January 16, 2010
As the world enters a new decade, one thing above all is clear: this will be a decade of war and occupation ~ the bloodiest decade ever. The last decade opened with a new era of war and occupation launched by the United States. The attacks on the World Trade Centre on September 11, 2001 were used to justify the invasions and ongoing wars and occupations in Afghanistan, Iraq, Haiti, Palestine, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Lebanon, Sudan, Somalia and Pakistan. The new decade has already opened with new attacks on oppressed people and on independent and sovereign nations around the world.
Last year closed with the horrifying United Nations announcement that 2009 was the deadliest year for Afghan civilians, who have been suffering under a brutal US/Canada/NATO occupation since October 2001. The military invasion of Afghanistan has not brought peace, freedom, or security to the Afghan people. The presence of thousands of foreign troops in Afghanistan has in fact only meant tens of thousands of innocent lives lost and the absolute destruction of a country. But this ongoing bloodshed and the popular protests in Afghanistan demanding the withdrawal of all foreign troops from their country has not meant an end to the occupation. Instead, the US/Canada/NATO occupation forces have increased troop deployment and expanded their war from Afghanistan to neighbouring Pakistan. In early December 2009, US President Barack Obama announced that 33,000 more US troops would be deployed to Afghanistan in 2010. Without a doubt, this means even more killing and bloodshed of Afghan people. Ironically, while the US administration and all other imperialist ruling classes trumpet that there is no military solution to the Afghanistan crisis, they have time and again increased their troops and are accelerating the criminal war in Afghanistan.
Not very far from Afghanistan and Pakistan, the people of Yemen were welcomed into 2010 by the opening of a new US war drive against their country. Under the pretext of stopping terrorism and al-Qaeda in Yemen, the US has begun military operations in the country, bombing and killing many civilians. One must wonder how in a mere 24 hours following an alleged attempted bombing of an American airplane, Yemen suddenly became the centre of al Qaeda and the main exporter of terrorism to the United States. US Senate Armed Services Committee Chair Carl Levin has called for US drone plane bombings of Yemen, and Saudi Arabia has also been bombing the country with the support of the US and Israel.
With the beginning of the new decade came the announcement from US President Barack Obama of an intensified drive for war and occupation and a renewed campaign against Muslim people around the world. Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Iran, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Algeria, Libya, Nigeria and Cuba have all been placed on the US list of potential ‘terrorist threats’. Cuba, which continues to face a 50-year-old blockade by the US government, is the only country on the list without a majority Muslim population. These countries are being singled out not only to have limitations placed on the democratic and human rights of their people by new so called US security restrictions, but also in preparation for future US military attack in the coming decade of war and occupation.
In the US and Canada, this expanding war drive has meant new ‘security measures’ are being enacted at airports and other public facilities specifically targeting Muslims for additional scrutiny, intimidation and humiliation. These measures are being enacted not in order to ensure public safety, but as part of a renewed fear campaign against Muslim people and attack on the human and democratic rights of Muslims living in the US, Canada and Europe in an attempt to create division and hatred between Muslims and non-Muslims.
Now, since last Tuesday’s earthquake in Haiti, the US and Canada are taking advantage of the massive humanitarian crisis to reinforce and consolidate their occupation of the country. The illegal military occupation of Haiti which ousted elected President Jean Bertand Aristide in 2004 has only kept the country in absolute poverty and social dysfunction. Today Haiti is the poorest country in the Western hemisphere. The UN occupation troops as well as US/Canada/France soldiers and advisors have killed and injured thousands of civilians in the name of bringing freedom and democracy to the country. In the wake of the terrible earthquake, Canada is sending 800 troops and the US is sending 10,000 troops to Haiti not for humanitarian assistance, but to control the country and suppress any potential opposition to the occupation and to the lack of basic good medical care especially after the tragic earthquake. This will not help the Haitian people recover from this disaster. What is needed urgently right now is doctors and humanitarian aid, not occupation troops.
The onslaught of new attacks on oppressed people around the world must be met with a campaign against this new era of war and occupation and for peace, justice and self-determination. From the Middle East to Africa to Asia, from Latin America and the Caribbean to North America and Europe, we must unite in the demands:
ALL FOREIGN TROOPS OUT OF HAITI NOW!
SEND DOCTORS, NOT TROOPS TO HAITI NOW!
RETURN PRESIDENT ARISTIDE TO HAITI!
END THE OCCUPATIONS OF IRAQ, AFGHANISTAN, PALESTINE, AND HAITI!
SELF DETERMINATION FOR INDIGENOUS NATIONS, TAMILS AND ALL OPPRESSED NATIONS!
US HANDS OFF PAKISTAN, IRAN AND YEMEN!
STOP ATTACKS ON MUSLIMS!
Mobilization Against War & Occupation (MAWO)