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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Peter Brooke, commenting on the recent letter from A.Shames/IRAQI. A.Shames (or IRAQI) asked for comments on his/her letter to the Independent and Daily Mail, which argued that sanctions had had devastating weffects on civilians in Iraq without doing much harm to the personnel of the government. Not only that, but from what one gathers, the government have been allowed under the cover of the sanctions regime to annihilate the Kurd population outside the autonomous zone and (despite continual chatter about the no-fly zones established to protect the Shi'i in the South) the 'Marsh Arabs'. A.Shames/IRAQI goes on to call for the overthrow of the Iraqi government without harming the Iraqi people. But he or she doesn't give any idea of how this could be done. The US/British way of conducting warfare is to shoot from a safe distance with a view to demolishing the industrial infrastructure of the country under attack. This necessarily harms the civilian population, often, as in Iraq, with very long term consequences. We are told that undercover operations with a view to assassination have been attempted, as, clearly, have military coups organised by people close to Mr Hussein. So does Shames/IRAQ know of another way in which war could be waged? My own conviction is that the best way of protecting these populations (though they may already be beyond protecting) is to end the state of threat under which Iraq is living. Nothing encourages paranoid behaviour so much as the continual threat of instant annihilation. Ending the threat would necessarily mean entering into normal diplomatic and commercial relations with the existing Iraqi government. The existing Iraqi government may well be distasteful, but our own record in the history, even the recent history, of the world, doesn't give us the right to be choosy in these matters. Ultimately what is required to discipline countries that mistreat their own and neighbouring populations is a proper system of international law. But a proper system of international law is one under which all parties (in this case countries) are equal. And the main obstacle to the establishment of such a system is at the present time the United States of America. And our Prime Minister, in his recent very important speech in Texas, has solemnly pledged that we (the UK) will support the USA in everything it wishes to do. Quoting IRAQI <email@example.com>: > Dear CASI members, > the INDEPENDENT and the DAILY MAIL published a > letter that I sent them last week: > > For decades the Iraqi people have paid the price > of international politics. > There were days when saddam was a nice guy and a > friend to the west, even while he was killing > Iraqis in there tens of thousands. > Then came the invasion of Kuwait and the removal > of saddam from the list of pals and the massive > bombing campaign that damaged almost every > aspect of life in Iraq, leaving the government > intact. > After that there were years of starvation for so > many civilians, caused by sanctions. > For how much longer will this be allowed to > continue? Is the war on terrorism going to put > the Iraqi people on the benefiting side for the > first time? > As an Iraqi, my first priority is not protecting > American interests or establishing peace between > Israel and Palestine - it is the Iraqi people. > The best thing that can ever happen to them is > the removal of Saddam Hussein and his government. > But the way to get rid of saddam should not be > over the bodies of innocent Iraqis. Removing > governments can be done with and without wars. > And wars don't have to include bombing the whole > country. > > A SHAMES > London > > > any comments? > > IRAQI > > > > Sent by Mail at easy.com, an easyGroup company. > > _______________________________________________ > Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on > Iraq. > To unsubscribe, visit > http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-dis cuss > To contact the list manager, email > firstname.lastname@example.org > All postings are arch ------------------------------------------------- This mail sent through UK Online webmail _______________________________________________ Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-discuss To contact the list manager, email email@example.com All postings are archived on CASI's website: http://www.casi.org.uk