Monday, September 04, 2006

Peace in Lebanon, but U.S. prepares for war on Iran

Darrell Rankin, an anti-war colleague, wrote this compelling piece in Peoples' Voice about U.S. preparations for war on Iran. He urges the anti-war movement to prepare for new mobilizations to block another senseless, disastrous war.

It is reprinted here with Darrell's kind permission.

Peace in Lebanon, but U.S. prepares for war on Iran

By Darrell Rankin, People's Voice, Sept. 1, 2006

AFTER A MONTH of criminal 'shock and awe' bombings and a stalled ground war by Israel in Lebanon, U.S. President Bush and the Israeli government accepted what could be a temporary peace arrangement in the U.N. Security Council on August 11.

Despite powerful antiwar protests and anti-imperialist resistance, it is increasingly clear that the cease fire must be used to prepare for greater unity and actions to block more dangerous imperialist aims.

Tens of thousands of Canadians protested against supporters of Israeli war crimes such as Prime Minister Stephen Harper. As the war continued, the Communist Party of Canada called for Harper's resignation and all opposition parties started to reflect the popular opposition to Harper.

Israel planned the war for at least two years with the full approval of the U.S. Launched to demolish any hope for ending its occupation of Palestinian territories and to advance U.S. strategic aims in the Middle East, the war has backfired.

The war gave popular forces courage and energy throughout the world to resist imperialism and realize justice. Calls are growing for a boycott of the racist, expansionist state of Israel. More people are becoming aware of the broader imperialist danger.

The war and Israel's butchery in the occupied territory of Gaza may be a prelude to a far 'greater' war - a massive U.S. onslaught against Iran and possibly Syria with the ill-conceived aim of crushing all resistance in a reshaped "new" Middle East, looting the oil resources and bolstering U.S. imperialist hegemony.

This is a futile and extremely dangerous strategy that would mark a further turn in foreign policy to fascist-like solutions for the serious impasses of U.S. imperialism, adding to pressures for reactionary crackdowns in the U.S. and its allies.

A growing chorus of commentators, intelligence experts, U.S. military officers, the Israeli government and 'sources' close to the Bush administration declare that the imminent target is Iran, viewed by U.S. imperialism and Israel alike as the main obstacle and backer of resistance forces in the region.

The far-right Bush administration agreed to a ceasefire in the following circumstances: a fierce and united resistance in Lebanon that won support among anti-imperialist forces everywhere and made proU.S. regimes more unpopular; signs of a growing Israeli opposition to the war; growing calls for a ceasefire (Arab League, Non-Aligned Movement of one hundred countries, some NATO countries, and massive protests around the world, including 100,000 people in London).

Without a doubt, Lebanon's resistance forces are being celebrated throughout the country and beyond for defeating the Israeli ground invasion, which until August 8 went no further than three kilometers. The victory was paid for by resistance fighters, by hundreds of civilians who died from Israeli air and artillery massacres, and by those who will die prematurely from a destroyed economy and from Israeli cluster bombs that now cover much of South Lebanon.

But it is not clear that Bush was forced to accept a ceasefire. Rather, U.S. imperialism led by the far-right Bush administration can equally justify the ceasefire as a convenient pause before attacking Iran. U.S. forces are now on alert and ready to destroy over 10,000 targets in Iran almost simultaneously.

A leading commentator, Seymour Hersh, writes that "some officers serving the (U.S.) Joint Chiefs of Staff remain deeply concerned that the (Bush) Administration will have a far more positive assessment of (Israel's) air campaign than they should." (New Yorker, August 21).

With absolutely no evidence and complete hypocrisy, the U.S. and Israel, which have thousands of nuclear weapons, are accusing Iran of intentions to develop and use nuclear weapons. Iran insists it aims only to develop nuclear power, a right enjoyed by all members of the United Nations.

Iran is widely expected to reject a United Nations Security Council resolution demanding that it abandon its nuclear programs by August 31. If Iran ignores the resolution, the Security Council could impose sanctions, which would be completely unjustified and contrary to the U.N. Charter and other basic principles of international law.

In short, imperialism would have once again influenced the U.N. Security Council to impose sanctions that could be as deadly as those endured by Iraq from 1991 to 2003. France, China or Russia may veto such sanctions.

The danger is that the U.S. will consider any 'failure' by the U.N. to act against Iran as a green light for a preemptive war and regime change.

This struggle is also increasingly linked to the defence of democratic freedoms. In one shocking development, some Zionist organizations in Canada have demanded police repression of anti-war demonstrations, taking the so-called 'war on terror' to new extremes.

Despite this, the anti-war movement is growing, and the CLC continues to make opposition to the Afghan debacle a priority. Every effort is needed to build on this trend, including the October 28 Canada-wide day of action against the occupation of Afghanistan.

As humanity mourns the many hundreds of dead in the latest conflict, we must prepare for new mobilizations to block the preparations by the U.S. for yet another war.

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4 comment(s):

it's so good to hear the anti-war movement is growing. interesting there's never been the massive protests like with vietnam, but the again there's been no draft (yet)

By Blogger Scout, at 2:43 AM  

Arrrgh, scout, not the D-word. Hopefully we'll be out of Afghanistan ASAP and we won't have to worry about it.

Great article, annamarie. Your site is such a treat both content-wise and visually.

BTW, you're tagged!

By Anonymous jj, at 9:24 PM  

Thanks both of you!

By Blogger Annamarie, at 12:04 AM  

btw, JJ, I am not able to post comment on your site. It keeps saying something about a Google length header required...?

Anyway, I'll answer your tag questions in a couple days when I have a bit more time...

By Blogger Annamarie, at 12:14 AM  

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