Next month will see the fifth anniversary of the US-led war against Iraq that started years of bloody, destructive imperialist occupation. A hellish half decade has seen unending death and destruction for the people of Iraq.
By Socialist Party reporters
Up to a million have died, so far, as a result of the invasion. Thousands are held illegally in prisons. The country’s infrastructure is destroyed. The health service and education sectors are in tatters. Unemployment is rampant. Over two million Iraqis were forced to flee the country.
The country is divided along sectarian, ethnic and national lines. The rich resources of Iraq have been plundered: oil wealth is being handed over to the domination of Western multinationals and the economy is being privatised. The Iraqi ‘government’ is a US-dominated puppet.
Despite overwhelming opposition to the occupation in the US, Britain and Australia, Kevin Rudd continues his support for the occupation and all the main US presidential candidates call for more years of bloody occupation.
In opposition to these horrors, global protests will take place on March 15 & 16 including demonstrations across Australia. These events will also highlight the occupation of Afghanistan, and call for Nuclear Disarmament.
Following the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq, the mighty US military appeared invincible. But now a number of imperialist powers are bogged down in both countries, in conflicts that can go on for decades. So bad is life for impoverished Afghanis under Western occupation that the armed Taliban is growing in support again. The enormous burden on Western powers, fighting extremely unpopular wars, is also reflected in sharp clashes between Nato member states.
The US Defence Secretary, Robert Gates, sent an “unusually stern” request to Germany to send combat troops to volatile southern Afghanistan. Angela Merkel replied that the German troops’ mandate was “not up for discussion”. On top of this, Canada threatens to bring home its 2,500 troops from Afghanistan, unless other Nato allies send reinforcements.
All troops should be withdrawn from Iraq and Afghanistan immediately. The horrendous situation in Iraq can only be made worse by continued imperialist occupation. Resolving the conflicts has to be the task of the Iraqi people.
The Socialist Party calls on people to be part of the global movement against the war. Join the demonstration in your city.
Palm Sunday Rally for Peace & Nuclear Disarmament
5th Anniversary of the Invasion of Iraq
March 16th 2008
Melbourne: 2pm State Library
Sydney: 1pm Belmore Park
Brisbane: 1.30pm Queens Park