Saturday, March 7, 2009

Iraq's Post-1950 History Revisited: Part 15

(See parts 1-14 below)

Most people in the United States would like to see the nearly 150,000 U.S. troops and 200,000 private contractors who are still occupying Iraqi soil (in support of special U.S. corporate interests) to finally be withdrawn from Iraq by Easter 2009. But the Democratic Obama regime is still not willing to immediately bring U.S. troops and private contractors in Iraq back home; and the Obama regime apparently plans to leave between 30,000 and 50,000 U.S. occupation troops stationed in Iraq as "military advisors" until January 1, 2012.

Yet if the Obama Administration officials responsible for authorizing the use of U.S. armed forces in Iraq--like U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton--had known more about Iraq's post-1950 history, perhaps U.S. troops and private contractors would not still be spending another Easter in Iraq in 2009?

Following the Kennedy Administration-backed February 8, 1963 military coup in Iraq, the 39-year old poet who had been Secretary General of the Iraq Communist Party since 1955, Husain ar-Radi (a/k/a Salam 'Adil), was arrested by the new Ba'th regime on February 20, 1963. But The Old Social Classes and The Revolutionary Movements of Iraq book noted that "although various means were employed to make him speak, he did not yield;" and "four days later he died under torture."

By March 1963, an estimated 10,000 Iraq Communist Party members had been arrested by the Ba'th regime and many imprisoned Iraqi leftist activists were not treated gently. As the book The Old Social Classes and the Revolutionary Movements of Iraq recalled:

"In the cellars of an-Ninayah Palace…were found all sorts of loathsome instruments of torture, including electric wire with pincers, pointed iron stakes on which prisoners were made to sit, and a machine which still bore traces of chopped-off fingers. Small heaps of blooded clothing were scattered about, and there were pools on the floor and stains over the walls."

And even some members of the anti-communist Ba'th Party apparently began to protest against the way some of their imprisoned Iraqi leftist political opponents were being tortured after the February 8, 1963 coup. (end of part 15)

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