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[ This message has been sent to you via the CASI-analysis mailing list ] This is an automated compilation of submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org Articles for inclusion in this daily news mailing should be sent to email@example.com. Please include a full reference to the source of the article. Today's Topics: 1. The Pillage of a Nation (ppg) --__--__-- Message: 1 From: "ppg" <ppg@DELETETHISnyc.rr.com> To: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: The Pillage of a Nation Date: Thu, 8 Jul 2004 05:25:02 -0400 [ Presenting plain-text part of multi-format email ] "The Iraqi oil is being sold by the US without metering". This means only t= he Bush Administration knows how much money is being earned from the sale o= f Iraqi oil. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article6444.htm Ghali Hassan lives in Perth, Western Australia. He can be contacted on: G.Hassan@exchange.curtin.edu.au The Pillage of a Nation =93I believe they were people who knew what they wanted. They had passed by the gypsum copy of the Black Obelisk. This means that they must have been specialists. They did not touch those copies.=94 Dr. Dony George, Head of t= he Baghdad Museum. By Ghali Hassan 07/07/04 "Information Clearing House" The American-led invasion and occupation of Iraq is an orchestrated and premeditated armed robbery. The widespread looting of the nation of Iraq, following the collapse of the Ba'athist regime, was not merely an incidental by-product of the US militar= y conquest of Iraq. It was deliberately encouraged and fostered by the Bush administration and the Pentagon for definite political and economic gains. Iraq is to be mainstreamed into the economy of the global pillage. Pillage of Iraq=92s Cultural Heritage The invading forces fuelled the looting of Iraq=92s cultural heritage, and = the concomitant destruction of ancient towns and cities have served Western propaganda and stereotypes against the Iraqi people very well. The veteran Middle East correspondent Robert Fisk who witnessed the pillage himself wrote in The Independent of April 14, 2003, =93[a]fter days of arson and pillage, here=92s a short but revealing scorecard. US troops have sat back = and allowed mobs to wreck and then burn the Ministry of Planning, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Irrigation, the Ministry of Trade, the Ministry of Industry, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Information. They did nothing to prevent looter= s from destroying priceless treasures of Iraq=92s history in the Baghdad Archaeological Museum and in the museum in the northern city of Mosul, or from looting three hospitals=94. Robert Fisk observed a pattern in US response to looting, =93[t]he American= s have, though, put hundreds of troops inside two Iraqi ministries that remai= n untouched=97and untouchable=97because tanks and armoured personnel carriers= and Humvees have been placed inside and outside both institutions. And which ministries proved to be so important for the Americans? Why, the Ministry o= f Interior, of course=97with its vast wealth of intelligence information on Iraq=97and the Ministry of Oil. The archives and files of Iraq=92s most val= uable asset=97its oilfields and, even more important, its massive reserves=97are = safe and sound, sealed off from the mobs and looters, and safe to be shared, as Washington almost certainly intends, with American oil companies.=94 The Americans had no concerns for the looting, and US troops had an order not t= o take action against the looting. =93The pervasive and systematic lawlessnes= s underpinning the occupation of Iraq is no accident. The neoconservatives in Washington understand that the rule of law stands as an obstacle to unleashing the full force of the U.S. war machine=94, writes Roger Norman o= f the Centre for Economic and Social Rights in New York America's Criminal Occupation of Iraq. Dr. Eleanor Robson of the British School of Archaeology wrote in The Guardian of London on June, 18, 2003, =93[t]wo months ago, I compared the demolition of Iraq's cultural heritage with the Mongol sacking of Baghdad i= n 1258 [the age of barbarism], and the 5th-century destruction of the library of Alexandria. On reflection, that wasn't a bad assessment of the present state of Iraq's cultural infrastructure. Millions of books have been burned= , thousands of manuscripts and archaeological artefacts stolen or destroyed, ancient cities ransacked, universities trashed=94. Dr. Robson continued, =93[o]utside the Iraq Museum, the picture is equally grim. At Baghdad University, classrooms, laboratories and offices have been