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Iraq: One year after the crime of the century

Freedom and Democracy for Bush, Terror and Despair for the Iraqis

That the majority of people in Iraq are happy that the government of Saddam Hussein has finished, there is no doubt. That the majority of people in Iraq are not happy with what the Americans have done, there is no doubt. Washington did not bring freedom to the Iraqi people, it created instead a vacuum into which every worst element was sucked, a void which has destabilized the country completely, destroyed its infra-structures, destroyed its civilian society. The result: a double No-No to Saddam and Bush.

George Bush continues to be a persona non grata in Iraq. Dubbed the "mental deficient" by Saddam's government, this man's regime is responsible for the deaths of ten thousand civilians and the wholesale destruction of Iraq's infra-structures, as civilian targets were obliterated by military forces in preparation for the doling out of lucrative construction contracts on an arbitrary scale. This is not freedom, this is not democracy.

30% of the population is unemployed. Electricity and water supplies are still interrupted, such was the savagery of the attack. Since when were electricity and water supplies military targets? Before March 19th 2003, when the invasion was launched, outside the auspices of the UNSC (making it illegal and making any human casualty a war crime), Iraqi citizens could walk the streets at night without fearing for their own safety.

Today, every worst element has been drawn into the chaos created by Washington: prostitution, pornography, drug abuse, robbery, mugging, kidnapping (even of children). Every wannabe criminal in the Middle East has poured into Iraq, taking advantage of George Bush's freedom and democracy.

Thousands of people around the world have put their voices where the Spanish people voted a week ago: against the war, against the criminal military campaign which slaughtered or maimed tens of thousands of civilians, on purpose. George Bush dare not step off an aircraft in most countries around the world and on his last trip to the capital of his main ally, the UK, he was forced to be the first leader to have to run out of Number 10 Downing Street by the back door, to escape the protestors.

Such was the venom against his presence that his State Visit was limited to three streets of London and a hasty visit to Tony Blair's constituency, much contested by the locals. Such is the international support for George Bush's Freedom and Democracy.

George Bush's Freedom and Democracy has no support inside Iraq. George Bush's Freedom and Democracy has no support outside Iraq. George Bush's Freedom and Democracy has divided this country on three levels: religiously, ethnically and politically. Not only are there now Sunnites fighting violently against Shiites, there are Arabs and Kurds and Turkmen suspicious of each others' motives, showing hostility where none was visible before.

Apart from this, Paul Bremer's authoritarian "de-Baathing" of Iraq has led to mass expulsions of Baath party members at the higher government level and also from the lower level: university professors, civil servants, teachers. bringing chaos to Iraq's society. Instead of allowing the Iraqis to choose their own constitution, it was imposed on them. Instead of allowing Iraqis to decide whether or not they wanted the Ba'ath Party in the new set-up, it was outlawed. By foreigners, by invaders, by the murderers of ten thousand innocent people.

The violence which rocks Iraq today is set to continue for decades to come, because the United States of America has wholly destroyed the fabric of Iraq as a state. The legacy of Bush's lying and warmongering will see the whole region descend into chaos for years to come. George Bush's Freedom and Democracy is not the freedom and democracy of others.

George Bush's Freedom and Democracy is translated into mass murder, war crimes, the allocation of lucrative contracts without tender (Halliburton), an act of irresponsibility on a scale never seen before. This is the legacy of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The Iraqis are not even free to walk down the street or to turn on a tap to get a drink of water.

Freedom and Democracy? Shock, yes. Awe, certainly. How could the international community allow itself to be hijacked by the Bush regime? One year on: Where are the Weapons of Mass Destruction?

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