Stop beating the war drumBy Pat Thompson Christian Peacemaker Teams
We have learned that some of our Christian Peacemaker Teams’ reporting on the conflict here in Iraqi Kurdistan could be used to justify military action against Iran.
We want to be clear that the CPT Iraqi Kurdistan team opposes all military action against Iran.
In recent months our team has included Canadian, European, Kurdish and U.S. members. From our CPT family and from world news, we are aware that no one beats the drum of war louder and with such zeal than some of the U.S. media and their allies, including Israel and certain members of the European Union. We do not wish to be a part of this.
Those who beat the war drum claim the Iranians are terrorists; they may develop nuclear weapons. Therefore the U.S. and its allies will not buy their oil, will not talk to them and will not sell to them until they stop their nuclear program. Sanctions have been imposed. Banks have been restricted.
Governments and some of the media tell us it is right to impose economic sanctions and that it is right to use military action against a “rogue” state that refuses to bow to their demands.
As if any society has a monopoly on morality and the right to police the rest of the world.
But who suffers? The Iranian government, with its control of the nation’s wealth? No. It is, and always has been, the ethnically and religiously diverse people of Iran.
The West knows this and calls it acceptable, hoping that this suffering will lead the people to pressure their government to change course. Yet we know that the Iranian government, like Western governments, does not always answer to its people.
This is affirmed by our brother and teammate Ramyar, an Iranian Kurd. Ramyar has been in Iraq for six years, during which he has been a friend, partner and now intern with CPT.
He has told us stories of his home, his land, his people and their customs, food and music. He has also shared about the political system, and his opposition to a heavily conservative form of Islam imposed on the once more liberal country. He shared the history of how the Russian, British and U.S. empires have undermined the prosperity of Iran over the past 150 years.
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