great national acts of remembrance on Armistice Day and now on Armed Forces Day. And as people gather in Wootton Bassett, as they have done today, to honour two brave servicemen, a local tribute that has become a national symbol of honour and gratitude, which remembers all those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. Nowhere have I seen more clearly that sense of service but also the resilience of spirit of our armed forces than on each of my visits to Afghanistan. As I travelled around Helmand province last weekend, our forces were the first to point out to me the positive signs amid the challenges. I visited a police station that had been a polling booth and heard stories of Afghans voting for the first time. I witnessed the joint operation room in Lashkar Gah at work, British forces supporting the Afghan army and police in bringing security and the rule of law to that provincial capital. And I heard from the governor, Governor Mangal, about the real progress being made combating the heroin trade. But I also saw – as others who have visited and Sir David Richards is here with us today – the scale of the challenges now and in the months ahead. Today has seen another serious incident in the northern province, where Taleban hijackers had to be intercepted. In Helmand in the last four months, over 50 British servicemen have been killed. 64 have been seriously injured. These are not just statistics. Each one is the loss of a professional, dedicated and brave serviceman and in each case there is the grief of a family whose lives will never be the same again. Each one a hero who deserves the same unending gratitude that we give to the heroes of the First and Second World Wars. And it is right that their service will be recognised by the new Elizabeth Cross announced by Her Majesty the Queen. There is nothing more heart-breaking in the job I do than meeting people who have lost someone who is a loved one in their family. There is nothing more heart-breaking than, as I did this week, meeting a teenager who has lost his leg. These young men, we have got to thank for the service to their country. I want to take head on, therefore, the arguments that suggest our strategy in Afghanistan is wrong, and I want to answer those who question whether we should be in Afghanistan at all. There are, of course, those who fear that history shows international intervention in Afghanistan is doomed to failure. There are of course those who argue that our counter-insurgency strategy cannot establish the security and stability we seek; and there are those who also argue that policies for development – while admirable in principle – will make no difference in a country that is one of the poorest and most corrupt in the world – no difference, at least, for many years. And there are those who answer that a strong Afghan state is not just a long and laborious task but probably an impossible one in the near future. So I want to answer those who argue that while our motive, to deprive Al Qaeda and terrorists of a base, may be well-intentioned, our strategy is flawed. And I want to remind people that what we are doing in Afghanistan is part of an international strategy. It is right, of course, that we play our part, and we do not leave the people of Afghanistan to struggle with their global problems on their own. So others too must take their share of the burden of responsibility. 42 countries are involved, and all must ask themselves if they are doing enough. For terrorism recognises no borders. All of us benefit from defeating terrorism and greater stability in this region, and all members of our coalition must play our proper part. The British strategy is part of a wider international strategy and must be understood in that context. Our aim in 2009 is the same as in 2001. We are in Afghanistan as a result of a hard-headed assessment of the terrorist threat facing Britain. We are part of a coalition of more than 40 countries embracing not just NATO – with the Danes and Estonians alongside British troops in Helmand – but countries like Australia. So this remains, above all, an international mission. We’ve all seen the reality of this threat: in Bali, Madrid, Mumbai, and of course on the streets of London four years ago.

