Iraq: cwi analysis – The bloody occupation of Iraq. Triumph of the US Empire?

The military assault on Iraq by US and British imperialism is now reaching its ‘end game’. At the time of writing the Iraqi regime is in the process of disintegration. This military ‘triumph’ of Bush and Blair is not unexpected, given the massive military superiority of US and British forces. It has followed weeks of unprecedented aerial bombardment.

Stop the war in Iraq. cwi comment and analysis.

The bloody occupation of Iraq: Triumph of the US Empire?

The US and British armed forces have now occupied Basra and are attempting to take full control of the capital, Baghdad. Bush and Blair are now hoping to be able to proclaim ‘victory’ in the next few days. The unexpectedly rapid military advance on Iraq’s two largest cities during the last week followed a period in which British and US forces became bogged down by fierce Iraqi resistance.

Despite continued resistance in some areas, it now appears that US and British imperialism are about to succeed in occupying Iraq, although how far this occupation will go remains to be seen. Before the assaults on Basra and Baghdad they had already achieved one of their primary war objectives and taken control of more than 600 oil wells and refineries in southern Iraq.

At this stage the fully bloody cost of this and the number of victims is not clear. Thousands, however, have been slaughtered. The full social, political, and economic consequences which flow from the invasion, are still to be felt.

This is the fourth war since 1990 that US and British imperialism has won – allegedly by the use of high-tech methods. Bush and Blair will attempt to exploit this victory politically.

However, this will prove to be a hollow victory in relation to Iraq, the Middle East and internationally. It will not be a repetition of the US victory in the first Gulf War in 1991which took place against an entirely different international background following the collapse of the former Soviet Union. The euphoria with which Bush and Blair will eventually proclaim their "victory" will eventually be followed by further social upheaval, conflict and mass anti-imperialist protests throughout the region.

Mass slaughter

Thousands of Iraqis have been killed or wounded in a few short weeks during which the horror of war rained down on Iraq’s cities in a savage aerial onslaught. Thousands have been killed in the push to take Baghdad. The toll of human slaughter has been increasing by the hour as the military have come under pressure from Washington to ‘get the job done as quickly as possible’. Hospitals in the capital reported that more than 100 casualties per hour were arriving and that medical staff is unable to cope.

This war has seen the use of brutal weapons of destruction. In less than three weeks, 725 Tomahawk cruise missiles were launched, 50 cluster bombs dropped and 12,000 precision-guided munitions fired. Two devastating ‘daisy cutters’ were used against Republican Guard units outside Baghdad. So far, no chemical or biological weapons have been found – one of the main justifications used by US and British imperialism to prosecute this war. If they find no weapons of mass destruction they will plant them. Truth is always the first casualty of war. In this conflict it has been transparently so. At each turn Blair and Bush have been forced to retract lies and false claims. Blair announced that British prisoners of war had been ‘executed’. Then he was compelled to retract it. They denied the bombing of a market place and then were forced to ‘investigate’ it.

The brutality of capitalism has been starkly revealed by this war and enraged millions of anti-war protestors around the world. Apart from the human tragedy, misery and slaughter, US imperialism has put aside US$80 billion for the military conflict and Britain at least £3 billion. This compares to the total UN programme for combating AIDS – which claims the lives of 5,500 people per day world wide – of US$3 billion. The price of just two of the 320 cruise missiles used in the opening blitz on Baghdad would feed 270,000 starving Angolans for a month. The ‘rich’ countries give US$14 billion to sub-Saharan Africa for which the US donates US$1.3 billion – just slightly more than the cost of a stealth bomber!

Rapid changes of war

This war has been marked by extremely rapid changes in the situation on both sides. However, the original picture painted by Bush, Rumsfeld and Blair, of an easy victory, where US and British soldiers would be greeted as ‘liberators’ and showered with flowers like in Paris 1944, initially failed to materialise. The slogan painted on a Basra wall – ‘Liberators go home’ – gave a clear expression of the initial attitude of the Iraqi population.

Now some sections appear to be welcoming the troops and are showing their relief at the end of the conflict and the regime. However, any welcome given to the troops today does not indicate that they will be welcomed for a lengthy stay. Imperialism will of course use this ‘welcome reception’. But as the 18th Century British Prime Minister said at the beginning of the war of ‘Jenkins Ear’ (The war between Britain and Spain in 1739): "Today they are ringing their bells tomorrow they will be wringing their hands". They may be wringing their hands quicker than they think.

