vendredi 25 avril 2008

Gabriele Zamparini: Exchange with Graham Watson Member of European Parliament

Gabriele Zamparini, The Cat's Dream
April 24, 2008

An e-mail exchange with Graham Watson MEP, Member of the European Parliament for South West England and Gibraltar and Leader of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe in the European Parliament

Dear Graham,

I hope all is well.

Please find below an e-mail I sent to your colleagues Edward Davey and Nick Clegg.

I kindly invite you too to highlight the human cost of the Iraq war.

Thank you.
Best wishes,
Gabriele Zamparini

email to Liberal Democrats MPs Edward Davey and Nick Clegg RE: Iraq war death toll

Graham Watson's reply:

Dear Gabriele Zamparini

Thank you for copying me in on your email to Edward Davey and Nick Clegg. You may be interested to read a speech I made in the EP on Iraq. It can be found at: [link]

Yours sincerely
Graham Watson MEP

My reply to Graham Watson MEP:

Dear Graham Watson MEP,

Thank you for your reply and for sending the link to the speech you gave on Wednesday, 16 November 2005 at the European Parliament at Strasbourg.

You said then: "Yet after two years and eight months of war, the deaths of countless Iraqis and over 2 000 coalition troops, it is clear that life in Iraq is little better than before."

Yes, "little better" indeed.

Let’s remember that the "before" was when the UN, under the US and UK pressure, imposed an embargo to Iraq, that helped destroyed the country and caused the death of a terrifying number of innocent people. One million? Two millions? Will we ever know?

Denis Halliday, former UN Assistant Secretary General and Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq (1997-98) said: "I had been instructed to implement a policy that satisfies the definition of genocide: a deliberate policy that had effectively killed well over a million individuals, children and adults." After thirty-four years with the United Nations, he resigned in protest over the effects of the embargo on the civilian population.

Hans Von Sponeck, who had succeeded Denis Halliday as UN Assistant Secretary General and Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq (1998-2000), resigned on February 13, 2000. He asked: "How long should the civilian population of Iraq be exposed to such punishment for something they have never done?"

Like Halliday, he had been with the United Nations for more than thirty years. [Source: The New Rulers of the World, by John Pilger, Verso, 2002]

Then came the US+UK war of aggression, illegal under the UN Charter – as recognised by the then United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan - and called at Nuremberg in 1945 the supreme international crime: "To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole." - Judgment of the International Military Tribunal for the Trial of German Major War Criminals - Nuremberg, Germany 1946

I was glad to read in the second part of your speech, the first of your three concerns: "First, the Pentagon’s acknowledgement a few hours ago that the US used phosphorous incendiary devices in Fallujah.

The European Union must demand a UN inquiry into the use of these banned weapons." This was in November 2005.

Please, may I ask you if the European Union demanded that UN inquiry?

Most importantly, I would kindly like to have your attention on one point. Once again, as the media watch FAIR wrote a few weeks ago: "There is no more important question about the Iraq War than the question of how many Iraqis have died. It is impossible to truly evaluate the war or discuss where to go from here without knowing the human cost of the war, and that cost has overwhelmingly been borne by Iraqis."

Please, it would be possible for the European Parliament to ask for an investigation on the human cost of the Iraq war?

Thank you again for your time and all you’ll be able to do on this issue.

Best wishes,
Gabriele Zamparini

P.S. Useful resources:

Iraq: the Human CostUpdated Iraq Survey Affirms Earlier Mortality EstimatesORB Update on Iraqi Casualty DataAnswers to Questions About Iraq Mortality SurveysCounting Iraqi Casualties -- and a Media ControversyWhat is the real death toll in Iraq?Iraqi deaths survey 'was robust'

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