Sunday, October 31, 2004

What Iraqis think of the French government.

France is the biggest enemy for Iraq.
Hamza Al Jawahiri.

I know the huge amount of oil France had stolen from Iraq.
Mohammed Jawad Asher.

France role is known through the modern history as supporter of dictatorships. France blocked the democratic path in Algeria and now Iraq.
Al Kenany

No, To New Barbaric Murders Supported by France, Yes, For Free Democratic IRAQ.
Radhi Al-Hashimy

These are some of the comments made by Iraqis who signed an appeal to the UN to stop France’s attempts to hinder the democratic process in Iraq.
The petition was organized by a group of Iraqi civil society organization and was directed to the UN and addressed “To any person support democracy in Iraq”. The petition was put on line few days ago and till this date they have gathered around 380 signatures from Iraqis inside and outside Iraq but the number is increasing by dozens everyday. The majority were Iraqis living abroad and I guess this is because of the Internet access is more available outside Iraq.

Unfortunately many comments were written in Arabic and seemed to be encoded that even I couldn’t view them, but still there are many comments in English. I know that many people would probably say that such actions are ineffective, and they have a point. Still I see it as a wonderful development that Iraqis are starting to organize such group activities making use of the Internet as the fastest way to achieve contact with the largest possible number of Iraqis. In addition to that, such appeals and the one organized by “Arab Liberals” send a message to the terrorists and those who support them and who claim to help Iraqi people that Iraqis do not support their actions and moreover condemn them. It’s helpful in exposing these people and also discouraging these terrorists whom many of them are being sent to Iraq and told that Iraqis need their help to be “liberated”.

It’s also helpful in showing Iraqis who believe in democracy and new Iraq to see that they are not a minority as the media tries to show them and that there are so many of their brothers and sisters who want what they want; peace and democracy. It’s a start for a more effective and more organized activities by the Iraqi people who were silenced for such a long time, and who till now are being terrorized inside their land.

Here’s the translation for the appeal as provided on line:

Your Excellency, Mr. Kofi Annan,
Secretary General of the United Nations

We extend our best greetings and highest appreciation,

We, the undersigned, Iraqi civil society organizations as well as a group of Iraqi and Arab intellectuals are gravely concerned at the continuing attempts of certain governments to undermine the democratic process in Iraq. In the vanguard of these governments stands the French government. Since the start, this government has opposed the endeavours of the international community to help the Iraqi people end the despotic rule of Saddam Hussein, a rule that posed a threat to international peace and security, under the pretext of protecting the integrity of the Iraqi people. It threatened to resort to the veto in the UN Security Council to thwart any resolution which could help the Iraqi people rid themselves of the dictatorial regime.

After the liberation of Iraq under United States leadership and supported by many countries in the world, the French government called for the participation of the Baath party in the transitional government in spite of that party’s totalitarian thought, nationalistic fanaticism and sanguinary past. These efforts were repeated in different forms including the persistent call for the withdrawal of multinational forces from Iraq, forces which Iraq needs in order to ensure security. The last such effort was the French government’s demand to convene an international conference in Egypt to include governments and representatives of what it calls factions of the “Iraqi resistance”. We wish to confirm to you that this “resistance” is none other than an alliance of remnants of the ousted regime in Baghdad and non-Iraqi Islamist and extremist terrorist groups affiliated to the Al Qaida organization led by Osama Ben Laden whose Iraq branch is headed by the Jordanian terrorist Abu Musab Al Zarqawi, as well as organized crime gangs previously released by Saddam Hussein before his fall.

The Iraqi government objected to the presence of terrorists at this conference, one which is a gathering of governments and not a joint meeting with non-governmental organizations. This stance was supported by Iraqi civil society organizations. This notwithstanding, the French government submitted a new proposal calling for the holding of a special conference to which “factions of the Iraqi resistance” would be invited under the appellation “Iraqi civil society organizations”. This term implies that these are merely peace-loving civil society organizations which believe in democracy, reject violence and terrorism and strive to protect human rights and society by peaceful means. We do not know whether the French government has accepted that representatives of these terrorists groups would attend masked, or if it will ask them to remove their masks so that hostages would recognize their kidnappers and witnesses of beheadings would behold the face of murderers.

We believe that the purpose which the French government seeks through all of the above is to accord international legitimacy to terrorist groups in Iraq, delay elections sought by the Iraqi people and press for the withdrawal of the multinational forces before stability is established and before security and democracy are realized in Iraq. This contradicts Security Council resolution No. 1546 which was approved by the very same French Government, a resolution that gave the Iraqi Transitional Government the sole right and authority to demand the withdrawal of these forces. We believe that withdrawal of the multinational forces in this critical transitional phase in the life of the Iraqi people is tantamount to paving the road, either to the restoration of the Saddam Hussein regime– one that has filled Iraq with mass graves and displaced millions of its sons – so that it may pursue its persecution of the Iraqi people, or transform Iraq into a large hotbed that attracts criminals, thieves, murderers and terrorists turning it into a centre of international terrorism with the attendant threat to peace and security of the peoples of the region and the world.
We therefore appeal to you, Your Excellency the Secretary General, to call on the governments of the states neighbouring Iraq as well as the French government to rectify their negative positions vis-à-vis the Iraqi people and to join the international community in the bid to help Iraq and its people defeat terrorism, realize security and democracy and rebuild their country, thereby restoring peace and security to the Middle East region, key to security and stability in the world.

With sincere thanks and appreciation,


1- President George Bush, President of the United States of America, the White House, Washington D.C.
2- Mr. Tony Blair, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, 10 Downing Street, London.
3- Mr. Jack Straw, Foreign Minister, U.K Foreign Ministry, London.
4- President Vlademir Putin, President of the Russian Federation, Moscow.
5- President Guojia Zhuxi, President of the People’s Republic of China, Beijing.
6- President Jacques Chirac, President of France, Paris.
7- Mr. Gerhard Schroeder, Chancellor of Germany, Berlin.
8- Mrs. Benita Ferrero-Waldner, Commission of the European Union, Brussels.
9- Mr. Iyad Allawi, Prime Minister, Government of Iraq, Baghdad.
10- Mr. Hoshyar Zebari, Foreign Minister of Iraq, Baghdad.
11- Mr. Ahmed Abu Al Gheit, Foreign Minister of Egypt, Cairo.
12- Mr. Amr Mousa, Secretary General of the League of Arab States, Cairo.

Here is the link to the petition, and here you can view the signatures.

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