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May, 2003

Anarchy, The Epilogue To Genocide
By Edward W Miller

"Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee." - John Donne, 1572-1631

"They made a wasteland and called it "peace" -Tacitus  (Roman historian 55-117AD)

   As American and British forces bludgeon their way across Iraq, trashing and killing at will, bombing public buildings, offices, telecommunications centers and whatever small concentrations of Saddam's forces threaten their progress, the Iraqi people are ignored, swept aside or killed.
   The death toll of citizens is now in the thousands, and Saddam's Guards wherever they have attempted to make a stand against an overwhelming firepower have been either destroyed by tank or helicopter fire or obliterated by bombs. Some brigades have already surrendered to either American or British forces. Most of the major cities have been overrun by the advancing invaders, though scattered pockets of resistance remain. Saddam's birthplace, Tikrit as I write, is suffering the fate of Iraq's other population centers.  
   The anarchy resulting from this barbaric exercise in the preemptive destruction of a people as civilized as  their invaders,  plays across the media screens of the world as disorganized crowds in the cities plunder at will.  Wounded children with amputated limbs cry softly in crowded, dirty and poorly-equipped hospital wards where weary physicians arm themselves to prevent street mobs from stealing hospital supplies and equipment. The blasted and burned-out skeletons of cars with charred bodies of their occupants sprawl on the highways attesting to some Iraqi patriots' suicidal attacks on American tanks or armored vehicles.  Red Cross workers report seeing trucks carrying the bodies of "dismembered women and children" leaving Baghdad. The invaders seem utterly unable to control the pillaging of public buildings, stores and food establishments, or even hospitals and museums. Individual homeowners shown on the media complain the soldiers seized their few private firearms, leaving them prey to intruders. Lost forever to the world's classical scholars, archeologists, historians and students of art are 170,000 museum pieces from antiquity looted from Baghdad's National Museum. Classical scholars had personally traveled to Washington before the invasion to get assurance that these treasures would be protected. To no avail. The bubbleheads in our Capital allowed the door to be slammed shut on 7000 years of early human history.
   Much of the uncontrolled pillaging in Iraq's cities seen on the media as anarchy spreads across that Nation's wasteland can be explained by the devastating poverty visited on Saddam's people ,who, while recovering from an eight-year war with Iran were then subject to the devastation of "Desert Storm." The plan initiated by the first Bush administration, and followed throughout the Clinton years, was to destroy the infrastructure of Iraq and kill its people, using a combination of starvation and biological (call it bacteriological) warfare. Americans, for ten long years, have been missing one of the most egregious genocides in history. Since the Gulf War, almost two million Iraqis, mostly the elderly, children, and babies, have been slaughtered by a US-British-UN program designed to maim and kill.
  There were actually two Gulf Wars. One, to recall Saddam's troops from Kuwait, the second, to destroy the infrastructure of Iraq, "bombing it back into the pre-industrial age," as General Schwarzkopf put it. The destruction of telecommunications, water supplies, sewage treatment plants, and oil facilities had nothing to do with Kuwait, but with the unspoken US-UN intent to destroy Iraq with those Apocalyptic weapons of mass destruction: war, famine, pestilence, and death. 
  Noam Chomsky correctly called this "biological warfare." During the Gulf War the Pentagon stated it conducted 110,000 aerial sorties in 42 days, one every 30 seconds. unleashing 85,000 tons of bombs. Iraq was essentially defenseless. On March 3rd, 1991 the London Times reported allied intelligence estimated 200,000 Iraqi soldiers were killed., a number the Pentagon agreed with (Ramsey Clark America Online March 09, 2003 *) "Civilian casualties from the bombing were in the tens of thousands. Thousands died from direct bomb hits, but far more died from destruction of the facilities essential to human life. Within hours of the first bomb there was no electricity anywhere in Iraq. In the first two days, pipes distributing water ran dry throughout the country. By February 1991 Iraq's Minister of Health estimated 3000 civilians dead and another 25,000 were in hospitals and clinics. A quarter of a million more were sickened without medicines or medical care. from drinking polluted water.. (ibid *)
