Three decades of US sanctions, militarism, and occupation has ripped apart Iraq, wreaking havoc on the population. The US assassination and murder of Qassem Soleimani, Iran’s top military official, this week by a drone strike on Iraqi soil is a clear indication the United States is willing to start a war with Iran using Iraq as a staging ground. This criminal act on behalf of the Trump administration and the Pentagon is part of an effort to not only provoke war with Iran, but it is also a crude retaliation against the popular uprisings in Iraq against the brutal US military occupation of the country entering its seventeenth year.
On New Year’s Eve last year, unarmed Iraqis protested outside the US embassy Baghdad after a US airstrike killed 25 and injured 50. Days later, the United States assassinated the Soleimani and Iraqi military leadership as retaliation for challenging US impunity to continue to wage war in Iraq.
For nearly six decades, the people of Iran have been resisting the economic, political, and militaristic violence imposed on them by the United States. In 1953, the bloody US-backed coup toppled Prime Minister Mossadegh. The Iranian Revolution of 1979 and the Iran-Iraq War, lasted from 1980 until 1988, in which the United States militarily backed Iraq.
As part of the current US imperial project, President Trump has imposed the most severe sanctions regime in world history on Iran, seeking to choke the economy of the Islamic Republic out of existence. But it is the poorest of Iran who suffer most. They no longer have proper access to medical supplies and basic food staples. Inflation is worse than it has ever been.
Since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, a report issued last year found that 2.4 million Iraqis have died. Another report estimated 600,000 had been killed within the first six months of the US-led invasion. Since then, Iraq has been in turmoil with the United States using the country as a base of operations to destabilize the region. The immediate and long term goals are to destabilize Iran and undermine Iraq’s political sovereignty, in the same way the United States created genocidal proxy wars in Libya and Syria and created a civil war in Afghanistan.
We recognize that the United States has been at war since its inception, and, according to its founding document, the Declaration of Independence, it was the “merciless savage Indians” who were the original enemies of empire. Today, there are new Indians but the war remains the same. The war on terror, and all US wars of aggression, are merely extensions of the US settler imperialist project that began with Indigenous genocide.
The United States plays no positive role in Iraq or in the region and is the biggest threat to world peace. Therefore, we demand a full withdrawal of all US troops and military bases from Iraq, halting all hostilities with Iran, and an international inquiry into and prosecution of the criminal behavior of the United States and its leadership.
There is an urgent need to build an anti-war movement this year. Weapons manufacturers and those who profit from war must be shut down. There must be no support given for any electoral candidates and politicians that support this criminal war. And we must end the callous slaughter of millions around the planet. We encourage popular mobilizations in the streets as well as the growth of strategic campaigns around divestment, demilitarization, and international solidarity.
No War with Iran! US out of Iraq!