Obama Iraq War And Obama Syrian War Will Both Involve US Alliance In 12 Types Of War Crimes
By Dr Gideon Polya
13 September, 2014
President Barack Obama has announced the Obama Iraq War, the Obama Syrian War and indeed an explicitly adumbrated Obama War on Indigenous Muslim rebels “wherever they are”. These Obama wars will involve commission of war crimes in 12 technical areas by US state terrorism and US Alliance state terrorism ( UK state terrorism, French state terrorism, Australian state terrorism) and must be opposed by decent, pro-peace people throughout the world.
The United Nations secretary general, Kofi Annan declared explicitly in 2004 that the US-led war on Iraq was illegal. Asked by the UK BBC if the war was illegal, he replied: "Yes, if you wish. I have indicated it was not in conformity with the UN charter. From our point of view and from the charter point of view it was illegal" .
According to the UN Charter, a country can only make war on the people of another country if (1) it has the approval of the Security Council; (2) it has been attacked - but “Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defence shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council”; and (3) in the case of “the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security”, permission must be given by the attacked country, but a civil war situation (as in Iraq and Syria) makes such “permission” highly arguable.
Below are the relevant articles of the UN Charter .
The Security Council shall determine the existence of any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression and shall make recommendations, or decide what measures shall be taken in accordance with Articles 41 and 42, to maintain or restore international peace and security.
In order to prevent an aggravation of the situation, the Security Council may, before making the recommendations or deciding upon the measures provided for in Article 39, call upon the parties concerned to comply with such provisional measures as it deems necessary or desirable. Such provisional measures shall be without prejudice to the rights, claims, or position of the parties concerned. The Security Council shall duly take account of failure to comply with such provisional measures.
The Security Council may decide what measures not involving the use of armed force are to be employed to give effect to its decisions, and it may call upon the Members of the United Nations to apply such measures. These may include complete or partial interruption of economic relations and of rail, sea, air, postal, telegraphic, radio, and other means of communication, and the severance of diplomatic relations.
Should the Security Council consider that measures provided for in Article 41 would be inadequate or have proved to be inadequate, it may take such action by air, sea, or land forces as may be necessary to maintain or restore international peace and security. Such action may include demonstrations, blockade, and other operations by air, sea, or land forces of Members of the United Nations…
Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security. Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defence shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security.”
(A) It is not a war crime for a country to make war if it has been directly attacked and is exercising the right of self-defence. However the government of a country making war is committing war crimes if it is involved in the following:
(1) there is no approval by the Security Council;
(2) it has been attacked but does not report its actions to the Security Council - but “Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defence shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council”;
(3) in the case of “the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security”, permission must be given by the attacked country, but a civil war situation makes such “permission” highly arguable ;
(4) use of “illegitimate” weapons;
(5) targetting of the civilian population;
(6) improper care and torture of prisoners;
(7) ignoring the need under the Geneva Convention to protect the civilian population. Thus Articles 55 and 56 of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection Civilian Persons in Time of War unequivocally state that the Conqueror must provide requisite life-sustaining food and medical services “to the fullest extent of the ,means available to it” .
(8) committing a Holocaust (killing a large number of people) ;
(9) committing Genocide (defined by Article 2 of the UN Genocide Convention thus: “In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as such: a) Killing members of the group; b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group” );
(10) failing to take reasonable steps to avoid active and passive mass murder (e.g. by negotiations, by prosecuting previous and ongoing war crimes, and, for example, by valuing non-European lives the same as European lives);
(11) violating the Natural Law, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Rights of the Child Convention by active and passive mass murder of Indigenous children; and
(12) committing to an “endless war” on any people, anywhere, that the aggressor country does not like (war between Indigenous peoples within a country is a tragic civil war but invasion by a remote aggressor nation with no legal excuse and no cultural, religious or linguistic connection to the victims, and with the clear purpose of acquisition of hegemony and resources, is the most blatant and evil of war crimes).
