Nasty Letters To Crooked Politicians

As we enter a new era of politics, we hope to see that Obama has the courage to fight the policies that Progressives hate. Will he have the fortitude to turn the economic future of America to help the working man? Or will he turn out to be just a pawn of big money, as he seems to be right now.

Friday, December 15, 2006

U.S. Troops Raid Hospital Again

*Inter Press Service*
Dahr Jamail and Ali Al-Fadhily

*FALLUJAH, Dec. 14 (IPS) - Iraqi doctors and medical staff are outraged
over yet another U.S. military raid at Fallujah General Hospital.*

The raid followed a roadside bombing Dec. 7 where four Iraqi policemen
were killed and two civilians injured. The injured were taken to
Fallujah General Hospital.

Shortly after this attack, a U.S. Marine who was on a patrol in the city
was wounded by a gunshot.

"U.S. soldiers replied to the source of fire then headed straight to the
general hospital across the (Euphrates) river hoping that they had shot
and injured the sniper," an eyewitness told IPS.

"American soldiers seem to have some imagination to think wounded
fighters might go to that so-called hospital," a retired surgeon told
IPS. "We know that they do not trust that place because of the
continuous raids by the U.S., and lack of everything in that hospital."
The hospital is functioning at minimal capacity due to lack of medicines
and equipment, the surgeon said.

Eyewitnesses at Fallujah General Hospital said U.S. soldiers raided the
hospital "as if it were a military target."

"We panicked at the way they entered, kicking open doors and blasting
locked ones," a nurse told IPS. "A doctor tried to tell them he had keys
for the locked doors, but they pointed their guns to his face. Then they
told us to go out of the building and they kept us under guard in the
garden until the early hours of next morning."

The nurse said the soldiers "would not even allow us to get some
blankets to keep us warm; the temperature was below five degrees

Doctors and medical staff were arrested and insulted, and some were
called terrorists, witnesses said. The hospital was then closed, and
could no longer offer even minimal treatment.

"We are used to that kind of behaviour from American soldiers," a
hospital employee told IPS. "This was the third time I was in handcuffs
with my face down. They have been more vicious with medical staff than
others because they consider us the first supporters of those they call

The U.S. military said that Marines from Regimental Combat Team 5
entered Fallujah General Hospital in order to search for fighters after
two Marines were wounded the previous day in the city.

Lt. Col. Bryan Salas, spokesperson for the Multi-National Forces in
Iraq, told reporters: "Coalition forces searched the hospital to ensure
that it continues to be a safe place for the citizens of Fallujah to
receive the medical treatment they deserve."

This hospital has been raided many times before, particularly in the
U.S. military assault on the city April and November 2004.

Two years back, on Dec 13, 2004, IPS reported that the U.S. military was
impeding Iraqi health workers around and inside Fallujah, and was
deliberately targeting ambulances. In November 2005 IPS reported that
the U.S. military had raided two hospitals in Ramadi.

Many Iraqi doctors have been arrested by U.S. forces for various periods
of time on suspicion of "supporting terrorism" in Iraq. Many have fled
the country for fear of repeated arrests or even killings by U.S.
soldiers or sectarian militia death squads.

The independent Iraq Medical Association announced last month that of
the 34,000 Iraqi physicians registered prior to 2003, over half have
fled the country, and that at least 2,000 have been killed.

Article 12 of the first Geneva Convention states: "(Combatants) who are
sick and wounded...shall be treated humanely and cared for by the Party
to the conflict in whose power they may be..." The article goes on to
state that "any attempts on their lives, or violence to their persons,
shall be strictly prohibited..."

Article 24 of the first Geneva Convention states: "Medical personnel
exclusively engaged in...transport or treatment of the wounded or
sick...(and) staff exclusively engaged in the administration of medical
units and establishments...shall be respected and protected in all

Under the fourth Geneva Convention, Article 18 reads: "Civilian
hospitals organised to care to the wounded and sick, infirm and
maternity cases, may in no circumstances be the object of attack, but
shall at all times be respected and protected by the Parties to the
(c)2006 Dahr Jamail.


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