‘Responsibilities’: Chomsky on Iraq

In a video interview recently aired on Channel 4, Chomsky offered the following verdict on the responsibilities of the aggressors in Iraq:

“I would like to remind myself and others in the United States and Britain that aggressors have no rights, they have only responsibilities.

“The first responsibility is to pay massive reparations for the crimes they have carried out. That extends in the case of Iraq to include support for Saddam through his worst atrocities after the war with Iran.

“After the savage first Gulf War when George Bush authorised the crushing of the rebellions that might have overthrown him, the murderous sanctions and of course the war and its aftermath.

“And their second responsibility is to hold the perpetrators accountable.

“And finally, and crucially, to attend to the voices of the victims, which are not a secret. The Pentagon has just released its latest study of opinions in Iraq. It was optimistic, it said. Iraqis have shared beliefs, so there’s hope for reconciliation.

“The shared beliefs turn out to be that the United States and Britain are responsible for the Sectarian warfare and all of its horrors and they should leave Iraq to Iraqis.”

“And we should finally resolve to ensure that we are never again responsible for such terrible crimes.”

Relatedly, the School of Law and the Boston University Anti-War Coalition at Boston University recently hosted Chomsky for a lecture on ‘Modern-Day American Imperialism: Middle-East and Beyond’. It goes for 2 hours and is also avaliable from Boston University’s iTunes site.

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