(B) Unfortunately in the First Iraq War (2003-2011) (as distinct from the Sanctions War of 1990-2003 and the Gulf War of 1990-1991) the US , UK , Australia and other US alliance invaders grossly violated International Law and committed egregious war crimes because:
(1) they did not have UN Security Council sanction;
(2) they had not been attacked or threatened by Iraq ;
(3) no permission was given by the attacked country;
(4) they used “illegitimate” weapons (e.g. white phosphorus and weapons involving use of depleted uranium);
(5) they targeted the Iraqi civilian population (e.g. according to Mike Marqusee, writing in The Guardian, "Fallujah's compensation commissioner has reported that 36,000 of the city's 50,000 homes were destroyed, along with 60 schools and 65 mosques and shrines"  );
(6) there was mass torture and killing of prisoners (most notoriously at Abu Ghraib);
(7) there was gross violation of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War with 1.2 million Iraqis dying avoidably from war-imposed deprivation and 0.8 million under-5 year old Iraqi infants dying, 90% avoidably and due to US Alliance war crimes .
(8) 2003-2011 Iraqi deaths from violence (1.5 million) or from violently-imposed deprivation (1.2 million) total 2.7 million and under-5 year-old infant deaths totalled 0.8 million, 90% avoidable and due to gross US Alliance violation of the Geneva Convention, this constituting an Iraqi Holocaust of the same order of magnitude as the WW2 Jewish Holocaust (5-6 million killed, 1 in 6 dying from deprivation);
(9) the 2.7 million Iraqi deaths from violence (1.5 million) or from violently-imposed deprivation (1.2 million) and the 5-6 million Iraqi refugees constitute an Iraqi Genocide as defined by the UN Genocide Convention (see A(9) above);
(10) the US Alliance failed to take reasonable steps to avoid the Iraqi Holocaust and Iraqi Genocide, rejected negotiations, lied about (actually non-existent) Iraqi Weapons of Mass Destruction, and ignored the protests by UN officials and humanitarians about the horrendous impact already of the Gulf War and Sanctions War that were associated in 1990-2003 with Iraqi deaths from violence (0.2 million) and violently-imposed deprivation (1.7 million) totalling 1.9 million and 1.2 million under-5 year old Iraqi infant deaths, 90% avoidable and due to gross US Alliance violation of the Geneva Convention;
(11) they were involved in the active and passive mass murder of children through 2.7 million deaths from violence (1.5 million) or from violently-imposed deprivation (1.2 million) in a country in which about half the population were children; and
(12) they were continuing an “endless” war for hegemony and fossil fuels not just on Iraqis but on Muslims from Africa to South Asia - deaths from violence or from violently-imposed deprivation in the post-18990 US War on Muslims now total 12 million with no end in sight to the genocidal Neocon American and Zionist Imperialist (NAZI) violence .
The US under President Barack Obama has already re-invaded Iraq with air force and drone bombing, weapons supply to various parties in the civil war, and the reintroduction of 1,000 US “military advisers” into Iraq . US lackey Australia under a pro-war, pro-Zionist , US lackey, neoliberal Coalition Government (and with the craven support of the like-minded Labor Right Opposition) has also re-invaded Iraq with air force-delivered weapons supply to the Kurds, Australian targetting of drone strikes through the Pine Gap Joint US-Australia spying facility, and the reintroduction of military “boots on the ground” as “security personnel”.
Now President Obama has given a major speech in which he has laid out a US “strategy” for an open-ended war by the US (and likely by a US Coalition) involving the supply of weapons to the Iraqi Kurds, the Baghdad Government and non-Islamic State (non-IS) rebel forces in Syria, air force bombing and drone strikes in Syria and Iraq, and reintroduction of more military “boots on the ground” as “military advisers”.
Some of Obama's key points: “Over the last several years, we have consistently taken the fight to terrorists who threaten our country. We took out Osama bin Laden and much of al Qaeda's leadership in Afghanistan and Pakistan . We've targeted al Qaeda's affiliate in Yemen , and recently eliminated the top commander of its affiliate in Somalia . We've done so while bringing more than 140,000 American troops home from Iraq , and drawing down our forces in Afghanistan , where our combat mission will end later this year… Still, we continue to face a terrorist threat. We can't erase every trace of evil from the world, and small groups of killers have the capacity to do great harm. That was the case before 9/11, and that remains true today. And that's why we must remain vigilant as threats emerge. At this moment, the greatest threats come from the Middle East and North Africa , where radical groups exploit grievances for their own gain. And one of those groups is ISIL -- which calls itself the "Islamic State."… Our objective is clear: We will degrade, and ultimately destroy, ISIL through a comprehensive and sustained counterterrorism strategy. First, we will conduct a systematic campaign of airstrikes against these terrorists. Working with the Iraqi government, we will expand our efforts beyond protecting our own people and humanitarian missions, so that we're hitting ISIL targets as Iraqi forces go on offense. Moreover, I have made it clear that we will hunt down terrorists who threaten our country, wherever they are. That means I will not hesitate to take action against ISIL in Syria , as well as Iraq . This is a core principle of my presidency: If you threaten America , you will find no safe haven” .
