After Costly War, Iraqis Quickly Organize to Oppose U.S. Military Occupation
Interview with Wade Hudson, member of the Iraq Peace Team, conducted by Scott Harris
As stage-managed media images of the Bush administration's triumphant conquest of Iraq fade into memory, the harsh reality of American occupation is becoming clearer with each passing day. The goodwill expressed toward U.S. troops by some Iraqi citizens, thankful for the overthrow of a brutal dictator, has given way to increasingly vocal demands for sovereignty and self-determination.
Street protests organized by diverse sectors of Iraq's religious and ethnic communities have condemned both the fallen regime of Saddam Hussein and the American military, which now occupies their nation. Retired Gen. Jay Garner, the man appointed by the Bush administration to rule postwar Iraq, has been the target for criticism by many Iraqis for America's failure to prevent the looting of hospitals, museums and libraries and the restoration of essential services such as water and electricity destroyed by U.S. bombs during the conflict. Even as thousands of Iraqi civilians suffer from injuries and privation caused by the war, the Pentagon has prevented dozens of non-governmental relief organizations from entering Iraq because they refuse to shed their neutrality and submit to military control. The Bush administration has similarly blocked a role for the United Nations relief assistance and the reentry of U.N. arms inspectors to resume their hunt for chemical, biological and nuclear weapons, the one-time justification for this illegal U.S. war.
Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Wade Hudson, a member of the Iraq Peace Team affiliated with the group Voices in the Wilderness. Hudson, an activist, writer and cabdriver from California, provides an eyewitness account of the U.S. bombardment and invasion of Iraq as seen during 31 days he spent in Baghdad before his departure on April 13.
Contact the Iraq Peace Team at (773) 784-8065 or visit their Web site at www.iraqpeaceteam.org
"U.S. Planners Surprised by Strength of Iraqi Shiites,"by Glenn Kessler and Dana Priest, Washington Post, April 23, 2003 "Elated Shiites, on Pilgrimage, Want U.S. Out," by Craig Smith, New York Times, April 22, 2003 "The U.S. Betrays Its Core Values," By Gunter Grass, The Los Angeles Times, April 7, 2003
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