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[casi] do not bomb Iraq

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Dear list,
  I thik it is iportant to republish this historic statement that was republished on the MER site. 
it is time to remember what had happened to know what is going to happen
  While the U.S. clearly has the military power to further devastate and prostrate Iraq, we 
strongly believe that the course the U.S. has chosen is not only grossly unjust, but also 
exceedingly hypocritical and duplicitous. We further believe that though the U.S. may be able to 
pursue its imperial policies without substantial opposition in the short term, the policies being 
pursued today, especially the new and massive military assault being prepared against Iraq, are 
likely to have tremendously negative historical ramifications.
  As Middle East experts and scholars — many with close and personal ties to this long-troubled and 
misunderstood region — we feel a political, a moral, and a historical responsibility to speak up in 
clear opposition at this critical time.
  Origins of Today’s Imbroglio:
  Throughout this century Western countries, primarily the United States and Great Britain, have 
continually interfered in and manipulated events in the Middle East. The origins of the Iraq/Kuwait 
conflict can be found in the unilateral British decision during the early years of this century to 
essentially cut off a piece of Iraq to suit British Empire desires of that now faded era.
  Rather than agreeing to Arab self-determination at the end of World War I and the collapse of the 
Ottoman Empire, Western nations conspired to divide the Arab world into a number of artificial and 
barely viable entities; to install Arab "client regimes" throughout the region; to make these 
regimes dependent on Western economic and military power for survival; and then to impose an 
ongoing series of economic, cultural, and political arrangements detrimental to the people of the 
area. This is the historical legacy that we live with today.
  Throughout the 1930s and the 1940s the West further manipulated the affairs of the Middle East in 
order to control the resources of the region and then to create a Jewish homeland in an area 
long-considered central to Arab nationalism and Muslim concerns. Playing off one regime against the 
other and one geopolitical interest against another became a major pre-occupation for Western 
politicians and their closely associated business interests.
  Following World War II:
  After World War II, and from these policy origins, the United States became the main Western 
power in the region, supplanting the key roles formerly played by Britain and France. In the 1960s 
Gamel Abdel Nasser was the target of Western condemnation for his attempt to reintegrate the Arab 
world and to pursue independent "non-aligned" policies. By the 1970s the CIA had established close 
working relationships with key Arab client regimes from Morocco and Jordan to Saudi Arabia and 
Iran—regimes that even then were among the most repressive and undemocratic in the world—in order 
to further American domination and to secure an ever-growing supply of inexpensive oil and the 
resultant flow of petrodollars.
  By the late 1970s the counter-reaction of the Iranian revolution was met with a Western build-up 
of the very same Iraqi regime that is so condemned today in a vain attempt to use Iraq to crush the 
new Iranian regime. The result was millions of deaths coming on top of the terrible destruction of 
Lebanon, itself a country that had been severed from Greater Syria by Western intrigues, as had 
been the area of southern Syria, then known as Palestine. Additionally the Israelis were given the 
green light to invade Lebanon, further devastate the Palestinians, and install a puppet Lebanese 
government—an attempt which failed leading to an American and Israeli retreat but ongoing 
militarism to this day. Meanwhile, throughout all these years Western manipulation of oil supplies 
and pricing, coupled with arms sales policies, often seriously exacerbated tensions between 
countries in the region leading to the events of this decade.
  The Gulf Conflict:
  It was precisely such American manipulations and intrigues that led to the Gulf War in 1990. 
Indeed, we would be remiss if we did not note that there is already much historical evidence that 
the U.S. actually maneuvered Iraq into the invasion of Kuwait, repeatedly suggesting to Iraq that 
it would become the pivotal military state of the area in coordination with the U.S. Whether true 
or not the U.S. subsequently did everything in its power to prevent a peaceful resolution of that 
conflict and for the first time intervened with massive and overwhelming military force in the 
region creating today’s dangerously unstable quagmire.
  The initially stated American goal was only to protect Saudi Arabia. Then after the unprecedented 
military build-up the goal became to expel Iraq from Kuwait. Then the goal evolved to toppling the 
Iraqi government. And from there the Americans began to impose various limits on Iraqi sovereignty; 
took over much of Iraqi air space; sent the CIA to repeatedly atttempt to topple the Iraqi 
government; and placed a near-total embargo on Iraq that many—including a former Attorney General 
of the United States—have termed near-genocidal. The overall result has been the subjugation and 
impoverishment of Iraq and the actual death of approximately 5% of the Iraqi people as the direct 
result of American actions.
  With the Clinton Administration, the U.S. began to insist on the "dual containment" of both Iraq 
and Iran—both countries which just a few years ago the U.S. was working very closely with and 
providing considerable arms to. With few in the press able to remember from one year to the next or 
to connect one historic event with another, somehow Washington has come to insist on Iraqi 
disarmament and Iranian strangulation. Furthermore, these policies are being pursued even while 
Israel and key Arab client states are receiving American weapons in ever larger amounts, with 
Israel's weapons of mass destruction making her forces 7 to 8 times stronger than all Arab armies 
combined. Furthermore still, the U.S./Israeli strategic alliance has never been closer, the U.S. 
has repeatedly helped Israel defy the will of the international community and the United Nations, 
and the U.S. continues to champion a disingenuous Israeli "peace process" which in reality on the 
ground continues to dispossess the Palestinians and to corral them onto reservations in their own 
  In a future statement we will move on to the crucial subject of what alternative policies the 
United States should be pursuing. But at this critical moment we are compelled to come forward and 
urgently condemn the policies now being pursued. We call for an immediate cessation of the economic 
embargo against Iraq, an end to U.S.-imposed restrictions on Iraqi sovereignty and airspace, and 
most of all immediately suspension of all plans to attack Iraq once again with the overwhelming 
technological and military instruments available to the U.S.
