Iraq war: new book by Zaki Chehab

Bush and the Iraq war, cartoon

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Inside the fightback

(Monday 21 November 2005)

Iraq Ablaze: Inside the Insurgency by Zaki Chehab
(Tauris, £17.99)

GEOFF SIMONS, horrified by the human rights abuses in Iraq, praises Zaki Chehab’s insight into the insurgency.

THE US, basing its policy on a lie, bombs Iraq in “shock and awe” tactics.

Cruise missiles, creating fireballs and flinging white hot metal over half a mile, demolish entire buildings throughout Baghdad.

Depleted uranium munitions pollute the land.

Cluster bombs, each capable of destroying a vast acreage, are sometimes left unexploded for children to find.

Then the state’s institutions are demolished.

Some 36,000 houses are destroyed in Fallujah, while white phosphorus incendiaries are dropped on the Iraqi defenders in the city.

Around 35,000 civilians are rounded up, denied legal defence, abused and humiliated.

Torture becomes endemic in US-run penal institutions and the new Iraqi security forces – some of them Saddam’s former torturers – are allowed to continue their gruesome trade.

Starving Iraqi prisoners, enjoying the human rights of the new Iraq, are found paralysed and with the skin flayed off their limbs.

And, all the time, the daily humiliations of Iraqi families continue – doors smashed in, men hooded and bound, women abused, children traumatised.

The US soldiers, quick learners, are finding out that the Iraqis do not enjoy this sort of treatment and are apt to resist.

And so we have an insurgency, well described here by Zaki Chehab, one of the first journalists to broadcast interviews with the Iraqi resistance.

He provides ample details about what is happening to ordinary people in Iraq.

A female teacher complains to a US marine that her school has been transformed into a military base – and ends up being shot dead along with several students.

An Iraqi who is totally blind is shot dead while reaching for his stick because, according to the US soldiers, he might have been reaching for a weapon.

On her wedding night, an 18-year-old woman is taken to Abu Ghraib and raped by US soldiers.

4 thoughts on “Iraq war: new book by Zaki Chehab


    Join us in a campaign to expose and stop the use of these illegal weapons

    On November 1, the BBC reported that the U.S. and British governments have continued to use radioactive and chemically toxic Depleted Uranium weapons in Iraq, disregarding warnings that these weapons pose a cancer risk and are linked to numerous other health issues.

    According to the article, a report by a senior UN scientist said research showing how depleted uranium could cause cancer and other health problems was suppressed in a recent World Health Organization report:

    But Dr Keith Baverstock, who worked on the project, …described a process known as genotoxicity, which begins when depleted uranium dust is inhaled. “The particles that dissolve pose a risk – part radioactive – and part from the chemical toxicity in the lung,” he said. Later, he said, the material enters the body and the blood stream, potentially affecting bone marrow, the lymphatic system and the kidneys. The research was not included in the WHO report, and Dr Baverstock believes it was blocked.

    During the current Iraq War the U.S. use of radioactive DU weapons increased from 375 tons used in 1991 to 2200 tons. Geiger counter readings at sites in downtown Baghdad record radiation levels 1,000 and 2,000 times higher than background radiation. The Pentagon has bombed, occupied, tortured and contaminated Iraq. Millions of Iraqis are affected. Over one million U.S. soldiers have rotated into Iraq. Today, half of the 697,000 U.S. Gulf War troops from the 1991 war have reported serious medical problems and a significant increase in birth defects among their newborn children.

    The effects on the Iraqi population are far greater. Many other countries and U.S. communities near DU weapons plants, testing facilities, bases and arsenals have also been exposed to this radioactive material which has a half-life of 4.4 billions years.

    From: The Queens Tribune, 4/21/2005

    Queens veterans of the War in Iraq share military stories, pay tribute to their fallen comrades and talk to each other about their experiences – and one element keeps ringing true to many of the soldiers. Depleted uranium.

    On Tuesday night, in the basement of All Saint’s Episcopal Church in Sunnyside, there was a screening of Poison DUst, a documentary that chronicles the United States government’s use of depleted Uranium. …

    The movie makes a convincing case for its argument that depleted uranium is being used rampantly in Iraq, among other places, and that wherever it is used it causes terrible health problems. The audience was clearly disturbed by the film.

    “Isn’t there some crime being committed?” Bill Hagel, who attended, asked in the question and answer session that followed. “Shouldn’t someone be in jail?”
    You thought they came home safely from the war. They didn’t.

    Poison DUst tells the story of three young men from New York who could not get answers for their mysterious ailments after their National Guard unit’s 2003 tour of duty in Iraq. A mother reveals her fears about the extent of her child’s birth defects and the growing disability of her young husband – a vet.

    Filmmaker Sue Harris skillfully weaves, through interviews, their journey from personal trauma, to ‘positive’ test results for uranium poisoning, to learning the truth about radioactive Depleted Uranium weapons. Their frustrations in dealing with the Veterans Administration’s silence becomes outrage as they realize that thousands of other GI’s have the same symptoms.

    Veterans, anti-war organizers, environmentalists and health care providers will find this wake-up call to today’s GIs invaluable.

    Today more than 1/3 of all 1991 Gulf war vets are on VA Disability Benefits. Meanwhile U.S. use of radioactive DU weapons has increased six-fold from 1991 to Gulf War II!

    Scientists expose the Pentagon Cover-Up!

    Poison DUst includes a powerful indictment of past U.S. use of radioactive weapons….

    The U.S. military now admits that it deliberately radiated its own soldiers, known as the “Atomic Veterans,” during the Cold War. This documentary exposes U.S. use of radioactive weapons on peoples in not only Iraq, but the Marshall Islands; Vieques, Puerto Rico; Meihyang-Ri, South Korea; and Yugoslavia.

    Poison DUst mixes interviews with soldiers with experts such as Dr. Helen Caldicott, Dr. Michio Kaku, and Dr. Rosalie Bertell explaining how DU contamination spreads and how residue from exploded DU shells radiates people.

    A growing global resistance is expressed by former Attorney General Ramsey Clark, scientists and activists from Vieques, Puerto Rico, by New York Daily News reporter Juan Gonzalez, Sara Flounders of the International Action Center’s DU Education Project and Major Doug Rokke – the former U.S. Army DU Project head.

    Poison DUst is an important educational tool in building the movement to stop this horror.

    Help us get the word out–this important film is already being shown in schools, churches, community centers, and in a Coffee House set up for GIs outside of Fort Drum.

    Join the campaign to stop the use of these illegal weapons.

    How you can help:

    Order the video from – arrange showings in your community


  2. Pingback: Iraq war: dead British soldier’s father accuses Blair | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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