Socialist Worker

US bombs again and calls it reconstruction

Issue No. 1877

US WARPLANES dropped 500-pound bombs and fired heavy artillery rounds in the Iraqi city of Tikrit last Friday. Each of those bombs was far bigger than those used to resist the occupation forces by Iraqis labelled as 'terrorists' by the US and British.

It is Bush, Blair and their occupying armies who are terrorising the Iraqi people.

This makes Blair's talk of 'reconstruction' in Iraq an obscenity. Blair bragged about inviting Bush to London to an audience of top dignitaries this week. 'It is exactly the right time for him to come,' Blair claimed.

Is it the right time because US warplanes are once again raining death and destruction down on Iraq?

Blair dared to tell people to put disagreements over the war behind them and unite behind the 'reconstruction' and 'make what is happening now work'. The words should have stuck in his throat. US and British forces in Iraq are not reconstructing the country, they are recolonising it.

A REPORT by the Medact health organisation has revealed that 20,000 people have lost their lives in Bush and Blair's Iraq war. TV and press in the Arab and Muslim world carried a shocking report by British journalist Yvonne Ridley on Monday-one which the British media had ignored as Socialist Worker went to press.

The report showed US troops tying up Iraqi women and children in their own homes. The US army warned the Al Jazeera TV station not to show the scenes. To its credit the Arab station rejected that pressure.

Blair will make some of the poorest people on earth pay for the occupation. His government announced last Thursday that it is axing £100 million from the aid budget for 20 of the poorest countries in the world to fund 'reconstruction' in Iraq.

That money will go straight into the pockets of giant US firms like Halliburton, Kellogg Brown and Root, and Bechtel.

David Nash, the former US admiral who heads the Iraq Infrastructure Reconstruction Office, is to tour Britain and the US this month. He will formally announce that only US companies like these, or those linked to them, will be eligible for contracts in Iraq.

Bush and Blair's 'reconstruction' means terror and death, humiliation, and plundering Iraq's resources to bolster corporate profits.

Next week these two warmongers hope to swan around London. Everyone should show their disgust at what they did in Iraq when they invaded in March, and at what they are doing to Iraq and its people today.

We need a storm of protest that goes beyond polite opposition and petition-signing. 'Onto the streets!' should be the call that goes out in every corner of Britain.

Whatever oppressive tactics the authorities use, we should not let them stop us protesting and expressing our anger about their atrocities.

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What We Think
Sat 15 Nov 2003, 00:00 GMT
Issue No. 1877
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