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Dear CASI subscribers, What follows is an editorial from a recent newsletter sent out by Sheffield Campaign Against War in the Gulf. It focuses on Peter Hain MPís claim that sanctions on South Africa were in some way a precedent for sanctions on Iraq. News from Iraq - October 1999 UNICEF's August 1999 report on the death toll of years of sanctions and bombs has left US/UK intransigence even more isolated and exposed. Political leaders on both sides of the Atlantic have set new standards for lies and doublespeak in their efforts to bin the UNICEF findings. The ultra-right wing North Carolina senator Jesse Helms said "It is Saddam who is starving the people of Iraq. ... In Northern Iraq, where the United Nations distributes food, child mortality rates are below pre-war levels. In the centre and South (where Saddam is in charge) mortality rates are twice what they were before the war." There have been few more pathetic sights than Peter Hain MP, newly appointed to the Middle East office, propounding an identical argument on a recent BBC2 newsnight. What was worse, Hain tried to use the prestige he won as a prominent campaigner against apartheid to sell the government's genocidal policy to the viewers. He said that sanctions on apartheid South Africa provided a precedent for sanctions on Iraq. The oppressed people of South Africa favoured sanctions, which were as much aimed at stopping UK and US capitalists feeding off apartheid super-profits as they were at their friends in Pretoria. However, no-one can say that the Iraqi people want sanctions... The difference with South Africa goes deeper. There are many brutal dictatorships, including even some who are not close friends of Washington and London. But there was only one South Africa, where even in law and constitution the Black population had the same status as farm animals. This is why the struggle against apartheid was exceptional, without a modern parallel. The Black majority had no national sovereignty to be violated. Now they do, thanks to the historic victory of the ANC-led democratic revolution. On the other hand, the national sovereignty of the Iraqi people is inviolable. They won this right in their nation-building struggles against British colonial rule culminating in the revolution of 1958. * * * -- ------------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To be removed/added, email email@example.com, NOT the whole list. Please do not send emails with attached files to the list *** Archived at http://linux.clare.cam.ac.uk/~saw27/casi/discuss.html ***