Opinion » Columnists

Why the US will not win in Iraq

I am not a journalist, but I have to get this out of my chest.
When it became clear that the US would start the unjustified war in Iraq, a friend of mine and I predicted what would happen, and  we were right to the finest detail. I cannot look into the  future, of course, but knowing history and understanding the  present, it is quite possible to predict the future.

It is commonly known that the US in Vietnam killed about 2 Million Vietnamese and lost 56,000 (or some sources say – 65000)  soldiers.  The US lost, but left behind a legacy of destruction and dioxin pollution that still causes health and environmental problems in Vietnam. Currently the US has military presence in  120 countries. Why I could never understand.

On April 18, 1983 63 people were killed in the suicide attack on the US embassy including the whole of Middle East Contingent  of the CIA, Director of the section and all.

Then, on October 23, 1983 even bigger suicide bombing attack on the Marine Barracks killed 241 Marines and seriously wounded 80 others.

The aftermath read:
"Those young people on a mission of peace in a land stricken by  violence, were killed as they slept."

True enough that these young people were killed, but what these young people were doing and how this mission of peace was  performed when they were not sleeping was explained in the article of the US publication SOLDIERS OF FORTUNE (referred to as SOF, editor Robert (Bob) Brown and weapons  expert Peter Kokalis whom I have met. In the edition 140 from 1985, an article "US MARINE SNIPER IN LEBANON" made such an impression on me, that now, 18 years later I can still quote from it!

The sniper and the author of the article writes in details how he  shot from various locations the people he did not know and who had done him no harm.  I quote two of his accomplishments:
"One day I got two with one shot, I was in position in a church tower when two youngsters came down the road on a scooter straight for me. I got him and his girl with one shot."

Imagine who these people may have been. I imagined that a 18-year-old borrowed the 125cc Vespa from his elder brother to take his 16-year-old sweetheart for outing. To this day this haunts  me, because at that time I was designing special weapons, silencers and sniper rifles.

The Marine sniper proudly reveals more:
"When I saw a couple I used to shoot the man first - the woman  always ran away and I never got a shot at her. Nowadays I always  shoot the woman first and the man will stay and try and help  her. So I get the second shot and that way I always get both."

Certainly such occurrences were not isolated incidents, but hardly  known to the rest of the world. Known to the Lebanese, such made  the US warmongers (on a mission of peace) the most hated  people in the area and lately invading Iraq has spread that  hatred around the world.  Shame poor Americans - why would  anybody blow up young people "on a mission of peace"?

I was busy writing a book on arms and ballistics at that time when I read the article in SOF. I was unable to give up the project, so I had to carry on, but my  spirit was dampened and I felt guilty of designing weapons that  could be used for such purposes and by such people. That  article changed my life and my goals.

And now the Americans create more hatred in Iraq in a way that  the Iraqis have no option, but to become Partisans (which would  is the correct term) or join the Resistance, or become Freedom  fighters. Choose anyone of the three, but do not call them  insurgents or terrorists.

Often the resistance members are labeled as "criminals", but a criminal is a businessman. He makes a profit from a crime, but  shooting up the occupier brings a criminal no profit,  therefore common criminals gain nothing by attacking that  could justify the risk of doing so.  Let’s just call them the  Iraqi resistance fighters.

If we make an insulting sign, we show a "fig" or stick up the middle finger "up yours", if you want to insult an Iraqi, you point the soles of your shoes to him/her. How serious such an insulting  sign is, can be seen from the incident when a German engineer received a  14 year prison term for putting his foot on a windblown note depicting the face of Saddam. 2.5  years of  diplomatic efforts of the German government got the man free  eventually, but still.

Shoes are "dirty", and therefore shoes are taken  off in a Mosque. Forcing an Iraqi to face down into the dirt and then PUTTING THE BOOT ONTO HIS NECK AND PUSHING HIS FACE INTO THE DIRT  is an insult no Iraqi can forgive. And these acts, together with the senseless killings create an ever increasing base of hatred and resistance to the US. This hatred arises mainly in the lower levels of Iraqi's society such as farmers  and workers, but Intellectuals, Doctors, Lawyers, Architects and Scientists are beginning to hate the US for the use of Depleted  Uranium (DU) ammunition.

