UN writes a blank cheque for war
The proposed Security Council resolution on Iraq is designed for one purpose only: to confer legitimacy on the forthcoming Anglo-American attack and occupation of that country.
Those who harboured the illusion that the United Nations might actually prevent the launch of unprovoked war have had their hopes shattered by the draconian resolution.
Under its terms, weapons inspectors – who will no doubt as before include CIA spies and provocateurs – will have an absolute right to inspect any facility anywhere in Iraq in search of the elusive “weapons of mass destruction”. The inspectors will also have the power to take any Iraqi out of the country for interviews and set up exclusion zones and corridors from which the Iraqi army is barred.
The resolution threatens Iraq with “serious consequences” – by which is meant war – should any of a number of conditions be broken.
What is also clear that there is no requirement to return to the Security Council for its approval before military action is launched. In other words, the UN is providing a cloak of legality for the invasion of a member state and the overthrow of its government, which in polite society is described as “regime change”.
There are number of conclusions we should draw from this charade at the UN. Firstly, the UN has effectively signed its own death warrant with the resolution on Iraq.
Any semblance of independence has gone for good with a resolution that endorses war based on a lie – that Iraq threatens its neighbours and the rest of the world with so-called weapons of mass destruction.
In any case, can anyone point to anything progressive the UN has ever achieved? It has always been the play thing of the major powers. In recent years it has promoted the apparent virtues of capitalist globalisation and turned the recent Earth Summit in Johannesburg into a showcase for the major corporations.
Secondly, if anyone doubted the real nature of New Labour, they surely have proof enough now that this is a capitalist government pure and simple. They just can’t wait to join the war on Iraq. Everyone acknowledges that the Foreign Office played a key role in drawing up the resolution at the UN.
Blair is not a poodle of the Americans but an enthusiast of the first order. He shares with the Bush regime the objective of making the world safe for the corporations to conduct their business in. Their mission is to take the free market into regions and countries that are not presently integrated into the global economy.
This aim is given added urgency by the growing economic slump in the United States, which resulted in this week’s panic cut in interest rates.
Iraq is important because it has the world’s second largest oil reserves. Guaranteeing the future supply of oil to the developed capitalist nations is what the war on Iraq is all about. That is why Russia and France have withdrawn their token opposition to the resolution in anticipation of a share of the spoils.
North Sea oil production is in decline and the world’s reserves are expected to peak in five to ten years. Control of Iraq and its oil reserves are therefore of strategic importance to the Bush and Blair governments.
The issue of weapons and the dictatorial nature of the Iraqi regime are secondary questions, to be used as a pretext. America and Britain were, of course, happy to back Saddam Hussein with arms when he attacked Iran and said nothing while he attacked his own people.
The Iraqi people have the right to determine their own future free from the Saddam dictatorship. Bush and Blair, who run increasingly authoritarian regimes themselves, have no interests in the welfare of the Iraqi people. If they did, they would lift the punitive sanctions that have caused the deaths of thousands of children.
New Labour and their White House friends are not open to pressure or persuasion. Their agenda is set firmly by the corporations that dominate world politics today.
In these circumstances, opposition to the war must centre on a campaign for a “regime change” in Britain and America. The Blair government is reactionary through and through, from its polices on asylum seekers, to its attitude to the firefighters and the privatisation of public services.
Those who say that getting rid of New Labour will only let the Tories in, end up in support of Blair, peddling the illusion that sufficient pressure can change the government’s mind. This pointless exercise also serves to restrict the growing anti-war movement to the narrow confines of the increasingly discredited parliamentary set-up.
“Regime change” in Britain will require the building of a independent movement that puts forward the creation of new democratic bodies based on the social ownership of economic and financial resources. The enemy is not Iraq but at home.
for a Socialist Future