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World Tribunal on Iraq Preliminary Declaration


In February 2003, weeks before war was declared on Iraq, millions of people protested in the streets of the world. That call went unheeded. No international institution had the courage or conscience to stand up to the aggression of the US and UK governments. No one could stop them. It is two years later now. Iraq has been invaded, occupied, and devastated. The attack on Iraq is an attack on justice, on liberty, on our safety, on our future, on us all. We the people of conscience decided to stand up. We formed the World Tribunal on Iraq, to demand justice and a peaceful future.
The legitimacy of the World Tribunal on Iraq is located in the collective conscience of humanity. This, the Istanbul session, was the culmination of a series of 20 hearings held in different cities of the world focusing on the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq.

We the Jury of Conscience, from 10 different countries, met in Istanbul. We heard 54 testimonies from a panel of advocates and witnesses who came from across the world, including from Iraq, the United States and the United Kingdom.

The World Tribunal on Iraq met in Istanbul from 24-26th of June 2005. The principal objective of the WTI is to tell the truth about the Iraq war as clearly as possible, and to draw conclusions that underscore the accountability of those responsible and underline the significance of justice for the Iraqi people. Saddam Hussein’s crimes against his people are not the focus of this Tribunal. We believe it is up to the Iraqi people to investigate these crimes in an independent and free trial.

I. Overview

1. The reasons given by the US and UK governments for the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq in March 2003 have proven to be false. The real motive was to control and dominate the Middle East. Establishing hegemony over the Middle East serves the goal of controlling the world’s largest reserves of oil and strengthening the position of the US’s strategic ally Israel.

2. Blatant falsehoods about the presence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and a link between Al Qaeda terrorism and the Saddam Hussein régime were manufactured in order to create public support for a “preemptive


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Opening Speech
Arundhati Roy



24 June 2005

This is the culminating session of the World Tribunal on Iraq. It is of particular significance that it is being held here in Turkey where the United States used Turkish air bases to launch numerous bombing missions to degrade Iraq’s defenses before the March 2003 invasion and has sought and continues to seek political support from the Turkish government, which it regards as an ally. All this was done in the face of enormous popular opposition by the Turkish people. As a spokesperson for the jury of conscience, it would make me uneasy if I did not mention that the government of India is also, like the government of Turkey, positioning itself as a “ally

I see one huge flaw in your outline.

In the world climate today in order to accomplish even a
token of what you are looking for, the whole concept needs
to be toned down a bit.

You have here in America about 50% of the people who follow
the bush agenda almost to the letter. This is of course as
Bush's crowd had counted on in the wake of 9/11 .

I state that fact because the most effective way to bring
Bush and those in cahoots with him to account for the deception
and following invasion is to rally the American citizen to the
cause. The total afront actions that you or your group desire
is not the way to do that.

It has to be done through factual appeal to the moral being of
even those hard right wing extremeist here.

Please be aware that I am not saying that you are wrong in your
desires, but instead that any attack against them which can be
interpeted as hate America will not accomplish any real desired
results even for you or your group.

It has to be done through the context of facts and through the
process within our country when it comes to our leaders. I only
say this because any other attempt will only strengthen and expand
the resolve of those who have been so misled by them. the only
recourse for results is to erode the support behind those who
rushed this war for the wrong reasons.

I am sure that there will be much dissagreement with my statements,
but one must choose if they want just a bunch of words of condeming
or if they trully seek results.

An interested reader from another perspective.

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