Jon Kofas writes:Like many Westerners who back the U.S. occupation in Iraq, Istvan Simon has convinced himself that the insurgency can be dismissed as "terrorist" or unpopular. These statements make many in the West feel better about the daily war crimes that the occupiers commit against the poor people of Iraq in the name of civilization, in the name of "democracy", in the name of "fighting terrorism." This does not mean that al-Sadr or al-Zarqawi are angels and not opportunists, but who gave rise to these people and so many of their followers? Demonizing, rather than analyzing the nature of the resistance to the occupation does not serve the interests of anyone, including the occupiers who ostensibly want "peace and prosperity" for Iraq. The situation in Iraq is very similar to that of Algeria under French occupation (1954-1962). Among many others who have made this comparison in the past year, Pierre Beaudry, "Will Bush or Kerry Learn a Lesson From De Gaulle" (Executive Intelligence Review 18 June 2004) is a good start for those wishing to analyze the situation and understand what is happening, rather than engage in vacuous rhetoric and eulogies of U.S. policy. De Gaulle recognized the political, economic, and social costs, and the futility of continued war and occupation of a Muslim country. Neither Bush nor Kerry have the kind of vision and political depth that De Gaulle demonstrated. It is equally sad to see apologists of the occupation engage in the same types of arguments of demonizing, categorizing, and especially homogenizing the enemy as they did with all ani-Western movements during the Cold War. Iraq (Mesopotamia) has survived thousands of invasions since 3,500 B.C., and this tragedy shall pass as well. The land of the Sumerians and Babylonians will revert to its people, who may be subjected to another Saddam or may be lucky enough to have some sort of benevolent regime. At least, they may get to live in peace without foreign occupiers dictating their lives.
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Ronald Hilton 2004
November 19, 2004