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SEGMENT #5:   GENOCIDE BY SANCTIONS

Captions:   Seven years of sanctions, 1.5 million dead, Iraq is suffering.

Voice of Iraqi doctor:  “For now, the diagnosis is not settled for this child.  He has had prolonged fever and he is wasting.”

Leslie Stahl (CBS Sixty Minutes interview, 11 May 1996): “We have heard that a half a million children have died.  I mean, that’s more children than died in Hiroshima.  And, you know……………is the price worth it?”

Madeleine Albright (US Secretary of State): “I think this is a very hard choice.  But the price, we think the price is worth it.”

Narrator: “Worth it, because she believes the sanctions are working.” 

Narrator:  “In November 1997, former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark headed a delegation of the International Action Center on his seventh trip to Iraq to investigate the continued effects of the United Nations’ sanctions on the population.  We were shocked by what we saw.  An almost total absence of medicines, medical supplies and spare parts for the equipment.  Despite the heroic efforts of medical personnel, babies, children and the chronically ill continued to die in vast numbers.”

“The United States government claims that Saddam Hussein is to blame for the crisis. What is the real cause of the suffering?  The sanctions. They are an extension of the 1991 United States war against Iraq.  The goal was to cripple Iraq’s infrastructure and make civilian life unsustainable.” 

Ramsey Clark, former U.S. Attorney General:  “We demonstrated the capacity of technology to cripple a country without ever setting foot on it in the Persian Gulf.  It’s important to recognize that because it goes hand in hand with the sanctions.  When we merely say that we flew 110,000 aerial sorties in 42 days, one every 30 seconds on the average, 24 hours a day, we ignore what we really did.”

Bill Blakemore, ABC News correspondent:  “The officials said the death toll was now 288 with many more to come.  The trucks kept filling up and driving away past waiting relatives who knew they might never be able to identify the bodies of their loved ones.  The community of Ameriyah filled one of the first of many funerals with gunfire in signs of grief and fury, and with angry words aimed through foreign journalists. “My mother, she’s gone!” shouted this young man.” 

Voice of Iraqi woman crying:  “Why!? Children! Girls! Boys! Man, woman! Why!? Why!?”

Blakemore: “This woman asked, “Could not all your modern technology tell you that there were children and women here?”

“Bill Blakemore ABC News in the Ameriyah district of Baghdad.” 

Ramsey Clark:  “We destroyed every silo for grain or anything else storing food in the whole country.  We destroyed all the storage and processing of food plants throughout the country. Even dates, the world’s biggest exporter of dates.  Famous processing and packaging plants in Baghdad, deliberately destroyed. We didn’t want them to be able to feed themselves for a long, long time. We’re all aware of the famous little powdered milk plant.” 

Unknown voice:  “The United States government says that in this factory here you were making chemical weapons.   Is that true?”

Iraqi man: “No that’s not true.  They are lie because this is milk for children. This powder – milk of children.”   

Unknown voice:  “Nothing else is made only this in the factory? 

Iraqi man:  “Yes, and you can see in yourself.”

Ramsey Clark:  “The only factory in the Middle East to produce powdered milk, they were producing about 17 per cent of their powdered milk requirements.  We destroyed that.  Cut off all the milk.  The malnutrition of the mothers immediately jeopardized all of the infants.  Seventy per cent of the pregnant women even today in Iraq suffer anemia.”

Caption:  “Death rate under 5 years of age: Monthly average in 1989: 593, September 1997: 4,578 = 672% increase.”

Narrator: “The death rate for children has soared compared to 1989, the last year before sanctions.  One of the biggest causes of death in Iraqi children today is diarrhea and dysentery due to the untreated drinking water. Iraq’s water purification plants were heavily bombed in the war and many that were repaired have broken down.  The United Nations bans the import of spare parts and chlorine into Iraq to purify water.  We saw the effects of this policy in the hospitals.”

Voice of Iraqi doctor examining child:  “This is the second attack for him of acute bloody diarrhea and amoebic dysentery.  Most of them are due to contamination of water.  He is malnourished, anemic, underweight, with a developmental delay.” 

Voice of Iraqi man:  “Diarrhea and vomiting.” 

Ramsey Clark:  “Do you have tap water there?”

Voice of Iraqi man:  “No.” 

Ramsey Clark:  “You can see the conditions of these children shouldn’t happen anywhere and is caused by the sanctions the United States government insists upon.” 

Narrator:  “The U.S. military used 800 tons of depleted uranium weapons in the war, causing a rise in cancers among the population.” 

“Why does the United States government spend $50 billion a year to patrol the Persian Gulf and keep Iraq locked down?”

Congressman:  “Please raise their hand…..”

