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Dear colleagues, How come "occupation" allows you to visit Iraq, set up shop, or is it political party headquarters, criticise it LEFT, right and centre in your bulletins and leave it unscathed when you yearn for your creature comforts back in the ivory tower of the imperialist motherland ? Could you in your wildest dream have done that during the previous 34 years of "not occupied" Iraq and why didn't you? It is precisely because 34 years of occupation by Saddam's fascist dictatorship has ended that facilitated the return of thousands of exiled Iraqis to their homeland. Not only the sadist Saddam's apologists, loony leftists, but also some of his victims are missing him already. The latter are psychological masachists displaying withdrawal symptoms of love-hate syndrome. The Iraqi people, regardless of their political views, their reservations about the means used and by whom to achieve this, are very grateful for this basic right to be able to visit their country and leave whenever they want to. Incidentally, from now on, those expatriates can keep their dual nationalities without forfeiting their Iraqi nationality. Moreover, those still in Iraq can use mobile phones, satellite TV dishes and criticise their rulers without fear of loosing their ear, tongue or even head. Incidentally, even a personal manual typewriter was banned under the rulers of "Pre- occupation". Good riddance dictatorship. Welcome freedom, long time no see ! 34 years in the case of our ultra-left Iraqis. Regards, Muhamad -----Original Message----- From: John Smith [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] Sent: 23 September 2003 01:02 To: Daniel O'Huiginn; Peter Brooke Cc: casi Subject: Re: [casi] Opinion polls Johann Hari/Iraq Prospect Organisation's pro-imperialist propaganda piece in 18 September 'Independent' was refuted by this letter printed in the same paper on the 20th: Sir: Johann Hari is still doing his best to justify his support for the war on Iraq. I too returned to Iraq to see for myself after 34 years in exile. But I arrived at conclusions contrary to those of Mr Hari and his Iraqi informants. He is happy to quote his informants' nonsense that "even after liberation, they [the Iraqi people] couldn't understand that they were free; they didn't understand what it meant." This I presume is his answer to the plain fact that the Iraqi people refused to shower the invaders with flowers. I talked with scores of people in Baghdad and, with only two exceptions, they opposed the US occupation and regarded it as the US "master" (ussta) replacing the "apprentice" (sani). For it is almost universally believed in Iraq, even among some supporters of the invasion, that the US was the power that not only backed Saddam's tyranny and armed him with WMD, but worked for decades to keep him in power. Saddam's old right-wing friends, Rumsfeld and co, are recruiting Saddam's security men and are prepared to derench Iraq in new bloodbaths precisely to stop its people from achieving democracy and true liberation. (signed: Sami Ramadani, Senior lecturer, Dept of Applied Social Sciences, London Metropolitan University) As for opinion polls.... how do you capture something as complex and contradictory as human consciousness, hopes, and emotions, in a land where the imperialist devil runs amok, putting the population in greater peril than they have ever been? Are we so unsure of ourselves that we can be swayed by pollsters who think that they can measure minds in the same way that fascists once measured craniums? The Zogby International opinion poll has provided the material for a plethora of pro-occupation articles in newspapers in the US and UK. It is interesting, therefore, to read how the Financial Times reported the same poll: Opinion poll underlines Iraqi distrust of America By Guy Dinmore in Washington Financial Times/September 11 2003 Braving bullets, arrests and hot pursuit while carrying out the first scientific survey of Iraqi public opinion, pollsters commissioned by a conservative US think-tank have discovered that most Iraqis do not trust Americans and want to be left alone. John Zogby, president of Zogby International, which completed the poll last month, summed up the findings yesterday, saying that, like most Arabs, Iraqis want to "control their own destiny", without the intervention of outside forces, and are confident in their own ability. "Now that tyranny is over," he said, "it is time to move forward but not as a colony." In that sense Iraqis broadly agree, but for different reasons, with the Bush administration's stated goal of handing over power and getting out as soon as possible. Commissioned by the American Enterprise Institute, the pollsters sought to survey a representative cross-section of Iraqi society by going to four cities: Mosul and Kirkuk in the north, Ramadi in the mostly anti-US Sunni area of central Iraq, and Basra in the Shia south. A total of 600 people were interviewed in public places. In Ramadi the pollsters were caught in crossfire in an ambush of US forces. One was arrested by Kurds in the north, while others were chased by car. In Basra some were detained for 24 hours. Asked if the US and UK should help make sure a fair government is set up in Iraq, or if the Iraqis should work this out themselves, 31.5 per cent wanted help while 58.5 per cent did not. Some 38.2 per cent agreed that democracy could work well in Iraq, while 50.2 per cent agreed with the statement that "democracy is a western way of doing things and it will not work here". Asked whether in the next five years the US would "help" Iraq, 35.3 per cent said yes while 50 per cent said the US would "hurt" Iraq. Asked the same of the UN, the figures were almost reversed, with 50.2 per cent saying it would help and 18.5 per cent the opposite. Reguarding US and British troops, some 31 per cent wanted them to leave in six months and a total of 65.5 per cent in a year. Some 25 per cent said they should stay two years or more. Interviewees were given a list of five countries they would like to model Iraq after. A total of 36 per cent chose the four Middle Eastern countries listed (16 per cent for Saudi Arabia, 11 per cent for Syria, 6.5 per cent for Egypt and 2.8 per cent for Iran) while 21.5 per cent settled for the US, the only western country listed. Seven out of 10 Iraqis think their country and their personal lives will be better five years from now. **************** --- Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free. Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com). Version: 6.0.518 / Virus Database: 316 - Release Date: 12/09/2003 _______________________________________________ Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. 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