Monday 24 March 2003

Hypocrites Of America Crying Foul

by Paul Routledge

Nothing more clearly illustrates the cruel hypocrisy of America's war against Iraq than Washington's reaction to the news that GIs have been captured.

Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld screamed "Geneva Convention! Geneva Convention!" at the Iraqis for showing footage of US soldiers taken on the battlefield.

He thundered that the film was "video propaganda" which violated their rights as prisoners of war under international law.

How two-faced can you get?

Rumsfeld is the warmonger who ignored international legalities when the UN refused to back the invasion of Iraq.

And he ruled that PoWs captured by the Americans in Afghanistan more than a year ago have NO rights, and can be caged like animals at Camp X-Ray in Guantanamo, Cuba.

Footage of 300 PoWs airlifted out of Kabul - with bags over their heads and chains on every conceivable part of their body - was jubilantly shown on American TV. The pictures were posted on the Pentagon's website.

That was OK. That was broadcast to satisfy the understandable American desire for revenge for the attack on the Twin Towers.

Yet, it is not OK for Saddam Hussein to take a leaf out of the Yankee book. When he does, he is "evil, evil" and his actions are an outrage.

But 18 months on, the Pentagon's PoWs - including nine Britons - are held as hostages in Camp X-Ray with no access to lawyers or diplomatic representation.

Tony Blair connived in their unlawful treatment, as last night he joined the chorus of condemnation of the Al Jazeera film.

Full story...