Socialist Worker

Voices raised against war

Issue No. 1767

'I THINK we must be very careful about assuming that a great many people in this country want vengeance. They want this to be prevented from ever happening again. What one suspects is that there are people from all over the Middle East who, because of what they have seen happening in Palestine and elsewhere, are prepared to go to desperate lengths.'

'IF A devastating attack is launched on a Muslim country, killing thousands, it will make 10,000 Bin Ladens rise up in the stead of the one whose head has been cut off. I do not know what could be bombed in Afghanistan, the Stone Age country we helped to create. There is nothing there. Hardly a building stands. The only thing to hit in Afghanistan is people. Millions of Afghans will spill over the borders to become refugees on ships that Western countries will turn away at the point of guns.'

'FAR FROM being the terrorists of the world, the Islamic peoples have been its victims-principally the victims of US fundamentalism, whose power, in all its forms, military, strategic and economic, is the greatest source of terrorism on Earth. Since the end of the Cold War, the US and its sidekicks, principally Britain, have exercised, flaunted and abused their wealth and power while the divisions imposed on human beings by them and their agents have grown as never before. The expulsion of the population of Diego Garcia in the 1960s by the Wilson government received almost no press coverage. Their homeland is now an American nuclear arms dump and base from which US bombers patrol the Middle East.'
JOHN PILGER, Journalist

'NORMAL GOOD-HEARTED Americans will weep for the suffering that these events exacted and hope to create a world in which such hate and callousness disappears. But I fear that America's leaders will cynically bulk up their ammo belts. People of goodwill must explain as often as possible that terrorism is horrific, but so too is capitalist business as usual. We must not step back from dissent, but must instead work harder to oppose all kinds of injustice.'
MICHAEL ALBERT, leading US anti-capitalist activist

'DID US foreign policy create the conditions in which twisted logic could flourish? The era of the videogame war in which the US is always at the controls has produced a blinding rage in many parts of the world. The illusion of war without casualties has been forever shattered.'
NAOMI KLEIN, author of best selling book No Logo

'WHAT HAPPENED in New York was a crime against humanity. And that means policemen, arrests, justice-not Cruise missiles and 'precision' bombs and Muslim lives lost in revenge for Western lives.'
ROBERT FISK, journalist

'IT'S BEEN heartening to see the banners calling for peace. The TV news has been making it seem like the only thing people want here is war, but there are a large number of banners that folks have put in place questioning whether war will lead to just more violence, more vengeance and more innocent deaths. You can see it in the flyers of the faces of the victims-thousands of innocent people died here on Tuesday, and the people who will suffer as our country retaliates in any sort of armed attack will be innocent as well.'
DIRK SLATER, New York resident

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Article information

Sat 22 Sep 2001, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1767
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