Bulletin 146



 2 November 2004
"Election Day" in the USA

Dear Colleagues and Friends of CEIMSA,
On this historic date, the day of the 2004 national elections, CEIMSA is sending out a series of recently received mail, which speaks to the theme of a long-term political struggle ahead for control of American foreign and domestic policy making. To paraphrase the infamous statement attributed years ago to Henry Kissinger, who was quoted as saying, "Oil is too important to be left to the control of Arabs !" we might say: "American elections are too important to left to the control of
U.S. citizens !" In our "global village" today, well-informed world citizens must take an active role in influencing institutional policy decisions at both local and the international levels.

In this spirit, we at CEIMSA share with you the following communications :

In item
A. is a petition from our associate research director, Professor Jean Bricmont, organizing against the continuation of U.S. War Crimes in Iraq.

B. is an article sent to us by another CEIMSA research director, Professor Richard Du Boff, again on the U.S. killing fields in Iraq.

In Item
C. we have a communication from Ms. Kathleen Ross-Allee, of Hollywood, California, reminding us of the implicit lesson expressed in Dustin Hoffman's poignant film, "The Tail Wags the Dog," which was aired last night on French television; namely, that U.S. political parties are arenas of struggle for reforms and not social remedies themselves.

And in item
D. Ms. Joanna Learner --an artist from Battle Creek, Michigan whose pacifist paintings were displayed last spring on the University of Grenoble campus during CEIMSA's 3rd International Conference which featured Jim Hightower, author of Ces truands qui nous gouvernent (Grenoble, 2004)-- has sent us a reference to important information on the current coalition-building process that is going on, and promises to continue after these elections, in the United States between traditional conservative groups and progressive groups, all of which are profoundly disturbed by the neo-conservative thrust to assume control over America's political economy.

Francis McCollum Feeley
Professor of American Studies
Director of Research
Université Grenoble3

from Professor Jean Bricmont :
Date: Fri,
29 Oct 2004

hope you are well (and survive in Grenoble).
here is more info for you to distribute, if you want.



 World Wide Petition Against the Escalation in Iraq, an initiative of the Brussells tribunal endorsed by the World Tribunal on Iraq

Dear all,
Prof. Jean Bricmont, a Belgian scientist, specialist in theoretical physics, and author on politics, who was member of the prosecution at the BRussells Tribunal, has written a short but strong statement "Stop the escalation" (see the text after this message, in English and French). It has been signed already by several authors and our organisations (see underneath).

We feel that we can't wait any longer to do something. We hope that you and/or your organisation will sign this letter, giving the call of prof Bricmont the resonance it deserves and he aimed at in writing it.

Now, on the evening of 28th of October 2004, that we know from an article in the Lancet, based on a survey by Johns Hopkins University that 100.000 Iraqi's died in the war (see below), we feel this petition is urgent, so we send it out now.

We hope you join us in our outcry over the ongoing massacres by signing Bricmont's warning against the escalation.

Yours in the struggle for peace

Lieven De Cauter, Dirk Adriaensens, Hana Al Bayaty and Patrick Deboosere, on behalf of the BRussells Tribunal committee.(see 
This letter is being distributed with full support of the the World Tribunal on Iraq (see www.worldtribunal.org) of which the BRussells 
tribunal Committee is part.
_______________________________________________________________________ ______

If you want to sign, PLEASE REPLY WITH I SIGN  TO: Info@Brusselstribunal.org. If possible add profession and locality.
_______________________________________________________________________ __________

"Excluding information from Falluja, a Lancet report of october 29 estimates that 100,000 more Iraqis died than would have been expected had the invasion not occurred. Eighty-four percent of the deaths were reported to be caused by the actions of Coalition forces and 95 percent of those deaths were due to air strikes and artillery."(Reuters, octobre 28.2004))

Far from being over, the war in Iraq has only begun.  The United States do not seem to be able to defeat the Iraqi resistance with the means they have been using. But neither can they accept their setbacks.  The very arrogance with which the war was declared and waged has put all their prestige at stake in Iraq and, thereby, decades of efforts to assure their world domination.  The stakes are even greater than in the Vietnam war. The United States cannot get out of Iraq unless they leave behind a friendly government, but today they have so few friends in that part of the world that no democratic election can produce such a government.

As a result, one must seriously anticipate a military escalation after the elections -- immediately in case Bush is returned 
to office, perhaps more gradually should Kerry win. But the Democratic candidate has no more intention than Bush of withdrawing from  Iraq. The U.S. government will seek to defeat the resistance by all possible means. The effort is already underway to demonize the resistance in world opinion by associating it with abductions and murders condemned by virtually the whole spectrum of political organizations in the Arab world.

