|It is skinning to watch U.S. President Barack Obama calling on Iraq to form an “inclusive” government. Iraq communities lived side by side for centuries and in some cases for millennia. The U.S. planted the seed of division and violence in Iraq. During the Occupation, the U.S. has carried out ethnic and religious cleansing in major Iraqi cities, particularly around the capital Baghdad, to encourage division and animosity among the Iraqi population. It is the U.S. that continues to fuel the violence to this day, financing, training, and arming terrorists and extremist groups. The aim is to use proxy forces to create chaos, control the region, and, at the same time, demonise Muslims and Islam.
Prior to the 2003 U.S. invasion and murderous occupation of Iraq, terrorism and extremism had zero presence in Iraq. The rise of terrorism in the region is the direct result of the U.S. war of aggression and military presence in Iraq. We all know the U.S. criminal legacy in Iraq. The genocidal invasion and preceding sanctions – without any justification – killed three million innocent Iraqis, including more than half a million children, and totally destroyed a relatively advanced developing country whose people were largely prosperous. Close to five million Iraqis were displaced by the invasion out of a population of 31 million, and five million Iraqi children became orphans. Women suffered the greatest losses in education, professions, child care, nutrition, and safety. More than one-fourth of Iraq’s population died, became disabled, or fled the country as refugees. As a result of U.S. terror on Iraq since the early 1990s, Iraqi culture and a generation of Iraqis have been destroyed in a premeditated barbaric violence. In addition, the U.S. brought into Iraq a culture of corruption and decadence unheard of in the long history of Iraq. Despite overwhelming evidence of war crimes and crimes against humanity, sadly, not a single individual responsible for the lies and war that destroyed Iraq and killed millions of Iraqis has been held accountable or indicted for mass murder and societal destruction. As someone who has followed events in Iraq very closely for years, I do not buy into Western “moral responsibility” and “humanitarian aid”. It is outright criminal and barbaric what Western governments, led by the U.S., have inflicted on the people of Iraq. It is morally abhorrent to support any Western leader who uses the word “humanitarian” to serve Western imperialist interests.
Iraqi property, including billions of dollars in gold reserves and priceless treasures of Iraq antiquity, were looted and taken out of the country. On Israel’s behalf, the U.S. disbanded the Iraqi army and police, rending Iraq defenceless and ruled by U.S.-created militias. Iraq’s military hardware, including Iraq’s war planes, were shipped to Israel and Jordan during the U.S. occupation. The real aim of the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq was the destruction of Iraq on behalf of the fascist state of Israel. After withdrawing its troops from Iraq, the U.S. left the Iraqi army without a single fixed-wing war plane and most of Iraq’s weapons are AK47 rifles and light arms bought from the Ukraine. To counter the invasion and terror attacks by ISIS (“Islamic State” [IS] in Iraq and Syria, ISIS) mercenary forces, Iraq has made an urgent request of Russia for the supply of defensive weapons.
In 2011, the U.S. failed to establish a foothold in Iraq after the Iraqi Parliament rejected the U.S. demand to enter into the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) with Iraq that will turn Iraq into a permanent colonial dictatorship. The U.S. reluctantly withdrew from Iraq, accusing the government of Nuri al-Maliki of being not sufficiently pro-American because of al-Maliki’s policy of rapprochement between Iraq and Iran. After the withdrawal of U.S. troops, the U.S. resorted to fomenting violence and division among Iraqis. In addition to the political chaos that was created by the U.S. and its allies, the Iraqi army remains weak and unable to defend Iraq. A failed state, engulfed in violence, is the condition that the U.S. has created in order to control Iraq and to serve U.S.-Israel interests. The U.S. capitalised on the chaos it has created by backing and arming terrorist groups, including ISIS terrorists, in order to replace al-Maliki with a more pro-American stooge.
