Friday, February 07, 2003

Truth behind this war

I was planning to post something completely different today but after reading Shanti’s blog I had a lot to say and before I forget, I want to jot them down. I know most of you are sick and tired of my war posts, but hey its war time – so I might as well join the bombardment.

Ok let’s start off with Saddam. I agree in toto that he is a lunatic, maniac, et all to the power of ‘n’. He does what all Shanti states that he does and probably a bit more because we know there is not much media in there to broadcast those things. But that is precisely why we should take those allegations with a pinch of salt – because it is only the western media that has placed that information before us. I don’t mean to state that Saddam is innocent puppy but just the fact that to justify a war – the media might have stretched those allegations a bit far. Just like how Pakistan / India magnifies the human rights violations on either side of the Kashmir border – while keeping mum on what they themselves do.

But if Saddam deserves any shred of respect then it is because of this: he is the only person who has held entire Iraq together for the last couple of decades and prevented large scale ethnic bloodshed. Be it Kurds, Sunnis, Shias or other ethnic tribal people, none have dared to oppose him - and yes I agree because he is merciless. If we look at Iraq’s history, for 25 odd years after the fall of the Ottoman Empire there was constant bloodshed between the tribal people. Post its declaration of turning to a Republic in 1958, it has always been ruled by military powers and bear in mind that dictators prior to Saddam were not really angels. Its just that media is much more powerful today than it was in the sixties. The irony is that, the peace between ethnic tribals is at the cost of living under Saddam.

When America attacked Afghanistan on Oct 9th 2001, it had only one objective: to get rid of Taliban. They never, and I mean never, did give a second thought about what would happen after they had routed the Taliban force. They had assumed that Northern Alliance would come back to power and all would be well with an American puppet regime in place. Did that happen? No! Far from that – what we see today is a puppet President who 90% of the Afghanistan people had never heard of until he came to power – and whose dictat doesn’t carry much weight beyond the downtown in Kabul.

Last night the general public interviewed Tony Blair. One member of the audience asked him – what would happen after Saddam was disposed off. After several moments of silence he pleaded his inability to give a precise answer. He was asked did more people die during the war in Afghanistan or after the war (due to ethnic conflicts), the PM admitted that they were finding it hard to contain ethnic clashes. He was asked how many Iraqi people were arrested over the last one year on charges of terrorism – the answer was ‘none’. He was asked why there wasn’t any action when his own British people were murdered, raped and looted in Zimbabwe by another tyrant dictator – the answer was a disturbing silence. Many more were asked but the bottom line is these ‘so called leaders’ themselves have no clue what will the war eventually lead them to. I totally agree that Iraqi people (and likewise Burmese, Tibetians, people of Zimbabwe, and many more) need to be liberated but war is not the answer. If American’s have so much tracking technology – why can’t they keep an eye Saddam’s palaces and bomb it with cruise missiles when he is in there? Why carpet-bomb the Iraqi people?

Coming to Bush. There is a fine book about Mr George Bush Jr called “George and Laura” and it is a recommended read if you want to find out more about the person we tend to call Dubya. It details out how he became a President – especially when his own father was loathe to introduce him to any diplomats when he was the president. Bush is not as innocent as American people would like to believe. This is the problem with polarised media – they never get to see the non-polarised view. In my opinion the best way to judge a man is not by talking to his nearest friends but through his bitter enemies. That way you know what you shouldn’t know – and you will be a better judge of character. Maybe Bush is not a ruthless dictator who gorges peoples eyes out because of calling him moron – but then again, it’s the American democracy that gives its people that freedom and not Bush himself. If people need to be proud of America – it’s their democracy first, then it’s people and lastly its malfunctioning administration.

That America is interested in Iraqi oil is not a hidden truth. The same reason why UK has teamed up with US; the same reason why China, Russia, France and Germany are opposing the war. They all have their vested interests. Its also the major reason why America is willing to talk to N.Korea whilst it doles out a different set of arguments for Iraq. Trust me – N.Korean people are not living in a paradise either. What I personally oppose is these double standards. And hey – I could write a book on American double standards when it comes to international diplomacy. And regards this “all about oil” thing – call this prophecy - but watch all those countries which oppose America now fall in line by the time the war starts. America knows how to lure people with good lucrative contracts – as they plan a systematic rape of Iraqi wealth. Oh yes, there will be wonderful statistics about how Iraqi children go to school and how women work blah blah blah, but what Iraqi people benefit (after being massacred by American bombs) is probably 1% of what America and its partners will eventually take out of that country. Yesterday Colin Powell announced that “a success in Iraq could fundamentally reshape that region in a powerful positive way that will enhance US interests...”

And how will that reshape take place? Turkey will take 80km of Northern Iraq for supporting the war because it has had a long dispute (since the end of the Ottoman Empire) with regard to the oil fields there. The Kurds are being promised autonomy though not complete independence because Turks are against it to prevent domestic upheaval. The Sunni minority are going to be promised their own homeland bordering Iran while Shias retain of what is left of Iraq. All this is for the short term because there are already sounds of Iran being next. After all Colin Powell’s ‘reshaping the region’ is not limited to just Iraq.

Phew! I could go on and on and on. But I will stop here. Maybe another day another time – when I feel really frustrated I will continue :-p


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