George Bush Must Be Held Accountable for The Massacre of Iraqi Civilians!

(Reprinted from "The Worker," newspaper of the Workers Party, USA)

June 6, 2006

Everyday new details are emerging about the massacre of unarmed civilians in Iraq. According to press reports, U.S. marines have carried out "extensive, unprovoked and methodical killings of civilians, including many women and children."

In one incident last November in the city of Haditha, evidence revealed that 24 unarmed Iraqi civilians were killed, some of them "execution-style." Recent reports by the BBC and Los Angeles Times state that a videotape of the scene proves that many of the victims were rounded-up and then shot in the head or back. According to death certificates, children slaughtered inside the houses were aged 1, 3, 5, 10 and 14.

One victim that survived, Khamisa Tuma Ali, said that U.S. marines entered his house shooting. They then shot everyone at close range and hurled grenades into the kitchen and bathroom. Most of the shots were fired at such close range that they went through the bodies of the family members and plowed into walls or the floor, physicians at Haditha's hospital also said.

And the massacre at Haditha is not the only case coming to light. Every day, there are reports of new atrocities. For example, on June 1, U.S. troops in Samarra shot and killed two Iraqi women, one of whom was pregnant, for allegedly failing to stop their car. Even the U.S. puppet Prime Minister Maliki has been forced to admit that U.S. troops "crush [civilians] with their vehicles and kill them just on suspicion" and that violence against civilians by the U.S. military is a "daily phenomenon."

Pentagon and other government officials are desperately trying to cover-up the extent of these atrocities and claim that they are only isolated incidents carried out in "the chaos and confusion of battle" or by a few "bad soldiers."

But the facts show that what happened in November in Haditha is not an isolated incident but part of the systematic policy followed by the U.S. military.

In Falluja, U.S. soldiers were videotaped shooting wounded Iraqis lying on the floor of a Mosque, while reporters recounted how refugees escaping from the city were shot down en masse. Torture, including murder, is systematically practiced against Iraqi prisoners on the basis of Donald Rumsfeld's view that the U.S. has the right to torture "terrorists." Neighborhoods and whole cities are systematically bombed. One year ago, Amnesty International reported on the "rape and sexual abuse of Iraqis" by U.S. soldiers. And the list goes on and on.

These bestial methods reflect the character of the war. U.S. imperialism is waging an aggressive war aimed at subjugating Iraq and therefore it considers the vast majority of the people to be enemies who must be terrorized and forced to submit.

All those responsible for the mass murders in Haditha as well as all the other atrocities committed against the Iraqi people must be held accountable and pay for their crimes. This includes both the individual soldiers involved as well as George Bush, Donald Rumsfeld and the entire high command of U.S. imperialism.