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From the Eastern Daily Press, Wednesday, September 8, 2004:

Anti-war and anti Saddam

IAN SINCLAIR,
Braymeadow Lane,
Little Melton.

Martin Mears ('In Iraq with John Simpson, September 3) makes the inaccurate claim that "if the peace crowd had their way this man (Saddam Hussein) would still be in power ".

Key figures in the Stop the War Coalition, such as Tony Benn, Jeremy Corbyn and George Galloway, were demonstrating against Saddam Hussein when the British Government was busy supplying him with weapons.

As Mr Galloway explained in an interview on Radio 4: "I was the ... Founding member of the campaign against repression and for democratic rights in Iraq, in 1978, when Tony Blair was just an Ugly Rumour."

On March 24, 1988, an Early Day Motion (a political statement to which MPs can sign up to and support) was issued, condemning Iraq's use of chemical weapons.

Mr Benn, Mr Corbyn and Mr Galloway all supported it

Notable for their absence were the names of Mr Blair, Jack Straw and Geoff Hoon.

In fact Mr Straw's conversion to the cause of human rights in Iraq is a recent one, As Home Secretary, he turned down a request for asylum by an Iraqi in January 2001.

The Home Office explained that Mr Straw was aware "Iraq ... Would only convict and sentence a person in the courts with the provision of proper jurisdiction."

Personal comment (ECA="Paddy"):

That, after all the killing perpetrated by US and British forces in the illegal attack on Iraq, the daily increasing signs of opposition to the continued occupation - and the recent bombing of Fallujah and other towns by the US air force, it is completely irresponsible for journalists to maintain that the aim of the war was to improve human rights in that country.

In fact the only way to secure human rights in Iraq is for the Coalition forces to withdraw unconditionally - and for anyone concerned with human rights generally perhaps the two main planks must be withdrawal of so-called "Coalition" forces from Iraq and release of those illegally held by the US in the base on Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

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Anti-War Index to pages on this site and external links
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