Narrator:  “Why does it pressure the Security Council to maintain the total blockade? We need to look back on the recent history of Iraq.  For many years, U.S., British and French oil companies owned 95 per cent of Iraq’s oil while they maintained a puppet monarchy in power. The people lived lives of extreme poverty.”

“When the Iraqi people carried out a revolution in 1958 against King Faisal II, U.S. and Britain lost their strangle hold.  They sent thousands of troops to the Middle East, but it was too late.  Iraq had become a sovereign country.” 

“Iraq nationalized its oil and used the wealth to develop industry, modern sanitation, education and excellent health care system, electricity and highways.  Iraqi women won new rights.” 

“The United States wants to return Iraq to its earlier status as a virtual colony in order to secure its control over the Gulf region’s oil, which is two thirds of the world’s petroleum reserves.”

President George H. Bush (September 11, 1990):  “Our involvement in the Gulf is not transitory.  It predated Saddam Hussein’s aggression and will survive it.  Long after all our troops come home, there will be a lasting role for the United States in assisting the nations of the Persian Gulf.”

President Bill Clinton: “There are those who would like to lift the sanctions.  I am not among them.”

Tariq Aziz:  “Our main objective, our main objective is lifting the sanctions which has been very, very cruel on our people.”

Larry King:  “Why do you think Americans want to keep the sanctions?”

Aziz:  “That’s their policy.” 

King:  “Why do you think?”

Aziz:  “Just ask them.  That’s their policy.  It’s against the will of the international community, it’s against the will of many other countries.  I think they are making profits from that but I don’t want to make accusations.”

King:  “Financial profits?”

Aziz:  “Yes.”

King:  “Like how?”

Aziz:  “Who’s selling oil instead of Iraq?  Iraq had a share in the oil market.  That share was stopped by the sanctions.  Who is selling that?”

King:  “Who?”

Aziz:  “They knew very well that Saudi Arabia jumped from five million barrels a day to eight million barrels a day.  Three million barrels, Iraq’s share, have been added to the share of Saudi Arabia.”

King:  “And we would take this to a war front to protect Saudi Arabia’s making more money?” 

Aziz:  “No. You are sharing that money, everybody knows that.” 

Narrator:  “Before the sanctions, Iraq used its $20 billion in annual oil exports to import 70 per cent of the country’s food and medicine.  The cutting off of Iraq’s oil by the Security Council has caused widespread hunger.”

Rania Masri, Iraq Action Coalition:   “Starvation of civilians as a method of warfare is prohibited by international law!  The sanctions are a violation of the Geneva Convention, the United Nations Charter, the Constitution of the World Health Organization, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Charter of Economic Rights and Duties of the States.”

Brain Becker, International Action Center:  “It’s not France, it’s not Russia, it is the United States which is imposing these sanctions which are killing their children by the hundreds of thousands, and we believe that the right policy for the United States government is to stop the sanctions. And that the people of this country, who are paying – having our tax dollars used to impose hunger and starvation, are not really being spoken for in this current crisis.”

Woman, Fox News television interview:  “But the UN has backed these sanctions.”

Brain:  “The United Nations for the last six or seven years has become virtually a plaything for U.S. policy.  And that’s because of U.S. dominance in the aftermath of the collapse of the Soviet Union.  That doesn’t mean that the people of the Middle East or the people of the world really support U.S. policies.”

Sara Flounders, International Action Center Coordinator:  “Today’s march, that we’re beginning now, is a procession to commemorate the more than half a million children in Iraq who have died from the sanctions policy.  A policy that’s so linked with the growing hunger here in the U.S. is reflected a thousand times in the starvation of more than a million people who died in Iraq.”

Gloria La Riva, I.A.C.:  “I think it’s very important that each one of you came out here today and to keep in touch with us and to raise your voice, to show your faith, to stand and walk with the Iraqi people.  We are thousands of miles away from them. But when I was in Iraq, I felt so desperately, I wanted to call the United States, and I wanted to say, Sisters and Brothers, organize a demonstration now!  Get together even if it’s 25 people, even if it’s 10 of us, show that we are here in the United States, that they have friends here who do not believe in the extermination of the Iraqi people, that they have friends here in the States!”

Narrator: “The International Action Center has launched a major medical aide campaign to deliver medical supplies to the people of Iraq.  Essential medicines and supplies can save the lives of many, many people.  We are asking everyone who sees this video to join in making the Medicine for Iraq Campaign a success.”

Caption:  “Dedicated to the Iraqi doctors, nurses and healthcare workers who struggle so valiantly to save lives and give comfort to the sick in the face of overwhelming odds.”  


To get involved in the Medicine for Iraq Campaign and to help end the sanctions, contact:

International Action Center, 39 West 14th St. 2nd Floor,

New York, N.Y. 10011 

Tel: (212) 633-6646  

http://www.iacenter.org

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