International Action Center http://www.iacenter.org Founded by Ramsey Clark
July 29, 2002
Any remaining hope the peoples of the United Nations have to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war through the United Nations would be crushed by another United States attack on Iraq. Threats to attack, invade and overthrow the government of Iraq by President George Bush, Vice President Cheney, Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, various cabinet officers and Pentagon officials have been routine for a year. The psychological warfare is itself a crime against peace and violates the U.N. Charter. Today's front-page headline story in the New York Times, "U.S. Exploring Baghdad Strike As Iraq Option," is typical of the in terrorem intention of the threats. The danger to civilian life in Baghdad from such a strike would be enormous.
THE UNITED NATIONS MUST ACT TO PREVENT AN ATTACK BY THE UNITED STATES AGAINST IRAQ
If the United Nations is unable to restrain the United States, a permanent member of the Security Council, from committing crimes against peace and humanity as well as war crimes against a nation that has already been violated by the U.S. beyond endurance, then what is the United Nations worth? At the very least, opposition to any attack or attempt to overthrow the government of Iraq by force must be publicly expressed by the United Nations.
THE UNITED STATES BOMBED DEFENSELESS IRAQ MERCILESSLY FOR FORTY-TWO DAYS IN 1991
The U.S. led and glorified the massive assault on Iraq in January and February 1991. The Pentagon announced it conducted 110,000 aerial sorties against the defenseless "cradle of civilization," dropping 88,500 tons of bombs.
The widespread bombing destroyed the economic viability of the civilian society throughout the nation. It killed tens of thousands of Iraqi citizens and others. A major part of the bombing was directed at civilians and civilian facilities. It was less accurate than the recent indiscriminate attacks in Afghanistan. U.S. bombs destroyed Iraqi water systems, electric power transmission, communications, transportation, manufacturing, commerce, agriculture, poultry and livestock, food storage facilities, markets, fertilizer and insecticide production, business centers, archeological and historical treasures, apartment houses, residential areas, schools, hospitals, mosques, churches and synagogues.
The Pentagon stated its casualties were 156. One third were from "friendly fire"; the rest were accidental. The U.S. had no combat casualties.
THE UNITED STATES FORCED THE IMPOSITION OF GENOCIDAL SANCTIONS ON IRAQ IN 1990
The U.S. crafted economic sanctions against Iraq which the Security Council approved on August 6, 1990, the 45th anniversary of the U.S. atomic bomb attack on Hiroshima.
Those sanctions are the direct cause of the very cruel deaths of more than a million people. This is the greatest crime against humanity, in the last decade of the most violent century in history. Each painful death of an individual wasting away?from malnutrition; Kwashiorkor; the rush of dehydration from contaminated water and from diseases was preventable. The sanctions continue to this time to cause hundreds of deaths each day. Every United Nations agency dealing with food, health and children--including FAO, WFP, WHO, UNICEF--has proclaimed the horror, magnitude and responsibility for this human catastrophe.
The great majority of the deaths caused by the sanctions are infants, children, the elderly, the chronically ill and emergency medical cases. These are the people most vulnerable to polluted water, malnutrition, and the lack of medicines and medical equipment and supplies.
U.S. claims that it is the Iraqi government that is responsible for deaths from shortages of food and medicine are false. The U.S. blocked oil sales by Iraq for six years before appearing to yield to humanitarian pleas to permit oil sales to purchase food and medicine. Since 1997, when sales began, it has effectively frustrated and delayed the Oil for Food program, which does not provide sufficient income at the levels approved to stop the daily deterioration of health and growing death rates in Iraq.
Before sanctions there was virtually no malnutrition in Iraq and free hospital, health services and medicines were a model for the region. Its present system of government distribution of available food staples is a model of fairness and efficiency, lacking only in quantity and variety of food.
UNITED STATES MILITARY AIRCRAFT HAVE ATTACKED IRAQ AT WILL FOR ELEVEN YEARS
The U.S. has engaged in air strikes against Iraq at will since March 1991, when the massive attacks averaging one aerial sortie every 30 seconds ended. Without losing a single plane, U.S. attacks have killed: cleaning personnel at the Al Rashid Hotel in Baghdad in a failed attempt to assassinate Saddam Hussein; scores of people each year in attacks on radar stations in or near the U.S.-imposed no-fly zones; all the persons aboard a U.N. helicopter shot down by U.S. aircraft; and civilians from all walks of life, including the internationally famous artist and Director of Iraqis' National Center for Arts, Leila al Attar.