In Basra one student was quoted saying: " We are caught between two enemies, Saddam and the British. Is this what they call liberation. We want our own government. We want our own security and our own law." Another shouted to a Challenger tank: "When are you going home? Soldier go away. We can look after our country now" (Independent, London, 4 April 2003).

US General Mattis, when asked what the Iraqi’s really think of the US forces’ arrival, said he had been: "delighted to see the crowds of cheering civilians, but then again the people of Cambodia had initially cheered the Khmer Rouge when they rolled into Phnom Penh" (Independent, 9 April 2003). This is hardly an optimistic assessment of the future!

At the very beginning of the war, US and British forces claimed extremely rapid advances with little or no resistance for a very short period. It soon became clear however that the campaign had become bogged down and faced heavy resistance. Basra was proclaimed to have ‘fallen’ within days. This was modified to a claim that Basra had been ‘secured’ – not taken. For almost three weeks the British army was not able to enter Basra. The same story was repeated for Nasiriyah, which was only ‘captured’ last week, having been ‘secured’ earlier in the war. Supply lines to Baghdad were extremely stretched, weak and subjected to attack by Iraqi forces.

Then, in a dramatic about-turn, British forces entered Basra and US forces are now engaged in fighting inside Baghdad and appear to have captured most of the city.

This conflict has seen many ebbs and flows, which have involved a number of turning points. At the beginning of the invasion, the CWI warned that US and British soldiers could face the possibility of stiff resistance from the Iraqi armed forces and sections of the population. The bitter hatred towards US and British imperialism could lead them to fight, despite their opposition to the Saddam dictatorship and divisions amongst the Sunni, Shia and Kurdish peoples. The latter make up 10% of Baghdad’s population. It seemed possible that Iraqi national consciousness could predominate over their opposition to the Saddam regime and lead them to fight US and British forces. This could result in the imperialist forces encountering stiff and determined opposition.

However we also warned that the hostility that existed to the Saddam dictatorship and its absence of a broad social basis could result in a collapse or partial collapse of the regime resulting in a relatively rapid military victory.

US and British imperialism miscalculated the situation that existed in Basra where they expected a rapid uprising by the population against the regime to greet them. They underestimated the deep-rooted suspicions and mistrust which developed towards them following 1991. The US military stood aside and allowed Saddam to massacre the Shia people of Basra who attempted to overthrow the dictatorship.

Wars do not develop in a predetermined manner. By its very nature the conduct of any war is subject to sharp and abrupt changes and accidental factors, which can change the course of its development. It is impossible to fully anticipate how any war will proceed – especially if there are no reliable forces on the ground able to accurately assess the attitude and mood of the population. This is particularly the case during the ‘fog of war’, with lies, propaganda and censorship being used by both sides.

It appears that the mass of the population have tended to stand aside from the fighting. Most of it seems to have been undertaken by the Republican Guard units, Fedayeen and militias of the Ba’ath Party. These forces offered heavy resistance in some areas but could not overcome the military might and power of the US, especially its awesome and modern means of destruction and firepower. The massive pounding of the Republican Guards, including the use of ‘daisy cutters’, has undoubtedly taken its toll and substantially weakened the Iraqi forces.

The hostility towards the Saddam Hussein regime and its lack of a widespread social base has meant that the mass of the population has not been prepared to participate in the fighting. The general feeling seems to be: ‘Let us end the nightmare – as soon as possible’. This, together with the constant aerial bombardment and prospect of certain defeat appear to have resulted in an implosion of these military forces in the last few days. This does not preclude some continued fighting in the cities for a period, which could still be quite substantial in some areas. It is not excluded that what remains of the Republican Guard and Fedayeen will attempt to regroup and make a last stand.

The ‘liberators’

The ‘victors’ will present recent developments in the war as justification for their actions. However it is also clear that the British and US troops have not been welcomed as ‘liberators’ or ‘heroes’ as Bush and Blair promised the soldiers who have been sent to fight this imperialist war.

For example, it appears that in Basra, which has a Shia majority, at best the British forces have generally been welcomed by silence – and often by looting. Even those who have been more receptive towards the troops have been so out of a sense of relief that the war and the regime are coming to and end. It is possible that some sections of the population will initially, for a short period, demonstrate a sense of relief that the war and the dictatorship are finished.

