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Friday, June 23, 2006

  • 12:35 PM
Stop Bush & Blair's terror

THE RESULT of George Bush spreading his version of 'freedom and democracy' is evident worldwide: three Guantanamo Bay prisoners have hanged themselves, while death and destruction continues in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

Bob Severn
Following the three Guantanamo deaths, the US administration callously dismissed the suicides as "a good PR [public relations] move" co-ordinated by the prisoners.

Guantanamo's base commander, Rear Admiral Harry Harris, was equally unconcerned about the deaths. "They have no regard for human life, neither ours nor their own," he said.

The prison camp, where only ten of the 460 prisoners have ever been charged for a crime, has led even Danish prime minister, Anders Fogh Rasmussen - a firm backer of the US/UK invasion and occupation of Iraq - to call for facilities at Guantanamo to be closed down. Of course, he's saying this to limit embarrassing PR!

Bad PR for 21st century imperialism does not stop there though. Leading politicians and officials in Afghanistan, supposed to be an example of US-exported democracy, have been exposed in a 220-page report by the UN high commissioner for human rights.

The UN report (uncovered by the guardian after being shelved for 18 months), accuses the former warlords, now in positions of power, of war crimes including massacres, torture and mass rape.

Last week a British solder was killed, the first since 3,300 UK troops were sent to the Afghan province of Helmand, as battles increase between coalition troops and resurgent Taliban forces. Two more soldiers were seriously injured. Two US soldiers were killed the Tuesday before, with dozens of Taliban and Afghan soldiers killed in the past month.

Meanwhile, Bush and Blair have tried to divert attention away from the mess they have made by trumpeting the death of Abu Musab al-Zarqarwi, al-Qa'ida leader in Iraq. The US President said: "It is a victory for the war on terror".

Unfortunately for Bush, Zarqarwi's death will not quell the insurgency. This is not only because al-Qa'ida have said they will avenge his death but also because the 'insurgency' is not just al-Qa'ida.

Much of the violence in Iraq comes from militias allied to different ethnic groups, Sunni, Shi'ite and Kurdish, not just fighting the occupation but fighting each other for political control.

Guantanamo, Afghanistan and Iraq have not happened because George Bush wants to establish worldwide peace but because the US government and their corporate friends want to control more oil resources, as well as secure the US as economic and military ruler of the world.

The Socialist Party has opposed these imperialist wars of occupation and calls for the immediate withdrawal of troops.

However, to cut across religious and ethnic sectarianism requires the building of socialist forces in these countries and the coming to power of governments made up of and representing working-class and poor people.
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