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> This is what I could find out about the French proposals (from > Associated Press): Thanks. > > Essence of French proposal for lifting sanctions: > > * end to embargo on oil sales > * replacement of weapons inspections à la Unscom with a less > intrusive system of arms controls > * the French also want to start discussions, break the deadlock, > and of course give themselves and Russia freedom to take up contracts to > help Iraq upgrade oil industry (lots of lovely oil dollars in it for > someone) since at present Iraq is only able to sell $3billion/six months Let's not forget the Iraqi people need that oil money to import spare parts for their ambulances, garbage trucks, hospitals, basic infrastructure, including crucially clean water supplies and sewage pipes and treatment. (The UNICEF report - see earlier email - says that 300,000 people were deprived of clean water by latest strikes. How many deaths will this lead to?). In fact this infrastructure could be even more important than medical supplies - I've been reading recently about how most of the reduction in mortality rates in Britain since 1800 has been due to better conditions and sanitation, not medical care. According to New Scientist, 23 May 92, "that much is undisputed". Probably the same applies to Iraq today - cancer treatments may make the headlines, but greater access to food, rebuilding infrastructure (and probably education about Depleted Uranium) would all have a far bigger impact. I'm not, of course, saying medical supplies are unimportant - on the contrary, the lack of anaesthetics in particular has led to the unpardonable suffering of thousands of people, including young children. > * proposes "economic and financial monitoring measures" so that > the United Nations is notified of each oil contract by buyers and Iraq. > The United Nations could stop military-related items or those which have > dual usage like pencils? I've heard they were banned because graphite in them could have a "dual use". Even if that's not true, there are dozens of other (mostly ridiculous) examples. > but could not restrict other civilian goods and services Depending on interpretation, this could have an enormous positive effect or only an enormous PR effect. I suspect the latter, but hope for the former. > * US rejected major points (surprise surprise) > * BUT Al Gore said "The United States is looking at ways to > improve the effectiveness of humanitarian programs in Iraq, including > lifting the current ceiling of funds which can be used to purchase food > and medicine" See other email on British proposals - this is at least partly a PR exercise. We need to keep exposing the lie that "food and medicine are not banned under the sanctions" - the truth is, the statement is technically true, but commonsensically false in practice. We also need to emphasise infrastructure (but don't just say "infrastructure" because it sounds relatively unimportant - use examples like ambulances and the fact that disease runs riot because of sewage in the streets etc.) Oil for food doesn't cover infrastructure - and these proposals don't mention it either! -- Robin P.S. I have built up a large collection of web-links on the sanctions and related issues at come.to/sanctions It is very easy to submit a new page or site - just click on add URL at the top and enter the address. If you have the time, you could also apply to co-edit with me - it forms part of a web directory which will be used by thousands or millions of people. -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To be removed/added, email firstname.lastname@example.org, NOT the whole list. Archived at http://linux.clare.cam.ac.uk/~saw27/casi/discuss.html