The New Worker

The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain

Week commencing 16th June 2006

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Zarqawi killed in action


by our Arab Affairs Correspondent

is dead. Bush has flown in to Baghdad for a lightening visit to his puppets and the imperialist media is once again telling us that another “turning point” has been reached in the “war against terror”.

But it was just another day in Iraq. The British army HQ in Basra was rocketed on Saturday.

The northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk was blasted in multiple resistance bomb attacks, partisan raids continued across the occupied capital and the residents of the besieged resistance stronghold of Ramadi were told that if they do not turn in the partisans by 15th June they will face a massive American offensive.

Al Zarqawi’s death had been reported many times before but this time there is little doubt that the leader of the most ruthless, feared and sectarian resistance group in Iraq died last week. He was killed by  an American air-raid on a home in which he and seven aides were meeting in the village of Habhab, north of Baquba at dawn on Thursday 8th June.

Ahmad Fadil Nazal al Khalayilah known as “Abu Musab al Zarqawi” was the bogeyman of US propaganda in Iraq. The leader of Al Qaeda in the Land of the Two Rivers was blamed for many sectarian attacks on the Shia Muslim community over the past three years.


And while some were undoubtedly carried out by his men, others were categorically denied by this fundamentalist group who in turn accused the American special forces of committing these crimes themselves to drive the Shia Muslims into the camp of collaboration.

Though the Americans portrayed Al Zarqawi as the paramount leader of the resistance, his movement was responsible for only a fraction of partisan attacks against the Anglo-American occupation. His movement was opposed by underground Arab Socialist Renaissance Party (Baath) supporters who see “Islamism” as a creation of the occupation and denounce “imported sectarians” of the Iranian or Al Qaeda kind for “ripping the nation apart”.

But Al Qaeda in Iraq started to seriously co-operate with other guerrilla movements last year and this, no doubt, accelerated the American drive to kill their leader.

George W Bush was quick to claim a cheap “victory” and secretly fly to Iraq on Tuesdays to meet his puppet “premier”, Nouri al Malaki, in a publicity stunt exercise designed to halt the slump in the US President’s popularity ratings at home. The chief Iraqi traitor, who was only given five minutes notice of the arrival of his master in Baghdad, is under no such illusions.

Over 75,000 American and puppet troops have been deployed throughout the occupied Iraqi capital with orders to crush the resistance throughout Baghdad. A dusk to dawn curfew has been enforced.

Cars and the use of mobile phones have been banned in certain areas and troops have launched hundreds of raids on the homes of suspected partisans. American helicopter gunships prowl the skies while sectarian Shia militiamen, who do the dirty work of the puppet regime, celebrate Zarqawi’s death.

Bush slipped in and out of Baghdad like a thief in the night because the strongest bases of the resistance are in the heart of the city. The fortified “Green Zone” compound that houses the US HQ and the offices of the puppet regime came under repeated rocket attack last week and six American civilians and eight collaborators working for the occupation were killed in a dawn  resistance rocket attack on the “Green Zone” last Friday.

Meanwhile the Iraqi underground’s own “war for oil” continued with the kidnapping of a high-ranking official in the Iraqi puppet “Ministry of Petroleum” last week.

The General Director for Oil Planning was seized at gun-point while he was being driven home from work last Friday. He was taken by the partisans to an unknown destination. The driver was released unharmed.

Iraq’s northern oil fields, now controlled by the imperialist corporations, have only just resumed pumping four months after partisans blew up the twin pipelines that carry Iraqi crude oil to Turkey. A previous attempt to resume pumping in January failed following further sabotage.

Only a trickle is getting through even now and it is only a matter of time before the resistance strikes again. Partisan sabotage has brought the northern export pipelines to a halt for most of this year and 2005.

Anglo-American imperialism dismisses countries it seeks to colonise as “failed states” but it’s their occupation of Iraq that has failed and it’s clear that the freedom struggle will continue until the Stars and Stripes comes down for the last time in the Land of the Two Rivers.


Stop the persecution of Muslims

THE MASSIVE police “anti-terrorist” raid and the shooting of a young man in a Muslim neighbourhood of East London has ended with the release of the two young Muslim brothers without charge. Mercifully, the wounded “suspect” only suffered light injuries but that doesn’t excuse the cops or those who ordered 250 of them in on a dawn raid based on “reliable” information that turned out to be totally false. No bombs or chemical devices were found and the two men were unarmed.

We’re told of course that there is a “war against terror” and London, which was terror bombed last year, is undoubtedly still a target for the followers of Osama bin Laden. But that doesn’t excuse the racist hysteria whipped up by the bourgeois media against the Muslim community in Britain that began when Anglo-American imperialism invaded Iraq in 2003. It has created a climate of fear similar to that fired up by the ruling class against the Irish community in Britain during the IRA campaign to free the north of Ireland that led to the victimisation and wrongful imprisonment of Irish men and women during the 1970s and 80s and the brutal murder of Diarmuid O’Neill in 1996.

This is the second time the Metropolitan Police have shot an innocent man in the past 12 months in “anti-terror” operations. The first, the young Brazilian mistaken for a terrorist and pumped full of bullets, led to a police apology that will not bring a dead man back and the second must lead to an inquiry to prevent any more innocent blood being shed.


Close Guantánamo down now

Meanwhile back in the “land of the free” the horror of the Guantánamo concentration camp continues. Over 500 prisoners taken during the American invasion of Afghanistan in 2002 have been held in inhuman conditions on the US naval base in Cuba.

Last week three of them hanged themselves in despair. Initially it was ludicrously dismissed by a top Washington official as a “good PR move to draw attention”, and by the camp commander as an “act of asymmetric warfare waged against us”.

 International outrage has now forced the US authorities to issue some mealy-mouthed expressions of regret at the deaths but not at the illegal and inhuman conditions that these prisoners are held.

These prisoners are called “enemy combatants” and indeed some may well have fought against the Americans in Afghanistan.

But they are not treated as prisoners of war and they are denied the rights established by the Geneva Convention. Nor are they treated as common criminals who are entitled to be formally charged, given the right to defence and a trial under United States law.

Instead they are held in humiliating, harsh and isolated confinement in camps on Cuban territory which itself is illegally occupied by American imperialism. These prisoners don’t know when, if ever, they will be released. It’s not surprising that 25 of them have attempted on 41 occasions to take their own lives.

Once again we’re told this is all part of the “war against terror” that Anglo-American imperialism proclaimed to justify the invasion and occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq and currently uses as a pretext to prepare the public for the isolation and possible invasion of Iran and Syria.

The Guantánamo Bay concentration camps are a symptom of the aggressiveness, arrogance and decadence of imperialism. Anglo-American imperialism preaches “human rights” when it suits them but denies its basic principles when it doesn’t. The camps must be closed now.

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