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[casi] A heartfelt question.

Dear all
While I would agree with Yasser Alaskary's  point that it is largely irrelevant whether the 
inspectors were expelled or withdrawn I find it a very handy starting point in debates with people 
who throw this up as well as challenging it when said by politicians. Being able to correct  this 
appararently minor point can cause questions to be made about other issues. It illustrates the 
accuracy of  our own country's media. Having corrected this point it is  possible to go on and say 
about the tragic consequences that the sanctions are having.
I further agree that we should be only concerned for what is best for the people of Iraq , and now 
I find a bit of a problem.
Before anyone says anything let me make it 100% clear I am not in favour of any war but  how do we 
support the Iraqi people and stop them suffering from the sanctions?
Of course I want to see the sanctions and therefore the suffering removed ,it is futile to quibble 
about inspectors being expelled/withdrawn  but it is equally futile to expect the sanctions to be 
lifted when America  has said
it will not ease the sanctions all the time Saddam is in power.Yes this is unjust and inhumane but 
that is the real situation, America will not allow itself to  be seen as backing down and couldn't 
give a ***** for worldwide opinion.
We all know we should not be in this position but we cannot rewrite history, we are where we are 
and trying to find a practical and realistic way out is the problem.
The thing that is hurting and killing the people are the sanctions imposed on them by the West in 
an attempt to get rid of Saddam, so it can be argued that if the west goes in and kicks him out the 
Iraqi people will have the sanctions lifted and their suffering will be ended. So on that basis 
should we be supporting  the proposed military action? However there is (as always) another side to 
this , despite the rhetoric that the action will be carefully targeted to only hit the republican 
guard it is bound to cause civilian loss of life as well , almost certainly will exascerbate 
tensions in the region, and be seen as an act of American aggresion.
We all know that if Saddam is removed there will be a puppet put in his place
but the suffering of the Iraqi people will be removed.
Please do not slam into me , this is a genuine concern and I would welcome anyone's constructive 
I deplore war and I deplore the sanctions.

----- Original Message -----
From: Yasser Alaskary <>
To: <>
Sent: Thursday, March 14, 2002 11:24 PM
Subject: [casi] anti-sanctions or just anti-government?

Hi all,

I've become somewhat alarmed by recent comments made on this group. the
reason any of us is campaigning and working for the end of sanctions is for
the iraqi people, or at least that should be the reason. by the same logic,
we should not be trying to defend the iraqi regime in any way. those who say
"its none of our business" and we should only deal with what our country
imposes on iraq, thats like saying "who gives a crap about what happens to
the iraqi people, as long as we're not responsible". it is extremely
hypocritical, and anyway the US and UK have helped keep saddam in power so
many times (not least in '91) that it does become our responsibility. this
isn't some game were our objective is soley to object against whatever
america and the government do, our work should stem for our sincere,
heartfelt concern for the starved and oppressed iraqi people - and this
concern should have no boundaries.

picking on the little detail of whether saddam hussein ejected the
inspectors or whether they left themselves is irrelevant to the fact that
the bombing and sanctions only hurt the iraqi people, killing hundreds of
thousands. the people of iraq should not be tied to the inspectors - that is
were the point should be made, not about some media injustices are done
against the brutal iraqi regime. by making such a point we are endorsing the
belief that the issue of inspections and sanctions should be interlinked.

come on people, focus on the objective.

yasser alaskary
president, imperial college iraqi society

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