Thursday, August 28, 2008

Resistance and re-awakening

Haroun Mohammed writes in his regular op-ed in AlQuds AlArabi about the crisis facing the Awakenings, in the form of persecution by the sectarian Maliki administration and malign neglect by the Americans. He says those under attack deserve the support of Iraqi nationalists and anti-occupation forces of all descriptions. He writes:
As we have said repeatedly, the occupier has no friends and no associates and his only priorities are his own interests. His role here is not only to abandon the Awakening groups, but to maintain the position of a neutral onlooker as the forces and the agencies of the government prepare and make ready their attacks on Awakening units first in Diyala and Baghdad, and then in a later stage in Anbar as well...

[There is] a national and moral responsibility that calls on the national and islamist forces that stand against the occupation to protect the Awakenings, and to turn the page of the recent past because the Awakenings include--and this is true--a group of former officers and soldiers and employees who were deceived or compelled to join them, and [this responsibility calls on us to] work to rehabilitate them, to assist them in confronting the expected actions of the government against them, and protect them from the persecutions that are being set up against them by a deceitful government.
There are thousands of people involved, he says, and they should be restored to all their rights and given their old jobs back or their pensions. However:
If the government does not respond to their just demands and continues its antagonistic policy, then they will be obliged to follow whatever path seems suitable to them, and once there has been laid bare [not only the government's aims, but also] the truth about their own leaders' self-interested opportunism, and to organize themselves and unify their efforts and prepare for the worst, so that either they obtain their full rights without diminution, or else it is confrontation. And the latter alternative seems inevitable given a government with a sectarian and racial agenda that sees in the Awakenings a threat to its continued existence.


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