ISIS is not an “Islamic ‘Sunni’” force, as Western politicians and the corporate media falsely portray it. ISIS is not just a by-product of U.S.-Israel terror and Zionist policies in the region; ISIS is a U.S.-Israel product, a proxy terrorist force of foreign mercenaries. In fact, the name “Islamic State” (IS) is the brainchild of the U.S. CIA to blacken and denigrate the name of Islam. Since 2011, the U.S., Israel, France, UK, and Turkey have openly financed, trained, and armed ISIS terrorists against the Syrian people and the Syrian Government. Indeed, the U.S. has been open and has acknowledged its complicity in the ongoing terror in the Middle East. In June 2014, the Obama administration asked Congress to authorize $500 million to provide U.S. military training and arms to “moderate Syrian rebels”, including ISIS, or IS. Across the Atlantic, the British Government of David Cameron drew up plans (drawn by the then most senior UK military officer, General Sir David Richards) to train and equip a 100,000-strong ISIS army in an effort to topple the legitimate Syrian government. It is evident that the U.S. and Britain are directly involved in the terrorist attacks not only on Syria but also on Iraq. In addition, Western governments, led by the U.S., Britain, and France have provided ISIS with unhindered access to social media to spread its violent propaganda.
Furthermore, according to the German weekly Der Spiegel, ISIS “rebels” are trained in secret bases in Jordan and Turkey by U.S. and Israeli Special Forces. They are financed by the U.S., Israel, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Qatar. Moreover, in May 2013 the European Union (EU) decided to lift previously imposed sanctions on the import of Syrian oil, not because the EU was concerned about the plight of the Syrian people, but because the EU intended to allow the flow of oil from areas (North-East Syria) controlled by ISIS terrorists and other anti-government “rebels” (“EU decision to lift Syrian oil sanctions to boost Jihadist groups”, The Guardian, 19/05/2013).
Furthermore, U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R) of Kentucky told NBC News’s ‘Meet the Press’ that the U.S. government has been funding ISIS allies and supporting the terrorist group in Syria. “They’re emboldened because we’ve been supporting them … It could be Assad [who could have] wiped these people out months ago … I personally believe that this group would not be in Iraq and would not be as powerful had we not been supplying their allies in the war”, he said. President Vladimir Putin of Russia was a rare exception when he categorically opposed any Western military attack on Syria to topple the Syrian Government.
A document released by Edward Snowden, the former NSA whistle-blower, revealed that ISIS was formed by the U.S., UK, and Israeli intelligence apparatus as part of a strategy known as the “hornet’s nest”, in order to attract fundamentalists from around the world to Syria. By turning against ISIS, the U.S. and its allies aimed at invading Syria, as recently announced by General Martin E. Dempsey, U.S. chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. General Dempsey said: “This is an organization that has an apocalyptic end-of-days strategic vision that will eventually have to be defeated.” He made it clear that defeating ISIS terrorist can only be possible by invading Syria. “Can they be defeated without addressing that part of the organization that resides in Syria? The answer is no,” Dempsey said. In other words, to defeat ISIS, the U.S. has to invade Syria, repeating the same U.S. aggression against Afghanistan and Iraq.
The ongoing Western arms deliveries to the Kurds in northern Iraq – with the deliberate intention to bypass the central government in Baghdad and without explicit UN resolution – is designed to encourage division and ultimately secession. The Kurds, the faction led by U.S. stooge, Ma’asoud al-Barzani, are not fighting ISIS; they are in cohort with ISIS, the U.S., and Israel. In fact, ISIS terror allows al-Barzani to enlarge the area he controls, including the northern oil fields.
If President Obama is serious about defeating ISIS, he had an opportunity before they crossed from Syria into Iraq. To the contrary, the U.S. and its allies provided heavy weapons and facilitated the ISIS march into Iraq. The U.S. warned Syria against attacking the terrorists. It was the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq by U.S. proxy terrorists.
It is laughable that ISIS alone, which is waging war on two states (Syria and Iraq), has the military capability to march into Iraq in broad daylight without the training and heavy weapons provided by the U.S. and U.S. allies. The U.S.-Israel strategy is to foment fratricidal violence among Muslims, and at the same time demonise Islam and Muslims in the West by blaming the violence on Muslims themselves. Hence, the violence in Syria and Iraq is U.S.-Israel fomented political violence and is not “sectarian” violence. Sectarianism is a myth created and nurtured by Zionists and U.S. imperialists.
It is the same U.S. strategy that was used in Afghanistan in the 1980s against the former Soviet Union troops there. Of course, terrorist forces transform and change their names. For example, al-Qaeda has been transformed into ISIL, ISIS and now IS. Hence, IS or ISIS is the new al-Qaeda, the pretext to justify aggression abroad and repressive measures at home. In a word, ISIS is the creation of the U.S. and it allies, Israel and Turkey in particular. ISIS main functions are: firstly, to be used as a tool to blackmail and intimidate the Iraqi and Syrian governments - indeed, Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki was forced to resign; secondly, ISIS criminal nature is used to demonise Islam and dehumanise Muslims in the West and around the world. ISIS is serving U.S.-Israel Zionist interests.
