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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Dear Dirk and others,
Dirk writes "The second article is an accusation of the Iraqi minister of Transport and Communications. This kind of articles appear often in the Iraqi press. I don't see why they shouldn't be trusted. Or am I wrong? This subject makes a good topic for a more profound discussion."
If plausible and can be coroborated then why not trust them? People in Iraq are in a much better position to comment on the reality of sanctions than the most well-meaning people here. And it's true that government and media lie a lot, but they sometimes tell the truth, especially when things are so awful already that no mileage is to be gained from exaggeration, eg. 11 Sept. in the US. Things are alot worse than that in Iraq, aren't they? I heard an interview with Tariq Aziz a while ago, in which he explained, wearily how sanctions were killing Iraqi children. Some anti-sanctions campaigners would say this kind of source lacks "credibility" and should not be used in campaigning. But Aziz was telling the truth. Instead of Unicef's words about sanctions "contributing" in some vague way to the deaths of children, which could be stretched to mean anything, he's pointing out the main fact, which is that we are killing children in cold blood. Political mass murder. I mean the data from the Unicef survey is really important, but as it ignores causation, it lends itself to self-interested interpretaions by noble crusaders like Blair and Bush. I have not read the Iraqi press, but I bet it's infinitely more accurate and honest about the effects of sanctions than our own.