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Bush’s ‘infinite war’ needs an infinite resistance
‘You’ll see the celebrations and we will be happy Saddam has gone,” So said one Baghdad resident to a western journalist. ‘But we will then want to rid ourselves of the Americans and we will want to keep our oil and there will be resistance and then they will call us “terrorists”’
There could never be any doubt that the vast power of the US military would defeat the armed forces of a small and weak country. The victory was all the easier because the US faced a regime organised not to protect its country from outside aggression but to suppress its own people. The biggest handicap to Iraqi resistance to invasion was Saddam himself.
This barbaric war, which has seen tens of thousands killed or mutilated, has not been vindicated by victory. Where are the weapons of mass destruction that were the justification for invasion?
Now we are told that the war is really about liberation. But the US has told the Kurds that they must leave their newly liberated capital, Kirkuk. No national independence for them or other minority nationalities! ‘Stuff happens’ says US Defence secretary Rumsfeld, when challenged about US obligations under the Geneva convention to protect the civilian population he claims to have liberated. Dr Chalabi, the puppet figure promoted as a new leader by the US, is wanted for fraud in neighbouring Jordan. The US general heading the new colonial regime has announced the reinstallation of Saddam’s police force!
Behind the scenes of Iraqi civilians overjoyed to see the end of a regime that the US and Britain once supported lies the hostility and suspicion of the majority of Iraqi people of the colonial regime that the US is about to impose.
Looking for a UN role is not an answer. The manoeuvres of Blair and the opposition of the European powers are in reality a fight for a share in the spoils of war. UN involvement will only be accepted by the US if it rubberstamps their rule.
The infinite war promised by Bush will continue. Already Syria, Iran and even Russia have been threatened - Syria particularly in the language of a colonial ruler. This war of global significance will affect everyone in every country. Management and censorship of the news will continue. Democratic rights will be torn up. In Ireland the local supporters of the war will bask in reflected glory. Trimble will justify the growing reaction in the North while Ahern continues to run the South as a combined colony of Britian and the US.
Those of us who oppose this imperialist war must now oppose the imperialist peace. Moral indignation is no longer an answer. Only a political understanding can inform continued resistance. Only an anti-imperialist alternative can oppose imperialist barbarism. It is up to everyone who has opposed the war to decide whether they will reluctantly accept imperialist pacification and wait for their next war, or continue to oppose imperialism, its peace processes and its plans for future wars.
We should not be down heartened or demoralised.