Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/280/24454
Stop This War For Oil
GORDON BROWN, Chancellor of the Exchequer, in his budget statement set aside £1 billion to wage war on Iraq. Some analysts put the true cost of war at £5 billion.
That's £5 billion to bomb Iraq back to the Stone Age, yet Brown's government flatly refuses to fund firefighters (who save lives) an £8.50 an hour take home pay.
The message is clear: public-sector workers must accept low pay in order for New Labour to be part of the US-led war on Iraq. And make no mistake, unless workers and youth in Britain and internationally can exert enough opposition, George Bush and Tony Blair intend to carry through a "regime change" in Iraq.
But an invasion and occupation of Iraq (for that is the reported plan) isn't about restoring democracy. Saddam Hussein will undoubtedly be removed but only to be replaced by a pro-US stooge resting on US and British military might.
The long-suffering Iraqi people aren't going to have a say over how the wealth of this oil-rich country should be used. That has already been decided.
It will be the giant oil and energy corporations that bankrolled Bush's presidential campaign who will receive their reward, by exploiting Iraq's vast untapped oil deposits (the country contains an estimated one-third of the world's total reserves).
As one industry analyst puts it: "Ninety cents a barrel for oil that sells at $30 - that's the kind of business anyone would want to be in."
But this threatened war is about more than greedy oil corporations backed by military might. Along with the 'war against terrorism', this 21st century colonial conquest is designed to serve as an example to the world's poor and the world's poorest countries ie, accept the New World Order of capitalism or face annihilation.
In this way the fate of ordinary Iraqis is linked to the interests of working-class people in Britain. Neither can gain from this rotten profit system that only benefits a privileged minority.
But workers and the poor internationally have everything to gain by affecting not just a 'regime change' to oust the likes of Bush and Blair but a 'system change' to bring a redistribution of wealth and power i.e. socialism. Join us in that fight.
No War on Iraq
called by Stop The War Coalition
Saturday 15 February 2003
National anti-war demonstration, London
For more details phone Hannah Sell, Tel: 020 8988-8778.
Blair's war propaganda
HOT ON the heels of the Blair government's widely ridiculed report on Saddam Hussein's "nuclear threat", comes another dossier exposing the Iraqi dictator as a dictator!
The timing here is critical. This report (accompanied by a video showing the aftermath of Saddam's gas attack on the Kurdish town of Halabja back in 1988) appeared only six days before the deadline for the Iraqi regime to release details of any 'weapons of mass destruction'.
Clearly, this is another piece of British government propaganda designed to soften up public opinion prior to launching an all-out attack on Iraq.
The report also coincides with US President George Bush's pre-emptive comments saying Saddam has failed to co-operate "willingly and completely" with United Nations weapons inspectors.
Saddam's human rights abuses are well documented. Less well publicised is evidence of British, US, Russian, French, Israeli and many other governments, who armed and financed the dictator during the 1980s Iran-Iraq war.
This includes the Thatcher government which continued to support the regime after the imposition of UN arms sanctions and the Halabja massacre.
And why only a report on one dictatorship? Where's the report on Saudi Arabia, Syria, Jordan and a host of other rotten Middle Eastern regimes and regimes throughout the world which ban trade unions and political parties, imprison without trial and torture opponents?
In reality governments in both the USA and Britain are happy doing business - including arms sales - to any regime providing it complies with imperialism.
In The Socialist 6 December 2002:
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