IRAQ IS NOT A THREAT TO THE U.S., COUNTRIES IN THE REGION OR OTHERS
The U.S. has falsely claimed that Iraq is working to develop weapons of mass destruction to attack the U.S., Israel, its neighbors and others. The U.S. claimed its 1991 attacks destroyed 80% of Iraq's military capacity.
The U.N. inspection efforts claimed to discover and dismantle 90% of Iraq's post-1991 capacity to develop weapons of mass destruction. Iraq, its peoples and resources are exhausted. It has a "stunted" generation of children under age 10 and a debilitated population at all ages. It is the victim of the worst crime against humanity in recent decades.
THE UNITED STATES IS THE GREATEST PURVEYOR OF VIOLENCE ON EARTH
Two of the highest U.N. officials responsible for U.N. weapons inspection within Iraq and a principle U.S. citizen participating in the inspections have resigned, denounced the sanctions and denied that there is a threat that Iraq will develop weapons of mass destruction.
The U.S. has more nuclear weapons than all other nations combined as well as the most sophisticated and numerous systems for the delivery of nuclear weapons, including the Trident II submarine fleet. It possesses the greatest stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons and the most advanced and extensive research in mass destruction weaponry in the world. Military spending by the U.S. exceeds that of the nine next largest budgets for war combined. President Bush has repeatedly declared the right to strike first. The U.S. attacked Hiroshima and Nagasaki with atomic bombs and continues to justify those acts.
The U.S. has renounced treaties controlling nuclear weapons and their proliferation; voted against the protocol enabling enforcement of the Biological Weapons Conventions; and rejected the treaty banning land mines, the International Criminal Court and virtually every other international effort to control and limit war. The U.S. War Against Terrorism is a declaration of right by the U.S. to attack first?anyone, anywhere, on mere suspicion, or without excuse, unilaterally.
The U.S. wants to overthrow the government of Iraq and many others in violation of law. Unless restrained the chance for peace and global equality of economic, social, cultural and political opportunity among nations will be lost. Which government presents the greater threat to peace globally or for Mesopotania and its neighbors?the U.S. or Iraq?
AN ATTACK BY THE UNITED STATES ON IRAQ TO OVERTHROW ITS GOVERNMENT WOULD BE A FLAGRANT VIOLATION OF THE U.N. CHARTER, THE NUREMBERG CHARTER AND INTERNATIONAL LAW
If, as promised so many times, the U.S. does attack Iraq to overthrow its government, it will be the most notorious, arrogant and contemptuous violation of the Charter of the United Nations, the Nuremberg Charter and international law yet experienced, or likely hereafter.
Only absolute power unrestrained by any rule of law or
standard of human decency openly taunts an intended victim as President Bush has taunted Iraq. Because the U.S. has committed historic injustices against Iraq, most during his father's presidency, and still seeks dominion in the region, President Bush, his Vice President and others in his administration hate Iraq and want finally to destroy it.
I am writing this letter to you; to each U.N. Representative of a Security Council Member; the President of the General Assembly; and President Bush. This is one of a series of letters describing and protesting U.S. and UN wrongs against Iraq. The threatened wrong addressed here is the worst. If twelve years after its devastating aerial assault and after twelve years of genocidal sanctions, the omnipresent risk and frequent fact of random attack with the ever present stalking by U.S. aircraft and endless threats against its helpless victim, the U.S. commits its coup d'grace on the people of Iraq to the silence of the U.N. and wealthy nations of the world, human shame and impotence will doom us to ever greater violence.
A U.S. ASSAULT ON IRAQ WILL CAUSE MORE AND GREATER VIOLENCE; URGENT ACTION BY THE UNITED NATIONS TO PREVENT A U.S. ASSAULT OF IRAQ IS REQUIRED
I urge you to immediately activate the United Nations, the General Assembly, the Security Council and all its agencies to denounce the continuing threats by the United States against Iraq, to demand immediate cessation of the threats and to warn the United States that an attack by it on Iraq will violate the Charter of the United Nations, international law and the friendship of all who seek peace and respect the dignity of humanity.
AN ATTACK BY THE U.S. ON IRAQ WOULD VIOLATE THE CONSTITUTION AND LAWS OF THE UNITED STATES REQUIRING IMPEACHMENT, TRIAL BEFORE THE U.S. SENATE AND CRIMINAL CHARGES IN FEDERAL COURTS AGAINST PRESIDENT BUSH AND ALL OFFICIALS RESPONSIBLE
An attack on Iraq by the United States would also violate the Constitution and laws of the United States and expose President Bush to impeachment by the House of Representatives under the Constitution of the United States for the highest of crimes, those against peace and humanity, to judgment by the United States Senate and trial in federal court for crimes charged.
