“How many Iraqi citizens have died in this war?
I would say; 30,000, more or less, have died as a result of the initial
incursion and the ongoing violence against Iraqis. We’ve lost about
2,140 of our own troops” – George W. Bush,
12 December 2005.
As the Occupation of Iraq is approaching three years, the mass murder
of Iraqi civilians is not questioned, but normalised in Western conscience.
President Bush reached the stage where he is able to make his own figure of
Iraqi deaths, with no remorse or sadness. The war was not the result of “wrong
intelligence”; the war was an illegal act of aggression, and a premeditated
mass murder. ‘Democracy’ is used as a tool to manipulate the public
and justify war crimes.
The most conservative estimate of Iraqi deaths was reported in October 2004
by a group of medical scientists from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health,
Columbia University and Al-Mustansiriyah School of Medicine in Baghdad. The
conservative estimate of more than 100,000 Iraqi deaths was published in the
reputed and peer-reviewed British medical journal the Lancet. If one
includes the atrocities in Fallujah, Ramadi, al-Qaim, Tel Afar, Hillah, Baghdad
and the daily mayhem instigated by U.S. forces and their collaborators, the
number of Iraqis killed since March 2003 would be in the 200,000 mark or even
more. It also estimated that 85 per cent of all violent deaths are by “coalition
forces” and that many of these are due to U.S. aerial bombardments. The
majority of the victims were innocent women and children.
According to Robert Fisk of the Independent; “The Ministry of
Health figures in July alone, was 1,100 Iraqi deaths in Baghdad alone. If you
spread that across, Mosul, Kirkuk, maybe Irbil [in the north], all way down
to Basra [in the south], through the months, and you must be talking of 3,000
to 4,000 a month. That's 36,000 to 48,000 a year”. This makes the “100,000
figure of [the Lancet study] rightly as being quite conservative”, added
Fisk. This figure
has been recently substantiated.
However, the Lancet study was deliberately ignored or dismissed by
the U.S.-British corporate mass media. In fact the study is now censored by
mainstream media because it shows a mass murder. The media and Western elites
roles have always been to selectively describe crimes allegedly – never
proven – committed by the regime of Saddam Hussein as “mass murder”,
while dismissing crimes committed by Western powers.
Since October 2004, the violence of the Occupation is increasing, and the daily
bloodshed is mounting. The indiscriminate and savage aerial and ground bombardments
– with chemical bombs, fire bombs (fuel-air bombs), napalm and other non-conventional
weapons (WMD) – of population centres continue the destruction of the
country and the killing innocent of Iraqis en mass. In addition, the U.S. and
British governments are secretly sponsoring the killings of prominent Iraqi
politicians, intellectuals, academics, religious leaders and trade union leaders,
including leaders of the Oil Workers Union using U.S.-British trained death
squads and criminals. The aim is to incite civil strife and destroy the
unity of Iraq to serve U.S. imperialist strategy. The US invaded Iraq to destroy
its unity and conquest its oil resources at the expense of the Iraqi people.
The real motives for the war remain conspicuously hidden from the public: the
colonisation of Iraq to enhance U.S. imperial dominance, the destruction of
Arab nationalism, and most importantly support for Israel's Zionist expansion
and criminal policies against the Palestinians. Moreover, the most relevant
was that public consent in the West has been manufactured and the U.S. had its
way to commit a ‘Supreme International Crime’ against defenceless
people, disguised as ‘spreading democracy’. Iraq under U.S.-British
Occupation is far more dictatorial and miserable place to live in than under
Saddam Hussein’s regime. Occupation is just another clone of Fascism.
The view from Iraq is that since the invasion; “Iraqis have been living
in fear, poverty, oppression and a lack of freedom … The occupation troops
have resorted to excessive force, indiscriminate killing and collective punishment
of the population. They have besieged entire towns, storming into them, instilling
fear and horror among residents and destroying their homes. Iraqis have been
humiliated and stripped of their basic human rights; they have been subjected
to brutal and ghastly forms of torture, as the infamous Abu Ghraib prison case
and the British troops' abuse of detainees in Basra have shown”. (The
Guardian, 15 December 2005).
A recent UNICEF rapid assessment survey reveals that acute malnutrition among
Iraqi children had almost doubled since before the war, jumping from 4 per cent
to almost 8 per cent. The survey adds that; “Acute malnutrition sets in
very fast and is strong indicator of the overall health of children”.
The general health of Iraqi children, the elderly and pregnant women in particular
has declined because of continue deteriorating of the living
conditions. Since the invasion three years ago, Iraq still lack of access
to potable water, food, adequate electricity supply, hospital care, and a sharp
decline in Iraqis purchasing power due to the 70 per cent unemployment.
As the war continues and the bloodshed mounting, the U.S. and British powers
are orchestrating elections that will legitimise their imperial interests at
the expense of the Iraqi people. Illegitimate and fraudulent elections are no
substitute for free, fare and democratic elections. This is consistent with
the West own demand for Syria to withdraw its troops from Lebanon before last
March elections. The Bush Administration should apply the same in Iraq. There
can be legitimate elections while Iraq is under occupation and its oil wealth
is looted by the invaders. It is not democracy; it is criminal.
