‘Operation Desert Storm’, the massive air and missile aggression on Iraq was launched on January 17, 1991 at 2:30 a.m. local time.
That night as we were watching the TV, the programme was suddenly interrupted and we saw pictures of the Baghdad sky illuminated with what seemed to be anti-aircraft fire; we realized with horror that the war on Iraq had started. We stayed up all night, terrified, watching with dismay how beautiful Baghdad, the city of One Thousand and One Nights, was being massively bombarded.
Our thoughts and prayers were for our relatives and friends and for all Iraqis who could not escape from this hell. How many would die under the bombs and missiles which were falling ‘at random’ on residential areas all over Baghdad and other Iraqi cities?
I still shudder when remembering that awful night and all the other terrible nights of the ‘First Gulf War’, there was no possibility to communicate with our loved ones in Iraq, the U.S.’s first targets had been the telecommunication centres and electrical grid on which they had dropped Tungsten bombs. Iraqis were completely isolated, alone, desperately alone…in the dark…in the chaos, amidst the destruction caused by these brutal attacks from the air.
We watched in dismay how the beautiful country that many generations of Iraqis had worked so hard to build and develop was being destroyed. We watched with horror how the American and British ‘boys’ cheered whenever their bombs hit some ‘target’, killing Iraqis. No doubt that George Bush was enjoying it too, ‘bringing Iraq back to pre-industrial era’.
Many Americans thought it was right to attack Iraq, they had no qualms that the country’s civil infrastructure was being purposely destroyed and that many thousands of Iraqis were dying. They believed the coalition troops were attacking Iraq to ‘liberate’ Kuwait* and to prevent an Iraqi attack on the zionist entity.
Some westerners who had never met an Iraqi and who could not even locate Iraq on the map, were filled with hatred towards the Iraqi people, because they had been told ‘how Iraqi soldiers were taking premature babies out of incubators in Kuwait’ !!! (1) and some other terrible stories fabricated by the western media,. Others were so gullible that they really believed there was such a thing as the ‘Iraqi Super canon’!!!
The western media were the accomplices of the warmongers, continuously diffusing their lies and propaganda. According to Fair,the US media allowed less than 1% of their space to those who were opposed the war. Day after day they repeated George Bush’s mantra: ‘about establishing a New World Order’ and many people in the west believed that the destruction of Iraq was worthwhile to establish this so-called ‘New World Order’.
Seventeen years have passed, but the pain and outrage I felt that night have not diminished, neither has my resentment towards all those who participated in this criminal aggression on Iraq.
George Bush, Dan Quayle, James Baker, Dick Cheney, William Webster, Colin Powell, Norman Schwarzkopf and many others who share responsibility in attacking and destroying Iraq still remain to be judged for crimes against peace, for war crimes, for crimes against humanity and for other criminal acts committed in violation of the Charter of the United Nations, in violation of the international law, in violation of the Conventions of Geneva and The Hague, in violation of the Charter of Nürenberg and in violation of the laws regulating armed conflicts. By waging this illegal war on Iraq George Bush also violated the Constitution of the United States.
Bush’s imperialist ‘New World Order’ was based on the capitulation and submission of the people in the Middle East, principally on the surrender of oil-rich Iraq.
On this sad seventeenth anniversary of the launching of the criminal aggression on Iraq my thoughts are with all Iraqi patriots who are fighting to free their country from the foreign occupiers.
On this day, one of the beautiful Irish patriotic song comes into my mind (I have substituted the name Ireland with Iraq)
Come the day and come the hour
Come the power and the glory
We have come to answer
Our Country’s call
From all the provinces of Iraq
Together standing tall
Shoulder to shoulder
We’ll answer Iraq’s call
Hearts of steel
And heads unbowing
Vowing never to be broken
We will fight, until
We can fight no more
From all the provinces of Iraq
(1) It was the daughter of the Kuwaiti Ambassador in the US who made these false accusations in front of the cameras, pretending to be a Kuwaiti nurse who had witnessed these barbaric acts!!!
*Kuwait: an invention of the British Foreign Office ‘around an oil well ‘ to deny Iraq access to the sea and so limit its influence in the Gulf and maintain it under British dependence.