The U.S. and its allies had the opportunity to stop ISIS before they moved from Syria to Iraq. In fact, the U.S. facilitated ISIS invasion of Iraq. President Obama has warned and threatened the Syrian government if Syrian forces attacked ISIS. It is not a coincidence that ISIS declared the end of the Sykes-Picot agreement, which divided the region between British and French interests at the end of World War I at the same time Israeli fascist PM Benjamin Netanyahu annexed Palestinian land in the Jordan valley. Furthermore, ISIS mercenary forces march into Iraq was timed with Israel’s terror attacks on the Palestinian people in Gaza and aimed at diverting public attention away from Israel’s war crimes.
Despite concerted efforts by Western politicians and the media to dissociate these terrorist forces from the West, overwhelming evidence shows these terrorist forces that are terrorising the people of Syria and the people of Iraq are Western-sponsored terrorist forces. They are disguised as “Islamic militants”, but have nothing to do with Islam and their criminal actions are anti-Islamic. They are violating all Islamic principles and Islamic laws. It is misleading – as some despicable journalists have alleged – to even hint that Muslims have failed to speak out against ISIS. Muslims around the world have condemned ISIS terrorists in the strongest terms.
ISIS violent acts have been exploited by Western media to spread anti-Muslim propaganda and justify the next all-out war on Muslim nations, like Syria and Iraq. As Tony Cartalucci writes in New Eastern Outlook: “The alleged killing of the journalist James W. Foley has created outrage amongst public opinion. It generated an illusion of confrontation between ISIS and the U.S., and further vilifies ISIS. The media’s narrative is that ISIS stands apart from other terrorist groups in Syria, and with that narrative, the West is simultaneously bolstering ISIS in Syria under the guise of arming and aiding ‘moderates’, while it conducts token airstrikes on ISIS in Iraq”. The U.S. had several opportunities to save the lives of Foley and Steve Sotloff, but it refused because it doesn’t serve U.S. interests. Hence, the U.S. is culpable in their deaths. Foley and Sotloff’s killings (although videos of their executions show they were staged) showed us the criminal nature of Western-sponsored terrorists.
Here in Australia, the hypocrisy of the neo-fascist Liberal government has reached a new level of moral bankruptcy. Prime Minister Tony Abbot is forming a nuclear alliance with Asia’s two most openly fascist leaders, India’s Narendra Modi and Japan’s Shinzo Abe. A militarily stronger and offensive Australia is good for the U.S. The Australian political and military establishments are bragging about joining President Obama’s “humanitarian war” on Iraq and possibly Syria. On 28 August 2014, Tony Abbotts unashamedly told Parliament, “that no one in this Parliament I am sure, no human being anywhere, would wish to stand by and watch the preventable slaughter of innocent people." We do know that Mr Abbott and his neo-fascist Liberals gang had just stood by and watched the slaughter (genocide) of innocent Palestinian women and children by the Israeli fascist regime. Keeping with Australian Anglo-Saxon traditions, Australia remains the unconditional supporter of the Israeli fascist regime, even when it massacred innocent Palestinian women and children in broad daylight.
Furthermore, since 2011, Australia has been at the forefront, supporting the anti-Syrian government “rebels”, including ISIS, in their terror against the Syrian people. Syrian diplomats in Canberra were expelled and the government of Syria has been accused of committing war crimes despite overwhelming evidence that ISIS continue to commit heinous war crimes.
Just as ISIS began attacking Iraq, the Australian neo-fascist Liberal government of Tony Abbott began a campaign of vilifying and demonising Muslim Australians. The racist campaign is designed as a “desperate diversion” to divert the Australian public from serious economic issues and from rampant government corruption and incompetency to govern the country. The government fabricated a “threat to Australia’s security”, allegedly posed by Muslim Australians who travel to the Middle East, to justify new draconian laws targeting the Australian Muslim Community and, in the process, turning Australia into a fascist police state. Muslim and Arab Australians who travel to the Middle East to visit their relatives and friends will be labelled “terrorists” and accused of endangering “Australian security”. They risk prosecution and even jail if they return to Australia.
