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.
[Main archive index/search] [List information] [Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq Homepage]
---------- From: Rick Rozoff <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: We're In Iraq To Protect Kurds? Date: Fri, Sep 7, 2001, 12:38 pm Denver Post September 6, 2001 We're in Iraq to Protect Kurds? by Reggie Rivers Imagine that Saddam Hussein had taken over the World Trade Center in New York, and there were 10,000 Americans trapped inside with him. In an attempt to force him out, we turned off the electricity so the building boiled during the summer and froze during the winter. Without electricity, there were no lights and no way to use any equipment that needed to be plugged in. We cut off the water supply, so there was nothing to drink, nothing to clean with and the toilets didn't flush. The longer the standoff lasted, the more unsanitary the situation became, leading to disease, malnutrition and death. Would we support this strategy if it were happening on our soil to Americans? Of course not. But since it's Iraqi citizens on the other side of the globe, we'll applaud for a full decade while children continue to die because of the embargo that we instituted. We'll talk about the evils of Hussein while people die in hospitals from relatively minor injuries that went untreated because basic medical supplies were unavailable. I've read that more than 1 million people have died in Iraq as a result of the decade-long embargo, and nearly half of those have been children under the age of 5. We say that we're doing this because we want to hurt Hussein, but he's living in a well-appointed penthouse at the top of the Word Trade Center with a generator that provides everything that he needs. It's the people trapped in the floors below him who suffer. But we don't care about this genocide against the Iraqis because we've got to stand behind our government no matter what it's doing. Last week, I asked how long we'd sit by while our government maintained no-fly zones in Iraq, and I've been swarmed with e-mails from people who complain that I don't understand the basic issue. It's about the Kurds, they wrote. Saddam Hussein was killing the Kurds and our no-fly zones are part of a humanitarian effort to prevent further attacks. There's no doubt the Kurds lead a tough life. They've basically been told to assimilate or die. They don't have political rights, freedom of speech or even the right to speak their own language. Nearly 2,000 Kurdish villages have been destroyed, forcing more than2 million Kurds to flee into the mountains. Even there they are not safe, because the army pursues them for miles and miles and weeks at a time. The Kurds have been shot, bombed, gassed, raped, tortured, burned and dismembered, and tens of thousands have been killed. And that's just what Turkey has done during the past decade. That's right. Turkey. Our ally. While we've maintained the no-fly zone in the north to "protect" the Kurds, Turkey has continued its open extermination policy against the Kurds, routinely sending its army across the border into Iraq to get a better shot at the Kurds. We haven't done anything to stop them because Turkey is an ally. We launch our planes from Incirlik Air Base in Turkey. So if the Turks want to kill a few Kurds, we're not going to complain. In fact, we'll arm them to the teeth so that they can do the job more effectively. The Turkish army is using Lockheed-Martin F-16 fighter planes, Textron-Bell Cobra and Super Cobra attack helicopters, United Technologies/Sikorsky Black Hawk troop transports and various U.S. tanks, armored personnel carriers and artillery systems to attack Kurdish villages. Seventy-five percent of Turkey's arms came from the United States. But we're in Iraq to protect the Kurds? When it comes to foreign policy, we're a nation that mostly accepts whatever the government tells us without questioning, examining or debating. Even if you agree with the no-fly zones, how can you agree with an embargo that aims to unseat Hussein by killing off the youngest, oldest and most infirm people in Iraq? Former Denver Broncos player Reggie Rivers (email@example.com) writes Thursdays on the Post op-ed page and is a talk host on KHOW Radio (630 AM, weekdays from 3 to 5 p.m.). __________________________________________________ Do You Yahoo!? Get email alerts & NEW webcam video instant messaging with Yahoo! Messenger http://im.yahoo.com -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq For removal from list, email firstname.lastname@example.org Full details of CASI's various lists can be found on the CASI website: http://www.casi.org.uk