149 The criminal war against the people of Iraq

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PAPER OF THE INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF IRANIAN REFUGEES                                                          149
                                                                                                                March 21, 2003
The criminal war against the people
of Iraq has begun
Despite      the     most         humanity. Despite their daily        throughout the world.
widespread         global         deceptions, they are
opposition, the USA and           nonetheless faced with the           The millions who have come
British governments have          disbelief and protest of             to the fore can still stop this
begun their war. On the           millions who know that this          immense human tragedy.
early morning of Thursday         war will kill and main               Workers can still stop the
20 March, George Bush             hundreds of thousands and            wheels of production and
gave the order for the            cause the displacement and           bring entire countries to a
slaughter of the people of        flight of millions.                  standstill in opposition to the
Iraq.                                                                  war. We must come to the
                                  This war is a truly shameful         fore as never before and
As usual, these two               moment in the history of             organise ongoing sit-ins,
governments and their             humanity. It is a war against        demonstrations, direct            intervention. The time is now.
lackey media are reporting        humanity, welfare and civil          actions and so on. We must        We can stop this massacre.
the war as an attack against      society and has been                 not let these criminals be for    This is our task.
Saddam Hussein rather than        registered as such within the        one second! The people of
what it is - a crime against      hearts and minds of people           Iraq anxiously await our                    continued page 2

Yes, this is a moment of truth but not in the
way Bush means
                                  a third force - that of civilised
Maryam Namazie                    humanity - has come to the
                                  fore. It has refused to accept
                                  the deceptive justifications put
On Thursday 20 March, the         forth by the USA and Britain
USA and Britain began their       and has begun to see that the
slaughter of the Iraqi people.    United        Nations,         its
They began to ‘shock and          resolutions, and for that
awe’ by dropping tons of          matter democracy are really
bombs on the innocent people      only hollow gestures and tools
of Iraq.                          that just don’t matter when          issues at hand but merely         the world, removing
                                  push comes to shove. It has          war propaganda. What is           governments, destroying
Yes, this is a moment of truth    come to see that UN                  real is the USA’s drive for       entire countries, killing and
as Bush puts it, but not in the   resolutions, WMD, terrorism,         what has been coined as the       maiming at will and
way he means. In this moment      liberating the people of Iraq        New World Order. The USA          determining what takes place,
of truth, unlike many others,     and so on are not the real           wants to become master of                   continued page 2
March 21, 2003                                                                                                                    2

The criminal war against the people of Iraq has begun, from page 1
The International Federation      denied Iraqis the full right to   given immediate access to
of Iranian Refugees strongly      asylum to open their borders      shelter, food, medicine, etc.
and unequivocally condemns        for Iraqi asylum seekers,         All humanitarian assistance
the war against the people of     grant them asylum and cease       must be provided by voluntary
Iraq and will do all it can to    all deportations to the region.   organisations and not the
stop     this     slaughter.      All asylum seekers/refugees       USA army which has had a
Furthermore, IFIR will do all     must be given decent shelter,     hand in massacring people.
it can to exert pressure on       food, medicine and so on.         100,000 refugees, including
border countries as well as all   The internally displaced          Iranians who are now in Iraq
countries, including Western      within Iraq (estimated to         must also be transferred to
ones that have for so long        become 3 million) must be         safe places.

Yes, this is a moment of truth, from page 1                                                           societies. The West’s
by whom, how and when.            drop thousands of cruise          and other war-mongering           conflict with political Islam,
                                  missiles on the first few days    governments pay a heavy           despite its importance, is not
And while this third force        of the war alone and are          price for their attack. Much      the engine and the moving
knows that Saddam Hussein         even considering using            depends on this force that        force of history. On the
is despotic and that the people   chemical and nuclear              has raised the banner of          contrary, it is itself placed
of Iraq must be liberated, it     weapons. They are so              civilised humanity. After all,    within this history and is
also knows that his despotism     concerned that they have          ‘the USA does not make            defined by it. The conflict
is not the issue at hand. It      already lined up a bunch of       history. The West does not        over the new world order has
knows it was the USA that         criminals,         Islamists,     determine the future. The         more important players.
put Saddam Hussein there in       nationalists and genocidaires     current US policy and actions     Social classes and their
the first place and armed and     for a post-Saddam Iraq, with      will inevitably shatter the       political movements, whether
supported him until he            Islamic law and federalism        present political framework       in the West or the Middle
stepped out of line. This force   as bonuses.                       in the Middle East, but other     East, are facing each other
knows that the USA and                                              forces will determine the         over the political, economic
West stood by while Saddam        The third force that has come     alternative relations that will   and cultural future of the
massacred and killed and          to the fore in the millions may   take shape… But this              world. It is these movements
used chemical weapons. It         not have been able to stop the    confrontation does not take       that will determine the final
knows that the West shut the      war from taking place, but it     place on an empty stage. The      course of these events,
doors of fortress Europe on       has removed any ‘legitimacy’      Middle East, like the West, is    irrespective of the current
those fleeing Saddam’s rule,      for this war. And when the        the scene of a confrontation      designs and demands of
sanctions and bombings. And       war starts, walk outs, strikes,   between social movements          Western statesmen and the
now when they need a              ongoing demonstrations and        that have existed prior to the    leaders of political Islam.’
justification for war, they       direct actions, and so on can     conflict between Western          [The        World        After
feign concern for the people      still limit the ensuing           bourgeoisies and political        September 11, Mansoor
of Iraq. They are so              destruction and slaughter. It     Islam and which have shaped       Hekmat, 12 October - 26
concerned that they plan to       can also make the USA, UK         political developments in all     November 2001].