We demand that the  United States face up to reality, unconditionally withdraw their troops from Iraq, and draw the 
necessary conclusions as to the unacceptable nature of preventive war. It is an illusion to ask that the U.S. forces remain until Iraq is pacified or stabilized, because their very presence is so hated that it constitutes the main obstacle to any sort of pacification.
Meanwhile, we affirm that we shall oppose by all peaceful and legal methods every attempt to crush the Iraqi resistance by a 
military escalation such as was attempted during the Vietnam war. We call on all governments to grant asylum to American military personnel  refusing to serve in Iraq. We shall do our best to spread all available information to counter the war propaganda, and we shall try to mobilize world public opinion, as in 2002, to demand that the United States abandon their efforts to impose a military solution on Iraq.

_______________________________________________________________________ __________


"Excluding information from Falluja, a Lancet report of october 29 estimates that 100,000 more Iraqis died than would have been expected had the invasion not occurred. Eighty-four percent of the deaths were reported to be caused by the actions of Coalition forces and 95 percent of those deaths were due to air strikes and artillery."(Reuters, October 28, 2004)

Loin d être finie, la guerre en Irak ne fait que commencer. Les États-Unis ne semblent pas arriver à vaincre la résistance irakienne 
avec les moyens qu ils utilisent. Mais ils ne peuvent pas non plus reculer: l arrogance même avec laquelle la guerre a été déclarée et menée fait en sorte que tout leur prestige est en jeu en Irak et, avec lui, des décennies d efforts visant à la domination du monde. L enjeu pour eux est encore plus considérable que lors de la guerre du Viêt-Nam. Les États-Unis ne peuvent quitter l Irak qu en laissant derrière eux un gouvernement ami, mais ils n ont aujourd hui que très peu d amis dans cette partie du monde et aucune élection démocratique ne pourra produire un tel gouvernement.

Par conséquent, il faut sérieusement s attendre à une escalade militaire après les élections. Immédiatement si Bush est élu, plus 
lentement peut-être si c est Kerry. Mais celui-ci n a, pas plus que Bush, la volonté de se retirer d Irak. Ils chercheront à vaincre la 
résistance par tous les moyens. On tente déjà de démoniser celle-ci dans l opinion publique mondiale en l associant à des enlèvements et des assassinats condamnés par la quasi-totalité des organisations politiques du monde arabe.

Nous demandons que les États-Unis fassent preuve de réalisme, retirent leurs troupes d Irak sans condition, et en tirent les conclusions qui s imposent concernant le caractère inaceptable des guerres préventives. Il est illusoire de demander que leurs forces armées restent jusqu à ce que l Irak soit pacifié ou stabilisé, parce que leur présence est tellement détestée qu elle constitue le principal obstacle à toute pacification. En attendant, nous affirmons que nous nous opposerons par tous les moyens pacifiques et légaux à toute tentative d écraser la résistance irakienne par une escalade militaire, comme cela a été tenté lors de la guerre du Viêt-Nam. Nous demandons que tous les gouvernements accordent l asile politique aux déserteurs américains. Nous nous efforcerons de diffuser toutes les informations permettant de contrer la propagande de guerre et nous tenterons de mobiliser l opinion publique mondiale, comme en 2002, afin d exiger que les États-Unis renoncent à chercher une solution militaire à la situation en Irak.

Jean Bricmont, prof. of theoretical physics and political publicist, writer of this petition, Belgium, The BRussels Tribunal Committee, The World tribunal on Iraq Committee

Karen Parker, attorney, USA

Haifa Zangana, iraqi novelist and journalist, U.K.

Abdul-Ila Albayaty, Iraqi political refugee, France

Amy Bartholomew, prof. of political sciences, USA

Erik Swyngedouw, prof of social geography, Oxford

Lieven De Cauter, philosopher, Belgium

Patrick De Boosere, demographer, Belgium

Hana Al Bayaty, documentarist, France

Dirk Adriaensens, sos Irak, Belgium

and many others to come....

 _______________________________________________________________________ ______

If you want to sign, PLEASE REPLY WITH I SIGN  TO:  Info@Brusselstribunal.org. If possible add profession and locality
----------------------------------------------------------------------- ----------------------------------------------------------------------- --
Background :

100,000 Iraqi Deaths
 by EMMA ROSS, AP Medical Writer

LONDON -  A survey of deaths in Iraqi households estimates that as 
many as 100,000 more people may have died throughout the country in 
the 18 months after the U.S. invasion than would be expected based on 
the death rate before the war.

