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Letters re Hitchens-Adams: The Left supports the Iraq war

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Some published Letters to the Editor following reply to Phillip Adams by Christopher Hitchens and letter from Robert Manne with similar line to Adams and other letters demanding appeasement of terrorist hostage takers, just before as Hitchens article demolishing them. "The Australian", August 2, 3 and 4, 2004

For Hitchens article (with links to Adams article etc) click here

4 August 2004

The Left supports the Iraq war

It must disappoint Guy Rundle (Letters, 3/8) to know that the former United Nations’ Rapporteur on Human Rights, Max van der Stoel, described the human rights’ violations of Saddam’s regime as the worst since World War II.

Rundle is right that the obvious fact that the regime couldn’t massacre greater numbers of Kurds once the US no-fly zone was enforced. But what hypocrisy! Rundle and other pseudo-leftists argued for the removal of US forces. I’m not aware of any making an exception for the jets that enforced the protected region.

Had Rundle’s mob won the day, the toll for the Kurds would have been thousands greater. And there would have been no hope for the future.

Rundle states 20,000 Iraqi civilians and conscripts have been killed. How many of that number were killed by the fascist Baathist-jihadist resistance? The pseudo-left continues to support this resistance, despite its practice of targeting non-combatant civilians in Iraq, in market places and religious centres. Will the likes of Pilger and Tariq Ali still support it when it targets voting booths next January, if federal elections are able to proceed?

Had the anti-war movement not fizzled the moment George W. Bush admitted the war was about liberation and not weapons of mass distraction, then the Iraqi people today would still be in a hopeless situation under a regime whose atrocities were far worse than the average US-backed dictator.

That the US acted against the mad dog it helped create does not make the regime’s overthrow, and the promise of democracy, any less desirable morally.

Australian leftists supported the war through a long-standing tradition of international solidarity with oppressed peoples. The pseudo-left opposed it.

Barry York Lyneham, ACT

First Byte (single para comments)

Here in the carefree FNQ I'm a little out of touch with ol’ Melbourne town, but was that the Albert Langer (Letters, 2/8)? Sweet hit, irrespective, on the state of most of the debate(rs) so far. Well said, Albert.

Bernie Scott Mt Pleasant Queensland

3 August 2004

Saddam's average record

CHRISTOPHER Hitchens (Opinion, 29/7) makes the error, possibly wilful, of most of the commentators who have argued for the invasion of Iraq on humanitarian grounds, and that is to average out the murders and repression caused by the regime over the last 25 years.

It is accepted by everyone that Saddam killed tens of thousands, possibly more, Shi'ites and Kurds in the early 90s after the US failed to support their uprising, as they had promised they would.

There was no chance he could have done the same now a no-fly zone had been imposed, and the Kurds had an autonomous region.

Amnesty estimates the number of political killings as in the low hundreds per year since then. This is awful, but more so is the deaths of up to 20,000 Iraqi civilians and conscript soldiers, another thousand allied personnel, and the basic destruction of social order.

Nothing in Saddam's recent record warranted unleashing the violence of a hi-tech war, in the absence of any clear wish by the Iraqi people for us to do so.

Guy Rundle Fitzroy, Vic

02 August 2004

Heroic outrage and moral blindness

ROBERT Manne (Letters, 29/7) quotes his own words in Why the War Was Wrong to prove he never sympathised with Saddam's vile regime: "Those who opposed the war, as I did, cannot wriggle away from the fact that if our opposition had been successful, the disgusting regime of Saddam Hussein would still be in power in Iraq."

Manne did not sympathise with Saddam and he did not sympathise with the Iraqis. Like those letter writers bleating about the lives of Australian hostages being more precious than Iraqi lives, he simply did not care.

The hypocrisy of US neocons who did not care about support for tyranny in the Middle East until it blew up in their faces as 9/11, and who then pretended the war that had to be fought was about non-existant WMD, is staggering.

The stupidity of liberals and the conservative foreign policy establishment who had to be lied to about WMD because they would never support a war for establishing democracy in the Middle East until after it was launched, is equally unimpressive.

But for sheer moral blindness, the heroic outrage of Australia's own Robert Manne and the letter writers demanding appeasement of terrorist hostage taking beats all records.

Albert Langer North Fitzroy, Vic

Created by keza
Last modified 2005-01-04 05:30 AM

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