39 It is our efforts at home and abroad – the efforts of our allies, the efforts of our armed forces, of the police and security services back in Britain – which prevented and continue to prevent further terrorist attacks. It is a totality of effort which in Britain is better resourced and better coordinated than before – from increased counterterrorist policing at home, to stronger checks at our borders, to international capacity-building, and to the work of our armed forces and other agencies abroad. It is right that eight years ago Britain with America and our allies – on behalf of the international community as a whole – helped to remove from Afghanistan a regime which enabled Al Qaeda to plot terror around the world, and which culminated in the attacks of September 11th – not just on America, but of course attacks on the freedoms and values of us all. But we knew that as we removed the Taleban from power and drove Al Qaeda from Afghanistan, so Al Qaeda would relocate – and they did so, on the remote mountains of Pakistan. A new crucible of terrorism has therefore emerged. The DirectorGeneral of our security services has said that three quarters of the most serious plots against the UK have had links that reach back into these mountains. At present the threat mainly comes from the Pakistan side, but if the insurgency succeeds in Afghanistan, Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups will once again be able to use it as a sanctuary to train, plan and launch attacks on Britain and the rest of the world. The advice I receive from the security agencies is clear. The sustained pressure on Al Qaeda in Pakistan combined with military action in Afghanistan is having a suppressive effect on Al Qaeda’s ability to operate effectively in the region – but despite these difficulties, the main element of the threat to the UK continues to emanate from Al Qaeda and Pakistan. Al Qaeda retains some contacts and provides limited support to the Afghan insurgency, principally through the provision of training for foreign fighters and military expertise; continues to view Afghanistan as fundamental in the establishment of a pan-Islamic caliphate; and therefore a peaceful and stable Afghanistan would for them be a severe propaganda blow and strategic failure for Al Qaeda. A safer Afghanistan means a safer Britain. It is on this basis that I made clear in the Spring – as did President Obama – that preventing terrorism coming to the streets of Britain, America and other countries depends on strengthening the authorities in both Pakistan and Afghanistan to defeat Al Qaeda, and also the Pakistan and Afghan Taleban. For if in either country the Taleban are allowed to undermine legitimate government, that would open the way once again for Al Qaeda to have greater freedom from which to launch terrorist attacks across the world – and would have longer term implications for the credibility of NATO and the international community, and for the stability of this crucial region and for global stability. That is why our Strategy, published in April, reflects an integrated approach across both countries. And we are now seeing what has not been obvious before: joint and complementary action on both sides of the border. In Pakistan in the last few months, the army and security services have taken on the Pakistan Taleban in Swat and elsewhere. Last week President Zardari told me his forces are preparing to tackle the threat in Waziristan, because he fully recognises that terrorism poses as serious a threat to Pakistan as to the rest of the world. We also agreed on the importance of stepping up action against Afghan Taleban leaders based in Pakistan. In Afghanistan, the Afghan army and police are not yet ready to take on the Taleban purely by themselves. That is why the international coalition must maintain its military presence. I believe that most people in Britain accept this - but I know they are concerned about how long international forces – and British forces in particular – will have to stay. And they ask what success in Afghanistan would look like. The answer is that we will have succeeded when our troops are coming home because the Afghans are doing the job themselves. From that day on, we will be able to focus our efforts on supporting the elected government on security and on development and on human rights. The right strategy is one that completes this job, which is to enable the Afghans to take over from international forces; and to continue the essential work of denying the territory of Afghanistan as a base for terrorists. As the reviews of General McChrystal and Ambassador Eikenberry will make clear: to reach that point where international forces can return home, we must place a greater emphasis on building up the Afghan army and police; on a unity of effort across international and Afghan authorities; on focusing our resources – both military and civilian – in the areas that matter most; and thus on securing the population. It is security that comes first – as in any counter-insurgency campaign. As I heard at the shura I attended in Lashkar Gah in April, giving Afghans security matters more to them than anything else we or their government can offer. And as General McChrystal has said: the measure will be the number of Afghans shielded from violence, not the numbers of enemy killed. That security, however, comes at a price. The last four months, as I have said, have seen over fifty British fatalities. August was also the worst month for American fatalities since the campaign began in 2001. This was undoubtedly in part because both British and American forces went on the offensive – and the main

