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Unlimited aims
Containing America's new drive for empire

By Peter Attwood
February 21, 2003
The Iranian

February 8 email to French UN mission, copies to Russia, China, and Iraq:

Everyone in the Security Council knows, and there is much evidence including the statements of the Bush team, that weapons of mass destruction or what a bad man Saddam Hussein is has nothing to do with why the United States wants Iraq - no more than the "terrible suffering" of the Sudeten Germans explained why Hitler wanted Czechoslovakia in 1938.

The American National Security Strategy, posted on our State Department's website, scarcely pretends that American policy is anything less than simply imperial dominion - and as the mass murder by embargo in Iraq has shown, it will be a cruel empire indeed.

If you let the United States have its way in Iraq, then as it was in Hitler's case, Bush and his team will have scarcely belched before picking another meal - perhaps Syria, perhaps Iran, perhaps even Saudi Arabia.

If you, Russia, and China fail to stand firm here and now, the same choice will confront you again, and it will be still more difficult. War Secretary Rumsfeld's openly expressed contempt for France should warn you that you are among those the United States intends to reduce as soon as possible to irrelevant vassalage.

It is polite to speak of the alliance between France and the United States, but there is no such alliance. These people do not like you, because of your tendency to be independent and even to tell them unpleasant truth. They do not wish you well, and nothing you can do will make them wish you well. Your place in the "New World Order," as Bush's father called it, is at best that of Romania or Hungary in Hitlers's New Order.

It is most appropriate that Rumsfeld was in Munich today to bully other nations into betraying Iraq into his hands as Hitler did in that same city in 1938. The moral choice is the same, and the eventual result, if dishonor is chosen, will be the same.

If even France alone vetoes any war resolution, it will strip the American aggression of legitimacy, and that is worth doing even if they go ahead with it. The world will more quickly mobilize to contain this new drive for empire, and maybe reduce the harm done before a catastrophe results.

These people already flaunt their willingness to use nuclear weapons first against non-nuclear powers, and for trivial purposes like destroying underground bunkers. Each easy success increases the world's danger, because Bush will use it to consolidate control at home, as Hitler did, making each successive aggression harder to contain, and increasing his willingness to resort to violence without limit.

Bullies do not get better by being appeased, especially when they have unlimited aims. It is especially grim that Bush and his colleagues have learned from Ariel Sharon that provoking terror attacks by acts of cruel oppression is a way to gain and hold power, in the way that Hitler used the Reichstag fire.

People think Bush is stupid to concentrate on Iraq, which poses no threat, while leaving al-Qa'eda alone, which probably does. But we see that it is not stupid but cunning, if we consider that Bush has noticed that the attack on the twin towers enabled him to consolidate his power. Another attack like that would serve him well. If we understand this, it will not surprise us that he has spent the last 18 months doing everything he can to make terrorist attacks more likely.

I was delighted to hear a proposal to send a UN peacekeeping force to Iraq. I've suggested that myself before to your mission and to Mr. al-Douri at the Iraqi mission. If this were done, it would really be impossible at this stage for the Americans to kill French, Russian, and Chinese troops in Iraq. It would also make it harder for Saddam Hussein to do evil, thus solving the problem the war is supposedly all about, and so the war could not go forward.

It seems to me that this could be proposed as a Security Council resolution, and if the United States vetoes, as we can expect, its aggressive designs will be laid bare. At that point, using the precedent of the American-led air war against Serbia in 1999, interested nations, with Iraq's agreement, could simply put a force together and be in the way of any aggressor.

If it was reasonable for the Americans to put together a coalition to wage a war outside the UN system, it certainly seems reasonable for France and other interested nations to put together a coalition to stop one.

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