Tariq Aziz, the Deputy Prime Minister of Iraq, declared at a press conference in Baghdad on Monday that Iraq will “fight to the last bullet” and “to the last breath”.
He promised fierce resistance for the American-led invasion, which, should it occur, will be a lightning sweep through the country, encircling the bulk of the Iraqi army in Baghdad and Basra.
He denounced the US position as being similar to a Rambo mentality and declared that Washington’s arrogance will meet with stern resistance from the Iraqi people. He stated “We are ready for war, from the army down to the civilian population”.
He revealed that the Iraqi authorities have plans to defend the bridges around Baghdad and that eventually, the USA would be held responsible for a massacre of the civilian population.
The declarations by Tariq Aziz reveal a plan by the Iraqi Armed Forces to concentrate among the civilian population in the cities, which would be quickly surrounded by the invasion force, leading to a siege. The humanitarian conditions inside the cities in such a situation would reach catastrophic proportions, according to experts in the UNO.
It is clear that the Iraqi leadership this time around, if indeed a war is to occur, will not simply line up its tanks in the desert, waiting for a conventional battle. With its massive airpower, the US/UK alliance will control the skies from the outset. However, with nothing to bomb, except civilians, the tactical advantage of air supremacy disappears in a siege situation.
Meanwhile, the civilised world talks diplomacy while Bush, Blair, Berlusconi and now Portugal’s Barroso, joined by Spain’s Aznar, Chile’s Lagos and Mexico’s Fox have isolated themselves from a process of dialogue and debate, opting instead for a submissive stance to Washington’s carrot-and-stick diplomacy and supporting the notion that Iraq is a direct threat to the USA.
It is a very sad statement that such countries could not find leaders with a more polished and professional approach to the solving of crises through real diplomacy and not the bullying style adopted by this administration in Washington.
Timothy BANCROFT-HINCHEY PRAVDA.Ru