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Hello all, many things have been said about how the peace-movement should address the sort of speeches Bush & Blair (and their vazals)have given to the world-community. If you put all the arguments in the different postings together, I think that one big issue is missing. Blair wants to divert the discussion to Saddam Hussein. But in fact, one doesn't need to take a clear stand on the issue of the democratic or non-democratic character of the Iraqi regime. Leave that issue to the Iraqi people. They will take care of their internal affairs, not we. Even if we suppose that Saddam is a ruthless dictator, the reasons for going to war are geo-strategical and economical: this war has nothing to do with human rights. It's about the control of energy and other resources, it's about world-domination, it's about solving the severe economic crisis in the US, it's about creating military bases in the region, it's about using their new weaponry, it's about the aspirations of Israel, it's about destroying third world economies to take care of the US crisis of overproduction etc.. I think we should concentrate on this issues rather than to let the discussion divert to Saddam, whose so-called "dictatorship" has nothing to do with this war. Remember that the president of the German National Bank and other prominent Western economists write that a short war can give new oxygen to the US and world-economy. But to mask their real reasons, they have to fabricate lies to sell their war. Remember that Bush said that he wants to pay for this war with the Iraqi oil. And that is the most brutal form of colonial "reconquista" one can imagine. With that money the world could be fed, the world could have clear water, free education, you name it. But all means will be used just to destroy a country that has been bled dry already. I hope this contribution is useful to campaigners for peace, in addition to the arguments that have already been given. Greetings. Dirk adriaensens. www.irak.be ----- Original Message ----- From: "F.Dowker" <email@example.com> To: <> Sent: Monday, February 17, 2003 11:37 AM Subject: Re: [casi] Blair's speech -- keep the momentum going A useful thing, for letters and discussion, is to learn a couple of quotes from humanitarian agencies about the threats to the wellbeing of the millions of Iraqi children and other vulnerable people. Juxtaposing them directly with the quote from Blair about it being an ``act of humanity'' is quite striking. There was an Independent article posted here a few days ago with quotations from terrified Iraqi children. Again juxtapose with the ``act of humanity'' statement. Useful perhaps to mention the possibility of the ``Shock and Awe'' strategy of smashing Baghdad with 800 Cruise Missiles in 48 hours and eliminating all power and communications facilities in a ``Hiroshima/Dresden'' type act of terrorism, crushing the population to a state of utter despair. We don't know if they're planning to do this, but if Blair were asked if this was ruled out, he couldn't say it wasn't. (In fact we should ask him.) Calling this an act of humanity sounds insane. I think it can be useful _gently_ to press people on how many people they think are going to be killed. They will have no answer. You can then ask whether it can be right to advocate a violent act when they have no idea how many people will die. (Especially when death in war is so terrible -- so much terror, screaming, dying slowly in agony in the rubble in the dark and searching for your children's broken bodies -- I don't tend to say this, though it is always on my own mind.) Then you can bring up the actual UN estimates and discuss the fact that because of the poverty caused by sanctions much of the population relies, precariously, on the government for subsistence rations and even slight disruption (let alone Shock and Awe) will cause great suffering. I sometimes ask how someone would feel to be living in Baghdad with their elderly relatives, disabled brother or sick children at this moment. Blair's stance of supporting the Iraqi people can be destroyed by explaining that he has helped to maintain the entire country in a state of destitution and economic collapse with rampant poverty (which kills) that has required people to rely on government handouts for more than a decade. Listmembers know better than anyone how to refute his claim to be acting on behalf of the Iraqi people. Good luck everyone. Fay On Sun, 16 Feb 2003, Eric Herring wrote: A quick comment to use on this. If the argument is that Saddam is such an intolerable beast and that is why we MUST go to war, then that means those taking that line must be committed to going to war even if Iraq complies fully with the disarmament process (and which should be accompanied by the lifting of the sanctions). Eric ---------------------- Dr. Eric Herring Department of Politics University of Bristol 10 Priory Road Bristol BS8 1TU England, UK Office tel. +44-(0)117-928-8582 Mobile tel. +44-(0)7771-966608 Fax +44-(0)117-973-2133 firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.bris.ac.uk/Depts/Politics http://www.ericherring.com/ Join the Network of Activist Scholars of Politics and International Relations (NASPIR)! http://groups.yahoo.com/group/naspir/ _______________________________________________ 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 -- ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ + Fay Dowker Physics Department + + Queen Mary, University of London + + E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Mile End Road, + + Phone: +44-(0)20-7882-5047 London E1 4NS. + + Fax: +44-(0)20-8981-9465 + + Homepage: http://monopole.ph.qmw.ac.uk/~dowker/home.html + ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ _______________________________________________ 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 _______________________________________________ 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