Freedom Socialist Party: Australian Section – 2006-03-17 23:53:27
BRUNSWICK, Australia (March 17, 2006) — The US invasion of Iraq was trumpeted as bringing democracy and security. Instead, it increasingly delivers terror and death, want and sectarian strife – all this in a country that had maintained a strong tradition of secularism and significant national unity among its vast mosaic of peoples.
Now that sense of solidarity is being deliberately shattered by US war strategies that put US soldiers in the middle of an unfolding civil war.
David Wurmser, one of the war’s architects and an advisor to Vice-President Cheney, wrote in 1997 that Iraq after Saddam would be “ripped apart by the politics of warlords, tribes, clans, sects and key families.” He urged the US to “expedite” such a cataclysmic collapse.
Currently, Yanar Mohammed, the President of the Organization of Women’s Freedom in Iraq, confirms that Wurmser’s policy is being carried out. She writes “The US occupation has planted the seeds of ethno-sectarian division, preparing Iraq for civil war, and has blessed religious supremacy over and against human and women’s rights.”
Who Benefits from Civil War in Iraq?
Why would the US deliberately foment ethnic antagonisms and civil war? The answer is that a balkanized Iraq, divided into small competing fiefdoms, would contain Arab and Islamist anti-imperialist revolt. Such divisions also guarantee US corporations control over the most oil-rich regions of the country.
Many Arab writers and leaders believe the recent bombing of the Shiite Golden Mosque in Samarra was instigated by occupation forces in order to break up the burgeoning resistance movement. Even Iraqi Vice President Adel Abdul Mehdi blamed the US for the bombing of the mosque.
Shiite cleric Muqtada Al-Sadr also accused occupation forces and Baathists. He called on his Al-Mahdi Army “to protect both Shia and Sunni shrines.” And in Samarra and other cities, groups of Sunnis demonstrated in support of Shias.
While it is true the bombing has sparked sectarian retaliation, it has also raised many questions about the US role in encouraging turmoil across Iraq.
US Takes “Divide and Conquer” to a New Level
In January 2005, the Pentagon publicly discussed what it called “the El Salvador option”: sending Special Forces teams to train Iraqis in assassination and kidnapping.
At the time, John Negroponte was the US ambassador to Iraq. It was not his first government assignment. During the Vietnam War he worked on the CIA’s Phoenix program which assassinated 40,000 Vietnamese “subversives.” Between 1980-85, Negroponte was US ambassador to Honduras. There he approved the use of CIA-trained death squads to torture, kidnap, and murder thousands of Salvadorans who had fled the civil war in their own country.
John Pace, former Human Rights Chief for the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq, recently confirmed the existence of Iraqi death squads that he called “uncannily similar” to those in El Salvador and elsewhere.
Who are these death squads killing? All who speak out against the occupation.
Educators and scientists have been special targets for extermination. Over 80 Baghdad University professors have been murdered since the war started and hundreds more have been slain across Iraq. Women’s organizations have reported similar killings and mass detentions.
In addition, police units, known as Punishment Committees, target those who do not abide by Islamic law or the authority of militia leaders. Even the UN has documented hundreds of Sunni deaths at the hands of US-trained government assassins.
These facts speak for themselves: the US is fomenting civil war.
For a secular, democratic Iraq
In an attempt to discredit those who oppose the occupation, the Bush admin- istration perpetrates the idea that the resistance is composed of foreign al-Qaeda sympathizers. Yet the US military admits the vast majority of anti-American fighters are Iraqi and that opposition to the occupation is rising among the people of this tortured land.
Though the specter of civil war is present, there are forces within the Iraqi resistance who are organizing across ethnic and religious lines to continue the fight to expel the US The fastest way to end this war is to support the indigenous resistance movement of trade unionists, women’s organizations, intellectuals, students and elders who want a secular and democratic Iraq.
People who want peace must demand that the troops be brought home now! Each day of US occupation increases the threat of full-blown civil war and causes more Iraqi civilians and US soldiers to die for oil.
For an immediate, unconditional withdrawal of US forces and all foreign occupiers!
Cancel Iraq’s national debt and provide reparations for Iraqi controlled reconstruction!
Freedom Socialist Party:
• Australian Section, PO Box 2066, Brunswick, VIC 3055
• US Section, 4710 University Way NE, #100, Seattle, WA 98105