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[casi] Dr Geert Van Moorter from Baghdad




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Hello all,
I hope you all demonstrated yesterday against the unilateral brutal attack on Iraq by the United 
States of Aggression.
Here's a report of Dr. Geert Van Moorter, currently in Baghdad. Daily reports can be found in Dutch 
and french at www.irak.be  (we're working on english translations.
Yours in struggle for peace.
Dirk Adriaensens

Dr. Geert Van Moorter's diary, Baghdad, March 22, 2:30 a.m.

March 20. Call for resistance on American radio.

Bombings were more powerful, and nearer. Clouds of dust and smoke. My eyes shed tears of anger. 
Last night I could finally talk to Marijke, my sister, on the phone. It was a pleasant moment. We 
could share thoughts about the resistance here and there. I'm so proud that the greater part of my 
family and friends support me. We are not risking our lives like fools, as some people might 
insinuate. We are representing so many people who are directly involved in what's happening here in 
Iraq through our mission. The Belgian media regularly call the Stop USA committee in my hometown 
Aalst. They also visit my family and even asked my mother if she couldn't keep her son from such a 
dangerous mission. She answered that she never even thought about stopping me. I was touched when I 
heard that.

Our lives are hectic here. I hardly sleep three to four hours a night. My mother will say I'm 
wearing myself out again. But then how could I ever sleep peacefully here? We are working in 
shifts: Colette during the day and I at night. Last night I was live on air on a radio station 
based in Washington DC, relayed to 98 local stations. Those Americans! A four-hour live show about 
the war! They can make a show about anything. It's like "Together against Cancer." Hehehe, maybe we 
could do a "Together against War" show. Anyway, I was able to call on the American listeners to 
show massive protest. I told them the Iraqis have nothing against them, but only against their 
government and their president, who have a massive human rights violation to answer for.

Support from a committed home front

Definitely, it's not only us. We can count on a broad team that supports our mission and 
distributes our information. Bert De Belder, MATW's coordinator, is working day and night. Wim De 
Ceukelaire, who works in the Philippines for Medical Aid for the Third World, translates our 
diaries into English. And then they are sent around the world. Dirk Adriaensens of S.O.S. Irak 
BelgiŽ is also involved. His website, www.irak.be, is the busiest European site about Iraq, 
spreading our messages to thousands of people. Monday, the workers of Caterpillar, a Belgian 
factory, will go on strike against the war! It is the whole context that makes our presence here 
worthwhile, the mobilization of many people against this monster. That gives me a good feeling and 
extra energy.

March 21. "The Iraqis' morale remains high."

Now we can see soldiers in the streets. Policemen are wearing helmets and Kalashnikovs instead of 
pistols. The military are piling sand bags and digging trenches.
The Iraqi people stay relatively calm. Apparently they got used to it. Many people told us they 
won't yield as their country has been destroyed already several times but always stood up again. 
Their morale is still intact. People support one another. The foreign journalists are panicking 
more than them...

"'United States of Aggression' is an understatement"

We've had very heavy bombings now, very strong explosions. The windows were trembling. We saw 
fireballs. It is a shame! The surgeons we met this afternoon in the Saddam hospital will have lots 
of work. We cannot see bombs fall, but the explosions are tremendous, with deafening rumbles. 
Colette screams with anger against the savagery while I try to make footages. Once in a while, I 
have to swallow to relieve the pressure on my eardrums. Assholes, this is sheer madness!

We are in safe in our hotel. We stay to report about war's madness and to hearten the people; to 
paint smiles on their faces for a while; to shake hands; to give them a hug.. Some people might 
look down on it in disdain but we don't care. We receive encouragement from all over the world. We 
give interviews to people in Argentine, Canada, South Africa, Washington, France, Australia. Every 
time we call on the people to resist. Now and then we denounce Belgium's half-heartedness. Every 
time we praise our Iraqi colleagues who stay on the job courageously despite the hardships.
Here, we tell everybody that people are protesting the world over. Stop USA, the United States of 
Aggression, is an understatement. Those who dare to say it is an exaggeration should experience the 
attacks. It has nothing to do with human rights and democracy. Or is democracy delivered by bombs 
these days?

"The US will run its head against a wall."

10:00 p.m. Sirens are wailing again. There's smoke and an irritating smell in the air. How do 
people who are not, like us, in a safe place experience this? The children we saw this morning in 
the hospital are in the zone that is now under fire. What do they feel? What kind of fears do they 
and their parents have to endure? This is a crime against humanity. Bush, Blair & co. should be 
tried. I hope their day will come.

Do we have to think we are helpless against this aggression; that the US are almighty? Last night I 
was reading the preface of a book I received from the Philippines, 'US Imperialist Hegemony and 
Crisis: Unmasking the War on Terror'. "The arrogant use of military power by the US as the sole 
superpower is also a sign of the inner and ultimately fatal weakness of US imperialism concealed 
behind the awesome appearance of overwhelming military power," it says. And it continues: 
"Everywhere the people organize themselves in mass movements and engage in revolutionary actions to 
thwart imperialist war." Only a few years ago I would have considered such phrases sloganeering. It 
might sound heavy for somebody who lives in a relatively protected environment. But now, after the 
bombings, I cannot but agree. For people in the Third World it is often easier to call a spade a 
spade. This is barbaric imperialism that doesn't shrink from massacres and destruction for economic 
interests. People are increasingly realizing that this can't go on any longer and, definitely, that 
is a positive development.

Today an Iraqi told me: "Maybe the US can achieve a military victory, but they will still be hated. 
And after their 'victory' they will be met with fierce opposition. The people hate the US, not the 
ordinary Americans, but their government and their president. Eventually, the will run their heads 
against a wall. We will rise again!"

Children for peace, in Belgium and Iraq

I look at the drawings about peace made by the schoolchildren of Aalst for the children of Iraq. 
There's one from a nine-year old boy from Wichelen: thick, red lines over a military tank. Some 
drew flowers, messages of peace,. . I was not able to give them to Iraqi children anymore because 
most schools were already closed as war was imminent. Another right of the children that has been 
violated in the name of 'human rights.' I heard many schools in Belgium went on strike today. A 
good example for many cynical adults!

Aid teams also targeted by bombings?

I notice that buildings are bombed twice, with an interval of fifteen to thirty minutes. We can see 
it from our hotel room. What a shame! After the attack, aid teams rush to the site of impact. The 
second attack deliberately targets the fire brigade and ambulances. That is a violation of the 
international humanitarian agreements Bush & co. don't care about. They want to demoralize the 
civilian population. Right now I can hear the ambulances. Back home in Belgium I used to join them 
regularly. Imagine, as soon as you arrive in the disaster area you are under attack!

10:30 p.m. Another attack. Now it is farther away. Only at 10:45 do we hear the sirens of the 
ambulances. That means first aid for the survivors arrives only one to two hours after the attacks. 
(The first attacks started at 8:00 p.m.) Shit, explosions again in the same area! I hope my 
colleagues weren't looking for survivors there. It has to be awful now for the survivors. Many of 
them will have bled to death in agony, with severed limbs and covered in burns. I know what I'm 
talking about. I have seen war scenes in Afghanistan and Yugoslavia. Sweet dreams, Mr. President! 
And to hell with the Belgian government that allows those weapons transports. Stop it! You are 
helping the murderers!



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