Although most people have heard of DU, they are not sure of all the  implications of its use.  Remember the demonstrations of Green  Peace activists in Europe  against the disposal of radioactive  waste?  Demonstrations in towns, near reactor sites, blocking railways?  These demonstrations were  always - can you guess? - against the movement and storage of depleted Uranium.  Depleted Uranium is not only radioactive, but highly poisonous as well as all heavy metals are.

The extend of their toxic characteristics differs.  For  instance, Plutonium, the extremely radioactive isotope is one of  the most poisonous substance and will kill you on ingestion  before the radiation kills you.  Anyway, DU, the poisonous and  radioactive material, was made into ammunition and fired freely in  Gulf War I, Kosovo and now Iraq.  An instructor in mine  sweeping in Kosovo told me that all people who were clearing  land mines and inhaling the radioactive dust before the danger  was known, died within 4 years of the operation.

He survived, because he was not on the ground sweeping for mines, but instructing only. Firing DU ammunition solved some of the DU waste storage problem in the USA, because it gets distributed by means and compliments of the US Department of  Offense DoO (erroneously known as Department of Defense or DoD) It causes the Gulf War syndrome in the US soldiers after a  short tour, but what about the Iraqis that cannot leave?  The  Chernobyl accident has brought to light that the younger the  people or organism exposed to radiation, the more damaging the  exposure is. The half life time of DU is 4.5 Billion years  which means that until the end of all life on this planet, the  damage done to hundreds of generations of Iraqis will result  in deformed or mutated people.

To commit atrocities against people who are not even born yet is  the biggest crime of all, but how will the Iraq occupation end?  Knowing all that I have said, the prediction is quite easy.

There are three scenarios possible that I can think of this time 03h00 in the morning.

 SCENARIO 1
Theoretically, if it is not too late and the UN will take over in  a credible fashion, a democratic, but certainly anti-American government will rule Iraq. The stated goal of Bush is not reached, but the US arms manufacturers (George’s friends) made a  killing profit or profit by killing. All Iraqi assets sold by Bremer will be confiscated soon after and all foreigners will be shot at anywhere and anytime. However, the Iraqis are blaming  the UN for 500,000 children that died due to sanctions and are  not likely to forget or forgive that.

SCENARIO 2
The US with brutal suppression and more killings and more terrorism against local population will succeed in installing a puppet government before the US army pulls out.  Members of this  puppet government will be assassinated early on and this puppet  government will soon be overthrown and civil war will begin.  Chaos  will reign, but during the last days of the illegal occupation,  when the US forces get thinner and thinner on the ground, the tanks  have left and the air support is lacking, that will be the time  when the revenge against the US begins, and I believe it will be  worse than the pull-out of Vietnam.  Remember the famous picture  of the last man out hanging on the last chopper to leave?

SCENARIO 3
The fastest and sincerest effort and massive propaganda from credible Arabic TV stations such as Al-Jazeera to halt violence and retaliation against the countries who genuinely opposed the  war and have credibility with the Iraqis, namely France,
Germany, Russia and China to take over the building of a new
Iraq amidst a certain chaos.  Again when the US troops get thinly spread on the ground, the Iraqis will remember the insults and even those who are not fanatical enough to be become  martyrs for their faith at present will start killing not only  the US soldiers, but every contractor, advisor and suspect foreigner having had any connection to the occupier.
The US states they cannot even for sure identify the
"terrorists" because "they" claim no responsibility for an attack.  How can anybody be aware of worldwide anti-war sentiment and  mass demonstrations and believe the there is a specified "small  number of only 5000 terrorists"(August 2003) in Iraq? The  reality is that almost all 25 Million Iraqis oppose the  illegal occupation and liberation American style. And we should support the Iraqi people dominated by a tyrant, starved by UN sanctions, disarmed and finally bombed back into  the Stone Age, these poor people are the only ones to oppose American colonialism and the theft of their oil.

A Swedish scientist engaged in research into worlds remaining oil reserves recently remarked dryly:" If Iraq's main export commodity was beetroot, nobody would have bothered with Iraq".  So it was the oil, the oil and nothing but the oil. 

W.A.Hundt
Rep.of Namibia

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