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Date: Sat, 27 Jan 1996 00:13:36 GMT
Sender: Activists Mailing List <>
Subject: Iraq: The children are dying

/** mideast.gulf: 80.0 **/
** Topic: Iraq: The children are dying **
** Written 9:36 PM Jan 17, 1996 by in cdp:mideast.gulf **

For further information, refer to the Iraq Action Coalition homepage at:

The Children Are Dying

U.S. Sanctions - a Crime Against Humanity

By Ali Baghdadi, 11 January 1996

"Economic sanctions and blockades, as now applied as the weapon of choice by the United States and by the Security Council of the United Nations at the urging of the U.S. and its allies, are a weapon of mass destruction directed at a whole people.

These blockades have been used only against poor countries, and while the entire people is punished by their economic impact, the greatest harm is overwhelmingly on the poorest and weakest - infants, children, the chronically ill and the elderly.

There is no crueler violation of fundamental human rights than this sanctions policy. The case of Iraq has demonstrated that the U.S. and its allies do not stop short of the deliberate creation of a new zone of death and destitution, with thousands of deaths monthly, dehydration, organ failure and pain without relief, permanent physical or mental disability, and generalized shortening of life.

All humanitarian law from its inception has endeavored to limit violence to combatants, to prevent use of cruel and unfocused weapons, to protect civilians from the scourge of war, and to outlaw the principle of collective punishment. The sanctions policy is clearly a Crime Against Humanity as defined under the terms of the Nuremberg Principles. It also violates the Charter of the United Nations, the Geneva Convention and other fundamental documents of contemporary international law."

The above are not the words of President Saddam Hussein, or Deputy Prime Minister Tarik Aziz, or any other Iraqi official that are usually dismissed by the U.S. administration as Iraqi propaganda. Nor are those the words of ordinary and bewildered Iraqi citizens who daily witness the death of their people as a result of the unjust and cruel embargo against Iraq, which is punished not for its attempt to restore Kuwait to its motherland, but for crossing the red line in industrialization and technology.

The statement is an appeal prepared by Ramsey Clark, former U.S. Attorney General, who has dedicated his life for justice and peace. Among the internationally known and respected draftees are Ahmed Ben Bella, first President of Algeria; Daniel Ortega, former President of Nicaragua; Clodomiro Almeyda, former Deputy President of Chile; Karmenu Missud Bonnici, former Prime Minister of Malta; Margarita Papandreou, former First Lady of Greece; and other prominent dignitaries.

The appeal will be featured in the special-edition book "The Children Are Dying" along with documentary reports from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) investigation team and other evidence for ending the sanctions. The material will be presented to the United Nations and other organizations.

On the eve of the 5th anniversary of the U.S.-led aggression against Iraq, where civilization was first born and the messages of God were initially revealed, international forums will be held in various cities across the world to expose the criminal, savage and illegal nature of economic sanctions against any nation.

The New York forum is sponsored by the International Action Center, Emergency Women's Action Committee, Haiti Support Network, Committee in Support of Iraqi People, National People's Campaign, International Commission of Inquiry on Economic Sanctions, International Peace for Cuba Appeal, Iraqi Cultural Committee, United Campaign in Solidarity with the People of Iran, Bruderhof Community, Women for Mutual Security, and Women's Strike for Peace.

The newly formed Political Action Islamic Council of America, is the only major organization of Muslim Americans that adds its name to the list of sponsors and demands an immediate end to the sanctions against Iraq, Libya, Iran, the Sudan and Cuba. Though the sanctions are of vital concern to the Arab and Muslim communities, organizations financed by certain Arab states chose to remain silent.

According to a recent report compiled by FAO, more than one million Iraqis have died as a direct result of the sanctions, which the U.S. and U.K. refuse to lift, despite Iraq's compliance to the unjustly imposed U.N. resolutions. Among the victims are 560,000 children. Lack of food and medicine and deteriorating sanitary conditions have actually caused more harm and suffering than the war itself despite the most savage and indiscriminate bombing ever experienced.

While American and British politicians and generals joyfully celebrate the anniversary of their "victory" and proudly brag about their experiences in killing and maiming, Iraqis continue to die slowly without even simple sedation to relieve their pain. Torching homes, houses of worship, schools, milk factories and shelters by the most sophisticated fire at their disposal, are their "medals of honor" that will be remembered as long as there are history books and people to read them.

Prior to the destruction of the entire Iraqi infra-structure, including sewage, water, and electricity plants, Iraqis had enjoyed a higher life expectancy than the United States. However, life expectancy in Iraq today is one of the lowest in the entire world. Even medicine which Iraq had fully paid for is kept in Western warehouses undelivered. Though food and medicine are exempted from sanctions, billions of dollars that Iraq had deposited in banks world-wide are frozen.

Patriotic Americans join billions of Arabs, Muslims, Africans and third world peoples and demand an end to the genocide. Ramsey Clark, a real American hero, warns:

If the United Nations participates in such genocidal sanctions backed by the threat of military violence - and if the people of the world fail to prevent such conduct - the violence, terror and human misery of the new millennium will exceed anything we have known.

The people of the United States bear responsibility for the acts of their government. We must demand an end to these genocidal sanctions now and compel the absolute prohibition in the future of all sanctions that punish an entire population.

We must all work to stop the killing and let the children live! Support this international campaign.. We cannot say "we didn't know". Call (212)633-6646 now.

For further information, refer to the Iraq Action Coalition homepage at:
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