Friday, February 21, 2003

A READER RESPONDS TO 'WORLD WAR X'

A READER RESPONDS TO 'WORLD WAR X'

Posted By on Fri, Feb 21, 2003 at 4:00 AM

TO THE FLYER: "The hard fact is that so long as Saddam remains in power, he threatens the well-being of his people, the peace of his region, the security of the world. The best way to end that threat once and for all is with a new Iraqi government -- a government ready to live in peace with its neighbors, a government that respects the rights of its people." President Bill Clinton/December 16, 1998 First, being against war is a legitimate position for people to take. It is NOT anti-American, and traditionally it takes courage to be and advocate for peace. All sane people want to avoid war. War should always be the last thing a nation turns to when resolving matters of national security. There are legitimate reasons for being anti-war. Just as there are legitimate reasons for being in favor of the use of force (as opposed to being pro-war). I'm not writing in an effort to get Jenn Hall to change her 'viewpoint' on what could be World War X. She has absolutely every right to be concerned and to worry about what is to come. In fact, I totally agree with her on the way 'generation x' has been unfairly categorized as a bunch of slackers; many of those 'slackers' went on to revolutionize the economy by being on the leading edge of the internet revolution. I only hope to point out that there are logical, legitimate reasons to disarm Saddam Hussein as soon as possible. I'm anti-war; we're all anti-war. Only a nut is 'pro war'. No one wants to see people die. War is hell. War never solved anything...except for ending fascism, nazism, and communism. Is there something worse than war? War is bad but evil is worse when it gives us no alternative but to go to war or cease to exist. Weapons of mass destruction in the hands of terrorists (and Saddam Hussein has had contacts with terrorist organizations such as Hamas, and Al AQueda) is the potentially catastrophic threat that we face. The most important thing to consider is whether or not Saddam Hussein has proven to be a danger in the past, and whether he is capable of supplying terrorist organizations with nightmarish weapons to unleash upon the world. What did President Clinton have to say about this back on February 18, 1998? "Now, let’s imagine the future. What if he [Saddam] fails to comply and we fail to act or we take some ambiguous third route which gives him yet more opportunities to develop this program of weapons of mass destruction? Well, he will conclude that the international community has lost its will. He will then conclude that he can go right on and do more to rebuild an arsenal of devastating destruction. And someday, some way, I guarantee you, he will use the arsenal." Is there a 'rush to war'? Is this truly a 'pre-emptive' war? Technically, the Gulf War never ended. During the gulf war, Saddam Hussein's army got it's clock cleaned in just a few days. In order to stay in power (which is what the U.N. wanted, and George Bush 41 went along with) he agreed to a cease fire which involved him agreeing to disarm, with United Nations inspections to confirm his disarmament. For 12 years he has violated United Nations sanctions on this matter, routinely shooting at American and British warplanes flying over the northern and southern no fly regions (in the year 2000 alone Iraq fired at U.S. & British planes about 366 times). He didn't cooperate with the U.N. inspectors then and, when they left in 1998, he wouldn't allow them back in until a he was basically forced to, thanks to George Bush #43. He has violated over 15 U.N. resolutions over the past 12 years and is continuing to do so. One must ask: can you trust a man who has proven that he can't be trusted? would a man such as Saddam Hussein be dangerous if he had nuclear weapons? Is George Bush being unreasonable to conclude that you can't trust a mass murdering, mad-man who has lied to and deceived the international community for the past 12 years? Does the mere threat of regime change by force make a difference when coming from an America President who actually means what he says work? Consider the following - - * "The Iraq story boiled over last night when the chief U.N. weapons inspector, Richard Butler, said that Iraq had not fully cooperated with inspectors and--as they had promised to do. As a result, the U.N. ordered its inspectors to leave Iraq this morning" --Katie Couric, NBC's Today, 12/16/98/ (during the Clinton presidency) * UNITED NATIONS -- In view of Iraq's refusal to allow the new commission of weapons inspectors into the country, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan said Tuesday he saw "no point in sending the team." Iraq also refused to allow the chairman of the Security Council's sanctions committee, Peter van Walsum of the Netherlands, to visit Iraq in an effort to improve the oil-for-food program established in 1996, after a U.S. initiative. - UPI / Sept. 13, 2000 (during the Clinton presidency) * "As Washington debates when and how to attack Iraq, a surprise offer from Baghdad. It is ready to talk about re-admitting U.N. weapons inspectors after kicking them out four years ago. " --Maurice DuBois, NBC's Saturday Today, 8/3/02 (during the Bush presidency) Anyone who has ever dealt with bullies in school knows that they don't respond to logic and reasonable requests. There are times when you have to stand up and defend yourself against bullies or they don't stop their bullying tactics. We are facing as great a danger as great as the rise of Nazi Germany or old style Soviet backed communist aggression: that of Islamist extremism. There precious few womens rights in Islamic countries. They still behead people for adultry in Saudi Arabia. Women are mere property throughout the Islamic world. Homosexuals under the rule of the Taliban had stone walls pushed over on them, crushing them to death. Yet there are many Islamic nations that have not invaded neighboring countries, gassed their own people, torched the oil fields of a neighbor (causing an ecological disaster) or launched scud missiles into Israel; Iraq under Saddam Hussein has done all of this. Make no mistake, the poor people of Iraq are not to blame and have every reason to fear a war; they're at ground zero. They have suffered for over two decades under conditions we can't even imagine. 