   On Sept. 17, 2000, Professor Thomas J. Nagy of George Washington University made public a seven page document he had obtained, prepared by the US Defense Intelligence Agency. The report, hidden by the government for ten years, outlined the Gulf Allies' plan to set the stage for a water-born genocide in that country. The report reads: "Iraq had gone to considerable trouble to provide pure water for its population... importing specialized equipment and purification chemicals... a shortage of pure drinking water... could lead to increased incidents, if not epidemics of disease... Full degradation of the water treatment system will probably take at least six months." The Agency's report "was circulated to all major Allied commands." This information identified not only bombing targets, but those specific chemicals and specialized water purification equipment which the US and British then added to their list of embargoed items, to be certain the genocide would succeed. As intended, Allied bombing destroyed dams, reservoirs, wrecking flood control, irrigation, and hydroelectric power. Pumping stations were crippled as were 31 municipal water and sewage facilities. As raw sewage poured into the Tigris River, the Iraqis only remaining source of water, they died by the thousands. The allies dropped 88,500 tons of bombs, equivalent to seven Hiroshimas, rendering 1.8 million Iraqis homeless and killing over 150,000 Iraqi troops.
   The Fourth Geneva Convention which the US signed clearly states: "It is prohibited to attack or render useless objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population"... "including drinking water supplies and irrigation works." Professor Nagy intends to pursue, under International law, criminal indictments against those responsible.
   Added to the carnage of Dessert Storm, the US and British fired "anti-tank" shells containing depleted uranium, which disintegrates on contact to burn with intense heat, leaving free uranium 238 particles to blow about freely in the desert winds. Inhalation of this dust is already creating both a marked increase in childhood lymphomas, plus numerous birth deformities. Since the half-life of depleted uranium is 4.5 billion years, lethal radiation from our shells will continue killing the civilian population in Iraq for generations.
   Americans have also forgotten that on Dec. 16, 1998, while sexual McCarthyism played out on the floor of Congress, President Clinton again ordered Patriot and Tomahawk missiles to hail down on Baghdad. Operation "Desert Fox" (called " OPERATION MONICA" in the Mideast) created extensive damage, killed over 25 civilians, and targeted one of the few oil refineries still able to function. To interrupt the impeachment process, Clinton, before he set the attack in motion, had carefully crafted Chief UN Inspector Butler's report to make certain it appeared Saddam was interfering with the UNSCOM Team.
   By 1998, Rick McDowell, whose "Voices in the Wilderness" group had visited Iraq many times since 1991, reported, "As of 1995, over a million Iraqis have died, 576,000 of them children, and three million risk acute starvation... More children have died... than the total of the two atomic bombs dropped on Japan."  McDowell noted the Oil for Food program was a failure since reparations to Kuwait, paying for UNSCOM and support for the Kurds ate up over 40 percent, leaving less than 25 cents/person/day for the Iraqis. McDowell said UN Security Council sanction which embargo pipes, pumps, filters, chlorine, ambulance tires, and everything necessary to produce potable water represent a "war of collective punishment."
   Some Americans may recall that in October 1998, Denis J. Halliday, Assistant Secretary-General of the UN and Chief of UNSCOM's "Oil for Food" resigned in disgust over the US-British interference with his program in an "all-out effort to starve to death as many Iraqis as possible." He added: "We see the member states... of the Security Council manipulating the organization for their own national interests." Halliday reported UN sanctions had reduced a once-proud civilization to third world status, resulting in crime, prostitution, beggary, family breakdown and corruption. He said Iraqis "were selling their belongings for food." Under Saddam Hussein, Halliday noted: "Iraq experienced the best civilization in the Mideast with universal medical care, the finest hospitals, free university education and overseas grants for graduate students....I went to Iraq to administer the largest humanitarian challenge in history I didn't realize the level of complicity in the suffering. It is to the point of madness. One day we will be called into account."
   Halliday, Ex-Attorney Ramsey Clark and others have reported mass starvation, waterborne diseases previously unknown in Iraq: diarrhea, cholera, strep, hepatitis, typhoid and polio (which had been eradicated). Animal plagues such as Hoof-and-mouth-disease for which the US forbids the importation of the vaccine to control this disease, kills one Iraqi source of protein. Screwworm, introduced by our CIA, killed off much of the sheep and goat population on which the people largely depended No need to fire plague-bearing missiles into a country when you have already contaminated the drinking water with sewage, and, with a strict embargo, forbidden the import of every single item necessary to clean it up.
