Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search


Howard’s End - There’s Madness Afoot

Howard’s End - There’s Madness Afoot

Whom the God's wish to punish they first make mad. With the massing of troops and firepower for an invasion of Iraq there is madness afoot which will summon up a host of unforeseen dangers and unimagined consequences.

Maree Howard writes.

Put simply, the western-alliance has no idea of the dangers and consequences that will come from such brazen aggression by invading Iraq in what is being described as "imperial overreach."

Just prior to Christmas even the UN Security Council further tightened restrictions on the Iraqi import of humanitarian goods. Heavy trucks were further restricted because the British, Bulgarian, US-sponsored measure said they could be used to carry military weapons. No thought, of course, that trucks also transport food and other goods for an impoverished people. And then there was the restrictions on stainless steel goods, auto injectors, and large quantities of antibiotics.

The measures further complicate an already difficult situation in Iraqi areas such as food supply, electrical energy, irrigation and oil refining.

The US still denies Iraq chlorine to purify contaminated drinking water, the main cause of death for hundreds of thousands of Iraqi children.

An Iraqi invasion is likely to see a further destablised Mid East and Turkey, a world economic crisis and a global uprising of a few million Muslims who are already demonstrating and calling the proposed invasion of Iraq a "Holocaust on the Muslim People."

And who can blame them for thinking that? The Muslim world increasing sees the West as set on a crusade against Muslims everywhere - a view reinforced by US attacks on Libya, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Iran, Somalia, Sudan, and Afghanistan over the past two decades.

The most important political reason not to attack Iraq is this: What will the western-alliance do with this MidEast Yugoslavia once it conquers Iraq?

Look at its bloody history - Britain created Iraq after World War I to acquire its oil, and put puppet King Faisal I, on the throne. Iraqi's and Kurds rebelled in 1920 and were crushed by British troops and bombers. Iraq's second king, Gazi, vowed to "liberate" Kuwait and died mysteriously soon after murdered, Iraqi's say, by the British.

Faisal II, another British puppet, was overthrown in a 1958 military coup by Colonel Kassem. The Kurds rebelled again. Kassem massed troops to invade Kuwait but was stopped by British forces, then murdered in a military coup led by Colonel Afref. Two years later, Saddam Hussein seized power. The Kurds rebelled twice more, aided by the US, Israel and Iran.

In 1979, the US and Britain armed and financed Saddam Hussein to invade Iran and overthrow the Islamic regime. In 1990, Washington gave Saddam what he took to be a green light to invade Kuwait.

King Abdullah of Jordan called it a chronically unstable "Pandora's Box."

Is this the nation the western-alliance plans to rule?

Iraq will undoubtedly splinter and this was the main reason why Bush Snr decided against marching on Baghdad in 1991. He knew that if he did, Iran would immediately annex southern Iraq.

The Kurdish rebels will likely seek their own state and that will have to be put down by western troops. They will also have to battle the Shia's - Iraq's religious majority.

An invasion will likely spark an anti-western revolution in Turkey or reignite a Kurdish uprising there.

Will the Arab world explode, as Egypt warns?

Then there is Iran. The same ideology which exists in western foreign-policy-makers to invade Iraq also applies to Iran, a nation of 68 million, and a greater challenge to Israel than Iraq.

The western-alliance will be in guerrilla warfare in the cities of Iraq and in the valleys of the Tigris and Euphrates where the British were defeated by the Turks in 1916.

The British and Americans have cultivated Iraqi opposition groups but they are discredited in the Middle East and are highly unlikely to form a stable regime. Any Iraqi military General who is placed in a position of power in Baghdad will simply follow his predecessors, battle the Kurds and want to annex Kuwait. He will inevitably want to seek advantage over Israel and counter Iran's advantage in manpower. No matter who rules, Iraq is Iraq.

Bush and Blair are mistaken if they think that profits from pumping stolen oil will outweigh the negatives and Iraq will simply become another docile protectorate like Kuwait or Bahrain. The western-alliance will rue the day they displace Saddam Hussein who, like him or not, transformed Iraq into a modern industrialised nation who had one of the Arab world's highest standards of education and income.

There are other global states over which the US exercises paramount influence - Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the Gulf Emirates and Morrocco. It long ago ought to have promoted democracy and human rights in those military and feudal shiekdoms. Instead, it promotes autocracy and despotism.

If the US is genuine in wanting to extinguish chem/bio weapons then it only needs to look a couple of hundred kilometers South of its own border - to Cuba.

And what about chem/bio and other mass destruction weapons held by France, Israel, Syria, Egypt, Iran, Libya, India, Pakistan, Ukraine, Russia, Serbia, North Korea and China and, of course, the US and Britain themselves who sold and helped Iraq to develop biological weapons like Q-fever and anthrax for Saddam's military.

It was OK to spray Muslim Iranians and Kurdish rebels, it seems.

The fact is, Saddam Hussein did not use his WMD arsenal during the 1990 Gulf War when US troops were massing at crowded Saudi ports. He might, they say, - but then so might many others. Might is not good enough for an illegal invasion!

No, I am not against the US and British people. I am against their foreign policy-makers who have mostly never even visited the MidEast or fought at the coal-face of a bloody war. The dangers we face and the consequences to be suffered - nobody knows.

But then, whom the God's wish to punish they first make mad - and there is madness afoot.

© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Jan Rivers: The New Zealanders Involved In Brexit

There are a number who have strong connections to New Zealand making significant running on either side of the contested and divisive decision to leave the European Union. More>>

Rawiri Taonui: The Rise, Fall And Future Of The Independent Māori Parties

Earlier this month the Māori Party and Mana Movement reflected on the shock loss of their last parliamentary seat in this year’s election. It is timely to consider their future. More>>

Don Rennie: Is It Time To Take ACC Back To First Principles?

The word “investing” has played a major part in the operations of the ACC since 1998... More>>

Using Scoop Professionally? Introducing ScoopPro

ScoopPro is a new offering aimed at ensuring professional users get the most out of Scoop and support us to continue improving it so that Scoop continues to exist as a public service for all New Zealanders. More>>