Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Iraq Regime Change a Sham, Say Mideast Experts: "Despite the positive responses Monday from U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan and members of the Security Council who praised the U.S. 'transfer of sovereignty' to an interim government in Iraq, Middle East experts and political analysts dismiss the regime change in Baghdad as a 'monumental fraud'.

"'The truth is that Iraqi sovereignty is a sham,' says Rahul Mahajan, publisher of the blog and author of 'Full Spectrum: U.S. Power in Iraq and Beyond'. The United States will keep at least 138,000 troops in Iraq (augmented by about 20,000 from other countries) for the forseeable future, he said. Fourteen permanent or semi-permanent military bases have been and are being constructed to house them, said Mahajan, who returned recently from a trip to Iraq.

"'Those forces have, by an eleventh hour edict of Paul Bremer (head of the former U.S.-run Coalition Provisional Authority), complete immunity from Iraqi law and Iraqi courts,' he added. The role of the new interim government in Baghdad has been reduced to 'advice' and 'consultation'. 'This is, and remains, a direct military occupation,' Mahajan told IPS. He said the level of control that the United States retains 'is just short of full colonial administration'."

"An edict signed by Bremer also gives U.S. and Western defense contractors complete immunity from Iraqi law. Additionally, Bremer created and appointed an electoral commission that can ban political parties; gave five-year terms to the new hand-picked national security adviser and national intelligence chief; and appointed inspectors-general with five-year terms over every one of the 26 Iraqi government ministries. Last month, the U.N. Special Representative in Iraq Lakhdar Brahimi described Bremer as "the dictator of Iraq". "Nothing happens without his agreement in this country," Brahimi said."

Compare this obvious reality with the immense corporate media blather over 'transfer of sovereignty'.

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