US President Barack Obama has given himself and the US a blank cheque to invade any country in the world to “hunt down terrorists who threaten our country, wherever they are”, noting that “terrorists” to the US state terrorists running the US are simply “people they don't like” for ideological, geopolitical, or fossil fuel resource reasons, and for the last 25 years have been Indigenous governments and Indigenous rebels in a swathe of countries from French-occupied Mali to US-bombed Pakistan.
(C) Unfortunately Obama's Iraq War and Syrian War will involve the US, UK, Australia and other US Alliance invaders grossly violating International Law and committing egregious war crimes because:
(1) they do not have UN Security Council sanction;
(2) they have not been attacked or threatened by Iraq , IS or Syria ;
(3) no permission was given by the attacked countries (there are 3 governments in Syria and 3 governments in Iraq , each variously involved in the Syrian Civil War and the Iraqi Civil War, respectively;
(4) they will use illegitimate weapons e.g. white phosphorus, weapons involving use of depleted uranium, and Australian-targetted drone attacks that cannot distinguish military combatants from civilians ;
(5) they will no doubt (as in the previous 1990-2011 Iraq War) target civilian populations through economic disruption, economic blockade, attacks on infrastructure and urban areas ;
(6) there has already been mass torture and killing of Iraqi Sunni prisoners by the US puppet Iraqi Government and mass murder of Iraqi Sunni civilians by Shia militias;
(7) there is certain to be gross violation of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War as in other US war zones from Somali to NW Pakistan where since 1990 avoidable deaths from war-imposed deprivation have totalled about 9 million .
(8) the stepped up Obama Iraq War and Syrian War will add to the carnage in those countries amounting to 0.2 million violent deaths in Syria since 2011 and 1.7 million violent deaths in Iraq since 1990 (with comparable numbers of non-violent deaths from war-imposed deprivation , this constituting a Syrian Holocaust and an Iraqi Holocaust;
(9) the Obama Iraq War and Syrian War addition to the carnage in those countries and Obama's intention to destroy all Islamic rebels “wherever they are” all constitute genocide as defined by the UN Genocide Convention i.e. “ acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group” ;
(10) just as the US Alliance has failed to take reasonable steps to avoid the endless war against Indigenous rebels from Mali to NW Pakistan, so the US and the US Alliance determination to exterminate such people “wherever they are” means decades more of war and massive avoidable mortality from war-imposed deprivation [7, 9];
(11) the Obama Iraq War and Syrian War will involve the active and passive mass murder of children in these impoverished countries in which about half the population are children;
(12) the Obama Iraq War, the Obama Syrian War and indeed the explicitly adumbrated Obama War on Indigenous Muslim rebels “wherever they are” is an obscene continuing “endless” US war for hegemony and fossil fuels imposed not just on Iraqis and Syrians but on Muslims from Africa to South Asia.
The Obama Iraq War, the Obama Syrian War and indeed the explicitly adumbrated Obama War on Indigenous Muslim rebels “wherever they are” must be seen in the context of a war criminal US that has invaded 70 countries since 1776  . The UK and France have invaded 172 and 80 countries, respectively, in the last millennium [9, 11, 12]. As a UK lackey and thence a US lackey Australia has been involved in 30 genocidal atrocities in its short existence since the British invasion of Australia in 1788 [13, 14]. The Establishments of these countries should be held to account by war crimes trials – and as long as they are not held accountable, the genocidal , war criminal invasions and devastations will continue.
The inevitably ramped up Obama Iraq War and the Obama Syrian War will both involve war crimes in a dozen areas as outlined above. The utter barbarism of the relatively small-scale war crimes of the IS rebels (beheadings, execution of prisoners, kidnapping of women, and terrorizing of religious and ethnic minorities) does not warrant even larger scale war crimes by the US and its war criminal US Alliance. Peace is the only way but silence kills and silence is complicity. Decent, pro-peace people in the West in particular should dissociate themselves from US Alliance war crimes by (a) informing everyone they can, (b) demanding cessation and punishment of war crimes, and (c) urging and applying, where possible, Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against all those people, politicians, parties, companies, corporations and countries associated with war crimes.
