Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/338/5673
The Socialist 13 March 2004 |
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Time To Protest
Time For Blair To Go!
"Passionate, self-justifying drivel" - veteran
Labour MP Tam Dalyell describing Tony Blair's defence of the Iraq war last
Blair displayed a "lack of critical thinking" -
former UN weapons inspector Hans Blix in his memoirs.
"We were all wrong" - David Kay, former chief of
the US team searching for weapons of mass destruction.
If you agree with any of these statements you need to be on
the Stop the War demo next Saturday 20 March.
A YEAR ago on 20 March the US and Britain invaded Iraq. Within a few weeks, they bombed and slaughtered thousands, stage-managed the pulling down of Saddam Hussein's statue and then proclaimed victory.
At least 10,700 civilians have been killed since the beginning of the war. The US holds over 11,000 prisoners. Unemployment remains at 50%. Schools, hospitals and basic utilities are still poor. Around 600 'coalition' troops have been killed, the majority since the 'end of major hostilities'.
All this in the name of the 'war on terror', on the pretext of stopping the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
But a year on no WMDs have been found, nor even any indication of a production process. And the war on terror has succeeded in introducing al-Qa'ida and terror attacks into Iraq.
Last week, around 271 died in horrific attacks on Shia festivals in Baghdad and Karbala. This followed the killing of at least 101 people by suicide bombers in the Kurdish city of Irbil in February.
Blair and Bush envisaged a triumph, the establishment of a 'democratic' and compliant Iraq as a platform for them to move on to other regimes in the Middle East. But the US and Britain are deeply unpopular. Millions have demonstrated against them.
The US-appointed Iraq Governing Council have cobbled together a new interim constitution. But real democracy for Iraqis is as far away as ever. Different groups are jockeying for power which could lead to civil war.
AND AT home the questions just won't go away. Was the war legal? Did they spy on UN member states and Kofi Annan? Did they lie about WMDs? Did they sex up intelligence?
Most people know the Hutton Inquiry was a whitewash and have no faith in the Butler Inquiry, the latest attempt to cover up and deflect attention.
This was the war no one wanted. It has led to the horror of occupation. Blair is guilty of lies, and has the blood of thousands on his hands.
Millions were opposed to this war. Millions took to the streets. Hundreds of thousands of school students and young people led the way.
The demo on the 20th has been called to say: "No more lies, Mr Blair". Let's make sure we also say:
- End the occupation of Iraq
- No more blood for oil
- Build the socialist alternative
- End The Occupation Of Iraq - Troops Out Now!
- Liar Blair Must Go!
- Let The Iraqi People Decide Their Own Future
- Bring The Oil And Energy Industry Under Democratic Public Ownership
- For A Socialist World Free Of War And Terror
March 20th, Assemble at 12 Noon Hyde Park, Central London
National Demonstration Called By Stop The War Coalition