40 offensives, Operation Panther’s Claw and River Liberty, were successful in bringing security to areas in central and Southern Helmand previously under the control of the Taleban. There has been much comment on Panther’s Claw. Our commanders, NATO commanders and international leaders all agreed the Taleban should not be allowed free rein in these key population areas. We do not yet know the full facts of the election – but it is already clear that thousands did vote in Central Helmand, rather than the few hundred some have claimed. Turn out was not as high as many, like me, might have hoped, and the incidents of voter irregularity and intimidation being reported must be thoroughly investigated, including by the Electoral Complaints Commission. But the very fact of the first elections run by Afghans themselves is an important step forward for the people of Afghanistan. And we should remember that the Taleban vowed to destroy this election – and they failed. Despite the fact that part of the country is in conflict an election was held. And 6,000 polling stations opened across Afghanistan. Now as we look beyond the elections the biggest challenge facing our forces remains that of defeating the Taleban tactic of using explosive devices – mines and roadside bombs. Having failed in 2006 and 2007 to defeat international forces by conventional means, the Taleban have more than doubled their IED attacks over the past year. International casualties are almost twice as high as this time last year as a result, and three quarters of them are due to IEDs. This is a tactic which of course is inherently hard to defend against but having spoken at length to our experts and commanders – who have been working closely with the Americans and the coalition in reviewing how best to respond to this evolving threat – I am confident we are fully focused on dealing with it. Bob Ainsworth and I are determined that in doing so our forces will have every possible support. It requires not just new equipment but new tactics, better surveillance, specialised troops, and offensive operations – not just one single response but many. So we have since 2006 spent over £1billion from the reserve on new vehicles for Afghanistan, including 280 mastiffs which offer world-leading protection against IEDs. Between November 2006 and April this year we have increased the number of helicopter hours by 84% – and on top of that, as well as sharing coalition helicopters, we lease hundreds of hours each month from other operators for routine supplies. Let us be clear: while we are committed to giving our commanders more options, what separates successful counter insurgency from unsuccessful counter insurgency is that it is won on the ground and not in the air. Already this year we have deployed 200 specialist counter-IED troops. Last week our forces cleared one of the most dangerous stretches of road in the world, the notorious ‘Pharmacy Road’ and ‘Route Sparta’ near Sangin – and their great skill and bravery uncovered and defused 37 IEDs, in the area where seven British soldiers have been killed by IEDs in the last month. And our offensive operations are also focusing more on countering the IED threat. Last month in a dawn raid by British and Afghan forces one of the largest IED-making facilities ever found in Helmand – hidden in a warren of mud buildings – was seized and destroyed along with a massive haul of 50 pressure plate IEDs, fuses, detonators, batteries, chargers and quantities of TNT and ammonium nitrate – a haul we believe was destined for Sangin. I can report that this brings the number of explosive devices found during the current tour by 19 Light Brigade to over 1,000. IEDs – 1,000 of them – designed to kill and maim but successfully dismantled by British forces. And now, as I announced last week, we are sending another 200 specialist forces and new equipment to find and defuse the IEDs, and identify and target the networks who lay them. We are increasing our surveillance to track the Taleban and target their bomb-makers. To ensure we have the best protected vehicles for road moves, we are buying, on top of the ones already ordered and coming into the theatre, another 20 ridgeback mine-protected patrol vehicles so that more will be going into operation over the next three months. And the first Merlin helicopters – which I saw being adapted for Afghanistan at RAF Benson in July – will now be flying in Helmand within two months and, together with enhancements to other types, by next spring compared to 2006 we will have doubled the number of helicopters, and increased flying hours by 130%. Of course the equipment has to be manufactured, delivered and adapted – and the personnel trained to operate it. But it is simply wrong to doubt the speed of our response as we adapt to the new tactics of the Taleban, and the scale of the financial commitment both to our soldiers and to this campaign. Military spending in Afghanistan – the spending that comes from the Treasury reserve, over and above the defence budget – is going up far in excess of this significant increase in troop numbers: it was around £180,000 per year to support each soldier fighting in 2006; it is now over twice that number, £390,000, for each soldier. In recognition of the debt we owe to our forces as well as the need to properly equip them, we are increasing pay for our forces at a faster rate than for other public servants. In 2006 we introduced the first flat rate bonus for all who serve in Afghanistan and other operational theatres – paid for out of the treasury reserve – money now

