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Iraq Resource Information Site http://www.geocities.com/iraqinfo --------- Activists say bombs killing Iraqi children By SUZANNE HURT BEE STAFF WRITER (Published: Tuesday, October 24, 2000) Students and peace activists urging an end to economic and military sanctions against Iraq rallied Monday at Modesto Junior College. The rally, which drew about 100 students, provided a forum for a handful of activists in the midst of a West Coast "Remember Omran" bus tour. They are protesting the bombing deaths of a 13-year-old shepherd named Omran and other Iraqi children. The activists say the U.N. sanctions and Allied bombing are devastating the Middle Eastern country and killing Iraqis. "I think that this killing of children, this bombing of children, this killing of shepherds, I think is un-Christian. I think it's un-Muslim, I think it's un-Jewish, I think it's un-Buddhist. I hope it's un-American," activist Mike Miles said. The 47-year-old teacher from Wisconsin has visited Iraq with Voices in the Wilderness, a Chicago-based organization founded to end the sanctions and one of the bus tour's sponsors. "But it will not be un-American until we as Americans stand up and say to our representatives, 'Not in my name. Not with my tax dollars. ... Because we will not go to war and put ourselves and our children in harm's way unless we have a say about it.' Well, today, we have a say." The Modesto Peace-Life Center, one of the rally's sponsors, and the MJC student association gave $500 to help the activists take food, medicine and books to Iraqi people. The MJC Student Activist Club, the other rally sponsor, donated a medical journal subscription. The Assyrian National Congress, a locally based group of Middle Eastern Christian expatriates that actively opposes Iraqi President Saddam Hussein's government, said the sanctions should be lifted because they haven't succeeded in making the people rise up against Saddam. But the organization's president, Sargon Dadesho, said Saddam -- not the sanctions and bombing -- are causing the hardship in Iraq. The Iraqi president bombs his people and uses chemical weapons against them, he said, adding that insiders report that Saddam secretly tests chemicals and weapons and then dumps the waste in the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, the country's two main water sources. The sanctions are being criticized for blocking food and medicine from getting to lower- and middle-class people, yet Saddam sent truckloads of food for the Muslim Palestinians engaged in a prolonged conflict with Israelis, Dadesho said. "Saddam is refusing to distribute the food and medicine to his own people. He distributes (it) to the people he likes. He doesn't care whether the Iraqi people die of starvation," Dadesho said. Turlock resident Shamiran Samano, 31, was one of the students who signed a petition calling for an end to the sanctions and bombing. It will be sent to officials in Washington, D.C. Last year, Samano returned to Iraq for the first time since her family left in 1978. She signed the petition because her visit with relatives in Baghdad showed her how middle and lower classes are suffering from policies of both the United States and Iraqi governments. "You're never going to hurt the elite class there. Those people have everything they want. What it is are the (less affluent) people that are there are stuck in this political battle," she said. "This is really beyond politics. You don't use regular civilians with the excuse or the illusion that we're doing this for political reasons." ===== Iraq Resource Information Site http://www.geocities.com/iraqinfo American Intifada http://www.egroups.com/group/American_Intifada __________________________________________________ Do You Yahoo!? Yahoo! Messenger - Talk while you surf! It's FREE. http://im.yahoo.com/ -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq For removal from list, email email@example.com Full details of CASI's various lists can be found on the CASI website: http://www.casi.org.uk