[Marxism] Jose Ramos-Horta: imperialist mouthpiece
lnp3 at panix.com
Fri May 14 07:59:37 MDT 2004
Jose Ramos-Horta: Keep fighting the good fight
May 14, 2004
THE new Socialist Government in Spain has caved to the terrorist threats
and withdrawn its troops from Iraq. So have Honduras and the Dominican
They are unlikely to be the last. With the security situation expected
to worsen before it improves, we have to accept that a few more
countries - who do not appreciate how much the world has at stake in
building a free Iraq - will also cut and run. No matter how the
retreating governments try to spin it, every time a country pulls out of
Iraq it is al-Qa'ida and other extremists who win. They draw the
conclusion that the coalition of the willing is weak and that the more
terrorist outrages, the more countries will withdraw.
As a Nobel Peace laureate, I, like most people, agonise over the use of
force. But when it comes to rescuing an innocent people from tyranny or
genocide, I've never questioned the justification for resorting to
force. That's why I supported Vietnam's 1978 invasion of Cambodia, which
ended Pol Pot's regime, and Tanzania's invasion of Uganda in 1979, to
oust Idi Amin. In both cases, those countries acted without UN or
international approval -- and in both cases they were right to do so.
Perhaps the French have forgotten how they, too, toppled one of the
worst human-rights violators without UN approval. I applauded in the
early '80s when French paratroopers landed in the dilapidated capital of
the then Central African Empire and deposed "Emperor" Jean-Bedel
Bokassa, renowned for cannibalism.
Almost two decades later, I applauded again as NATO intervened --
without a UN mandate -- to end ethnic cleansing in Kosovo and liberate
an oppressed European Muslim community from Serbian tyranny. And I
rejoiced once more in 2001 after the US-led overthrow of the Taliban
liberated Afghanistan from one of the world's most barbaric regimes.
So why do some think Iraq should be any different? Only a year after his
overthrow, they seem to have forgotten how hundreds of thousands
perished during Saddam Hussein's tyranny, under a regime whose hallmark
was terror, summary execution, torture and rape. Forgotten, too, is how
the Kurds and Iraq's neighbours lived each day in fear, so long as
Saddam remained in power.
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