However this reaction is in marked contrast to the enthusiasm that initially greeted British troops sent to Northern Ireland in 1969 to ‘defend’ the Catholic population. The jubilation amongst local Shias that was evident when Israeli forces invaded southern Lebanon in 1982 has not been evident in Basra or Baghdad. Furthermore, the initial enthusiasm in Northern Ireland rapidly turned to hatred and opposition to the British army amongst Catholics. The jubilation in southern Lebanon turned into a bloody guerrilla war against the Israeli occupation, which ended in the final withdrawal of the Israeli army in 2000. This is a warning of what may develop in the next phase of the conflict in Iraq

Bush and Blair are basking in the glow of ‘victory’ but opposition and a bitter struggle against the occupation forces is bound to develop at a certain stage. The absence of an enthusiastic reception being offered to the soldiers as they have arrived in the cities is a barometer of the mood. The masses opposed Saddam but are not enthusiastic about foreign ‘liberation’ at the point of a bayonet. Moreover, the occupation is well understood by the Iraqi people to have been made in order to gain access to the vast oil reserves and to impose a strengthened US presence in the region.

US imperialism intends to initially establish ‘direct rule’ for a period and then establish an administration that is favourable to the interests of US imperialism. It appears that the initial regime will be headed by retired General Jay Garner – an arms trader (with SY Technologies) who has already profited from the war by selling missile systems vital for the attack and who also has links with the Israeli state.

Under his command will be a series of former US military commanders and Iraqi Quislings, such as Ahmad Chalabi of the exile Iraqi National Congress. Chalabi has not set foot in Baghdad for 45 years! He was sentenced in 1992 by a Jordanian court to 22 years hard labour for bank fraud following the collapse of the Petra bank that he had founded in 1977! The type of colonial administration envisaged by the US administration will rapidly run into massive opposition from the Iraqi population.

The plans already considered by the Bush regime for this ‘viceroy’-run country include the introduction of vicious neo-liberal policies, such as privatisation of oil fields and other sectors of the economy currently under state ownership, and the opening up of the economy to exploitation by imperialism. A deregulated oil industry will be used against OPEC to try to force down the price of oil.

US imperialism has promised economic investment and development for Iraq and its peoples. The same promise was made to the people of Afghanistan and even to those of the former Soviet Union. In reality little or nothing has been forthcoming. Wealth will be extracted from the country by imperialism not invested in it. The oil fields of the former Soviet Union have been opened to plunder by gangster-capitalism. The same will be done to Iraq. The attitude of imperialism towards the mass of the Iraqi people was illustrated by the attempt by some soldiers to charge money for bottles of water!

These policies will be carried out against the Iraqi people in collusion with a section of elite Iraqi exiles and capitalists/landlords from Iraq. Some commentators have reported that US and British forces have now been told to destroy as few Iraqi tanks as possible in order to maintain an Iraqi army following the military victory. The conquerors want to use remnants of the old Saddam state apparatus to repress the people of Iraq, if they feel it is necessary.

In Basra, the British forces have been faced with widespread looting, which they admitted they were powerless to police. One British officer complained that: "A power vacuum now exists". Yet was not the purpose of the invasion to smash the old power and establish an occupying force to fill the power vacuum! This shows the weakness of the position the imperialist forces are now in. They have announced they intend to try and establish a local police force and "re-establish law and order as soon as possible".

In Basra, a ‘local Sheik’ is apparently being appointed to run a new administration. It is a paradox that they have fought this war to smash the old Ba’ath party regime and are now being compelled to rely on sections of it to form a new administration. Is this not an echo of what happened in Mogadishu, in Somalia, in 1992, when US troops intervened following the overthrow of President Barre? Initially they collaborated with a local clan leader, Aideed. US forces tried to disarm his and other clans as they came into conflict with them but eventually they US troops were forced to withdraw.

Looting is now also reported in Baghdad and other cities. The imperialists have been taken aback by these developments. It shows they feared a genuine uprising of the Iraqi people and did not want an independent mass insurrection of the working class and poor in the cities. Following their ‘victory’ they will now do everything possible to try and prevent such a development – now or in the future.

