Socialist Worker

Blair war lies fall apart

Issue No. 1851

...and so do documents used to smear George Galloway.

Tony Blair's lies over Iraq now stand so exposed that even Clare Short has broken with him. Cabinet splits, however, have little meaning for those who are suffering in Iraq.

OIL

Tony Blair 'We don't touch it, and the US doesn't touch it.' MTV, 7 March,
The truth Last week's United Nations (UN) resolution tabled by the US and Britain gives them total control of Iraq's oil revenues.

WEAPONS

Jack Straw 'Should the UN have a vital role to play in respect of weapons inspections? Yes.'
The truth No role for the UN inspectors 'for the foreseeable future', says Donald Rumsfeld.

OCCUPATION

George Bush 'The UN will have a vital role to play.' Belfast summit, 8 March
The truth The UN will have only an advisory function. US and British officials make all operational decisions.

IRAQ'S GOVERNMENT

Tony Blair 'Military action is to uphold the authority of the UN and make sure Saddam is disarmed' MTV, 7 March
The truth is the US and Britain will rule Iraq as an 'occupying power'.

WEAPONS #2

George Bush 'We know that the regime has produced thousands of tonnes of chemical agents, including mustard gas, sarin nerve gas, VX nerve gas. It has a massive stockpile of biological weapons...capable of killing millions' October, 2002
White House official 'You don't necessarily have tonnes of chemical weapons or biological weapons sitting around in Iraq' Monday of this week


Iraq disaster

THE US announced last weekend it was withdrawing its mobile weapons inspection teams. They had found nothing. It is also withdrawing US general Jay Garner, brought into oversee 'reconstruction', and Barbara Bodine, the diplomat given charge of Baghdad. Their rule has been a disaster. Hospitals in Iraq are still unable to function. There are frequent cuts to electricity and water supply. There has been an outbreak of cholera in Basra.

The credentials of the man the US has sent to replace Garner show what its priorities are. Paul Bremer is a 'counter-terrorism' specialist and a protege of war criminal Henry Kissinger. Meanwhile, new documents show the full role in Iraq Bush has given to Halliburton, the oil company that pays vice-president Dick Cheney $1 million a year.

It had been reported to have got the contract to extinguish Iraqi oil fires. In fact the corporation has been given 'operation of facilities and distribution of products' - that is, control of the oil industry. Every single contract handed out by the US agency responsible for reconstructing Iraq has gone to US firms.

The commander of the US 101st Airborne Division in Mosul, northern Iraq, echoed that arrogance last week. He said that he is looking to put a US officer with a translator inside the local TV station to monitor what goes on air. 'Yes, what we are looking at is censorship,' said Major General David Petraeus.


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Article information

News
Sat 17 May 2003, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1851
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