41 £2,380, tax free, for a six month operational tour – fairer than income tax relief and offering more money for the average soldier. Over the last three years medical care both in Afghanistan and back in Britain at Selly Oak hospital and Headley Court and elsewhere, has been radically improved – and I want to thank all the medical teams and their support staff for their dedication and for their achievements. Last year we doubled the lump sum compensation we give to the most seriously wounded, while recognising that we still need to improve this program and have started an urgent review. So we are giving our service men and women the additional resources they need to keep themselves safe, to fight and succeed in their operations and to bring security to Afghanistan. But as we do so, we will also continue to adapt and improve our counter-insurgency strategy for Central Helmand which we set out in April and which underpins this summer’s operations. It is a strategy that – let me now explain – starts with short-term security, but links to medium term Afghanisation and longer term development to create a stake for Afghans in the future of their country. It is a strategy that has to be based on credible, deliverable and, where right to do so, time-specific objectives – objectives above all for the advance of Afghan responsibility and autonomy for their own affairs. The more Afghans can take responsibility in the short term, the less our coalition forces will be needed in the longer term. And in our case it is a strategy focused on the key population areas of Central Helmand – not just the towns but also the relatively densely populated Helmand River Valley, where the fight against the insurgency must be won. And this is a strategy radically different from the Russian Strategy in Afghanistan and indeed from all previous foreign interventions in Afghanistan, which lacked the support of the population, which stayed in the cities and ignored the country, and did not seek to empower Afghans themselves in maintaining security. And ours is essentially a four-pronged strategy for accelerating the Afghanisation of this campaign. First we will now partner a growing Afghan army presence in central Helmand. Secondly we will be strengthening the civilian-military partnership, including on improving policing. Thirdly, we want to support the Governor of Helmand by strengthening district government – backed by targeted aid – and a more effective and cleaner government in Kabul. And fourthly we want to build on the success of the ‘Wheat not heroin’ initiative which I discussed with Governor Mangal at the weekend; we want to extend it to thousands more who depend on the land for their livelihood. Back in 2007 I said that we would shift over time the emphasis of the strategy to what I called Afghanisation – and greater responsibility for Afghans in all those areas. So let me take each in turn and how we plan to progress it. First, the Afghan army. The numbers of our forces devoted to training and mentoring the Afghan army has been increasing, albeit slowly. At a national level we have helped train tens of thousands of Afghan troops and thousands more Afghan police. Afghan forces are already running security in Kabul, and over time they will take over other districts. In Helmand a British battalion has been mentoring an Afghan army brigade – living, training and fighting alongside them. But we must now move from simply mentoring the Afghan army to what we call ‘partnering’ – partnering with them as they take more responsibility for their country’s security. When we clear an area of Taleban, it is the Afghan army and police who must hold that ground and prevent the Taleban from returning. So when I met the new NATO and US commander, General McChrystal, in Afghanistan last weekend, I made clear that to back his new counter-insurgency approach Britain supported faster growth both of the Afghan National army and the police. In the spring NATO announced that we would support the expansion of the Afghan army from 80,000 to 134,000 by November 2011. That training is already proceeding, but it is at the rate of 2,000 per month. Britain would support a more ambitious target of 134,000 by an earlier date of November 2010 – which would mean increasing the rate of training to 4,000 at least per month. It is clear that to achieve this rapid increase in numbers – and to increase the quality and effectiveness of the new Afghan forces – this will require a new approach, shifting from mentoring – where small numbers of mentors work with Afghan units – to this approach of partnering, where the bulk of our combat forces would be dedicated to working side by side with the Afghan army at all levels. British troops would eat, sleep, live, train, plan, and fight together with their Afghan partners, to bring security to the population. And this is in our view the best route to success, the most effective way to transfer skills and responsibility to the Afghan security forces, the best way to gain the trust of the population – and therefore the most effective way to complete our tasks. In principle every British combat unit could partner a larger Afghan counterpart. By November 2010 we envisage up to a third of our troops partnering Afghan forces. That means that our combat units in Helmand could be ready to partner an Afghan army corps of around 10,000 soldiers. And to help us achieve this goal we will press the new Afghan President to assign greater numbers of Afghan army forces to Helmand, where the challenge to legitimate Afghan government, and of course to the security of the people, is today the greatest.

