UK, January 28, 2010 (Pal Telegraph) – Tomorrow we see Ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair face the Iraq inquiry in London. However, there is much more to this than the reasons for going to war. We have seen repeated violations by those privileged to be in office, and yet war crimes are carried out on an almost daily basis. As it stands at the moment, one could say with great confidence that the respective leaders — secretary of defense, foreign minister and chiefs of staff, etc.– have committed and continue to commit war crimes against humankind.
As far as the previous regimes are concerned, that implicates George Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Condoleezza Rice and many others. On this side of the pond, it includes Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, Bob Ainsworth, John Hutton, Des Browne, John Reid, Geoff Hoon, George Robertson, David Miliband, Margaret Beckett, Jack Straw, Robin Cook, etc. (However, in regard to Robin Cook, he never agreed with the war and resigned later on moral and ethical grounds.)
The list doesn’t simply stop there; we also have to implicate all of the NATO countries, their leaders and staff and — last but not least — Israel, which has totally abused the vast array of weapons that is contained in its arsenal.
We have to fully understand that many of today’s so-called conventional weapons are in actual fact WMDs, since they contain uranium components. Many other weapons used were also totally illegal in their usage. So what constitutes a war crime and, furthermore, genocide?
Every leader and his or her senior staff members are fully aware of every stage of a conflict or war. They are briefed on a regular basis on all aspects of the war, including logistical support (i.e. what is being sent and associated costs, etc.) — all of which are vetted by those in senior positions, including the chancellor. It comes with the title that you have to take full responsibility if you become involved or implicated in any wrong doing.
Today Gordon Brown hosted yet another conference on Afghanistan, and he proclaimed this will be a decisive year. What exactly is meant by this statement is anyone’s guess, but for sure this year is going to be a blood bath. If one is losing a war, or if there is a risk of losing, you should immediately put in more troops or implement a phased pull out. Yet, instead, we see another surge planned, but with no apparent rush to follow through.
We also again see a change of tack in that both the U.S. and UK now admit they have to talk to the Taliban, possibly employing some of its members by giving them jobs in the government.
However, we must recognize that the Taliban are still holding the cards and control a vast majority of the country. They may be poorly equipped compared to the coalition forces, but they are relatively hardened fighters who know their country better than the invading forces and have the spirit needed to endure the impossible. In all such conflicts, local militias are typically never defeated.
In the winter months, such militias normally keep a low profile. However, this winter has been one of their most active. This is a clear warning to the West that soon the spring will be upon us and this is when the Taliban will mobilize into a significant force. Regrettably, the coalition forces will sustain very heavy losses this year, perhaps almost double those in 2009.
Meanwhile, we now are making the same mistake in north Yemen. Despite the superiority of the Saudi Arabian armed forces and the continuous aerial bombardment by both the U.S. and Saudi Air Force, the Saudis have lost 82 soldiers and 21 are missing.
I have always believed that we in the West have to change our “iron fist” foreign policy and pull out of this game. Bring all the troops home and close all bases on Islamic soil. Once this has been done, terrorism as we know it will cease. Then we have to learn to negotiate and trade with Middle Eastern countries and not try to take their resources or control their markets. We must totally change our foreign policy. Unfortunately, the U.S. must take the majority of the blame for implying it is the police of the world. When there is any regional conflict, it should be dealt with by those involved and the adjoining countries, not by the West — which in general has no understanding of the complexity of tribal groups or their religions.
I would ask the question why a conference on Afghanistan is being held in London with a strong U.S. and NATO presence?Why isn’t such a conference being held in Iran, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan or Pakistan, and excluding the U.S., UK and EU? Why do we always have to control such events, especially when we do not understand how such countries think? The fact that we act this way really does show signs of colonialism and imperialistic greed.
