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A critical view on the sanctions on iraq placed by the united states

Increase in social inequality Income gap between rich and poor ; Social upheaval, violence distress Psychosocial impact difficult to measure 4.

In an authoritarian state which continued to hold most of the levers of control, much of the burden caused by the embargo fell on the civilian population.

  • Peter Hain, even former President Clinton and others have pointed out how Iraq had billions of dollars of relief and aid available to spend on its people;
  • As John Pilger comments, His was the first public expression of an unprecedented rebellion within the UN bureaucracy;
  • Increase in social inequality Income gap between rich and poor ; Social upheaval, violence distress Psychosocial impact difficult to measure 4;
  • John Pilger, Squeezed to Death , Guardian, March 4 2000 For such a top UN official to have resigned with such harsh accusations, gives an idea of the amount of impact the U;
  • The immediate consequence of eight years of sanctions has been a dramatic fall in living standards, the collapse of the infrastructure, and a serious decline in the availability of public services;
  • For many Council members, Resolution 1483 fails to give an adequate role to the UN in post-war Iraq and to arrange for the return of the UN arms inspectors to certify that Iraq is free of weapons of mass destruction.

The immediate consequence of eight years of sanctions has been a dramatic fall in living standards, the collapse of the infrastructure, and a serious decline in the availability of public services.

The longer-term damage to the fabric of society has yet to be assessed but economic disruption has already led to heightened levels of crime, corruption and violence. Competition for increasingly scarce resources has allowed the Iraqi state to use clan and sectarian rivalries to maintain its control, further fragmenting Iraqi society.

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The Iraqi government also withdrew funding and services from the three northern governorates and imposed its own economic blockade on the region in October 1991, leading to the creation of a de facto Kurdish-controlled region Iraqi Kurdistan. However, the international community did not alter the scope of sanctions, which remained in force over the whole of Iraq.

This 'double embargo' imposed by the international community and by the Government of Iraq encouraged the development of a non-productive economy based on revenues derived from customs duties, and smuggling to Turkey, Iran, and government-controlled areas of Iraq. This anomalous economic situation fuelled the conflict between rival political factions, resulting in four years of internal fighting from 1993-1997.

By 1995 this conflict resulted in the virtual collapse of the Kurdish Regional Administration established after the May 1992 elections in the northern Iraq. The previous link is to a paper presented to the International Law Association, in February 2000. First, it targets civilians in breach of Articles 48 and 51 2. Secondly, it constitutes indiscriminate attack, in breach of Article 51 3. Thirdly and most flagrantly, it employs starvation as a method of warfare, in breach of Article 54.

However, the sanctions regime was not lifted due to such concerns, but only when the Saddam Hussein regime was eventually toppled. United Nations reports on massive death toll — from sanctions In 1991, George Bush jr. Since the 1998 bombing has been over, Iraq had been constantly bombed, with the killing of civilians as well.

However, this was rarely reported in the US mainstream media apart from the larger bombing campaigns. Up to half of these are said to have been be children, but the 500,000 number has been controversial based on the methods of data collection and estimation. Other estimates suggest 227,000. For sanctions to work, there needs to be a promise of relief to counterbalance the suffering; that is, a carrot as well as a stick. Indeed, it was the failure of both the United States and the United Nations to explicitly spell out what was needed in order for sanctions to be lifted that led to Iraq suspending its cooperation with UN inspectors in December 1998.

Effects of Iraq Sanctions

Stephen Zunes, Continuing Storm: The report also says that child deaths have actually doubled in the last ten years. As the above link also highlighted, Unicef Executive Director, Carol Bellamy noted that if the substantial reduction in child mortality throughout Iraq during the 1980s had continued through the 1990s, there would have been half a million fewer deaths of children under-five in the country as a whole during the eight year period 1991 to 1998.

  • One of the additional major concerns with the sanctions regime was that it has exacerbated poverty and prevented the shattered civilian economy from being rebuilt;
  • He was co-ordinator of humanitarian relief to Iraq and Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations, one of the top most officials;
  • He was co-ordinator of humanitarian relief to Iraq and Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations, one of the top most officials.

Recognizing a multitude of reasons, she pointed to a March statement of the Security Council Panel on Humanitarian Issues which states: Parents were fined for failing to send their children to school. The phenomenon of street children or children begging was unheard of. Iraq had reached a stage where the basic indicators we use to measure the overall well-being of human beings, including children, were some of the best in the world.

In 10 years, child mortality has gone from one of the lowest in the world, to the highest. John Pilger, Squeezed to DeathGuardian, March 4 2000 According to an article from the Progressive magazine, citing declassified documents from the U. Note that this is not a UN-authorized no-fly-zone as the media keeps saying.

Check out this link for more information. While Sadam Hussain no doubt bears some responsibilities, as outlined by The Nation Magazinethe impacts of the UN policies largely pressured by the U. Consider for example, Denis Halliday.

He was co-ordinator of humanitarian relief to Iraq and Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations, one of the top most officials. He resigned in 1998, after 34 years with the UN. As John Pilger comments, His was the first public expression of an unprecedented rebellion within the UN bureaucracy. I am resigning, [as Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations] he [Denis Halliday] wrote, because the policy of economic sanctions is totally bankrupt.

We are in the process of destroying an entire society. It is as simple and terrifying as that. Five thousand children are dying every month. When I first met Halliday, I was struck by the care with which he chose uncompromising words. I had been instructed, he said, to implement a policy that satisfies the definition of genocide: We all know that the regime, Saddam Hussein, is not paying the price for economic sanctions; on the contrary, he has been strengthened by them.

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It is the little people who are losing their children or their parents for lack of untreated water. What is clear is that the Security Council is now out of control, for its actions here undermine its own Charter, and the Declaration of Human Rights and the Geneva Convention.

History will slaughter those responsible. John Pilger, Squeezed to DeathGuardian, March 4 2000 For such a top UN official to have resigned with such harsh accusations, gives an idea of the amount of impact the U. That letter was published, amongst other places, in the Guardian newspaper in U.

  • The Iraqi government also withdrew funding and services from the three northern governorates and imposed its own economic blockade on the region in October 1991, leading to the creation of a de facto Kurdish-controlled region Iraqi Kurdistan;
  • We are in the process of destroying an entire society.

Amongst other things, Sponeck said to the minister, it is an outrage that against your better knowledge you repeat again and again truly fabricated and self-serving disinformation.

You can read that letter, published by the Guardian newspaper, January 4, 2001. Peter Hain, even former President Clinton and others have pointed out how Iraq had billions of dollars of relief and aid available to spend on its people.

However, that glosses over a number of points best summarized by John Pilger who, in an articlequotes the above-mentioned von Sponeck: One of the additional major concerns with the sanctions regime was that it has exacerbated poverty and prevented the shattered civilian economy from being rebuilt. In this way, it had not targeted the Saddam Hussen regime or the miltiary.

Smart sanctions which were attempted later, were also criticized for being a smarter way to prevent rebuilding of the civilian economy.