05-Apr-2007

War Crimes

What justifies this?

Few people know about the crimes committed during the two sieges of Fallujah — Operation Vigilant Resolve, launched on April 5, 2004, and Operation Phantom Fury, in the following November — as a result of which 200,000 people became refugees. There are no official figures for civilian deaths.

In the face of repeated independent verification, U.S. forces have now acknowledged the use of chemical weapons, and yet there remains no sustained international outcry and no official response (let alone condemnation) from any government or the United Nations. The United States has overthrown a regime while supposedly searching for phantom weapons of mass destruction, only to use such weapons on the newly "liberated" civilian population. The cold hypocrisy of such actions is outweighed only by its extravagant viciousness.

Seventy articles of the Geneva conventions were breached in the two separate months of siege warfare. Despite calls to abolish the conventions by senior politicians, they remain an essential bulwark against the bullying tactics of the powerful, and a poignant index of the increasing impunity of the neo-colonial project. Their ethos is that the innocent, the weak, the defeated and the injured be afforded all the protection possible in times of conflict. The ethos of the U.S. government is that the weak and innocent are a hindrance to the acquisition of power and, occasionally, an opportunity for the expansion of profit.

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