Iraq: Eyewitness Statement
- CIVILIAN DEATHS IN IRAQ COULD BE AS HIGH AS 10,000
IAN BRUCE, The Herald, 5/23/03
AMERICAN guns, bombs and missiles killed more civilians in the recent
war in Iraq than in any conflict since Vietnam, according to
preliminary assessments carried out by the UN, international aid
agencies and independent study groups.
Despite US boasts this was the fastest, most clinical campaign in
military history, a first snapshot of "collateral damage" indicates
that between 5000 and 10,000 Iraqi non-combatants died in the course
of the hi-tech blitzkrieg.
Organisations such as the Red Cross, the Muslim Red Crescent, Amnesty
International, Human Rights Watch, and the UN are all still carrying
out surveys and are reluctant to commit themselves to a final figure
Letter From Voices In The Wilderness in Iraq
Bittersweet days have emerged again. It was bittersweet when the US
government began to threaten increased violence against Iraq and was
simultaneously met with the largest anti-war movement in history. It
was bittersweet when the US declared it was going to begin a military
assault on Iraq and member states of the United Nations with veto
power declared that they would veto any resolution calling for a
military attack. It was bittersweet when the US military dropped the
first bombs on a defenseless nation of 26 million innocent people,
and in return people all over the world engaged in acts of civil
disobedience and protest. With the passing of UN Resolution 1483 the
removal of brutal, unjustifiable sanctions has taken place, which is
indeed sweet. However, outlined in 1483 is the direct control of
Iraqi oil revenues by the US government. A bitter reality.
Since the bombing ceased, our team in Baghdad along with various
humanitarian organizations, have witnessed the horror of war and
occupation. The information they have provided to us is endless but
not reported in most media outlets from the US. A brief look into
what the Iraq Peace Team and humanitarian groups have found creates
the following picture:
- Basic services remain inadequate.
- Countless children are at risk of diarrhea and other
illnesses related to dirty water.
- Many children are not attending school.
We recently received a report that many teachers who have
returned to their jobs do so without pay
- Unexploded ordnance and ammunition, both US and Iraqi-delivered,
continue to maim and kill unsuspecting people, particularly children.
In the words of Senator Byrd, "What makes me cringe even more is the
continued claim that we are 'liberators.' The facts don't seem to
support the label we have so euphemistically attached to ourselves.
True, we have unseated a brutal, despicable despot, but 'liberation'
implies the follow up of freedom, self-determination and a better
life for the common people. In fact, if the situation in Iraq is the
result of 'liberation,' we may have set the cause of freedom back 200
From our office in Chicago we remain steadfast in the principles of
nonviolence and the necessity to continue a call for the betterment
of life in Iraq. With the lifting of sanctions we enter a new phase
in our work and hope that you will join us.
CREATIVE RESISTANCE SUMMER CAMP
We are hosting a creative resistance summer camp in New York City
using traditional and emerging forms of activism. For a period of 30
days, artists, media activists, and grassroots organizers will take
part in creative forms of direct action using NYC as their canvas. We
will use methods of nonviolence and alternative forms of
communication as a means to counter the massive US government-
controlled propaganda campaigns.
Creative responses, satiric guerrilla theater, info-warfare, music,
workshops, video screenings, performances, debates, and talks
coalesce into a month-long laboratory and creative resistance camp to
help kick off a new direction of Resistance.
Interested in participating? Contact Joe Proulx joe@...
WHEELS OF JUSTICE TOUR
Nonviolent Resistance to War and Occupation in Iraq and Palestine
To continue to put a human face on the Iraq conflict and its
aftermath, we're heading out on the road again, starting this summer,
on a national bus tour to further education, organizing and action
around war and occupation in Iraq and Palestine. Working with Middle
East Children's Alliance, affiliates of the International Solidarity
Movement and Al-Awda, we hope to:
- offer academic and eyewitness perspective to the conflicts in Iraq
- cultivate and promote nonviolent resistance in the US to war and
- promote solidarity with people, especially Iraqis and Palestinians,
living under war and occupation
- highlight the risks and effects of this war on members of the armed
services and veterans
Do you want to host an event? Would you like to participate? Contact
Ceylon Mooney at: ceylon@...
Both the Creative Resistance Summer Camp and the Wheels of Justice
Tour are parts of our on-going mission to Spotlight Iraq. You'll be
hearing from us soon again.
Laurie Hasbrook, and
for Voices in the Wilderness
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