  If the U.S. continues to pursue its current policies then we conclude and predict it will not be 
unreasonable for many in the world to brand the U.S. itself as a arrogant and imperialist state, 
and if that becomes the historical paradigm, it will be both understandable and justifiable if 
others pursue whatever means are available to them to oppose American domination and militarism. 
Such developments could quite possibly lead to still more decades of conflict, warfare, and 
terrorism throughout the region and beyond.
COME Advisory Committee: Ms. Arab Abdel-Hadi - Cairo; Professor Nahla Abdo - Carleton University 
(Canada); Professor Elmoiz Abunura - University of North Carolina (Ashville); Professor Jane Adas - 
Rutgers University (NJ); Oroub Alabed - World Food Program (Amman); Professor Faris Albermani - 
University of Queensland (Australia); Professor Jabbar Alwan, DePaul University (Chicago); 
Professor Alex Alland, Columbia University (New York); Professor Abbas Alnasrawi - University of 
Vermont (Burlington); Professor Michael Astour - University of Southern Illinois; Virginia Baron - 
Guilford, CT.; Professor Mohammed Benayoune - Sultan Qaboos University (Oman); Professor Charles 
Black - Emeritus Yale University Law School; Professor Francis O. Boyle, University of Illinois Law 
School (Champlain); Mark Bruzonsky- COME Chairperson (Washington); Linda Brayer - Ex. Dir., Society 
of St. Ives (Jerusalem); Professor Noam Chomsky - Massachusetts Institute of Technology 
(Cambridge); Ramsey Clark - Former U.S. Attorney General (New York); Professor Frank Cohen - SUNY, 
Binghamton; John Cooley - Author, Cyprus; Professor Mustafah Dhada - School of International 
Affairs, Clark Atlanta University; Zuhair Dibaja - Research Fellow, University of Helsinki; 
Professor Mohamed El-Hodiri - University of Kansas; Professor Richard Falk - Princeton University; 
Professor Ali Ahmed Farghaly - University of Michigan (Ann Arbor); Professor Ali Fatemi - American 
University (Paris); Michai Freeman - Berkeley; Professor S.M. Ghazanfar - University of Idaho 
(Chair, Economics Dept); Professor Kathrn Green - California State University (San Bernadino); 
Nader Hashemi - Ottawa, Canada; Professor M. Hassouna - Georgia; Professor Clement Henry - 
University of Texas (Austin); Professor Herbert Hill - University of Wisconsin (Madison); Professor 
Asaf Hussein - U.K.; Yudit Ilany - Jerusalem; Professor George Irani - Lebanese American University 
(Beirut); Tahir Jaffer - Nairobi, Kenya; David Jones - Editor, New Dawn Magazine, Australia; 
Professor Elie Katz - Sonoma State University, CA; Professor George Kent - University of Hawaii; 
Professor Ted Keller - San Francisco State University, Emeritus; John F. Kennedy - Attorney at Law, 
Washington; Samaneh Khader - Gruadate Student in Theology, University of Helsinki; Professor 
Ebrahim Khoda - University of Western Australia; Guida Leicester, San Francisco; Jeremy Levin - 
Former CNN Beirut Bureau Chief (Portland); Professor Seymour Melman - Columbia University (New 
York); Dr. Avi Melzer - Frankfurt; Professor Alan Meyers - Boston University; Professor Michael 
Mills - Vista College (Berkeley, CA); Kamram Mofrad - Idaho; Shahab Mushtaq - Knox College; 
Professor Minerva Nasser-Eddine - University of Adelaide (Australia); Professor Peter Pellett - 
University of Massachussetts (Amherst); Professor Max Pepper, M.D. - University of Massachusetts 
(Amherst); Professor Ruud Peters - Universiteit van Amsterdam; Professor Glenn Perry - Indiana 
State University; Professor Tanya Reinhart - Tel Aviv University; Professor Shalom Raz - Technion 
(Haifa); Professor Knut Rognes - Stavanger College (Norway); Professor Masud Salimian - Morgan 
State University (Baltimore); Professor Mohamed Salmassi - University of Massachusetts; Qais Saleh 
- Graduate Student, International University (Japan); Ali Saidi - J.D. candidate in international 
law (Berkeley, CA); Dr. Eyad Sarraj - Gaza, Occupied Palestine; Henry Schwarzschild - New York 
(original co-founder - deceased); Professor Herbert Schiller - University of California (San 
Diego); Peter Shaw-Smith - Journalist, London; David Shomar - New York; Dr. Manjra Shuaib - 
CapeTown (South Africa); Robert Silverman - Montreal; Professor J. David Singer - University of 
Michigan (Ann Arbor); Professor Majid Tehranian - Director Toda Institute for Global Peace and 
Policy (University of Hawaii); Dr. Marlyn Tadros - Deputy Director, Legal Research and Resource 
Center for Human Rights (Cairo);; Ismail Zayid, M.D. - Dalhousi University (Canada). 
[Identifications listed are only for purposes of identification; only individuals are associated

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