   Right up to Bush's ongoing invasion of Saddam's country the US and Britain pursued this devastation despite rising world criticism. Their north and south overflights, (never authorized by the UN), and bombing missions were still murdering Saddam's people (over 2000 killed since 1998), and wrecking any attempts by the Iraqis to rebuild their economy. Iraq's out-of-date antiaircraft batteries never reached high-flying US-British planes, so bombing in retaliation "because their radar locked on" was but another cheap US-Brit excuse for killing.
   To pursue this mayhem, the US had simply ignored their fellow members in the Security Council where Russia, China and France, amongst others, frequently asked US to quit the sanctions and normalize trade. Even ex-UNSCOM officer Scott Ritter called bypassing the Security Council while pursuing a campaign to remove Saddam: "A failing and contradictory US policy." Back in Aug. 1999, France's Interior Minister stated his government "will not support a policy which victimizes innocent Iraqi citizens." The French government noted when UN's Butler, on Clinton's order, tossed out UNSCOM inspectors, "they had tracked down and destroyed all the existing nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons capacity they were ever going to find." UN expert and author Phyllis Bennis reported the Security Council "prevented UNSCOM from making its findings public. Such organizations as Voices-In-The-Wilderness group, Amnesty International, the International Red Cross, and the Red Crescent as well as the Russian, French, Chinese and other UN Security-Council members, have all decried our genocide in Iraq.
   The campaign by the media to cover-up this genocide has never ceased... Hans von Spondek, UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq, who took over Halliday's position and likewise resigned in protest over the genocide, in an interview May 6, 2000, stated: "in Boston to meet with the editor of the Boston Globe (owned by the NY Times), I was told not to refer, even, to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, or the UN Charter, because they have no meaning in that paper." (The Boston Globe is owned by the NY Times) Von Spondek reported the death rate for children had tripled since 1991, and even much-needed electricity was often lacking in Baghdad. The UN had allowed only $112 million for repairs whereas the system rehabilitation minimum was over $7.1 billion. Saddam's people, once the best-educated in the Mideast on a 1989 $2.1 billion school budget, with sanctions struggled with $229 million. The literacy rate fell from over 90 percent to barely 60 percent. Computers can't be imported, as the UN fears "military use." Forty-four Congressmen sent Clinton a letter demanding the sanctions be lifted, to no avail
   As I write OPERATION RESTORE FREEDOM is grinding down as tanks and armored vehicles move through Tikrit without significant resistance. As everyone expected, The American military machine running on a $400 billion budget, as was anticipated, overwhelmed Iraq's obsolete army whose budget was $1.9 billion. Saddam's air cover had never been replaced since the Gulf War, and under UN sanctions he was not allowed enough money to provide even simple maintenance for his antiquated military machine. The US media as in the Gulf War, has continuously exaggerated Saddam's military strength for a compliant and ignorant US audience. Our "brave fighters" have, to date, not faced significant military resistance. Saddam's Republican Guard were completely unable to defend themselves, though several thousand bravely offered their lives in this useless exercise. Iraqi ex-patriots returning to defend their country, along with uncounted mujahadeen from Muslim countries, have managed to inflict occasional damage to the US/Brit forces, delaying the Pentagon's timetable. 
   What will be done to lift Iraq out of this Washington-produced humanitarian morass is anyone's guess. Anti-War protesters still march in the streets of capitols around the world. The estimated costs to return Iraq to its pre-Gulf War status run between $300-$400 billion. Robert Ebel, Director of the energy program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, says that even if Iraq gets its oil production up to the $18 Billion/year pre-war level, "That's not going to go very far." Bush promised to rebuild and democratize Iraq, but if Afghanistan is an example this will be another abject failure. Even the streets in Kabul, Afghanistan's capital are not safe at night. There is anarchy throughout that country though our CIA is still bribing tribal leaders to reduce internecine warfare. The Afghans still lack clean water and sewage facilities, transportation, postal, banking and health systems and a police force. Only a fraction of the promised international monies have surfaced and recently, two close political appointees of the West's chosen president, Karsai, have been murdered. Can we expect Bush to keep any of his promises. to Iraq aside from refurbishing their oil industry for western interests?
   "...Winning a war is one thing. Succeeding in the ideological and economic project that lies behind this whole war is another. The "real" story for America's mastery over the Arab world starts now." -Robert Fisk ( April 10th THE INDEPENDENT)

 

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