42 But this is a military strategy complemented by an even greater emphasis on civilian effort to work with local communities. And the second element therefore of our strategy is strengthening the security of and support for the local population by the strongest possible civilian-military partnerships, including support on policing. Our forces were the first in Afghanistan to set up a fully joint military-civilian headquarters, and we did so in 2008 – a model which the Americans, having seen it in action, are now looking to roll out across the whole country. In the 12 months following that we doubled the number of our civilian support experts on the ground. And I saw this joint approach in action in the joint operational coordination centre in Lashkar Gah. The police are often on the front line, taking heavier casualties than even the Afghan army – which is why over 100 of our armed forces are currently dedicated to mentoring them, in addition to our civilian police mentors. The challenge here is perhaps even tougher than the Afghan army, but there are positive signs – including the success of the focused district development programme – though we need to go further in tackling problems of illiteracy, drug abuse and corruption, and logistical problems like ensuring police are paid adequately and on time, without which progress on tackling corruption and building up our police forces there effectively will be impossible. Third, at the heart of the future for Afghanistan with its predominant village and rural population is the strengthening of local and district government – a vital part of any counter-insurgency strategy anyway, but a vital part of countering the shadow governance of the Taleban. A few months ago, when I was last in Afghanistan before last weekend, I attended a shura – a meeting of district officials and elders. And it was there to agree the priorities for the local communities, and they were discussing plans for policing and informal justice but also new roads, clean water, and other basic services. And as our policy of Afghanisation and localisation advances, our experts will work with shuras in more villages and more districts in Helmand – and right across Afghanistan I believe priority must be given to the training and mentoring of the 34 provincial governors but also 400 district governors as well. Our development department has over the last three years in Helmand funded 60km of new roads, 1,800 wells, irrigation for 20 thousand hectares. Construction has now begun on a project to develop the hydropower plant at Gereshk and work will begin this month to expand the airfield at Lashkar Gah. Construction will soon begin on a new road linking the two towns. And I can say today that we are ready to fund and partner the first Afghan district teams to be sent down to Helmand for stabilisation purposes – Afghan officials working alongside our teams – not only reinforcing the hard gains of our forces during this most difficult of summers but advancing Afghan responsibility for their own affairs. And to ensure this effort has the widest possible support, we will provide an extra £20 million for security and stabilisation work in Helmand – including police training and basic justice – increasing by around 50 per cent what we have provided over the last year. Now the fourth part of our strategy is moving the economy of Central Helmand over time from heroin to wheat and to diversify even further. Attacking the heroin trade, while a worthy objective, is not, of course, the fundamental reason why we are in Afghanistan. The fundamental reason is to ensure Al Qaeda cannot again use this region as a base to train and plan terrorist attacks across the world. But there are links between the drugs networks and the insurgency and terrorists; and the drugs networks are one of the most powerful forces standing against the kind of legitimate Afghan control which over time could take over the job of dealing with terrorism and the insurgency. That is why we as part of NATO have been part of mounting more than 80 operations across Afghanistan in this work this year, precisely targeting the links between the drugs networks and the insurgents. But we also know that the strategy will work best when we provide an alternative livelihood for the farmers. And I believe that the key to the reduction in heroin in Helmand this year by 37 per cent – a fact that was announced by the United Nations earlier this week – was Governor Mangal’s ‘food zone’ programme. With the support of the British military and civilian experts, wheat seed was delivered to 32,000 Afghan farmers – combining an alternative to poppy with protection from Taleban intimidation in a secured area of Central Helmand. The independent study carried out by Cranfield University confirms that the results in the food zone are much better than outside. And we will help Governor Mangal to extend this programme next year; we will also help set up agricultural training college. Over time we want to see Central Helmand restored to its former position, known as the ‘breadbasket’ of Afghanistan. As we look beyond the elections, there are changes we want to encourage with our coalition allies at a national level too. Clearly the priority is for the new government of Afghanistan to retain the trust and support of its people. This means action against corruption – but it also means reaching out, including to other candidates in the election. And as in every other comparable conflict in history, lasting peace and stability will involve all sides reaching out and engaging in dialogue. This process must be led by the Afghans themselves, and as President Obama has said: ‘there is an uncompromising core of the Taleban. They must be met with force, and