 There is no official figure for the number of Iraqis killed since the 
conflict began, but some non-governmental estimates range from 10,000 
to 30,000. As of Wednesday, 1,081  U.S. servicemen had been killed, 
according to the U.S. Defense Department.

 The scientists who wrote the report concede that the data they based 
their projections on were of "limited precision," because the quality 
of the information depends on the accuracy of the household interviews 
used for the study. The interviewers were Iraqi, most of them doctors.

 Designed and conducted by researchers at Johns Hopkins University, 
Columbia University and the Al-Mustansiriya University in Baghdad, the 
study is being published Thursday on the Web site of The Lancet 
medical journal.

 The survey indicated violence accounted for most of the extra deaths 
seen since the invasion, and air strikes from coalition forces caused 
most of the violent deaths, the researchers wrote in the British-based 

 "Most individuals reportedly killed by coalition forces were women 
and children," they said.

 The report was released just days before the U.S. presidential 
election, and the lead researcher said he wanted it that way. The 
Lancet routinely publishes papers on the Web before they appear in 
print, particularly if it considers the findings of urgent public 
health interest.

 Those reports then appear later in the print issue of the journal. 
The journal's spokesmen said they were uncertain which print issue the 
Iraqi report would appear in and said it was too late to make Friday's 
issue, and possibly too late for the Nov. 5 edition.

 Les Roberts, the lead researcher from Johns Hopkins, said the 
article's timing was up to him.

 "I emailed it in on Sept. 30 under the condition that it came out 
before the election," Roberts told The Asocciated Press. "My motive in 
doing that was not to skew the election. My motive was that if this 
came out during the campaign, both candidates would be forced to 
pledge to protect civilian lives in Iraq (news - web sites).

 "I was opposed to the war and I still think that the war was a bad 
idea, but I think that our science has transcended our perspectives," 
Roberts said. "As an American, I am really, really sorry to be 
reporting this."

 Richard Peto, an expert on study methods who was not involved with 
the research, said the approach the scientists took is a reasonable 
one to investigate the Iraq death toll.

 However, it's possible that they may have zoned in on hotspots that 
might not be representative of the death toll across Iraq, said Peto
a professor of medical statistics at Oxford University in England.

 To conduct the survey, investigators visited 33 neighborhoods spread 
evenly across the country in September, randomly selecting clusters of 
30 households to sample. Of the 988 households visited, 808, 
consisting of 7,868 people, agreed to participate in the survey. At 
each one they asked how many people lived in the home and how many 
births and deaths there had been since January 2002.

 The scientists then compared death rates in the 15 months before the 
invasion with those that occurred during the 18 months after the 
attack and adjusted those numbers to account for the different time 

 Even though the sample size appears small, this type of survey is 
considered accurate and acceptable by scientists and was used to 
calculate war deaths in Kosovo in the late 1990s.

 The investigators worked in teams of three. Five of the six Iraqi 
interviewers were doctors and all six were fluent in English and 

 In the households reporting deaths, the person who died had to be 
living there at the time of the death and for more than two months 
before to be counted. In an attempt at firmer confirmation, the 
interviewers asked for death certificates in 78 households and were 
provided them 63 times.

 There were 46 deaths in the surveyed households before the war. After 
the invasion, there were 142 deaths. That is an increase from 5 deaths 
per 1,000 people per year to 12.3 per 1,000 people per year more 
than double.

 However, more than a third of the post-invasion deaths were reported 
in one cluster of households in the city Falluja, where fighting has 
been most intense recently. Because the fighting was so severe there, 
the numbers from that location may have exaggerated the overall 

 When the researchers recalculated the effect of the war without the 
statistics from Falluja, the deaths end up at 7.9 per 1,000 people per 
year still 1.5 times higher than before the war.

 Even with Falluja factored out, the survey "indicates that the death 
toll associated with the invasion and occupation of Iraq is more 
likely than not about 100,000 people, and may be much higher," the 
report said.

 The most common causes of death before the invasion of Iraq were 
heart attacks, strokes and other chronic diseases. However, after the 
invasion, violence was recorded as the primary cause of death and was 
mainly attributed to coalition forces with about 95 percent of those 
deaths caused by bombs or fire from helicopter gunships.

 Violent deaths defined as those brought about by the intentional 
act of others were reported in 15 of the 33 clusters. The chances of 
a violent death were 58 times higher after the invasion than before 
it, the researchers said.

