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Issue #1657      September 24, 2014

Taking Issue – Chelman Lentz

Going into illegal, criminal war

The Abbott Liberal government, fully backed by the Shorten Labor opposition, is about to follow the United States into a new war in the Middle East.

While the stated purpose of the war is to “take out” ISIS – the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria – it will be largely fought on Syrian territory and is being used to bring about “regime change” in that country.

Waging this war inside Syria’s borders is being done without the authority of the Syrian government. In fact the United States has declared it will not consult or cooperate with Syria in prosecuting this war and spurned Syria’s offer to work with the US to help suppress the ISIS gangs. Syria has been fighting the ISIS and Al-Qaeda terrorists unleashed on Syria for more than three years now.

The United States moreover, has threatened to destroy Syria’s “military” infrastructure and bring down its government, if Syria interferes with the US campaign against ISIS on Syrian territory.

Furthermore, President Obama has requested an extra US$500 million from the US Congress to train and equip an army of “moderate” Islamists that will not only combat ISIS, but over the next few years be able to defeat the Syrian army and so “solve Syria’s crisis once and for all”.

This army will be trained in Saudi Arabia, one of the principal financiers of ISIS, and the Gulf State most determined to destroy the secular, progressive Syrian state because of the challenge such a state presents to Saudi Arabia and its particular brand of fundamentalist Islam in the Middle East.

The United States – and “allies” like Australia – are in reality invading Syria, using ISIS as a pretext.

Doing this without Syria’s consent, without approval from the United Nations Security Council and despite Syria posing no clear and imminent threat to the US or any of its allies is illegal and criminal – in fact, it is an unjustifiable war of aggression and conquest against a sovereign nation and, according to the UN, the “supreme” war crime.

If the US Congress approves Obama’s war plans it does not make the war legal; if the Australian parliament approves Abbott’s involvement it does not make it legal. It is the UN conventions against war crimes that the United States, Australia and others are violating.

It is not for the United States or Australia to decide who is or is not an independent nation’s legitimate government. Syria, as a sovereign state and a member of the United Nation has as much right as Australia or the United States to be protected from unwarranted aggression and conquest by other nations.

What the USA and Australia are doing is not merely a war crime against another sovereign nation, it also undermining the very basis of international law, which serves to protect the peace and allow exercise of all other human freedoms and civil rights.

The Australian people need to wake up to what the Australian government, with the complicity of the federal opposition is about to do.

People everywhere need to demonstrate their opposition to the impending, illegal and dangerous war Washington is preparing for the Middle East.

The media – the so-called free press – also needs to ethically fulfil its role as an independent voice, rather than merely act as the propaganda voice for those elite forces in our society that are continuously pushing for violent regime change and endless, world wide war.

Next article – Film Review – Calvary

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