Unfortunately in recent years our Constitution has been more honored in the breach than in faithful observance of the rights it is intended to protect for all. But the effort to hold accountable any U.S. authority who participates in an assault against Iraq will be made here by those who love their country and for that reason insist that its acts be just.
Sincerely, Ramsey Clark
International Action Center 39 W. 14th St., Suite 206 New York, NY 10011 212-633-6646 fax: 212-633-2889 http://www.iacenter.org firstname.lastname@example.org
This is the IAC activists announcement list. Anyone can subscribe by sending any message to <ActionCenter.email@example.com> To unsubscribe <ActionCenter.firstname.lastname@example.org> Hear Ramsey Clark tomorrow live from Iraq on Pacifica Radio's Democracy Now!
Tuesday Aug 27 At 9 am
Listen in: San Francisco at KPFA 94.1 FM Los Angeles at KPFK 90.7 FM NY at WBAI 99.5 FM Washington, DC at WPFW 89.3 FM Houston, TX at KPFT 90.1 FM
RAMSEY CLARK LEADS PEACE DELEGATION TO IRAQ WILL GO TO SITE OF SUNDAY'S COALITION BOMBING THAT KILLED SIX CIVILIANS--
Calls for Mass Anti-War Demonstrations in the U.S. on October 26 to Say: "Stop the War Before It Starts"
While the U.S. prepares for war against Iraq, former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark has just arrived in Iraq with a five-person fact-finding peace delegation.
The delegation is meeting with high government officials, family members of people who were killed in the U.S. bombing of Basra August 26, and visiting hospitals and food distribution centers. The group is touring Basra at the site of yesterday's bombing raid that killed eight civilians.
The purpose of this trip is to report on the latest effects of U.S.-led UN sanctions against the Iraqi civilian population, and to show solidarity with the people of Iraq who are facing the prospect of an imminent US war of aggression. Ramsey Clark is the founder and chairperson of the U.S.-based International Action Center, which has campaigned against the devastating economic sanctions on Iraq for the last decade.
The delegation also includes Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, an attorney and co-founder of the Partnership for Civil Justice?LDEF; Johnnie Stevens, co-director of the People?s Video Network; Kadouri al-Kaysi, coordinator of the Committee in Solidarity with the Iraqi People; and Brian Becker, co-director of the International Action Center.
"It is clear from our discussions with both officials and average Iraqis that the people of this country hope that people of conscience in the U.S. and around the world will join together in building a massive movement to stop the war being planned by George Bush, Donald Rumsfeld and the other warmongers in the White House and Pentagon," stated Mara Verheyden-Hilliard.
"Iraq is still reeling from the impact of economic sanctions," Verheyden-Hilliard continued. "In our meetings with officials from the health ministry today we have learned that mortality rates for children and the elderly have actually increased in the last twelve months. More than 8,000 people die needlessly this month from hunger and water-borne diseases and the degrading of Iraq's health care system. According to the United Nations statistics more than a million Iraqis have perished from sanctions. The so-called debate in the U.S. establishment is over whether Iraq should be invaded today or tomorrow or next year. That misses the point. The US has conducted an illegal non-stop war against Iraq for more than ten years and it must end now. We are organizing against war and sanctions."
Clark is the author of a recent letter (full text at www.iacenter.org) addressed to the UN Security Council and copied to the UN General Assembly, denouncing new plans for a U.S. war on Iraq -- plans that include the use of 250,000 troops. Since its dissemination at the UN, the letter has been translated into Arabic, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian and Chinese.
"Twelve years ago when the U.S. organized the aerial slaughter it was able to build an international coalition against Iraq. Most governments in the coalition joined as a result of US bullying and coercion. Today the US government is isolated. All the people of the world and all twenty-two of the Arab League governments oppose this plan for unprovoked aggression that violates all international law," stated Ramsey Clark. "We have come to Iraq to help galvanize the active mobilization of world opinion which stands in opposition to this planned war. This war can be stopped but only if the people of the world take action now."
The third edition of Ramsey Clark's book The Fire This Time: U.S. War Crimes in the Gulf will be released in mid-September 2002. The book constitutes the most comprehensive and well researched analysis of the events leading up to the 1991 Gulf War and the war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by US and Allied forces during the 42-day assault. The third edition is being published by the International Action Center.
For more details about October 26 check out our website at http://www.internationalanswer.org/
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