Indeed, several innocent Muslim Australians have been detained at Australian airports in the past few months and prevented from leaving the country because of their Middle Eastern backgrounds.
Yet the Abbott government and ASIO have nothing to say about hundreds of Australian Jews (“dual citizens”) who join the Israeli army and participate in Israel’s massacres of innocent Palestinian women and children. They return to Australia as heroes, wandering the streets of Melbourne and Sydney with Palestinian blood on their hands. They do not risk arrest for war crimes or being called terrorists. The Australian media and Australia’s despicable journalists and commentators treat these war criminals with deafening silence.
In addition to the 43 laws that are already in place, the new repressive anti-Muslim laws have absolutely nothing to do with national security. Rather, the new laws (like the old ones) are aimed at criminalising Muslim and Arab Australians, restricting the right of all Australians to live in a free country and intensifying police state measures. As George Williams, a professor of law at the University of New South Wales in Sydney observed, that the new anti–terrorism laws “would extend the powers of government at the expense of [Australian] citizens is unexpected and quite shocking.” Professor George added that, “allowing innocent Australians to be detained in secret and subjected to coercive questioning by ASIO [the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation] is more suited to dictatorship regimes” (SMH, 11 August 2014). Moreover, the Abbott government is introducing legislation to stop welfare payments for Muslim Australians who the government and its security agencies deemed pose a ''serious threat to Australia's national security''. It is important to remember that, these draconian laws apply to Muslim Australians only - the label of “terrorist” is only applied to Muslim and Arab Australians. White Australians (Christians or Jews) who commit acts of terrorism are labelled as “psychopaths” or “loners”, not terrorists. In other words, only Muslim Australians are singled out.
Echoing the war criminal George W. Bush’s racist and divisive call of “you are either with us or against us”, Tony Abbott is calling on Muslim Australians to join his fascist-Liberal “team Australia” or else. He is telling Muslim Australians, “You are all guilty until proven innocent”. On 21 August 2014, Mr Abbott, echoing another war criminal, Tony Blair, told an audience in Adelaide, “Extremism is the enemy, not Islam”. We all know that “extremism” is a catch-all word for all Muslims. According to Abbott’s sick mind, Muslim Australians who refuse to join Abbott’s “team” will be considered “extremists”. Taking his cue from war criminals like Tony Blair and Dick Cheney, one of Abbott’s advisors, former Australian army chief Peter Leahy – retired warmongers have become a fixture on Australian TV screens – was more frank when he said: “We will fight Islam for 100 years”. It is difficult to discern the reasons behind Australian fascist-Liberal hatred for Muslims and Islam. The Muslim Community is singled out by the neo-fascist Liberals and their supporters because it is a small and divided Community that lacks a power base in Australia or outside Australia. It is also easy to single out the Muslim Community because of years of demonization and vilification by politicians and the Australian racist media. The fears that Muslim Australians of Middle Eastern backgrounds could pose a threat in Australia are absurd and racist. It is a hysteria created by politicians and the media to justify repressive measures.
There has been no act of terrorism committed in Australia by Muslim Australians. People are targeted because of their Islamic/Arabic names and their religious beliefs. Innocent Muslim Australians are framed by ASIO and the police in so-called “Sting Operations”, prosecuted and imprisoned on fabricated charges for their opinions. The Australian Government has co-opted obscure academics, the so-called “counter-terrorism experts” (aka anti-Muslim bigots), to support its racist laws and anti-Muslim propaganda. Furthermore, to get some legitimacy to enact these laws, the Abbott Government undermined Muslim unity by bribing and coercing some of the despicable self-appointed “community leaders” to back the new laws. The laws and the language used by Tony Abbott and his neo-fascist Liberals aimed at spreading the plague of Islamophobia across the country.
ISIS is not an indigenous Islamic resistant movement; it is a U.S.-sponsored proxy terrorist force of foreign mercenaries. By creating and demonising ISIS, the West is demonising Muslims and Islam to justify a war of terror and to advance its imperialist-Zionist agenda, regardless of the loss of innocent human lives and the criminal tragedies it creates.
Only when the U.S. and its allies understand the principles of sovereignty and stop interfering violently in the affairs of other nations will they be able to claim to defend world peace. Only when the U.S. and its allies stop financing, training, and arming terrorists will they be able to claim to have defeated terrorism.
Ghali Hassan is an independent researcher and writer living in Australia.
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Axis of Logic columnist Ghali Hassan
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