VoteNoWar.org – 2004-10-28 21:12:49
In a medical study being published today, scientists have concluded that the US invasion and occupation of Iraq has resulted in the deaths of at least 100,000 Iraqis, “and may be much higher.”
It further revealed that most of the 100,000 Iraqis who died were killed in violent deaths, primarily carried out by US forces’ airstrikes.
“Most individuals reportedly killed by coalition forces were women and children,” according to the study. The study was designed and conducted by researchers at Johns Hopkins University, Columbia University and the Al-Mustansiriya University in Baghdad (The Lancet, October 29, 2004).
The population of Iraq is approximately 25 million people. Were this slaughter carried out on an equivalent scale in the United States, it would be comparable to a death toll of one million people.
Infant Mortality Has Doubled Under US Occupation
Even the youngest and most vulnerable have not been spared: as a consequence of the US war against the people of Iraq, infant mortality rose from 29 deaths per 1,000 live births before the war to 57 deaths per 1,000 afterward.
The Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, 78 U.N.T.S. 277, executed in 1948, and ratified by the United States, and which carries the binding force of the law of nations, prohibits genocide or complicity in genocide. See, also, 18 U.S.C. 1091.
“In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:
• (a) Killing members of the group;
• (b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
• (c) Deliberately inflicting upon the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part…”
Bush Administration Is Guilty of War Crimes
This is a criminal war just as the Vietnam war was a criminal war. It isn’t enough to advocate that replacing Bush with Kerry should be the goal of anti-war advocates.
The Pentagon is preparing to rain down their favored “shock and awe” violence on the devastated people of Fallujah who have already been subject to terrorizing bombing raids and the killings of entire families night after night for months.
A Call for Unconditional Withdrawal
By demanding the unconditional withdrawal from Iraq we are sending a message to the Iraq people that we respect their right to determine their own destiny and we send a message to the US soldiers that their lives and dignity are too important to be used in the commission of war crimes or to serve as cannon fodder in a war that only benefits the corporate and banking elite.
Bush and Kerry have pledged to continue this violent occupation in order to “win” in Iraq. The people of Iraq are desperately trying to regain their sovereignty and right to determine their own futures without outside intervention.
While some feel that the “final stretch” is in these next few days culminating at the polls, for the people of Iraq and all those around the world who stand in solidarity with them, the “final stretch” is from now until the US troops and all occupation forces are removed from that sovereign land.
We must deepen the fight in the United States to bring this war to an end unconditionally. It is completely bogus to insist the intervention must continue based on some humanitarian argument that since US intervention wrought so much devastation, the US must now stay the course in order to prevent “civil war,” “chaos,” or “a blood bath.”
These were the same arguments that were used to justify the prolongation of the US war in Vietnam. The only thing that happened when the US finally left Vietnam was that the real blood bath ended.
A Call for Mass Action
That’s why thousands of people are planning to take action starting on November 3 and culminating in a mass action all along the route of the Inaugural parade on January 20 in Washington, DC.
For info on attending the January demonstrations, click here
Only the anti-war movement will end the criminal war in Iraq. We urgently need your support to carry out these activities to stop the blood bath in Iraq.
Anti-war activists who are out in the streets, including before the election fighting against racist disenfranchisement as well as after the election, are prominently displaying the most important anti-war message of our time: Bring the Troops Home Now! on T-shirts, stickers and signs — which you can get at the VoteNoWar Resource Center, along with ANSWER’s own “End All Occupations” shirt.
Pledge now to support the January 20 demonstration against the war — no matter who is elected.