Socialists recognise that wars are fought between workers of the participating belligerents. Lives are given and taken by the working class in the belief that they will be rewarded: financially, meritoriously, culturally, spiritually or otherwise-myths are created and anniversaries celebrated. People become forever removed from a society where they are needed most to care, provide and enjoy. We have been repeatedly led to the battlefield by policies and diplomacy that most people do not understand, they do not vote for, nor would they agree with if they could see their formulation.
If we agree that it is true, that wars are fought by the working class from one geographical area (a nation) against the working class of another area, then it is also true that it is nothing other than another form of exploitation by the capitalist class. War is another economic tool in the capitalists' unending assault on winning at short term gain and further capital growth. The working class are fooled into mobilisation with analogies of god-given principles, a myriad of unfounded racist beliefs, hatred and a lust for supremacy in one form or another.
As the UK public has seen with Afghanistan and Iraq, no amount of general protest (or even rioting for that matter) will have any effect on changing the social and political status-quo. By voting in a general election, we give-up our right to have any say on the social and political existence of our nation-state. By electing a parliament we are providing our consent to whatever government is formed to make decisions on our behalf, no matter what they are or whether they are in our best interests or not-this includes war.
The clever thing about capitalism is that no matter how many good intentions a new political leader may have, no matter how "socialist" her or his ideas may appear to be, the importance of there being a business-case remains the most important. The need for capitalist countries to trade internally and externally dictates what policies are enacted and distracts any good intentions to focus upon money.
No nation-state will ever exist that goes against the idea of profit and war is an important part of oiling capitalism's mechanism. Why let it continue? Why let successive governments literally get away with murder? We shouldn't accept another century of destruction, we should build a new century of cooperation based upon a genuine socialist system of society-one that has no need for profit but allows all people to meet their potential, no matter where they live, when they were born or what skin they have on. Socialists don't fight for capitalism, they argue for socialism and share the struggle to achieve a world free from the chains of profit.