Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Letter sent to the IrishTimes 1 Sept. Re: Blair's visit

Michael Lillis is wrong (letters 30 August). We do not owe Tony Blair ‘the courtesy
of assuming that his’ dragging Britain into an illegal war of aggression in Iraq ‘even
if an unfortunate mistake-was sincere in its intent.’

Tony Blair, like Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld (who wanted to invade Iraq on September 12, 2001),
their lawyers who justified the invasion, their ideologues, like William Kristol “the No. 1 cheerleader for the” war, John Bolton, Richard Pearl, et al. who promoted the invasion since the 1990s; the military commanders who planned and executed the war, CIA and MI5 officials who engaged in or covered-up torture…they are all war criminals-at-large.

In the 1933 Major-General Smedley D. Butler USMC said “See that no American
boy dies for an oil well in Iraq.” He also said “War is a racket. A racket is best
described…as something that is not what it seems to the majority of people. Only
a small group knows what it is about”. War “is conducted for the benefit of the very few
at the expense of the masses.”

As a Marine Corps veteran of the Vietnam War I saw first-hand what war is. War, for me,
meant wiping up the remains of young Marines ‘blown to bits’ during a sapper attack.
War means carrying the dead for miles, or searching for a left foot to put into a body bag,
so there’s two feet, or seeing your friend’s hand blown up. I saw over 240 bodies bags stacked
up like cordwood on a runway awaiting their final journey home.

War is not noble like Bush and Blair pretended it to be. Their children were not sent to
war? Bush, Cheney, and their ideologues avoided the Vietnam War. They send others
to die for their wars.

War is seeing children, women, the elderly beg for food.
War is having an 8-12 year old boy offering to sell his mother or sister for sex
so that they might eat!
War is murder, brutalization, torture, rape, savagery, butchery…the ultimate in
human degradation to combatants and civilians alike.

War is 18 US war veterans killing themselves each and every day. That is what
war does.

To me, the only reception Tony Blair deserves is thousands upon thousands,
if not millions chasing him to make a citizen’s arrest, and holding him for the
International criminal court, or a duly constituted people’s court if the ICC takes
no action!

The Nuremberg tribunal laid down a principle “that to initiate a war of aggression…is
not only an international crime, it is the supreme international crime”.

The blood of the dead Iraqi’s, British, American and others call out for justice. War
is a criminal enterprise. And war criminals like Bush and Blair should not have nice
receptions, but war veterans like me, and masses of people waiting to execute a citizen’s

Paul Meuse
7 Belgrave Place
Wellington Road

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