Opposition

Opposition and resistance to a new stooge government are certain to develop amongst the Iraqi people. Urban guerrilla fighting, including the use of suicide bombers threatened by Saddam, is likely to develop following the ‘victory’ of imperialism. This is certain to increase in intensity the longer the occupation continues.

The effectiveness of suicide bombers is minimal in conventional military conflicts between armies. As part of a struggle against occupation forces in the cities, such tactics can act like a constant sore and undermine the confidence and morale of the occupying forces.

Like Afghanistan, where the imperialist occupation forces cannot leave the main cities and are still attacked within them, this will prove to be a Pyrrhic victory for US imperialism.

The opposition to future governments will also involve the re-emergence of struggle by the mass of the Iraqi people in the cities. The urban working class will engage in struggle against the new regime using traditional methods, including strikes and mass protests. Demands for democratic rights, social reform and an end to the occupation, are likely to be crucial issues for such protests and struggles.

Moreover, the repercussions of this war will be felt throughout the Middle East. The warning of Egyptian President Mubarak, that the war will "create one hundred Bin Ladens", will probably prove to be an underestimation of the consequences of this war. Chillingly, Bin Laden has issued a tape urging Muslims to launch suicide bombings in solidarity with the Iraqi people. The statement from the London Ambassador of the Arab League, that Arabs will never forget the US for this war, is a warning of the consequences that are yet to follow, as we have explained in other articles from the CWI.

This was a representative of the Arab ruling capitalist elite being compelled to give a faint echo of the indignation felt on the ‘Arab street’. The Egyptian youth shown on television screens ironically shouting, "Thank you, thank you, thank you, Mr. Bush, for waking up the Arabs", is a more graphic illustration of the mood amongst the Arab masses.

The war has already resulted in an explosive growth of hatred for US imperialism in all Arab countries. Such anger will also be directed towards those Arab rulers who are perceived as collaborating with Western imperialism.

The effects of this defeat will not be like those following the war on Afghanistan when the Taliban collapsed without conducting any real struggle. Arab youth will have been motivated by the fact that Iraqis at least attempted to fight and held out for some weeks against the invasion. It is, after all, better to be defeated fighting rather than be forced into submission with no struggle. Despite the repressive character of the Saddam dictatorship, the resistance that has been demonstrated against the invaders will, like the Palestinian Intifada, have laid down a tradition of struggle that will be taken up by the Arab masses.

Although, in the short term, the apparent victory of US imperialism may result in a certain disappointment, this will not last for a lengthy period of time. It will give way to further outbursts of anger, frustration, hatred and anti-imperialist consciousness. This will lead to a strengthening of Arab nationalism and of anti-imperialist movements. It also raises the prospect of the coming to power of anti-Western, right-wing Islamic fundamentalist regimes in some countries, such as Egypt or Saudi Arabia. It will also unfortunately strengthen reactionary forces like Bin Laden and al-Qa’ida.

Bush and Blair will undoubtedly organise a massive propaganda campaign to justify their war, arguing that they have yet again been proved to be correct. However, a massive anti-war movement developed internationally, including in the US and Britain, in the months leading up to and during the war. The outcome of the war will effect sections of the movement differently but a significant section of the anti-war movement is enraged and angry about the war – especially a new generation of young people who have taken the first steps to becoming politically active during this crisis. Amongst these there will remain a profound hatred of US and British imperialism. Many young people and anti-war campaigners will be looking for an explanation of what has taken place and why. A crucial question that is certain to emerge is: ‘How is it possible to defeat US imperialism and the awesome firepower that it now has at its disposal?’ Many will also ask the question: ‘Is it ever possible to defeat this seemingly invincible mighty Empire of US imperialism?

The working class and socialism

Potentially the mightiest power that exists on the planet is the international working class. A mass international socialist movement of the working class is the only force that can challenge and defeat US imperialism. One of the most important detachments for this struggle is the working class in the US, which can be convinced by, and won to, a mass international democratic socialist alternative to capitalism.

The experience of this war and other conflicts has shown that a military struggle alone is not enough to defeat US capitalism. The working class and youth in the USA are decisive in the fight against US imperialism and its military power. The CWI will develop this theme in future articles and publications.

However the possibility of the working class challenging and defeating powerful military machines has been shown in previous struggles. During the Spanish Civil War – particularly during the ‘July Days’ in 1936 – the working class smashed the Franco Fascist forces and took control of four fifths of Spain. It was only possible for Franco to eventually recover and win the civil war because of the incorrect policies of the leaders of the mass workers’ organisations.

