In an address to the government funded right-wing think-tank organisation, the Australian Strategic Policy Institute in Canberra yesterday, John Howard, arguing for Australia’s continued presence in Iraq, told his audience that: “The stakes are extraordinarily high - for Iraq, for the wider Middle East, for American power and prestige and, ultimately, for our region and our own national security,” adding that: “I believe strongly that to signal our departure now would be against Australia's national interest”.
These remarks demonstrate Howard’s continued penchant for lying and promoting deceit. He ignores entirely the interests of the Iraqi people themselves who have had their nation destroyed by a war started by a Coalition of the Willing, of which Howard was and is a major partner. He ignores entirely the fact that the continued presence of occupation troops in Iraq is achieving nothing except even more death and destruction. He ignores entirely the 600,000 plus people that have already perished in a war that he was part instigator of and he ignores entirely the growing humanitarian disaster as the numbers of refugees displaced by the war reaches two million and continues to grow as displaced Iraqis pour westward hoping to find refuge in Syria and Jordan.
He arrogantly blusters about ‘American power and prestige’ as though America actually has any ‘prestige’ left after the way it has abused its power against so many peoples of the world. He continues to display his arrogance and belief in his own national self-importance by talking of ‘Australia’s national interest’ ignoring altogether the fact that the vast majority of Australians never wanted to be part of the criminal invasion of Iraq in the first place and even more Australian’s are now demanding that enough is enough and that we should leave immediately.
Howard continues to perpetuate the myth of ‘al Qaeda’ in Iraq whereas in reality there are only those that are either fighting to rid the country of the invader or criminals that have used the chaos of war as an excuse to commit murder and mayhem in grabs for political and economic power in a nation that has slid into anarchy as a result of that war.
The Iraqi people have rejected ‘democracy’ enforced upon them via a nation that has invaded, occupied, destroyed and, together with its puppet government, pillaged its resources. The Iraqi people demand that the invaders leave their country and that they confront the future via their own self-determination.
For Howard to presume that he knows what is best for the Iraqi people is both delusional and arrogant, characteristics which took Australia into war against the Iraqi people in the first place four years ago and which Howard continues to display as the Iraqi people endure even greater hardships.