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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Western Values: destroy, abandon at sea

Unconscionable failure to bear consequences of Western-made disasters
Excerpt, editing by Carolyn Bennett 

“The country of my birth, already so damaged, is now crippled by fear of all-out civil war,” writer and lecturer Sami Ramadani warned in March of last year. But, he said, “In the people there is hope.”

Continuing, compounding disaster

“On the eve of the 2003 invasion,” Sami Ramadani writes in quoting his words from 11 years ago: “‘In Iraq, the US record speaks for itself:
 ·         …it backed Saddam [Hussein]’s party, the Ba’ath, to capture power in 1963, murdering thousands of socialists, communists and democrats;  
·         …it backed the Ba’ath party in 1968 when Saddam [Hussein] was installed as vice-president;  
·         …it helped him [Saddam Hussein] and the Shah of Iran in 1975 to crush the Kurdish nationalist movement;  
·         …it increased its support for Saddam in 1979…helping him launch his war of aggression against Iran in 1980;  
·         …it backed him throughout the horrific eight years of war (1980 to 1988), in which a million Iranians and Iraqis were slaughtered, in the full knowledge that he [Saddam Hussein] was using chemical weapons and gassing Kurds and Marsh Arabs;   
·         …it encouraged him [Saddam Hussein] in 1990 to invade Kuwait…; 
·         …it backed him [Saddam Hussein] in 1991 when [George H. W.] Bush suddenly stopped the war, exactly 24 hours after the start of the great March uprising that engulfed the south and Iraqi Kurdistan…; and  
·         …it backed him [Saddam Hussein] as the ‘lesser evil’ from March 1991 to September 11 2001 under the umbrella of murderous sanctions and the policy of ‘containment’.
“…When it was no longer in their interests to back him [Saddam Hussein], the United States and the United Kingdom drowned Iraq in blood.

“That war has still not been consigned to history – not for the people of Iraq or the region.”

The total dead, wounded, displaced, traumatized – has never received a full count and countless thousands of Iraqis are missing. Of a million internally displaced people (IDPs) and another four million refugees, only one million have been able to return to their homeland. 

And the United States and UK “still refuse to accept the harmful consequences of radioactive depleted uranium munitions.” US officials claim not to have “used chemical weapons in Fallujah – but Iraqis see the evidence: …poisoned environment, cancer and deformities.” 

In one of the richest countries on the planet, a “lack of electricity and clean water and other essential services continue to hit millions of impoverished and unemployed people.

“Women and children pay the highest price. Women’s rights and human rights in general are suppressed daily.”

Ramifications of the US-led war on Iraq – “an unmitigated disaster with genocidal dimensions for the Iraqi people” – continue “to fuel conflicts and sow discord in the region.” In its earlier atrocities, invasions and provocations, Sami Ramadani continues:  
· …the US-led occupying authorities nurtured a ‘political process’ and a constitution designed to sow sectarian and ethnic discord.  
·         Having failed to crush the resistance to direct occupation, they [US-led occupying authorities] resorted to divide-and-rule to keep their foothold in Iraq. 
·         Using torture, sectarian death squads and billions of dollars, the occupation has succeeded in weakening the social fabric and elevating a corrupt ruling class that gets richer by the day, salivating at the prospect of acquiring a bigger share of Iraq’s natural resources, which are mostly mortgaged to foreign oil companies and construction firms. 
·         Warring sectarian and ethnic forces, either allied with or fearing US influence, dominate the dysfunctional and corrupt Iraqi state institutions, but the US embassy in Baghdad – the biggest in the world – still calls the shots.  
·         Iraq is not really a sovereign state, languishing under the punitive Chapter VII of the UN charter.
“The northwestern region of Iraq borders Syria and it is where General Petraeus [retired US military officer, public official, former CIA director David Howell Petraeus] funded the Sahwa ‘awakening’ militias in order to crush resistance in that region. Al-Qaida-type terrorists are also active in the area. They are natural allies of the terrorist al-Nusra Front of Syria.