 Twelve of the 73 violent deaths were not attributed to coalition 
forces. The researchers said 28 children were killed by coalition 
forces in the survey households. Infant mortality rose from 29 deaths 
per 1,000 live births before the war to 57 deaths per 1,000 afterward.

 The researchers estimated the nationwide death toll due to the 
conflict by multiplying the difference between the two death rates by 
the estimated population of Iraq 24.4 million at the start of the 
war. The result was then multiplied by 18 months, the average period 
between the invasion and the survey interviews.

 "We estimate that there were 98,000 extra deaths during the postwar 
period in the 97 percent of Iraq represented by all the clusters 
except Falluja," the researchers said in the journal.

 "This isn't about individual soldiers doing bad things. This appears 
to be a problem with the approach to occupation in Iraq," Roberts 

 The researchers called for further confirmation by an independent 
body such as the International Committee of the Red Cross, or the 
World Health Organization (news - web sites).

 The study was funded by the Center for International Emergency 
Disaster and Refugee Studies at Johns Hopkins University and by the 
Small Arms Survey in Geneva, Switzerland, a research project based at 
the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva.


from Professor Richard Du Boff
Mon, 1 Nov 2004 11:57:56 -0500
Subject:  100,000 Iraqis have died: where is our shame and rage?
The Guardian (
copyright November 1, 2004

The war on Iraq has made moral cowards of us all: Scott Ritter
More than 100,000 Iraqis have died - and where is our shame and rage?

The full scale of the human cost already paid for the war on Iraq is only now becoming clear. Last week's estimate by investigators, using credible methodology, that more than 100,000 Iraqi civilians - most of them women and children - have died since the US-led invasion is a profound moral indictment of our countries. The US and British governments quickly moved to cast doubt on the Lancet medical journal findings, citing other studies. These mainly media-based reports put the number of Iraqi civilian deaths at about 15,000 - although the basis for such an endorsement is unclear, since neither the US nor the UK admits to collecting data on Iraqi From: rnjlearner@comcast.net

Date: Wed Oct 27, 2004  9:16:48 PM America/Detroit
To: francis.feeley@u-grenoble3.fr
Subject: Even the conservative publications are endorsing Kerry.

Dear Francis Feeley, I just read an interesting article on The American Conservative website and I thought I'd tell you about it. Check it out!  http://www.amconmag.com/2004_11_08/cover1.html

civilian casualties.

Civilian deaths have always been a tragic reality of modern war. But the conflict in Iraq was supposed to be different - US and British forces were dispatched to liberate the Iraqi people, not impose their own tyranny of violence.

Reading accounts of the US-led invasion, one is struck by the constant, almost casual, reference to civilian deaths. Soldiers and marines speak of destroying hundreds, if not thousands, of vehicles that turned out to be crammed with civilians. US marines acknowledged in the aftermath of the early, bloody battle for Nassiriya that their artillery and air power had pounded civilian areas in a blind effort to suppress insurgents thought to be holed up in the city. The infamous "shock and awe" bombing of Baghdad produced hundreds of deaths, as did the 3rd Infantry Division's "Thunder Run", an armoured thrust in Baghdad that slaughtered everyone in its path.

It is true that, with only a few exceptions, civilians who died as a result of ground combat were not deliberately targeted, but were caught up in the machinery of modern warfare. But when the same claim is made about civilians killed in aerial attacks (the Lancet study estimates that most of civilian deaths were the result of air attacks), the comparison quickly falls apart. Helicopter engagements apart, most aerial bombardment is deliberate and pre-planned. US and British military officials like to brag about the accuracy of the "precision" munitions used in these strikes, claiming this makes the kind of modern warfare practised by the coalition in Iraq the most humanitarian in history.

But there is nothing humanitarian about explosives once they detonate near civilians, or about a bomb guided to the wrong target. Dozens of civilians were killed during the vain effort to eliminate Saddam Hussein with "pinpoint" air strikes, and hundreds have perished in the campaign to eliminate alleged terrorist targets in Falluja. A "smart bomb" is only as good as the data used to direct it. And the abysmal quality of the intelligence used has made the smartest of bombs just as dumb and indiscriminate as those, for example, dropped during the second world war.