vandalised, and equipment and furniture stolen or destroyed. Student libraries have been emptied. Nabil al-Tikriti of the University of Chicago reported in May that the Ministry of Endowments and Religious Affairs lost 600-700 manuscripts i= n a malicious fire and more than 1,000 were stolen. The House of Wisdom and the Iraqi Academy of Sciences were also looted. The National Library was burned to the ground and most of its 12 million books are assumed to have been incinerated=94. The destruction and looting of artefacts, has led to the loss of hundreds o= f tablets, a method developed by the Sumerians of leaving one=92s signature o= n clay several of which have not even been translated yet. This is a huge los= s for humanity, one only surpassed by the loss of the lives and well being of the Iraqi people. This plundering of Iraq=92s cultural heritage is part of = an illegal trade in antiquities thought to be as lucrative as drug trafficking= . =93Not since the Nazis systematically stripped the museums of Europe has su= ch a crime been committed?=94 writes Ann Talbot in www.wsws.org. This outright pillage of the Iraqi nation by the US is forbidden under the Geneva conventions of 1949 and The Hague conventions of 1907. It is clear that there was nothing accidental about the looting. Rather it was the result of a long planned project to plunder the artistic and historical treasures that are held in the museums of Iraq. Iraqi law regards all archaeological artefacts as state property and bans their export. By allowing the National Museum in Baghdad and other places of Iraq=92s cultur= al heritage to be looted, the US authorities have shown great ignorance and disregard for the real importance of Iraq to human history. Pillage of Iraq=92s Economy Immediately after the occupation of Iraq, the US worked to lift the 13-year= s long genocidal sanctions that killed more that two million Iraqis a third o= f them were children under the age of five, and destroyed the fabric of the Iraqi civil society. The reason for this sudden change of heart was the US control of the UN Oil-for-food program, which was benefiting from oil production. In May 2003, the UN resolution 1483 allows all revenues from Iraqi oil and gas exports to be deposited into the =93Development Fund for Iraq=94. The f= und also took over about one billion from the Oil-for-Food program and a simila= r amount in all frozen Iraqi assets. Those funds were given to the control of the US occupying authority =93to be used in a transparent manner to meet th= e humanitarian needs of the Iraqi people=94 and they were to be audited by th= e International Advisory and Monitoring Board (IAMB), which the UN set up for this purpose. According to various estimate, the amount collected in the fund reached $20 billion as of June 26 2004. Auditing the fund has been a nightmare for the IAMB, because of lack of cooperation by the occupying authority, and the secrecy of awarding contracts to US corporations without competitive bidding. A new report published by Christian Aid, a charity organisation in the UK, showed that the Bush administration failed to account for what it has done with some $20 billion of Iraqi oil revenues, which should have been spent o= n relief and reconstruction. Anthea Lawson of Christian Aid told Amy Goodman of DemocracyNow.org on 01 July 2004; =93the Iraqi oil is being sold by the = US without metering, which makes assessing Iraq=92s oil revenues extremely difficult because its oil production is not being metered=94. This means on= ly the Bush Administration knows how much money is being earned from the sale of Iraqi oil. Furthermore, Sir Menzies Campbell, the British Liberal Democrats foreign affairs spokesman, demanded that an investigation into the way the US-led administration in Baghdad handled Iraq=92s oil revenues from which another $3.7 billion is missing. The oil of Iraq is the property of wealth of Iraqi people, and should not be stolen by the US. Recently, the UN Security Council passed a resolution recognizing the US occupation of Iraq. Never had the UN in its history endorsed the occupation of a nation and the attack on the resistance fighting such occupation. In its new resolution on Iraq, the UN authorizes US-led troops to remain at Iraq's request, and gives them leeway to take "all necessary measures" in fighting the resistance movements that are fighting the occupation. Once again, the UN proved to be the facilitator of US imperialism throughout the world. However, the Security Council recognition of the US and Britain occupation authority provides no legal cover. In May 2003, the UN passed a resolution requiring the occupying powers to =93comply fully with their