“The de facto alliance between the US, Turkey, Israel and militants that has appeared in Syria is being mirrored in Iraq, with the additional ingredient of Saddamist remnants. US pragmatism knows no bounds!”

Sami Ramadani concludes his 2013 article

“The immediate prospects are frightening but I write with the image of a brave Iraqi child imprinted in my mind.

“I saw him in Baghdad in July 2003. He was shouting angrily, waving a clenched fist of defiance at a US soldier whose machine gun was menacingly aimed at him.

“With that free spirit and with solidarity among the people – a democratic and free Iraq shall surely rise strong and prosperous.”

Today's Europe to Migrants
RT reports
Failure to bear consequences for Western-created crises, consequences

Since the year 2000, an estimated “22,000 migrants” have died trying to cross from the Middle East and Africa via the Mediterranean Sea into Europe. But instead of rescue missions, Europeans have come up with “a new limited European Union border security operation ‘Triton’” to be set against migrants on November 1.

Britain wages endless wars and oppression in the Middle East and Africa yet rejects people who attempt to escape their suffering (as does the United States). “The British Refugee Council has railed against the UK government’s decision to “‘withdraw help’” from migrants, saying such callousness “will lead to more people ‘needlessly and shamefully dying on Europe’s doorstep.’”
Western Values

“‘People fleeing atrocities will not stop coming if we stop throwing them life rings,’” said the British Refugee Council’s chief executive. To a person running for his or her life, from a country in flames, “‘boarding a rickety boat in Libya,’” for example, seems a “rational decision.’”
Yet “‘the British Government seems oblivious to the fact that the world is in the grip of the greatest refugee crisis since the Second World War.…” The answer to migration is not to build higher fortress walls in Europe but “‘to provide more safe and legal channels for people to access protection.’”

Sources and notes

“Iraq’s pain has only intensified since 2003,” March 14, 2013, The Guardian, http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/mar/14/iraq-pain-2003-civil-war

Political exiled from Saddam’s regime Sami Ramadani was also a campaigner against US-led sanctions against, invasion and occupation of Iraq. The Iraq native is a lecturer in sociology and writer on current affairs in Iraq and the Middle East. He is also a member of the steering committee of the Stop the War Coalition-UK. Twitter at @SamiRamadani1

‘Shameful’: Rights groups slam UK scrapping of Mediterranean migrant rescues,”
October 28, 2014, http://rt.com/uk/200075-uk-rescue-mediterranean-migrants/


A lifelong American writer and writer/activist (former academic and staffer with the U.S. government in Washington), Dr. Carolyn LaDelle Bennett is credentialed in education and print journalism and public affairs (PhD, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan; MA, The American University, Washington, DC). Her work concerns itself with news and current affairs, historical contexts, and ideas particularly related to acts and consequences of U.S. foreign relations, geopolitics, human rights, war and peace, and violence and nonviolence. Dr. Bennett is an internationalist and nonpartisan progressive personally concerned with society and the common good. An educator at heart, her career began with the U.S. Peace Corps, teaching in Sierra Leone, West Africa. Since then, she has authored several books and numerous current-affairs articles; her latest book: UNCONSCIONABLE: How The World Sees Us: World News, Alternative Views, Commentary on U.S. Foreign Relations; most thoughts, articles, edited work are posted at Bennett’s Study: http://todaysinsightnews.blogspot.com/ and on her Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/carolynladelle.bennett. http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/08UNCONSCIONABLE/prweb12131656.htm http://bookstore.xlibris.com/Products/SKU-000757788/UNCONSCIONABLE.aspx Her books are also available at independent bookstores in New York State: Lift Bridge in Brockport; Sundance in Geneseo; Dog Ears Bookstore and Literary Arts Center in Buffalo; Burlingham Books in Perry; The Bookworm in East Aurora


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