BAGHDAD: NO BUSH - NO
(just in from Rosemarie)
by MAX WATTS
4:33am Thu Mar 20 '03
(Modified on 8:05am Thu Mar 20 '03)
Thursday 20 March 2003 - 3:40 am
Source - Sydney Indymedia: http://sydney.indymedia.org
This news story: http://sydney.indymedia.org/front.php3?article_id=27784&group=webcast
I have been on tel and email to/from Baghdad. The consensus of what I'm getting is that Bush Blair Howard et.al (who is their all ?) are totally off the planet. Wrong. Nuts.
1/ just in from rosemarie:
Sent: Thursday, March 20,
2003 2:47 AM
Subject: AS THE TIME DRAWS NIGH
This morning I was asked on radio live, what is the mood of the people. I was cut off as I was telling how the people were preparing calmly for the expected attack.
It seems that the architects of this war think that the Iraqis will be knocked over like a row of skittles - or that people will rise up against Saddam Hussein.
It is like expecting the English people to rise up against Winston Churchill during the Battle of Britain. Now doubt Hitler wished they would!
(well, there was, Lord Halifax, who would have made deals with Hitler. But he had no support outside of the the Cliveden set, their lordly halls..)
The Bush camp seems to think the Shi'ites will rise up and work the "regime change" for them - or that they, or other Iraqis will welcome American soldiers as "liberators". Nothing could be farther from the truth. Have they learnt nothing from Vietnam?
The Shi'ites do not want a government which will just be a puppet of the United States either. All the Iraqis I have spoken to want the sanctions lifted, because they have caused great suffering, and none of us savours the prospect of being bombed to bits. Bombing is no way to win friends and influence people!
As for the Human Shields, our mood is one of facing the expected onslaught and preparing for it. The bombing could start any time.
People are buying up stores of food and bottled water to last us through the bombing. Most people are calm and quietly determined. A spirit of camaraderie is growing where once there was dissension. With more than twenty nations represented we are a united nations of peoples, working together, speaking many different languages. We have made many friends. They have become our comrades, our sisters and brothers.
Together we face the dangers of an unjust war and a fearful bombing blitz. We might get blasted to bits. But our spirits are strong, because we know, with truth and courage, we will prevail in the end.
--- who knows how long the bombing blits will last?
Bye for now - let's hope the bombing does not start tonight!
Rosemarie - Re Australian doctor: GD
As for your request, I am going to visit a Paediatric hospital tomorrow morning. In the meantime, I have the following to contribute. This is about the medical effects of the sanctions:
From an interview with Dr Murtadha Hassan, Haematologist, Paediatric Hospital, Saddam Medical City.
The paediatric hospital is a specialist hospital taking in children with sever, chronic or complicated illnesses. It is a teaching hospital.
"The incidence of child leukaemia has increased in the last 10 years due to the use (by America) of depleted uranium in warheads"
NB mw: US ARMY SPOKESPERSON EX KUWAIT: "we shall use depleted uranium shell in the coming "regime change". It is quite harmless, not radio-active. (sorry, I don't have the exact quote) if anyone disbelieves, check it out for yourself !
Dr Murtadha said. Child mortality rates from leukaemia have also increased, he said, because the medicines required for the treatment of leukaemia are not available, as a result of the sanctions.
"The treatment of leukaemia is very sophisticated and involves many courses of treatment. Each course of treatment requires three to four different types of medicines. If one of the medicines is not available, the course of treatment will not work, so the rate of relapse is high." Dr Murtadha said.
At an earlier visit to the hospital, I saw a young mother weeping silently over her daughter lying listless in her bed. Shahad, who is only seven years old, has been diagnosed with acute leukaemia. She has only weeks to live. Her mother could not hold back her tears.
Soon Shahad will become another victim of the sanctions.
SUMMARY (slightly edited) of several tel conversations with Baghdad, particularly with Wayne Coles-Janess:
The people I (Wayne) have been talking to - during the past 5 weeks in Iraq - in Baghdad, Basra, other places, have changed quite remarkably in the past week or so.
MW: Contrary to much of the "media information" received here, Wayne is not accompanied by a "regime minder". He has moved freely at all times, in all places, filming as he went. Nor have any of his (or Rosemarie's) transmissions, ems or phone calls been "censored
Wayne: People are used to living under a dictatorship, but this is not their big problem. Before it was just "getting on with of daily life", many problems due to the sanctions But I have noted a big change in the past few days. Previously quite ordinary People have been "galvanised", politicised.
I can't give you percentages, numbers but the impression I get is that it's great majority are now against the Americans. Even if some are unhappy with Saddam, the feeling now is: "He is our President".
"We don't want a new President delivered on an American tank !"
The Western media, the "choco journos", here for 10 days.. have no understanding of the History, the pride, of the people. When the Iraqis are told, by Bush, the Americans, they "can't have this president" (Saddam) they get very annoyed, upset.
Before they may not have been happy about Saddam, but thanks to Bush he has gained much popularity, "he is our president." Not Bush'es.
Wayne: Above all, I'd say the Western media, the Americans, have no idea of the coming war. They seem to think they can bomb for a few days, and then walk in. No way. There would be a very vicious fight here, in Baghdad. With horrendous losses.
People feel it is their country which is being invaded. No, I don't think there will be a "mass revolt" against the regime, against the Saddam government. And it won't be over in two days. Not in two weeks, not in two months There will be years of fighting.
The people here, not just the army, the police, the militia, the ordinary people, are armed. Like, they say: "I have my Kalashnikov, my brother has his Kalashnikov, we will defend our city if it is invaded.."
These people, the men, have all been in the army. Well trained. Some for three, others for 6, or 9, years.
And they insist on their proud heritage.
Our government is, will be, our own choice.
Not imposed by some Western invader.
Two weeks ago people worried about peace, about getting the embargo lifted. Now it's our "Integrity". Our "Pride".
I asked Wayne if these remarks were conditioned by him being - as many western sources say - "under the supervision of "Minders".
Wayne: That is absolute garbage. I have never been "minded", in the five weeks I travelled all over, filmed, spoken with whom I want, met, looked for. I walk around town at 5 am, with my bags, camera, near a machine-gun nest in Sydney, if I was "Arab" looking, I'd be jumped by the cops here no one pays any attention.
I asked about the human shields, if many have left. "one group, pretty far out I called them the "Human Tissue Shields". They left. The others, no. I've met with them, Rosemarie..
Q: what about the Shiites, the Kurds ?
A: here there seems no such difference, between different people. They don't bring this out They are just people. And they have guns, whoever.. they are..
A quick comment on this article.
Never give up
by John Morris
8:05am Thu Mar 20 '03
Good luck Rosmarie et al.
I think modern history backs up the your statement that Baghdad will be hard to take.
Moscow repelled Napolean twice, decimating his army and then did the same to Hitler, breaking his ascendency.
Perhaps this may be the only fruit of this - the US war machine driven again to collapse and the end of its ascent to Empire.
I think there is a strong chance the US will stop short and fragment the country, with an increased sanction regime on Iraq and a US oil field puppet in something they'll call "Free Iraq".
Sorry to harp on about the obvious, but you will send pictures via the net to indymedia. Will be necessary to show the world what the US is doing.