4 million Iraqis exiled; 60% of the Iraqi population iis dependent on food aid from the government; tens of thousands of political prisoners are in jail and routinely executed; Hussein had his daughters husbands executed. It is worth noting that Iraq has routinely clustered it's military assets in and around civilican populations; this was also a tactic the Taliban used in Afghanistan. In spite of what so called 'peace activists' from the Workers World Party claims, they know that America does not target civilians. If America routinely targeted civilians, they would hide their military assets elsewhere. This alone proves that America does not intentionally target civilian locations. Saddam Hussein has no way of delivering a nuclear, chemical or biological device to America via the conventional means of missiles. But he could easily provide such a device to a terrorist group who has an ax to grind against western civilization in general, and America in particular. The enemy of their enemy is their friend. Is there evidence that Saddam Hussein has worked with terrorist organizations outside of Iraq? Yes. Hussein has clear connections to the homocide bombers of Hamas in Israel in that he provides checks to the families of those very bombers. This alone is helping destabilize the Middle East. As Tony Blair pointed out, if 500,000 marched for peace, that is still less than Saddam Hussein has murdered. If a million marched, that's still fewer people than the number of people who have died in wars began by Saddam Hussein. It's worth noting that almost none of the anti-war protestors were protesting the horrible human rights abuses Saddam Hussein engages in routinely. They might as well have held up signs saying, "Saddam kills his own people, it's none of our business". Why have none of these marchers gone to Iraq to protest Saddam's human rights violations in front of one of his palaces? It's easy to call George Bush a nazi when most people probably know deep down that George Bush won't have their tongues cut out, dip them into acid baths or murder their families in retaliation. Yet people at the recent anti-war marches certainly love to cast Bush as 'evil'; what term would they use for true evil? Most of the anti-war marches to date seem to be more anti-America / anti-Bush than anti-war. While I'm sure that many of the people there are simply against war, one can't help but note that they aren't out there protesting the atrocities of Saddam Hussein. One has to wonder who they would hate more if Saddam Hussein were to turn weapons of mass destruction against the Iraqi people; George Bush for trying to resolve the matter, or Saddam Hussein for actualy doing it? Where were the protestors in 1998 when then President Bill Clinton launched more cruise missiles into Iraq than were used in the Gulf War? Then there's the fact that many of the organizations involved in organizating the anti-war marches aren't pacifist or anti-war in nature at all. They're anti-capitalist, anti-American. The International Action Committee, the Not In Our Name Organization, International A.N.S.W.E.R. (and others) are all closely connected to the Workers World Party, with some members associated with all of the above as well as the Revolutionary Communist Party. They literally support North Korea. They supported the Chinese crackdown on students in Tianamen Square protesting for democracy. Remember the famous picture of the lone student standing in front of a line of Chinese tanks? The Workers World Party supported the guys in the tanks. They supported the 'peoples war' of Nepal, and the brutal Shining Path in Peru. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have reported on the violence associated with these 'revolutionary movements'. Just go online and do a google search on some of their members (Mary Lou Greenberg, C. Clark Kissinger, Ramsey Clark, Brian Becker to name but a few) and read their writings endorsing communist revolutions worldwide. They are not anti-war pacifists at all and, when you look at their writings and web sites, you find that they advocate the overthrow of the United States government so that they can replace it with a 'communist dictatorship of the proletariat'. Those are their words. The unsuspecting folks who truly desire peace, and who march with them, are being used and duped by advocates of an ideology that is responsible for the deaths of nearly 100 million people in the 20th century. The term the Soviet's used to use for such people was 'useful idiots'. Those are their words. This is why many are suspicious of the true intentions anti-war organizers, and the judgement of those who follow them. They're being judged by the company they keep. Historically, peace movements do not prevent wars; they serve to convince dictators that the other side has no stomach to fight, even if attacked. It has been reported that Saddam Hussein has been gloating over the recent marches. In the 1930's there were peace marches to prevent any action being taken against Adolf Hitler. Inaction there resulted in a world war. In the 1960's there were marches demanding the removal of American troops from South Vietnam. History has shown that one of the practical effects of the communist backed anti-war marches (and that is a