Back to the topic at hand. Are Western leaders and senior politicians guilty of war crimes or genocide? The answer is clearly yes. If one chooses to use a weapon that could be considered to be an WMD, then you are in breach of the Geneva Conventions and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Where have these weapons been used, where are they currently being used and by whom? We have to turn the clock back to the mid 1940s when the authorities realized during atomic weapons testing the potential of creating radioactive nanoparticle aerosols that could be released over the battlefield. A memo giving details of their evil intentions is reproduced below. It must be clearly understood that in 1943, nuclear experts were discussing the advantages of using fine dust as a weapon. One such document was issued on Oct. 30, 1943, stating: “It is recommended that a decision be obtained from a competent authority authorizing additional work pertaining to the use of radioactive materials, in order that this country is ready to use such materials or to defend itself against the use of such materials.” This same document contained the following information:
As a gas warfare instrument, the material would be ground into particles of microscopic size to form dust and smoke and distributed by a ground-fired projectile, land vehicles or aerial bombs. In this form, it would be inhaled. The amount necessary to cause death to a person inhaling the material is extremely small. It has been estimated that one millionth of a gram accumulating in a person’s body would be fatal. There are no known methods of treatment.
Two factors appear to increase the effectiveness of radioactive dust or smoke when used as a weapon. These are: (1) It cannot be detected by the senses; (2) It can be distributed in a dust or smoke form so finely powdered that it will permeate through a standard gas mask filter in quantities large enough to be extremely damaging.
This document explains why today’s weapons are not only highly effective in their ability to penetrate deep into the target, but also how their pyrophoric qualities allows them to ignite spontaneously and create a huge cloud of fine DU dust that becomes a lethal airborne aerosol. I have a copy of this memo.
Now the scene was set for these crazy-minded scientists to develop the weapons that we see today. They have been re-categorized as conventional weapons, when in actual fact they are clearly WMDs.
How do these weapons violate the Geneva Conventions? The use of depleted uranium (DU) was condemned in 2000 by experts from Germany, namely Prof. Dr. Albrecht Schott and Prof. Dr Siegwart Horst Gunther. In their proposal to phohibit DU, they stated: “Given that we know that the chemical and radioiogical toxicity of depleted uranium and its compounds causes damage to humans, animals and the ecological cycle, we demand that the military and civilian use of depleted uranium (DU) be banned.” The doctors went on to conclude that “the preservation of creation and the dignity of humankind forbid the use of DU. The invasion of DU, and the compounds produced by its self-ignition due to heat, make soil and water uninhabitable for thousands of years (the half-life of uranium is 4.5 billion years; uranium forms long-term radiologically dangerous decay products).”
The military use of DU violates current international humanitarian law, including the principle that there is no unlimited right to choose the means and methods of warfare (Art. 22 Hague Convention VI [HCIV] and Art. 35 of the Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions [GP1]); the ban on causing unnecessary suffering and superfluous injury (Art. 23 HCIV; Art. 35 GP1); the prohibition of indiscriminate warfare (Art. 51 §4c and 5b GPI) and understanding that poison or poisoned weapons will not be used. It also contradicts the right to life established by Resolution 1996/16 passed by the UN Subcommittee on Human Rights. The resolutions calls for the following:
1. A ban on the use, development, production, transport, storage and possession of DU weapons and DU armour-plating, as well as on all other military uses of DU.
2. Medical treatment of all victims of DU, particularly children.
3. Destruction of all DU weapons and means of their deployment and assurance of secure storage of uranium in a stable chemical compound.
4. A ban on the civilian use of DU to protect against accidental exposure to uranium or its compounds.
5. Decontamination of all military and civilian equipment contaminated by DU.
6. Decontamination of all territory tainted by DU. This includes theaters of war as well as military practice ranges and other areas where DU has been deployed.
7. Conversion of the global stocks of DU (approximately 2-3 million tons) from its presently insufficiently stable form into a stable uranium oxide, followed by safe deposition.
8. Punishment of the military use of DU as a war crime (in accordance with Art. 85 §3b GP1; Art. 6b IMT Statute; Art. 2c, 3a and b ICTY Statute; and Art. 8 §2b Statute of Rome).
