Coalition of the killing

The house is on fire, and everyone discusses the politics of the fire brigade. Between 50 to a 100 innocent Iraqi civilians are dying everyday. The more that are killed, the more the horrendous death toll is turning into a mere statistic to fill the time slot for CNN or BBC, or whatever. The attention has turned much more to the politcal negotiations and machinations, the finacial cost to the US, the exact number of soldiers to be sent to Iraq or Afganistaan…

Talk, Talk, Talk, Talk,
It’s sickening how we can all avoid the real issue. The individuality of the deaths. The pain of the children.
While the US fires their Surgeon General over the lack of care to returning US soldiers from Iraq, and the papers in the UK are full of the psychological cost of being in the war zone for British Soldiers, lets turn our attention to the psychological cost to all the Children of Baghdad. How are they being affected by living in a city of death, where everyday at school they hear about a friend that was killed, or a friend’s father, mother, brother or sister ?
Imagine this – everytime you leave home for school, you don’t know if you are coming back, or if you will ever see you mom or dad again, or you granny or any loved one. Every goodbye as u leave your doorstep could eb a final goodbye to your loved ones. It’s a nightmare of Baghdad.
Yet the Coalition of the Willing (Killing ) just talk. The US generals are saying we will have peace back in a year. A year ? At this rate in a year another 25,000 innocent lives will be lost. Bush says he needs nore soldiers. More soldiers ? How can a protected armed force do anything against those that look forward to death for their beliefs. The truth is that the US just does not have enough soldiers, or enough political and financial will to win this battle. It’s because the US keeps moving the goal post of it’s so called ‘victory’ ?
What does victory mean in Iraq to the coalition of the kiling ? That all violence must stop ? The problem is that it will never stop as long as there is a presence of foreign troops in Iraq. That has been proven everyday on the streets of Baghdad.
We can go on saying “well, it’s sectarian killing, it’s Sunni vs Shia” . But when something like this goes wrong in a State, who do we hold responsible ? Who do we hold responsible for a breakdown in Law and Order ? The authority, right ? So the authority in Iraq is the Coalition. They MUST take responsibilty for the hundreds of thosands of civilian that are dying in Iraq. The world must hold the Coalition responsible and not allow this to be blamed on just sectarian violence.
Remember that Hindu’s and Muslim’s in pre – partion India lived in relative harmony with each other till the British Colonists decided to leave the country divided by artificial boundaries. We still suffer from that.
Iraq, like Afganistan, India, Pakistan, the Balkans and large parts of Africa, stands as a vivid and horrendous example of a long suffering casualty of the sins of colonization.
And yet it goes on ! The invasion of Iraq is just turning into another modern colonial occupation.

9 thoughts on “Coalition of the killing

  1. Shekhar very true !!
    But who is blazoning out on this??? I guess democratic forces in west! thats the beauty of democracy!
    No voice from middle east???? Sunni arabs are much bothered about curbing shiaiite Iran and vice versa.
    The very people who burn the towns on smaller issues(socalled) on against Islam, did not get united and say boldly to “coalition killing Forces” , “Hey we will solve our problems, You guyz go away” !!!!!
    I guess two reasons — one, the autocratic rulars are happy with US supporting their Crowns and no democratic voice can come out. If some voices go against the US backed rulars, either they will be crashed or will turn out to be Al Quida.
    Two, as RUDRA wrote some where it may be ‘karmic’ effect – as you sow,so you reap. ‘The sword factor’!!!!

  2. Shekhar,
    Psychological cost they talk seems like such a fictitious word. No one is worried about the kids being orphaned, girls raped and pushed to prostitution, lost homes, lost limbs, lost mental balance,. Iraq is like phoolan is getting raped…that phoolan who symbolizes the every sweet, natural and life like thing. (A) 14 year old girls got raped thousands of kids lost their parents in front of their eyes and …world is talking about crime of wars and crime against humanity. We need lots of Kabeers, guru Nanaks, Jesus and Mohammad to come back again and redefine and interpret again what they actually meant by their philosophies. I think those great souls said things not to put in some showcase, which are merely, became museums in the shape of Temples, mosques and churches.
    Sanjay malhotra

  3. Bush is responsible for the death of 655,000 Iraqi lives according to Johns Hopkins research. 655,000! I just cannot interpret the meaning of that number. 655,001 and I don’t have a best friend anymore. The world indeed is a ridiculous place to live in.

  4. Dear Shekhar,
    This situation now is such that it is just not possible to pullout, as it would not look good on the resume of a superpower. It may also lead to an escalation of violence and more profound civil unrest (although this is debatable). Also, as long as the troops are there the insurgency is likely to continue. The arms manufacturing industry is a hugely profitable business in the US, and it benefits greatly when the military is engaged. The death toll of any war is always horrific, but for most of us far away from the scene it seems more like a statistic than a tragedy (like Stalin said). It is almost impossible to fathom the pain, fear and concerns of the people caught in the middle, and I can only say that may God give them the power to live on. I hope some kind of a ceasefire is declared from both sides, and then negotiations begin for troop withdrawal/ govt. that the majority accepts.
    Himanshu – New York

  5. In 1800 there was spices of Java AND Sumatra which made India a British colony, as spices was the hot commodity of that time..oIL IS todays factor and hottest comodity. .who cares about human rights and the welfare of some one else. Does anyone really really cares about establishing a democracy in Iraq?..If coalition is really worried about protecting the human rights and welfare of the public interest then why don’t they go to countries like Ethopia,srilanka,Bangladesh and other third world , with lots of money in their hands to feed those who are in need. If they can make a coalition to kill people..why don’t they make coalition to give people a life .Bottom line…This (coalition) corporation is made to make profits and for that they can interpret the situations in whatever way they want..As Sahir Ludhianvi’s words “Kaun rota hai kisee aur ki khatir ai dost sab ko apni hi kissee baat pe rona aya.” sanjay malhotra