literal fact) of the 1960's is that it prolonged the war itself. Subsequet testimony by North Vietnamese generals confirms that the Vietcong forces we were fighting in Vietnam were effectively destroyed in 1968; most of the war, and most of the casualities occurred because communist North Vietnam counted on the fact that America would give up due to increasing public pressure from anti-war marchers. The blood of hundreds of thousands of people are on the hands of anti-war activists who handed communist North Vietnam a victory. After communist forces won that war with the help of peace activists, they slaughtered nearly 2 million of their neighbors (see Pol Pot). War for oil. Per Mitchell Cohen, spokesman for the Green Party USA, "I'm no Saddam-hugger, but if we want someone to step down from office, the world would benefit if George W. Bush would do so. . .Now the spectre of Bush's 'war without end' is being extended to other oil-producing countries: the US-backed coup in Venezuela earlier this year is one such example; it was defeated only because hundreds of thousands of workers and poor people poured into the streets there in defense of democracy. The war against Iraq is moving full steam ahead; and, over the coming months, Saudi Arabia's oilfields may be fully expropriated by Exxon et al., under US military occupation". There are a lot easier ways for America to get oil than to wage war. War drums are adding a level of uncertainty in world markets that is destabilizing at best. The countries actually opposing the United Nations resolution (France and Germany) to disarm Saddam Hussein are the ones who are the ones profiting off of the misery of the Iraqi people. France has billions invested in Iraq; France provided Hussein with nuclear reactors; Germany has provided tons of sodium cyanide to North Korea and who knows what else to Iraq. Chances are, they really don't want the world to know how involved they are with providing Saddam Hussein with nuclear material and chemical/biological agents. It is those nations who are worried about how a war would affect their profits off of oil deals they have with Iraq, or the billions France has received from Iraq in the food for oil program. If not now, when? We must nip the Iraqi situation in the bud before it becomes a nuclear threat, capable of blackmail, just as North Korea is today. If a nuclear device were detonated on America soil there would be no way (short of it being track by radar on the tip of a missile)to determine where it came from. An explosion from a suitcase bomb would vaporize the components. Only the radioactive 'signature' could be used to determine its origin. While the cost of inaction could be far greater than the threat of inaction, there are no guaratees. There is plenty of reason to worry about the last desperate actions Hussein will take. Right now there are reports of three Iraqi cargo ships which have been trolling around the ocean since November that are refusing to explain what they're doing (the fear is that they're loaded with who knows what, and that their captains may be ready to scuttle the ships and create an ecological disaster)....then there's Hussain al-Shahristani, ex-chief adviser to the Iraqi Atomic Energy Commission, who's warning that Saddam Hussein might create a 'ring of death' around Bagdad to slow down coalition troops and turn the cities residents into hostages...would peace activists then blame George Bush or Saddam Hussein In a way, the French and Germans are right. We need more inspections. Right now, we have 150,000 'inspectors' right next door to Iraq. It's time to send them in and let them start inspecting. February 19, 2003 -- WASHINGTON - Saddam Hussein plans to use chemical weapons to create a ring of death around Baghdad to slow down a U.S. invasion and turn the city's residents into hostages, a former Iraqi scientist said yesterday. Hussain al-Shahristani, ex-chief adviser to the Iraqi Atomic Energy Commission, said at a conference in the Philippines that Saddam has hidden chemical and biological weapons in deep underground tunnel systems - to be unleashed in a last stand around Baghdad. "There has been discussion within his circle to set up what they call a 'chemical belt' around Baghdad using his chemical weapons to entrap the residents inside," said al-Shahristani. (excerpted from the New York Post) In America one is free to protest the government. It is the patriotic thing to do when one sincerely believes that the government is wrong. In spite of the venemous assaults mounted against George Bush this past weekend, you don't see the secret police rounding up dissenters who are exercising their first amendment right to free speech. How does Saddam Hussein handle dissent? According to the Arab news service Al-Hayat Saddam Hussein issued a decree stating that anyone who insults him or his family will have their tongue cut out. The previous penality was a six year prison sentance. With protestors claiming that Bush is a 'Nazi', one must wonder what word they would use to describe Hussein. In closing, the intent of the email is not to change Jenn Hall's mind at all. I prefer a world where people don't agree on everything. Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations. Only in a dictatorship does\ everyone have to 'agree' on something (like the 100% of the Iraqi people who voted for Hussein in their last 'election'). I just wanted to point out that there are sincere, thought out reasons for the actions currently being taken other than people being 'pro-war'. There are sincere people on both sides of this issue who need to respect each others differences, and they can begin by getting past partisan rhetoric and trying to understand where the other side is coming from. Sincerely, Chris Leek Memphis

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