9. Redress of damage caused by DU use according to customary liability principles in international (humanitarian) law.
10. Creation of a center for the worldwide documentation of all DU-contaminated regions, particularly theaters of war, military practice ranges, scenes of accidents, etc., and to study the DU problem.
It is interesting to read a report by Leuren Moret. U.S. Expert Leuren Moret gave in her article, “Depleted Uranium: the Trojan Horse of Nuclear War” (July 8, 2004), a full account of the issues relating to DU. Moret’s contribution to the fight against DU is exemplary and I urge you to read the article in full as well, as the many other articles she has written. In this particular article, she discusses four reasons why using depleted uranium weapons violates the UN Convention on Human Rights:
LEGALITY TEST FOR WEAPONS UNDER INTERNATIONAL LAW
Temporal test – Weapons must not continue to act after the battle is over.
Environmental test – Weapons must not be unduly harmful to the environment.
Territorial test – Weapons must not act off of the battlefield.
Humaneness test – Weapons must not kill or wound inhumanely.
I have so many other documents from both military and civil sources that clearly say there is no safe level of uranium and therefore any type of uranium that is allowed to enter our atmosphere (including low-level radiation) is totally against the Geneva Conventions.
Most people would be shocked to learn that it was Israel that first used weapons containing DU extensively (with the assistance of U.S. military experts) during the Yom Kippur War (October 1973). The IOF has used these weapons almost continuously since then, in all areas of conflict — particularly during the 2006 Lebanon conflict and again during Cast Lead in 2008/9. One must also remember that these weapons would have been fired earlier within Israel territory, on a test basis and also during IOF exercises.
The US, UK and NATO forces also have used DU weapons, in the Balkans in 1995 and later in Kuwait, Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Gaza and Pakistan. It would also appear that such weapons have been used in Somalia and now in Yemen. Because these WMDs are totally indiscriminate and do not recognize international borders, their debris can drift all over the globe. There is sometimes huge clouds of nanoparticle aerosols floating in the earth’s atmosphere, and it only takes one particle to enter your lung and inflict damage. Remember: Millions of nanoparticles are issued by each weapon.
It makes one feel acutely sick to know that a few select people in high places have known the consequences of such weapons and the magnitude and levels of contamination, both within a given conflict area and beyond. They knew DU-containing weapons can be considered a depopulation tool that is totally indiscriminate in its effects. As an example, when Israel used them in Lebanon and Gaza, it also contaminated its own Israeli population, land, crops and water supply.
So there you have it…..We know where the products are made, who exports them and who uses them. We know all the countries involved or implicated (the United States, UK and other NATO countries, not forgetting Israel). We know all the presidents, prime ministers, senior members of government, and chiefs of staff, etc.
These countries have already caused immeasurable suffering and death in the Balkans. They have destroyed the genetics of the people of Iraq and soon probably the residents of Afghanistan. They have contaminated Lebanon and Gaza, and as a result of their actions, adjacent countries and states such as the Punjab are contaminated as well. They have also carried out one of the greatest crimes of all, and that is to contaminate their own troops and their own populations. The IOF’s latest conflict in Gaza is a classic example that is still ongoing. Only this week I saw pictures of badly disfigured babies being born in a Gaza hospital. In Fallujah and Basra, women are scared to have a child.
Maybe you, the jury, can now reach a verdict? Are all of the above-listed countries guilty of war crimes, genocide or both? From my perspective, they certainly are. I would repeat a question I have asked so many times before: What is the reason for the existence of the United Nations? And why does a person within the UN assigned to deal with such terrible atrocities – Francis Deng, Special Adviser for the Prevention of Genocide — do nothing?
Only the ordinary people in this world can turn around this situation. It will take much courage and you may lose many friends on the way who think you are insane. It’s entirely up to you. When you look into that sweet face of your child or grandchild, ask yourself, “How can I leave him or her this legacy?” Be strong and bless you all.