                           Mansoor Hekmat (1951-2002)
                          With the bloody suppression of the revolution in Iran and the imposition of an ultra-reactionary
                          life on the people, tens of thousands of human beings, alone and without organisation, fled the
                          Islamic Republic of Iran in search of security and tranquillity. Organising this vast human mass
                          around the most modern and humane advances of humanity, unconditionally defending their right
                          to asylum, and creating an international organisation without taking into consideration people’s
                          nationality, religion, sex and or political affiliation became an immediate necessity. Creating the
                          International Federation of Iranian Refugees (IFIR) was Mansoor Hekmat’s response to these
                          conditions. As he said: ‘Our entire life story is changing the lives of human beings.’
3                                                                                                                   Hambastegi 149

People’s duty towards Iraqi asylum seekers
Now that the USA has                 example, Mr. Ruud Lubbers,       set up facilities to help         that is to stand up against the
attacked Iraq, millions of           the UNHCR Representative,        minimize their suffering. Such    anti-asylum policies of
innocent people will suffer,         had called on Saddam Hussein     actions may include providing     Western governments.
die or attempt to flee. Many         to leave the country with his    shelter, food, medicine and
reactionary            regional      sons so as to avert a            clothes. People must act          At the same time, pressure
governments have already             humanitarian catastrophe!        promptly to intervene             must be placed upon regional
made it clear that they will                                          independently of the Islamic      and Western governments to
prevent asylum seekers from          In light of this, Iraqi asylum   regime of Iran and other          open their borders to all Iraqi
entering their borders. The          seekers can only be truly        governments. The people of        asylum seekers. Iraqis must
UNHCR will be no real help           assisted with the direct         Iran can show the world that      be granted protection and
either given its role in assisting   intervention of the people of    they are in solidarity with the   asylum! There must be no
governments in migration             the region and the West. The     Iraqi people. We must not         deportations to the region!
control rather than refugee          people of Iran and elsewhere     forget that many people in
protection. Rather than call         and especially those residing    the West have done the same
for no war on Iraq for               near the Iran-Iraq border must   for Iranian asylum seekers -

People of Iraq do not want this war!
This war on Iraq is not about        This war is not about            government is playing the role    want a bloody war that will
the brutality of Saddam and          Weapons        of     Mass       of a junior partner in this       kill and maim hundreds of
his despotic regime. When            Destruction. The biggest         bloody campaign to share in       thousands, destroy people’s
we were fighting to get rid of       stockpiles of nuclear,           the spoils and strengthen its     homes, strengthen terrorists,
Saddam, the US and British           chemical and biological          position vis-a-vis its rivals.    nationalists, Islamists and
governments kept him in              weapons are held by the US                                         other reactionary forces, and
power. They armed him with           and British governments          The reactionary opposition        make Iraqi people’s struggle
the chemical weapons that            themselves. USA is the only      groupings in Iraq, the            for freedom and civil liberties
he used against us and the           state in the world to have       monarchists, Islamists,           that much harder. Genuine
people of Halabja.                   actually used nuclear            Kurdish nationalist gangs and     freedom in Iraq will only
                                     weapons against hundreds of      former army officers and          come when the people of
This war is not about the            thousands of innocent            secret service agents of the      Iraq are able to conduct their
liberation of the Iraqi people.      civilians. Twelve years of       Iraqi regime, are not the         struggles against the regime
Killing and maiming people in        economic sanctions have          representatives of the Iraqi      of Saddam or any other
their tens of thousands and          killed up to half a million      people. They are warlords         repressive regime without the
destroying their homes,              people in Iraq, while            and self-appointed rulers who     threat of war, without the
schools, hospitals and               strengthening the regime of      already have a dark and           murderous          economic
workplaces is a sick way of          Saddam.         Economic         bloody record of repression       sanctions and without
trying to ‘liberate’ them.           sanctions have been one of       against the people of Iraq        intimidation by US and British
                                     the biggest Weapons of Mass      and Iraqi Kurdistan. They         militarism.
This war is not about fighting       Destruction.                     are not the ‘liberators’ of the
terrorism. Terrorism will only                                        people of Iraq. They are,         Stop playing with the lives of
increase as a result of this         With this war, the US and        rather, the new Iraqi Contras     the Iraqi people! Stop the
war. This war and its                British governments are          - armed and financed by the       War! Worker Communist
aftermath will provide               following their own inhuman      CIA and Pentagon and/or           Party of Iraq (UK),
another grievance and                political agenda. This war is    various repressive regional       International Federation of
another excuse for Islamic           the pretext for the USA to       states such as the Islamic        Iraqi Refugees (UK), Middle
terrorists to exploit for many       assert its unquestioning world   regime in Iran. A devastating     East Centre for Women’s
years to come for their own          supremacy as the biggest         war and the unleashing of         Rights,        Independent
horrific and reactionary ends        military and economic power      these forces is the grim future   Women’s Organisation in
       Mansoor Hekmat
– just as they have been doing       in the world at the cost of      being planned by Bush and         Iraqi Kurdistan, Committee
with the injustices against the      tens of thousands of lives and   Blair for the Iraqi people.       to Defend Women’s Rights
Palestinian people.                  mass destruction. The British    The people of Iraq do not         in Iraqi Kurdistan
March 21, 2003                                                                                                      4

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Tel: +1 310 413 1578, RahimiA2000@yahoo.com.                 Editor: Maryam Namazie
                                                             Translators: Laili Panahi
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