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Stop this war!

March 21, 2003 | Page 1

THE MOST powerful military machine the world has ever known plans to lay waste to one of the poorest and most desperate places on earth. More than 1 million Iraqis are dead after a decade of U.S. warfare--both military and economic.

But that's not enough for Washington. The madmen in the White House want to launch a new war that could equal this death toll in a matter of months, not years--killed not only by U.S. bombs, but the refugee and food crisis that is certain to follow.

To give Iraqis a signal of the living hell they will suffer through, the Pentagon unveiled its latest weapon of mass destruction last week--the Massive Ordnance Air Blast (MOAB), a 21,500-pound bomb with the destructive power of a small nuclear weapon.

At one of his press conferences, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld casually described its operational uses. But more important, he said, was the psychological impact. "The goal is to have the capabilities of the coalition so clear and so obvious that there is an enormous disincentive for the Iraqi military to fight," Rumsfeld told reporters.

And these people dare to claim that they're fighting terrorism? What word other than "terror" can describe the reason for testing the MOAB bomb? What other word can describe the Bush administration's "Shock and Awe" strategy of using overwhelming force against a defenseless country? Or the flood of tens of thousands of refugees trying to flee the country before the bombing started--only to be stopped at the shutdown borders?

The real terrorists are running the U.S. government. If the U.S. assault on Iraq goes as planned, American troops will smash into Iraq in a matter of days. And the U.S. corporate media--which so breathlessly welcomed the test of the MOAB bomb--will celebrate this cruel "victory," no matter what the cost.

But don't be fooled. "[W]hen pictures of exhausted Iraqis greeting their 'liberation' are flashed around the world," wrote antiwar journalist John Pilger, "remember the faces that will be missing in the crowds--not only those of the children bombed and disposed of as 'collateral damage,' but more than 1 million faces declared expendable by the…economic embargo…Remember the words of President Clinton's then-representative at the United Nations, Madeleine Albright, when she was asked if the price of 500,000 Iraqi children [dead] was a price worth paying for the embargo. 'The price, we think, is worth it,' she said."

We have to respond now to the horror they're inflicting on Iraq with a resounding message: This war must be stopped--now!

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