In Iran, in 1978-79, a mass movement of the working class and poor overthrew the Shah’s brutal military regime. This was despite the absence of a revolutionary socialist leadership. However the lack of a mass socialist alternative meant that Khomeini was allowed to derail the movement and establish his own reactionary theocratic dictatorship.

Even the most powerful military machine can be split and defeated by a mass movement and social revolt. The heroic struggle of the National Liberation Front in Vietnam laid the basis for a revolt by big sections of the US working class and youth against the war, which, in turn, was decisive in forcing US imperialism to withdraw its forces.

Even the present conflict in Iraq has had an effect on some sections of the rank and file of the army and shows the potential that exists for the working class and a socialist programme to win support. The Guardian newspaper quoted one US marine as saying: "Bush is a rich bully. The US has no legal right to be here…this is the first free democratic country ever to occupy another without good reason." (The Guardian, London, 9 April 2003).

Although this unnamed marine was wrong about previous invasions by ‘democratic’ countries, he showed the opposition that is beginning to develop to Bush and what he represents.

The effects of the recent anti-war movement in the US – which has been far bigger than the anti-Vietnam War movement at a comparable stage of that war – are an indication of the potential for the building of a powerful opposition to capitalism and imperialism in the US. This will be fuelled by the deepening economic and social crisis that is beginning to develop there.

Others from the anti-war movement may question if the mass mobilisations of millions worldwide had any effect at all. After all, Bush and Blair were determined to prosecute this war. But the reality is they were forced to take into account the mass international protests of millions. This was one factor that drove them to go down the United Nations route, complicating their war plans. However, because of the vital strategic economic and political importance of this war for the Bush regime, the leaders of US imperialism were determined to go ahead and conduct the invasion.

Bush and Blair had agreed a military timetable and plan a long time before the war actually began. The question of Saddam’s alleged weapons of mass destruction was simply the excuse for war. The mass protests were not enough to stop it.

To achieve this aim would have required a mass movement of workers and young people armed with a socialist programme. It would have required the preparation and organisation of a mass general strike by the working class, not only to challenge the war but also to be prepared to take power and overthrow the capitalist system itself.

However, the massive protests – especially the earth-shattering international demonstrations by millions of people on 15 February – have been historic. They were a promissory note for future bigger mass protests. The significance of them must not now be lost amidst the current barrage of war propaganda.

War prepared for a long time

Bush and Blair have been planning this war for a long time. According to Sir Christopher Meyer, recently retired British ambassador to Washington, Bush, encouraged by his top aid, Paul Wolfowitz, wanted to go to war against Iraq following September 11. Blair succeeded in persuading the US administration to delay – firstly going after Bin Laden, then Afghanistan and then Iraq. (The Guardian, London, 4 April 2003).

A crucial factor in this war was the question of US imperialism clearly establishing itself in the role as the world’s single super power and ‘policeman of the world’ following the collapse of the former Soviet Union at the end of 1991. Sections of the US ruling class have prepared for this since the early 1990s. The Sunday Observer reports (London, 23 February 2003): "In 1992, Wolfowitz wrote a blueprint to ‘set the nation’s direction for the next century’ which is now the foreign policy of George W. Bush. Entitled ‘Defence Planning Guidance’ it put an onus on the Pentagon to ‘establish and protect a new order under unchallenged American authority. The US must be sure of deterring potential competitors from even aspiring to a larger regional or global role’ – including Germany or Japan. It contemplated the use of nuclear, biological and chemical weaponry pre-emptively’. Wolfowitz formed a group called ‘Project for the New American Century’ which included Cheney and Richard Perle. Two years ago this group produced another document that pondered that what was needed to assure US global power was ‘some catastrophic and catalysing event, like a new Pearl Harbour.’ It concluded that the need for a substantial American forces presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein."

These ideas were codified by the Bush regime in a document, ‘National Security Strategy’, which was published in September 2002.

This war has decisively changed international relations. It was fought because the current Bush regime considers that the strategic, political and economic interests of US imperialism are best served by securing a strong military base in the Gulf with control of Iraq’s oil fields. Once the ruling class, or a section of it which is in power, concludes that vital interests are at stake, it is prepared to go to war whatever the consequences. However, even mighty US imperialism was compelled to take the mass protests and mobilisations around the world, and especially in the US, into account in its political and military planning.

