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IRAQ: The facts

Tim Brown takes issue with Martin Storey of France on the issue of Iraq: "Mr. Storey is grasping desperately at straws to defend his position on Iraq by using highly selective and exceedingly strained comparisons that have become a sort of comparing oranges with redwood trees because, since both are organic they are identical. I respect his right to oppose the war. But he'll have to do better than this in defense of his beliefs.

I would be interested to know the names of the countries where Mr. Storey lived that fit so closely the profile of Saddam's Iraq. Which of them, in addition to rampant poverty, ill health, lack of women's rights, and a dearth of hope, which I agree full exist in far too many countries, are also ruled by totalitarian dictators who are self-declared haters of the United States, have attacked their neighbors, sponsor terrorism, have programs of developing weapons of mass destruction including chemical, biological and nuclear weapons, and applauded 9/11? We are not attacking Iraq because of its poverty, health, problems, inadequate protection of women's rights, or the dearth of hope there, although all these things are abominations in a country will tens of billions of dollars of annual oil revenues, or should be to anyone who feels they are a morally upright liberal. We didn't invade Iraq when Saddam used chemical weapons against his own people nor did we, or the UN for than matter, act when he committed massive violation of human rights such as summary executions en masse, systematic torture, and so forth, crimes against humanity I assume Mr. Storey abhors. We are doing so because Saddam is a threat to our vital national interests who either has a death wish or is too arrogant and politically stupid to understand that all he had to do was stop threatening us and we would have left him alone to continue oppressing his own people.

The one thing I am finding most amazing about the anti-war movement is that it is mostly made up of exactly the same people who go into paroxysms of rage every time they think of Chile's Pinochet because he committed far less extensive crimes against humanity that Saddam, but who have not uttered a single peep against Fidel Castro's having jailed 80 dissidents within the past ten days. I spoke to a forum just yesterday and had a gentleman sitting at my side who hates Pinochet, loves Castro, and is virulently anti-war. After a few minutes discussion, in exasperation he finally said to me in front of a dozen people, and I quote: "Stop bringing up facts. They just confuse me and my mind is made up." A college graduate and very wealthy entrepreneur, at least he was being intellectually honest".

RH: I hesitate to comment since Iraq is one of the few countries I do not know. How the Iraqis feel abkout Saddam Husseun I do not know. Perhaps they say "He may be an SOB, but he's our SOB". Either he or a double appeared in a crowd today and was applauded. My position is that he is indeed their SOB. The Iraqi public is said to be one of the best educated of the Arab world.

Ronald Hilton - 4/4/03