Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Robert Fisk on the Middle East

If I had not inadvertently grabbed my reading glasses and left my computer glasses at home, I would not have heard a bit of Robert Fisk on TUC Radio, on Radio Free Buffalo, broadcast on WHLD here in Buffalo.

Robert Fisk:

The Conquest of the Middle East
In his talk about his new book, The Great War for Civilization, Robert Fisk offers his thoughts on the most urgent issues of our day: From the Algerian war, the Palestine Israel war, the invasion of Afghanistan, the sanctions on Iraq and the spread of depleted uranium, each invasion by the new and old colonial powers has made Muslims more angry of the West. In light of decades of bloodshed Fisk says how surprised he is “how restrained Muslims have been with us.”

In 1917 it was Britain that invaded Iraq, claiming to be the liberator. Britain was driven out by the insurgency after great loss of life. Now it is the United States. Will we be able to learn from history? Fisk says that every journalist in the Middle East needs to keep a history book in their pocket as reminder why the injustices inflicted by the West on the Middle East are engraved in people's minds and have a powerful influence on what happens next. Tragically though, Fisk says, the relationship of America with the Middle East is the one taboo subject in the US.

It's worth a listen. He cogently gives regional background, and explains the details that we are not hearing about, including the more than 1,000 Iraqi civilians killed by violence in Baghdad in July alone. That extrapolates to at least the 100,000 dead postulated in a study published in the Guardian last year. By the way, the Loser In Chief admitted that the civilian casualties in Iraq amount to 30,000. That is apparently the number said to have been killed by the insurgents - it does not count the innocent victims of our own forces.


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