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Spokesman magazine (Bertrand Russell Foundation) 'The War or Terror Runs Amok', June and Morning Star 8th July, hope this not double posting, if so, apols, f. Felicity Arbuthnot spells out what the bombing of Iraq really means: COLLATERAL DAMAGE: Luay was ten years old when he found the head, during the Gulf war. He told his story to Professor Magne Raundalen, founder of the Center for Crisis Studies, in Bergen, Norway and one of the world¹s formost experts on the trauma of children in war. Luay had joined a neighbourhood watch¹ scheme - groups who tried to rescue people from bombed buildings. Since he was small, he could reach places that others could¹nt. Crawling into one building, he told Raundalen, he had found the body of a mother.¹ Crawling further on, he found the body of her baby. He described how he had crawled back through the rubble and placed the baby on the mother¹s breast and wrapped her still warm arms round him. ³That is your worst memory?¹ asked Raundalen; no his: worst memory was the head.¹ Crawling back, he had found a jacket, and under it was a head. He dreamed every night that he was taking the head from his jacket pocket and handing it to the rescuers to try and identify it for a bereaved family and a dignified burial. In surveys, Raundelen found that up to eighty percent of children felt they would not live to grow up and he found, in Iraq: the most traumatised child population¹ he had ever encountered. Luay will now be twenty two - if he has not become one of the up to eleven thousand a month who die of embargo related causes.¹ Five to six thousand of those are under five. If he has survived the grinding misery of the most draconian siege ever administered by the United Nations, he will now be conscripted into Iraq¹s decimated army and probably end his lost youth as cannon fodder for a smart or truly dumb missile. On one visit to Iraq, I asked young, at random, from all backgrounds, of their hopes dreams and fears. None had a dream. I am too tired to dream¹, said an eighteen year old who had dreamed of being a doctor. He was working in a smelt, to support his family, in the searing heat of Baghdad, as it paid pitifully - but realtively well in a land where a kilo of meat - due to stratospheric inflation - at that time, exceeded a university Professor¹s monthly salary. A young woman dreamed: of having enough milk for my baby.¹ Another waited till her mother left the room and whispered: nothing awaits us, only death.¹ She was eighteen. Forgotten to are the numerous bombings by Britian and the US - unsanctioned by the UN and the trauma they continue to heap on this shattered, damaged youth, in the land where Abraham was born at Ur, which brought the world writing, mathematics, algebra, record keeping and the first domestic laws were written before the birth of Christ. Where the Garden of Eden flourished and the site of the hanging gardens of Babylon can still be visited. A friend, who arranged for all the neighbourhood children to come to his house when there was a bombing, in peer support, hesitated, before saying: I hope you won¹t be offended, when I tell you that, when the bombing stops, we are left, in the dark, surrounded by pools of urine and faeces, from the terror of the children.¹ In the lie-speak of the Ministry of Defence and the Pentagon, like Luay¹s head: collateral damage.¹ In February 1998, when the world was certain Iraq was going to be bombed again, I was in Baghdad and went to visit a woman with another tragic tale to tell. Like many, she had sold all her furniture to survive. As we talked in her large, bare room, it began to fill with children - a stranger in this isolated land is a rare treat. They sat, perhaps fifty in all, aged between perhaps three and thirteen, quiet as mice, watching every move of my pen. When I got up to leave, dusk was falling and they followed me out and as I got into the battered car, they surrounded it, laughing, waving and blowing kisses, as we moved off, they ran beside us, still laughing, smiling and blowing kisses. When we were moving to fast I looked back and they were standing in a knot in the road, still, laughing and blowing kisses. It was the darkest night, the night all the military experts said Iraq would be bombed again. I went back to my hotel, lay on the bed and wept. Public opinion prevented the February bombing. Instead, in December Prime Minister Blair stood in front of his resplendent Christmas tree and announced we were bombing (in time for Christmas and Ramadan.) If this illegal, immoral, tragi -ridiculous war on terrorism¹ continues, not alone the Middle East, but most of the world will erupt; we are truly looking into the abyss. That ;¹history will slaughter those responsible¹ to quote distinguished former UN Under Secretary General, Denis Halliday, will be of no comfort to the traumatised children of Iraq, Palestine , Afganistan and where ever else this feckless, reckless policy leads. _______________________________________________ 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 firstname.lastname@example.org All postings are archived on CASI's website: http://www.casi.org.uk