The following is an archived copy of a message sent to a Discussion List run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.
Views expressed in this archived message are those of the author, not of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.
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My wife Margarita and I wish you and others all the best as you endeavour to make press and public see this matter in perspective.
Yes, a Harvard Study Team did report on 22 May 1991 of their first field study in Iraq. All subsequent reports of the effect of sanctions support their findings and indicate further deterioration.
They reported on a serious "breakdown" of Iraq's medical system with acute shortages of medicine, equipment and staff. The report stated there is a link in Iraq between electrical power and public health and that without electricity, water cannot be purified, sewage cannot be treated, water-borne diseases flourish and hospitals cannot treat curable illness. Statistics supported their findings.
Today's reports give a horrific picture of the decline both in the situation in Iraq and in the perception of western morality in international affairs.
We urge the press and the public to challenge western government policy makers and their morality. Instead of challenging UNICEF and other statistics, government leaders and advisors should feel challenged about their morality. Though important, statistics do not prove the right or wrong of economic sanctions. This matter must be addressed. Major powers react firmly when trade sanctions are imposed against them; they feel the impact.
Power may be might but it is not neccessarily built on moral authority.
We do not have the moral authority nor right to deprive a nation of its children and economy. Diplomatic means can be used to maintain monitored weapons sanctions and to lift economic sanctions.
Margarita and I write and speak for a moral solution; as covered in Margarita's "Between Despair and Hope" and my "Jerusalem to Baghdad 1967-1992."
One day even western societies will ask why our governments had a moral lapse.
All the best for everyone's efforts --- Roy Skinner