  6. Today a column in the NYT spells out quite clearly the oil grab that was one of the prime reasons for the war. White colonialists in this century grab the wealth of other nations by skilled subterfuge unlike earlier centuries where they did it quite directly. What if a few million third-worlders die in the process?
    Whose Oil Is It, Anyway?
    TODAY more than three-quarters of the world’s oil is owned and controlled by governments. It wasn’t always this way.
    Until about 35 years ago, the world’s oil was largely in the hands of seven corporations based in the United States and Europe. Those seven have since merged into four: ExxonMobil, Chevron, Shell and BP. They are among the world’s largest and most powerful financial empires. But ever since they lost their exclusive control of the oil to the governments, the companies have been trying to get it back.
    Iraq’s oil reserves — thought to be the second largest in the world — have always been high on the corporate wish list. In 1998, Kenneth Derr, then chief executive of Chevron, told a San Francisco audience, “Iraq possesses huge reserves of oil and gas — reserves I’d love Chevron to have access to.”
    A new oil law set to go before the Iraqi Parliament this month would, if passed, go a long way toward helping the oil companies achieve their goal. The Iraq hydrocarbon law would take the majority of Iraq’s oil out of the exclusive hands of the Iraqi government and open it to international oil companies for a generation or more.
    In March 2001, the National Energy Policy Development Group (better known as Vice President Dick Cheney’s energy task force), which included executives of America’s largest energy companies, recommended that the United States government support initiatives by Middle Eastern countries “to open up areas of their energy sectors to foreign investment.” One invasion and a great deal of political engineering by the Bush administration later, this is exactly what the proposed Iraq oil law would achieve. It does so to the benefit of the companies, but to the great detriment of Iraq’s economy, democracy and sovereignty.
    Since the invasion of Iraq, the Bush administration has been aggressive in shepherding the oil law toward passage. It is one of the president’s benchmarks for the government of Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki, a fact that Mr. Bush, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Gen. William Casey, Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad and other administration officials are publicly emphasizing with increasing urgency.
    The administration has highlighted the law’s revenue sharing plan, under which the central government would distribute oil revenues throughout the nation on a per capita basis. But the benefits of this excellent proposal are radically undercut by the law’s many other provisions — these allow much (if not most) of Iraq’s oil revenues to flow out of the country and into the pockets of international oil companies.
    The law would transform Iraq’s oil industry from a nationalized model closed to American oil companies except for limited (although highly lucrative) marketing contracts, into a commercial industry, all-but-privatized, that is fully open to all international oil companies.
    The Iraq National Oil Company would have exclusive control of just 17 of Iraq’s 80 known oil fields, leaving two-thirds of known — and all of its as yet undiscovered — fields open to foreign control.
    The foreign companies would not have to invest their earnings in the Iraqi economy, partner with Iraqi companies, hire Iraqi workers or share new technologies. They could even ride out Iraq’s current “instability” by signing contracts now, while the Iraqi government is at its weakest, and then wait at least two years before even setting foot in the country. The vast majority of Iraq’s oil would then be left underground for at least two years rather than being used for the country’s economic development.
    The international oil companies could also be offered some of the most corporate-friendly contracts in the world, including what are called production sharing agreements. These agreements are the oil industry’s preferred model, but are roundly rejected by all the top oil producing countries in the Middle East because they grant long-term contracts (20 to 35 years in the case of Iraq’s draft law) and greater control, ownership and profits to the companies than other models. In fact, they are used for only approximately 12 percent of the world’s oil.
    Iraq’s neighbors Iran, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia maintain nationalized oil systems and have outlawed foreign control over oil development. They all hire international oil companies as contractors to provide specific services as needed, for a limited duration, and without giving the foreign company any direct interest in the oil produced.
    Iraqis may very well choose to use the expertise and experience of international oil companies. They are most likely to do so in a manner that best serves their own needs if they are freed from the tremendous external pressure being exercised by the Bush administration, the oil corporations — and the presence of 140,000 members of the American military.
    Iraq’s five trade union federations, representing hundreds of thousands of workers, released a statement opposing the law and rejecting “the handing of control over oil to foreign companies, which would undermine the sovereignty of the state and the dignity of the Iraqi people.” They ask for more time, less pressure and a chance at the democracy they have been promised.

  7. USA is a 400 year ‘young’ country of colonising Europeans and brutalised Hopi americans.
    It is a Mercantile nation with a Military .So no Human values move it .
    America, for all its Advertised values of Freedom , Liberty does not care for any other nation except itself – it wants a ‘right of way’ in everything .
    Thats one part of the reason – the other reason is the worldwide apathy to Islamic nations that cannot be truly Democratic – not one !

  8. (Just a different point of view)
    US is the sole super power today. What the US is doing is bad, but if we look at what it can do….i think the world is still a much better place. When we criticize US so convincingly and unilaterally, I wonder how we or any other nation in similar position would have acted. Not to forget..terrorism is a strange, un-understandable, illogical phenomenon and many more mistakes are going to be committed if we are serious about fighting it. Also remember that Bush is the only world leader who is speaking all out against terrorism. But we know his time is up. We will see a much more moderate american president next time, most probably a lady. Lets wait and see how safe the world would then be. I am very optimistic though

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