obligations un= der international law including in particular the Geneva conventions of 1949 an= d the Hague Treaty regulations of 1907=94. Furthermore, The US army=92s Law o= f Land Warfare states =93 the occupant does not have the right of sale or unqualified use of [non-military] property=94. Therefore, the US-imposed =93economic reforms=94 and edicts on the Iraqi Nation contradict Iraq=92s constitution and they are in breach of international law. According to The Hague and Geneva conventions, and the International Bill o= f Human Rights, the occupier gains no sovereign rights and is prohibited from manipulating the nation=92s future, plundering its resources, and repressin= g its people. AS Naomi Klein has written, =93bombing something does not give you the righ= t to cell it=94. Yet this is precisely what the Bush Administration is doing. The US military invasion of Iraq has put US companies (multinational corporations) such as Bechtel and Halliburton in positions to completely ow= n all of Iraq=92s industries and businesses. The destruction of Iraq is playe= d as =93reconstruction=94 in Western media and by Western elites. It's only $= 366 million of the $18.6 billion Congress =93allocated for reconstruction=94 of= Iraq has been spent, according to the Washington Post. A recent report released by the General Accounting Office on 28 June 2004 reveals =93Iraq is worse off than before the war began last year=94. The wa= r against the people of Iraq was rigged and unnecessary war. The war brought no =93democracy=94 and no =93freedom=94 to the Iraqi people. The Anglo-Amer= ican crypto-fascists presence is sowing the seeds of civil war in Iraq. Thousand= s of innocent Iraqis have been slaughtered as a result of Bush and Blair violent =93messianic=94 war. Why? The US is still the occupying power in Iraq. The =93transfer of sovereignty= =94 to few dozens of Iraqi expatriates, two third of them are foreign citizens, =93of course, another lie and most Iraqis know it=94, says Tariq Ali. The American Embassy in Baghdad, the largest in the world and situated in Sadda= m =92s Palace against the will of the Iraqi people, is the maker of key decisions. Ambassador John D. Negroponte is the new Proconsul in Iraq supported by more than 160,000 occupying forces. The whole charade of =93transfer of sovereignty=94 is merely an Arab fa=E7ade. The new Iraqi =93Prime minister=94 Mr. Iyad Allawi has full responsibility = over garbage collection and assassination of Iraqi dissidents (see who is Allawi?). Recent Iraqi opinion poll conducted in Iraq reveals that 92 percent of Iraqis opposed to the US occupation of their nation, and want th= e occupation to end. Mr. Iyad Allawi has almost 5 percent supports, just belo= w the president, with a 7 percent approval rating. The Iraqi sovereignty is vested in the Iraqi people. This new Iraqi =93sovereignty=94 is a fake sovereignty. Same donkey, different saddle, as the Iraqi saying goes. The U= S administration appointed the Iraqi Interim Government, pliant enough to ratify these illegal laws and make the occupation of Iraq permanent to serv= e as the guardian of US interests. The trial of Saddam Hussein is a farce, =93illegal and unjust=94. The real criminals are using this theatre to cover-up their own crimes against the Iraqi people. Those who are picked by the Americans, =93in the words of a n= ow common Iraqi saying, =91came on the backs of American tanks=92. As one Iraq= i observed: =91If they give Saddam a fair trial, they will all end up with hi= m in the dock - Kissinger, Reagan, Thatcher, Blair, the two Bushes, [Rumsfeld= ] and Allawi=92=94, writes Sami Ramadani in The Guardian of London. An Iraqi businesswoman told Robert Fisk: =93This is a childish play, written by children for children. We have real needs and they want us to go and watch = a play=94. The trial of Saddam is a circus, which will keep the people distracted from the real issues of occupation. It is used by the US to bull= y and intimidate not only the Arab people, but also the rest of the developin= g world. It makes the world looks like powerful mafia gangs run it. The Attack on Iraq is an attack on the history of humanity by a new form of barbarism. The world will be safer only if this form of barbarism opposed and remained isolated. For Iraqis, the only path to full sovereignty is the immediate end of the US occupation and colonisation of Iraq, and returns th= e wealth of the nation to the Iraqi people. End of casi-news Digest _______________________________________ Sent via the CASI-analysis mailing list To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-analysis All postings are archived on CASI's website at http://www.casi.org.uk