They never learn, American imperialism does not mind that innocent Iraqi’s and Syrians get killed in their bombings. American war planes strike both targets in the Republic of Iraq and the Syrian Arab Republic. Over 380 civilians have been killed already since the bombings began. In response of the attacks, Islamic fighters have killed over 1.200 innocent people in an act of revenge. With the western intervention in the Syrian and Iraqi civil wars, we have once again fallen into the hell of religious sectarianism. The attacks on Paris and Brussels are a direct result of American and European idiocy when it comes in dealing with the middle east!
Western intervention in middle eastern affairs is not new. The criminal CIA worked with reactionary Iranians to overthrow the only democratic government Iran had. Their actions led to the 1953 coup which removed Mohammad Mosaddegh from power. CIA trained monarchists then gave absolute power of the Shah of Iran; Reza Pahlavi puppet of America. The imperialist world intervened in Congo and trained right-wing guerrilla’s to fight national liberation movements. It aided racist regimes in Rhodesia and South Africa and armed Latin American death squads!
With the invasion of Iraq in March 2003, America started a conflict that grew out of its control. By 2006, radical Islamic rebels were fighting the deeply corrupt and ineffective Iraqi government, now nothing more but a puppet of the western world. Led by Shia-Muslims, the conflict soon grew sectarian as the Iraqi government purged all Sunni-Muslims from important functions. This angered the Sunni population, who joined the jihadist resistance against American imperialism. After American soldiers left the country, a rebel group then known as the; Islamic State of Iraq, was able to profit from the corruption and deep frustration, the Americans left behind. Their radical Islamic ideals were hailed by those who live in deep poverty as Iraq is a deeply unequal nation. With the capture of Mosul, the Islamic State won a great victory over the weakened Iraqi Army!
In 2011, European nations of NATO intervened in the Libyan civil war on the side of the rebels who fought Muammar Gaddafi. The Libyan dictator lost the struggle and was captured, tortured and executed. After his death, Libya enter a spiral of chaos. Five years after the downfall of the ”Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya”, four factions fought for power. Three of them are Islamic oriented and wish to build a society based on Koranic laws. The Islamic State controls the city of Sirte, the former hometown of Gaddafi. Secular nationalists fled eastward and took the harbor city of Tobruk. Radical Islamic forces from the Shura Council of Benghazi now rule from the former rebel capital, while a moderate Islamic government kept control of Tripoli. Until April 2016, the Libyan governments in Tripoli and Tobruk fought each other. The second civil war lasted almost two years, before a Government of National Accord was created to unify the nation in the struggle against the IS!
The results of NATO’s involvement in Libya is clear. By supporting the sectarian rebels, the western world created a power vacuum that led to chaos and violence. Old tribal feuds that Gaddafi suppressed resumed, militia’s started to fight each other over land possession and crumbling infrastructures. Even today in April 2016, the State of Libya is a failed state. The revolution that was to free Libyans from the iron grip of Gaddafi, ended in blood and death. Revolutionary socialists rejected the NATO bombings in March 2011 as it would hijack the revolution. Anti-imperialists from the Stalinist tradition choose to rally behind the Jamahiriya and Muammar Gaddafi. Proudly these idiots flew the green banner of the Gaddafi regime that oppressed the Libyan working class since 1969!
In the name of democracy and freedom, American imperialism has bombed and killed many innocent people. 200.000 are said to have died since the USA began its War on Terrorism in 2001. By arming corrupt governments and sectarian rebels, the Americans have caused death and destruction. The Arab uprisings against dictators were genuine as many Arab workers wish to live in freedom. But their inability to build parties of the working class and a complete lack of class consciousness, led to the hijacking of their revolutions by reactionary forces. Right-wing Islamic groups were able to win elections in Tunisia and Egypt, because they offered social justice. President Morsi of Egypt was a member of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood. Although democratically elected, he was overthrown by the military after only a year in office!
In Syria, popular demonstrations ended in blood as soldiers of the Syrian Arab Army were told to fire on protesters. Some refused their orders and founded the Free Syrian Army, now just one of many rebel groups, who fight the Al-Assad regime. Kurdish forces had more luck as they were able to take control over Syrian Kurdistan known as Rojava. This northern section of Syria has started to experiment with democratic confederalism, a libertarian socialist ideology developed by Murray Bookchin and expanded by Abdullah Öcalan!
Meanwhile the bombing of Iraq and Syria continues. Western planes bomb targets of the Islamic State in both nations. This is what IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi wishes. He wants western planes to drop bombs on his cities. Civilian victims can then be used in propaganda movies to recruit foreign jihad fighters. Western nations think they can defeat IS by bombing it. This is not true as the Islamic State lives on deep anger and frustration. Although it is a totalitarian regime it still has support among the Sunni populations. Should the Islamic State be destroyed by America and their allies, it would not take away from the problem. The deep poverty of millions will not end, corruption and exploitation are what led to the rise of the IS terrorist group!
When we look at the map of the wars in both Syria and Iraq, we see the Islamic State loosing ground. Kurdish forces of the People’s Protection Units have played a huge role in driving the terrorists out of northern Syria. Iraqi government forces have regrouped and managed to move towards Mosul, the capital city of IS in Iraq. The liberation of Mosul will be a major propaganda boost for the Iraqi’s, should they be able to drive IS out. But a military victory is not enough for lasting peace. This is why revolutionary socialists keep struggling for a workers party. Iraqi Kurdistan has already made plans to split from the Republic of Iraq. But an independent Kurdistan under capitalism would not be a alternative for the Kurdish workers. Also the Turkish government of soon-to-be-dictator; Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, will never support a free Kurdish nation. Since Iraqi Kurdistan is capitalist and not based on democratic confederalism like Syrian Kurdistan, its remains to be seen what they would do regarding independence!
There are many imperialist nations at work in this conflict. The Turkish regime is accused to support the Islamic State against Rojava. Saudi-Arabia is arming jihadist groups in Syria while Iran is supporting not only the government of Al-Assad, but also the government of Iraq. The Iranian; Revolutionary Guard has been deployed to help the governments of Iraq and Syria, who are led by Shia-Muslims. America and Europe meanwhile arm the moderate Free Syrian Army, but since they have allied themselves with radical Islamic forces (allied to Al-Qaeda) it is clear that many western weapons end up in jihadist hands!
Arming the People’s Protection Units (YPG) in Rojava is out the question for western imperialism, because NATO member Turkey equals the YPG with the Islamic State. The Turks hate the Kurdish freedom fighters in Rojava, because they are allies of the PKK. Since the Kurdistan Workers Party is called a ”terrorist” party by America, Europe and Turkey, western support for Rojava is limited!
What are revolutionary socialists saying about the bombings and the violence in the middle east?
- No to imperialist intervention! The withdrawal of all foreign forces from Syria, Iraq and from other occupied countries.
- Let the Syrian and Iraqi people themselves decide their fate in open, fair and free elections, supervised by elected, democratic workers’ committees.
- For the building of united, non-sectarian defence committees to defend workers, the poor and others against sectarian attacks from all sides.
- Prepare a movement to fight for a government of representatives of workers and the poor.
- For a revolutionary constituent assembly in Syria and Iraq.
- The implementation of the national and democratic rights of the masses, beginning with the recognition of the right of the Kurdish people to self-determination including, if they so wish, full autonomous democratic rights within the state they live in or the establishment of a common state of the Kurds themselves.
- Independent trade unions and the building of mass workers’ parties with a programme of land to the masses and the factories to the workers, implemented through a programme for a socialist democratic planned economy.
- A democratic socialist confederation of the Middle East and North Africa.