The fact that most bombing missions in Iraq today are pre-planned, with targets allegedly carefully vetted, further indicts those who wage this war in the name of freedom. If these targets are so precise, then those selecting them cannot escape the fact that they are deliberately targeting innocent civilians at the same time as they seek to destroy their intended foe. Some would dismiss these civilians as "collateral damage". But we must keep in mind that the British and US governments made a deliberate decision to enter into a conflict of their choosing, not one that was thrust upon them. We invaded Iraq to free Iraqis from a dictator who, by some accounts, oversaw the killing of about 300,000 of his subjects - although no one has been able to verify more than a small fraction of the figure. If it is correct, it took Saddam decades to reach such a horrific statistic. The US and UK have, it seems, reached a third of that total in just 18 months.

Meanwhile, the latest scandal over missing nuclear-related high explosives in Iraq (traced and controlled under the UN inspections regime) only underscores the utter deceitfulness of the Bush-Blair argument for the war. Having claimed the uncertainty surrounding Iraq's WMD capability constituted a threat that could not go unchallenged in a post-9/11 world, one would have expected the two leaders to insist on a military course of action that brought under immediate coalition control any aspect of potential WMD capability, especially relating to any possible nuclear threat. That the US military did not have a dedicated force to locate and neutralise these explosives underscores the fact that both Bush and Blair knew that there was no threat from Iraq, nuclear or otherwise.

Of course, the US and Britain have a history of turning a blind eye to Iraqi suffering when it suits their political purposes. During the 1990s, hundreds of thousands are estimated by the UN to have died as a result of sanctions. Throughout that time, the US and the UK maintained the fiction that this was the fault of Saddam Hussein, who refused to give up his WMD. We now know that Saddam had disarmed and those deaths were the responsibility of the US and Britain, which refused to lift sanctions.

There are many culpable individuals and organisations history will hold to account for the war - from deceitful politicians and journalists to acquiescent military professionals and silent citizens of the world's democracies. As the evidence has piled up confirming what I and others had reported - that Iraq was already disarmed by the late 1990s - my personal vote for one of the most culpable individuals would go to Hans Blix, who headed the UN weapons inspection team in the run-up to war. He had the power if not to prevent, at least to forestall a war with Iraq. Blix knew that Iraq was disarmed, but in his mealy-mouthed testimony to the UN security council helped provide fodder for war. His failure to stand up to the lies used by Bush and Blair to sell the Iraq war must brand him a moral and intellectual coward.

But we all are moral cowards when it comes to Iraq. Our collective inability to summon the requisite shame and rage when confronted by an estimate of 100,000 dead Iraqi civilians in the prosecution of an illegal and unjust war not only condemns us, but adds credibility to those who oppose us. The fact that a criminal such as Osama bin Laden can broadcast a videotape on the eve of the US presidential election in which his message is viewed by many around the world as a sober argument in support of his cause is the harshest indictment of the failure of the US and Britain to implement sound policy in the aftermath of 9/11. The death of 3,000 civilians on that horrible day represented a tragedy of huge proportions. Our continued indifference to a war that has slaughtered so many Iraqi civilians, and will continue to kill more, is in many ways an even greater tragedy: not only in terms of scale, but also because these deaths were inflicted by our own hand in the course of an action that has no defence.

Scott Ritter was a senior UN weapons inspector in Iraq between 1991 and 1998 and is the author of Frontier Justice: Weapons of Mass Destruction and the Bushwhacking of America

from Kathleen Allee :
Date: Sat, 16 Oct 2004

Dear Francis,
Thank you, as always, for wonderful insights into the American nightmare that is our "upcoming election".

What I don't understand is why no one seems to understand that we are not electing a "President" we might be electing a "Republican party platform" and "a conservative Supreme Court" and a "right-wing" agenda.

If only for that, people on the left should be embracing Kerry and the Democratic "platform" which protects a woman's (all women) right to choose and supports inclusiveness for all race, religion and sexuality.

Once we get a Democratic agenda started then we can iron out and push further left wing ideals...but, this can NEVER happen when coming from the right.  They are TOO far away.  Let's at least bring some common sense back and understand that at least the Democratic party has some of the basic values that we on the left support.  I know that they have become a little centrist...but, at least we might be able to work with them.

THEN, begin acting LOCALLY, use the power of your vote to bring progressives and independents and green party candidates into local government.  Help them to build their resumes, support them and grow them to become the leaders of tomorrow. 

Since when do we begin at the top?  Let's lay some groundwork, eh?


from Joanna Learner :
Wed Oct 27, 2004  9:16:48 PM America/Detroit
Subject: Even the conservative publications are opposing Bush.

Dear Francis,
I just read an interesting article on The American Conservative website, and I thought I'd tell you about it. Check it out!