As the CWI has explained, the occupation of Iraq opens a new chapter in world relations and, in particular the role of US imperialism. Already sections of the Bush regime are considering further foreign policy adventures. It was not an accident that during this conflict Rumsfeld and Powell both have issued warnings to Syria and Iran and alleged that Saddam’s ‘weapons of mass destruction’ have been moved to Syria.

More threatening in terms of a potential crisis are the unfolding events in North Korea. Maurice Strong, Special Adviser to UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan, warned that: "There is such a complete breakdown of trust and confidence between these two countries [the US and North Korea] that they are now unable to read the intentions of the other, so there is real potential now for this to escalate into a conflict. I think war is unnecessary, it’s unthinkable and unfortunately it’s entirely possible" (Observer, London, 6 April 2003).

The unstable nature of the North Korean regime and the arrogance of the Bush ‘junta’ mean that an armed conflict, including a terrifying nuclear exchange, cannot be excluded. Other conflicts, like that between India and Pakistan can also erupt into major wars. Bush, by adopting the doctrine of the ‘pre-emptive’ strike, has given unstable regimes the justification to launch such an attack.

During the Iraqi crisis, inter-imperialist rivalries have re-emerged. The clash of interests between the imperialist powers will be a feature of the new world situation. The victory of US and Britain will not end these conflicts. On the contrary they will intensify in the coming period. Bush and Blair are mistaken if they think that their rivals will simply be prepared to accept Pax-Americana, as the two day summit between Russia, France and Germany in Russia on 11 – 12 April shows.

Anger and bitterness

Following the US/British ‘victory’ in Iraq, it is possible that a temporary mood of disappointment at the imperialist victory will affect many people in the imperialist countries and in the neo-colonial world. Amongst a broader layer, this may be reflected in attendance at the demonstrations and protests, which are already showing signs of a substantial decline. For a temporary period this mood of disappointment may develop in many countries of the neo-colonial world and also in some of the imperialist countries of Europe. However the anger and bitterness that have been aroused during this conflict will be reflected in further crises and massive movements against the rulers and the system that have produced this war.

Blair and Bush will attempt to use this ‘victory’ to strengthen their support. They may be able to do this to some degree for a temporary period. However, they will pay a heavy price as the consequences of the conflict erupt in the Middle East and internationally. At the same time, they are also confronted with a worsening international economic crisis. Bush and US imperialism hope that by securing the Iraqi oilfields, smashing the power of OPEC and forcing down the price of oil it will be possible to resolve the economic problems facing capitalism.

As the CWI has explained in other articles, this is an unlikely possibility because of the underlying problems in the economy, which will not be resolved even if there is a fall in the price of oil. At the same time, the Iraqi oil fields need massive investment to extract the wealth they contain. As the Financial Times pointed out: "The financial system has to be rebuilt from scratch; the debauched currency, in effect, re-launched. Iraq has great oil wealth but needs tens of billions of dollars in investment to upgrade its oil industry and rebuild its infrastructure. With foreign debts above $100 billion and war reparations to Kuwait absorbing a quarter of revenue, it will not get that investment" (The Financial Times, London, 8 April 2003).

The worsening economic crisis and attacks on the living standards of the working class will bring to the fore other aspects of the class struggle following this war – not least in the US and Britain. It is even possible that Bush, despite this apparent ‘victory’ will, like his father, become a one-term President. He may win the war and be defeated by economic recession. Even before ‘victory’ has been proclaimed, Prime Minister Aznar in Spain, Bush and Blair’s other main war ally, faces a major political crisis and may be the first casualty of this war amongst the capitalist leaders of the West. The crisis he faces is a warning to Blair and Bush of what awaits them.

The ‘victory’ that Bush and Blair will proclaim in the coming days will begin a new chapter in world relations and in the struggles of the working class and others exploited by capitalism and imperialism. The world of peace and progress promised by capitalist leaders during the 1990s has become a world of war, conflict and crisis. The vital task of building a mass socialist international alternative is now more urgent than ever.

  • End the occupation of Iraq
  • British and US troops out of Iraq
  • Let the Iraqi and Kurdish peoples decide their future
  • No Privatisations of oil or other resources
  • For a democratic socialist Iraq
  • For a voluntary, democratic socialist federation of the Middle East

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