Sunday, April 18, 2010

Iraq / United States / United Kingdom

Howling Wind: The Unrepented Genocide
By Chris Floyd, April 18, 2010
"The other day I was reading the New York Review of Books in a bookstore café. I saw a large ad in the bottom corner of a page; it began with this quote, in bold capitals: 'WHY IS IT A CRIME FOR ONE MAN TO MURDER ANOTHER, BUT NOT FOR A GOVERNMENT TO KILL MORE THAN A MILLION PEOPLE?' My first reaction, before I read further, was a feeling of surprise that someone had articulated the case against the Iraq war so clearly -- and had bought expensive space in the magazine to bring this unpunished, unrepented -- indeed, unacknowledged -- war crime to the national consciousness again. A moment later, I saw that it was actually an ad for an exhibition in New York City about Raphael Lemkin, the Polish-Jewish exile and US government advisor who first coined the term and developed the concept of 'genocide.' Under a picture of Lemkin's wartime government ID card, the ad goes on: 'Before Raphael Lemkin, that kind of killing had no name. Today we know it as genocide.' Then comes the title of the exhibition: 'Letters of Conscience: Raphael Lemkin and the Quest to End Genocide.' The life and work of Raphael Lemkin is a worthy topic for an exhibition, of course, and I wish it all success. But still, I was struck by how aptly his words described our own situation. For by the same scientific measurement tools used by the U.S. and UK governments to determine the extent of mass slaughters in Rwanda, Darfur and other places around the world, the war of aggression launched by those two governments against Iraq in 2003 has by now resulted in the death of more than one million Iraqis. ...
But not a single person has ever faced trial, or censure, or even the slightest personal inconvenience for the murder of more than 2 million Iraqis over the past two decades. The bipartisan perpetrators of these crimes -- the leading lights of the Clinton and Bush Administrations – live ensconced in comfort and privilege. Many of them of Clinton’s associates -- including his wife -- are once more in power in the Obama Administration. Many of Bush’s associates – including his Pentagon chief, most of his top generals, and his intelligence apparatchiks -- are still in office. [...]"

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please be constructive in your comments. - AJ