Like the January 2005 elections, these elections are for propaganda purpose
designed to fool the rest of the world and cover-up the U.S. colonial aim in
Iraq. Behind the scenes and against the wishes of the Iraqi people, the looting
of Iraq’s oil wealth and the colonisation of Iraq’s economy
is a reality. The new production sharing agreements (PSAs)
between big U.S. and British oil corporations enforced foreign control of Iraq’s
resources. Every day passed, the occupation of Iraq is becoming more deadly
and long lasting.
Furthermore, the U.S. and Britain are interfering directly in the elections
by planting false articles in the Iraqi press to report favourably on the U.S.
Occupation and to promote U.S. candidate. Iyad Allawi is presented by the U.S.
and British mass media as the “strong man” and “only hope”,
for Iraq. In October, Iraqis were forced to vote on a divisive and sectarian
U.S.-crafted Constitution and now they are voting to implement that division.
It doesn’t matter how many Iraqis vote in the elections, these elections
do not represent the aspiration of the Iraqi people for free, democratic and
sovereign Iraq. These elections are imposed from outside and at gun point.
The outcome of these fraudulent elections is a forgone conclusion. The result
won’t change the situation on the ground. Imported Iraqi expatriate conmen
and religious clerics, with their own militias and death squads are serving
as the façade of the Occupation. The current coalition, the United Iraqi
Alliance (UIA), which includes conman Ahmed Chalabi, is posed to win most of
the votes. The C.I.A stooge, Iyad Allawi may be added to give the new puppet
government a ‘secular’ colour with a corruption test. Together with
the Kurdish warlords, the UIA will most likely continue to serve the U.S. Occupation,
because they depend on its ongoing presence. The Occupation and its associated
violence benefit the U.S. and its allies. Iraqis are stuck in the Occupation’s
In addition to the U.S. and Britain, the Iranian regime is doing everything
to keep its fanatic stooges in power in Iraq. There have been reports of ballots
forgery and rigging on massive scale, including the participation of over a
million illegal Iranians in the Iraqi elections. A stable Iraq has never been
part of Iran policy, and the current environment of ongoing U.S. Occupation
of Iraq is in Iran interests.
The vast majority of Iraqis are rejecting the U.S. Occupation. A recent poll
conducted by the British Ministry of Defence in August 2005 reveals that over
82 per cent of Iraqis are “strongly
opposed” to the presence of the occupying forces in Iraq. Less than
1 per cent of Iraqis think the Occupation forces are responsible for any improvement
in security. If one excludes the Kurdish region of Iraq – where the U.S.
has some support – from the poll, the anti-Occupation sentiment is even
higher. George Bush refusal to set time for the withdrawal of U.S. forces from
Iraq is also contrary to the “tentative agreement” reached on 21
November 2005 at the Arab League-sponsored Cairo conference, by Iraqi leaders,
including the current puppet government.
So, if the elections have any chance of achieving the aim of the Iraqi people,
which is the FULL and immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq, then Iraqis
will look forward to better future in independent Iraq. Only after liberation
and national independence, Iraq can have truly free, fare and democratic elections.
Westerners, Americans in particular should liberate themselves from the anti-Arab
colonial ideology of deep-seated belief in cultural superiority to indigenous
Iraqis. Iraqis do not need to prove their capability and place in history. Democracy
can not be imposed and achieved by violence; democracy is planted and nurtured
by the people.
For three years, the mass media didn’t dare to ask about the number of
Iraqi deaths, and have deliberately covered up the mass murder of innocent Iraqis.
President Bush wasn’t asked by a reporter, but by someone from the public
when he responds to a question. Bush’s lowest estimate of Iraqi deaths
is consistent with his style of deception, 30,000 or 200,000 deaths; Bush is
admitting to have committed mass murder. What for?
There were no weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in Iraq, and Iraqis have never
posed a threat to the American people. It wasn’t because of faulty intelligence,
as the Bush-media spin suggests. The war instigated with clear conscious of
the truth. The UN declared the war on Iraq an “illegal” act of aggression
in violations of UN Charter. The invasion of Iraq is rightly described by Noble
laureate, Harold Pinter, as:”An act of blatant state terrorism, demonstrating
absolute contempt for the concept of international law”.
It is legally argued by attorney Michael Ratner, the former director of the
Centre for Constitutional Rights, and past president of the National Lawyer's
Guild that: “Article 2131
of the UN Charter requires that
international disputes be settled by peaceful means so that international peace,
security and justice are not endangered; Article
2141 requires that force shall not by used in any manner that is inconsistent
with the purposes of the UN and Article
33 requires that parties to a dispute shall first of all seek a solution
by negotiation, inquiry, mediation, conciliation, arbitration judicial settlement,
resort to regional agencies, or other peaceful means”. Force can not be
used based on assumption and bogus intelligence.
It follows, that there is an overwhelming prima facia evidence to indict George
W. Bush and his accomplices with war crimes and crime against humanity. If the
American people justify the death penalty for Americans who committed murderous
crimes in America, they should not ignore those who committed mass murder in
Global Research Contributing Editor Ghali Hassan
lives in Perth, Western Australia.