43 they must be defeated. But there are also those who have taken up arms because of coercion, or simply for a price. And these Afghans must have the option to choose a different course.’ Our military efforts are essential to this process of reconciliation and reintegration of former fighters, because it must take place from a position of strength: the insurgents must come to believe they will not win, but that all those that can be reconciled, they must see an alternative way forward founded on the renunciation of violence, acceptance of the democratic process, and the severing of any links with terrorists. Political progress must then be backed by a far stronger economy. In a country where over half of Afghans live below the poverty line and 40 per cent remain unemployed – around three quarters of which are men under the age of 35 – poverty and lack of opportunity is a problem that must be addressed. And that’s why we are committing £36 million over the next four years to a national Afghan programme for employment, which will create 20,000 permanent jobs and boost incomes for 200,000 Afghans. As well as increasing our civilian assistance to Helmand to back the work of our forces there, our Department of International Development will also continue to work at a national level on longer term objectives – continuing to support, as we have since 2002, improvements to health and access to education – sometimes forgotten at times like these. It is a truly remarkable achievement that thanks to the help of the whole international community, basic healthcare now covers more than four-fifths of the Afghan people. 40,000 more Afghan children will see their fifth birthdays this year compared to 2002. And we should remember again that when the Taleban ran the country, only a million children were in school, all boys. Today there are 6.6 million children at school – 2 million of them are girls. With the help of our development funding, 10,000 new teachers were recruited from 2007, with more expected in 2009. And this is an investment in the future of Afghanistan and its stability, and its resilience against extremism – and therefore in our security. Our work on education in Afghanistan – together with the increasing focus on education in Pakistan – brings me to a final point. I have described the courageous and skilful work of our forces, rightly the focus of so much of our attention and our concern; and, behind that work, our coordinated, military-civilian counter-insurgency strategy, aimed with our coalition allies at securing the population and building up the Afghan authorities to a point where they can defeat the insurgency and the terrorists themselves, and our forces can return home. I have set out today the challenges facing us as we put this strategy into effect, the work we are doing to improve it, and the broader national and regional context. But returning from Afghanistan again I also reflected that while our objective is to advance justice, tolerance, and opportunity – underpinned by security – that of our enemies is an ideology of violence, intolerance and resistance to modernity, as alien to the Islam religion as it is to the West. And so, as in the Cold War, achieving our objective depends not just on armies and treaties – it depends on us winning hearts and minds. The task of winning hearts and minds in Southern Afghanistan is not primarily ours – it is for the elected Afghan government, the leaders of Afghan civic society. But we can and must support them in this, just as we must support them in security, governance and development. Encouraging new links with Muslim thinkers and with young people; using all modern means of communication to engage with moderates and all who espouse a peaceful interpretation of Islam; co-operation between institutions of learning; multi-faith dialogue – showing at every stage that we are not in a struggle against Islam, but against extremists who abuse the name of Islam for their own purposes. So Britain will continue our proud tradition of supporting education, a free media, the exchange of ideas and learning in Afghanistan, as we do in the rest of the world. And this is more than soft power, or even smart power: this is about people power – empowering individuals and communities to stand up against extremism. This has been the most difficult of summers. The situation in Afghanistan is serious – nowhere more so than in Helmand. And when I meet young people who have suffered at the hands of the Taleban, and who are in hospital, and when I meet the families of those people who have been bereaved, I have to keep asking myself, ‘Are we taking the right decisions for them and for the conduct of the action in Afghanistan? Are we doing what is right both by our forces and by the population of this country?’ And every time I ask myself, as I do, these questions, my answer is, ‘Yes, we are taking the right action, the action that is necessary to safeguard both our country and promote security in the world.’ It is at times like this when we must strengthen not weaken our resolve. We must stand up to those who would threaten our way of life. We must take heart from progress that has been made since 2001. And we must take actions to deal with the changing and new tactics of the Taleban. And I know we are asking a great deal of our armed forces. I can assure them that the government will continue to give them every support. But just as important, so too, I know, will the people and the communities of our country. And in return we are setting credible and deliverable objectives for their work - above all for the

44 advance of Afghan responsibility and autonomy. I repeat, the more Afghans can take responsibility in the short term, the less our coalition forces will be needed in the long term. And this, of course, must be accompanied by credible, deliverable and specific objectives in Pakistan, especially on action against terrorist networks based in their country. So: continuing the enhancement of security for our forces; expanding the vital work that has discovered and dismantled 1,000 IEDs this summer; a radical step-up in the training of Afghan forces, through partnering not mentoring; Britain ready to work with our allies to train around 10,000 new forces in Helmand alone; stronger district governors in Helmand and across Afghanistan’s 400 districts; local communities given greater power to run their own affairs, backed up by a civilian strategy to provide clean policing and services as well as security; through our development work, securing for Afghans a greater economic stake in the future of their country; and pressure on the new Afghan government for an anti-corruption drive throughout the country. These are objectives that are clear and justified – and also realistic and achievable. It remains my judgement that a safer Britain requires a safer Afghanistan. In Afghanistan last week, I was further convinced that, despite the challenges we face, a nation emerging from three decades of violence can be healed and strengthened; and that our country and the whole world can be safer; because together we have the values, the strategy and, I believe, the resolve to complete our vital and important task.

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Chris Coverdale Make Wars History 83 Priory Gardens, London N6 5QU. Tel: 020 8374 0742 www.makewarshistory.org.uk

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“As a citizen I regard it not only as a right but as a moral duty to help shape the destiny of my country, to uncover and oppose manifest evils. What I aimed to do was to rouse my students to an ethical understanding of the grave evils of our present political life; a return to definite ethical principles, to the rule of law, to mutual trust between man and man. This is not illegal rather it is the reestablishment of legality.”

Professor Huber, Munich University 1943

Shortly before he was condemned to death with five of his students for spreading sedition

From ‘Humanising Hell’ by George Delf

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