. Ewen MacAskill and Julian Borger, “ Iraq war was illegal and breached UN Charter, says Annan”, The Guardian, 16 September 2004: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2004/sep/16/iraq.iraq .
. “UN Charter, Chapter VII: action with respect to threats to the peace, breaches of the peace, and acts of aggression”: http://www.un.org/en/documents/charter/chapter7.shtml .
. Geneva Convention relative to the Protection Civilian Persons in Time of War: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/ProtectionOfCivilianPersons.aspx .
. Mike Marqusee, “Fallujah: a name that will live in infamy” : http://www.mikemarqusee.com/?p=156 .
. “Iraqi Holocaust Iraqi Genocide”: https://sites.google.com/site/iraqiholocaustiraqigenocide/ .
. Article 2 of the UN Genocide Convention: http://www.edwebproject.org/sideshow/genocide/convention.html .
. "Muslim Holocaust Muslim Genocide": https://sites.google.com/site/muslimholocaustmuslimgenocide/ .
. “Transcript of President Obama's speech on Islamic State", Syracuse Post Standard: http://www.syracuse.com/news/index.ssf/2014/09/transcript_of_president_obamas_speech_on_islamic_state.html .
. Gideon Polya, “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950”, that includes an avoidable mortality-related a history of every country since Neolithic times and is now available for free perusal on the web: http://globalbodycount.blogspot.com/ .
. Gideon Polya, “US has invaded 70 nations Since 1776 – make 4 July Independence From America Day”, Countercurrents, 5 July 2013: http://www.countercurrents.org/polya050713.htm .
. Jasper Copping, “British have invaded nine out of ten countries – so look out Luxembourg . Britain has invaded all but 22 countries in the world in its long and colourful history, new research has found”, Telegraph, 4 November 2012: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/history/9653497/British-have-invaded-nine-out-of-ten-countries-so-look-out-Luxembourg.html (for a map see: http://i.imgur.com/yKK2yrc.gif ).
. Gideon Polya, “ President Hollande And French Invasion Of Privacy Versus French Invasion Of 80 Countries Since 800 AD”, Countercurrents, 15 January 2014: http://www.countercurrents.org/polya150114.htm .
. Gideon Polya, “Jane Austen and the Black Hole of British History. Colonial rapacity, holocaust denial and the crisis in biological sustainability”, now available for free perusal on the Web: http://janeaustenand.blogspot.com.au/ .
. Gideon Polya, “Review: “The Cambridge History of Australia” ignores Australian involvement in 30 genocides” , Countercurrents, 14 October 2013: http://www.countercurrents.org/polya141013.htm .
Dr Gideon Polya has been teaching science students at a major Australian university for 4 decades. He published some 130 works in a 5 decade scientific career, most recently a huge pharmacological reference text "Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds" (CRC Press/Taylor & Francis, New York & London , 2003). He has published “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950” (G.M. Polya, Melbourne, 2007: http://globalbodycount.blogspot.com/ ); see also his contributions “Australian complicity in Iraq mass mortality” in “Lies, Deep Fries & Statistics” (edited by Robyn Williams, ABC Books, Sydney, 2007: http://www.abc.net.au/rn/science/ockham/stories/s1445960.htm ) and “Ongoing Palestinian Genocide” in “The Plight of the Palestinians (edited by William Cook, Palgrave Macmillan, London, 2010: http://mwcnews.net/focus/analysis/4047-the-plight-of-the-palestinians.html ). He has published a revised and updated 2008 version of his 1998 book “Jane Austen and the Black Hole of British History” (see: http://janeaustenand.blogspot.com/ ) as biofuel-, globalization- and climate-driven global food price increases threaten a greater famine catastrophe than the man-made famine in British-ruled India that killed 6-7 million Indians in the “forgotten” World War 2 Bengal Famine (see recent BBC broadcast involving Dr Polya, Economics Nobel Laureate Professor Amartya Sen and others: http://www.open.edu/openlearn/history-the-arts/history/social-economic-history/listen-the-bengal-famine ). When words fail one can say it in pictures - for images of Gideon Polya's huge paintings for the Planet, Peace, Mother and Child see: http://sites.google.com/site/artforpeaceplanetmotherchild/ and http://www.flickr.com/photos/gideonpolya/ .
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