Dear Citizen of Iraq

Category: Americas, World Affairs Topics: George W. Bush, Iraq, Saddam Hussein Views: 3209
3209

Dear Citizen of Iraq, 

I have felt compelled to write a letter of apology for the brutal onslaught my government has waged upon you, your families, your religion, and your sacred homeland. I know no plea for atonement can reconcile the sorrow my government has inflicted -- but I hope you accept this token.

Like you, I am simply a citizen of a country -- a country I am often not proud of -- especially when its doctrine involves waging war on innocents that have neither attacked us nor threatened our national security.

For those who have suffered the loss of loved ones, I grieve for you.  Like millions of other Americans I have not supported the war President Bush and his minions have employed.  Their pre-emptive strategy is simply short-sighted and wrong-headed.

Saddam Hussein may have been an evil man, certainly a dictator nobody would wish upon any country.  But I do not believe ridding Iraq of Saddam using such brutal force was in any way justifiable.

Millions of Americans took to the streets in America in opposition to President Bush and his awful war -- in hopes we could pre-empt his sprint to battle.  We ventured down countless avenues to send our messages of dissent to the White House.  But Mr. Bush did not acknowledge us.

Indeed the international community greatly opposed these attacks as well -- but like the United Nations, they too were deemed irrelevant.

I am deeply disgusted with any administration that arrogantly breaks international laws, and unashamedly disdains the very democracy it claims to fight for.

I write in hopes you may understand this. 

The news we get about this war is not of the suffering -- not of your losses, but of Iraq's supposed gains.  The photos of your dead and wounded are rarely viewed by American audiences.  The truth about the horrific suffering now plaguing Iraq cannot be understood fully by anybody here in the US. Especially those that do not have the time or energy to seek the truth about what is really taking place in your country.

I ask you not to confuse the policies of the American government with the will of the American people.  They are not one in the same.

American soldiers are also not to blame for Mr. Bush's actions.  I believe many naively think they are spreading freedom and democracy in Iraq.  They may believe this is what you want, and that this is the only way to go about doing so.  This is the same rhetoric our government has used in justifying their attacks. They are quite skillful at selling their propaganda, but not all of us in the United States are buying.

I will end by saying, my thoughts are with you, my hopes are with you.  Your great culture will once again overcome a horrific atrocity -- an atrocity I condemn -- an atrocity my government committed -- an atrocity for which, I am deeply sorry.

Your Friend,

Josh Frank

United States Citizen

 

Josh Frank is a journalist living in Portland Oregon, his work appears frequently in Impact Press and online at Counterpunch. He can be reached at [email protected]


  Category: Americas, World Affairs
  Topics: George W. Bush, Iraq, Saddam Hussein
Views: 3209

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Older Comments:
TIM PAGE FROM USA said:
I have to laugh when I read such propaganda as this. Whats so funny about it is, do you really think the liberated people of Iraq who have just been freed from a murderous Dictator actually read articles you write? If any, very few. All you are doing is trying to sooth your misguided views. As for as the common man in Iraq, I think you could care less. Your agenda is to attack the Bush adminisration. Tell the truth!!
2003-04-21

OPEN MIND FROM USA said:
It is indeed gratifying to have amongst us one as honorable as Josh Frank whose moral integrity compelled him, in the least, to address citizen of Iraq - a nation in chaos; millions of US citizens share the subtle expression of humanity penned in his article.

USA is indeed a nation that justifies and protects human values of integrity, honesty that imbue greatness. We know and understand destroyed loves, lives and hopes of many Iraqi may never recover for years - if never in this lifetime.

Down the road, it is an aspiration that history will be kind in judging and record the sentiments of the faceless Americans cringe in our shame and in pain of those whose lives are in the state it is.
2003-04-20

NAYEEMUR RAHMAN FROM INDIA said:
may allah bless you all and make our iman strong help all of muslim world awake know to one cause
2003-04-20

AMMAR FROM JORDAN said:
Dear Mr. Frank Josh,
Bless you and bless all good hearted americans. The first step to curing a disease is to acknwoledge its existence. The evil in the white house cannot be rectified unless more people like you stand out and voice out. You being a journalist can spread your thoughts more than others and that put more load on your shoulders. May Allah help you and help all good ones around.
2003-04-20

AHMED ASGHER FROM BAHRAIN said:
Dear Josh Frank

Thank you for taking the time to write to us expressing your sentiment about this unjust war.

It is funny how all those who are pro-war accuse us of being pro-Saddam because we do not support this illegal war.

Such ignorance is alarming since such logic comes from learned quarters. Their logic is that only bombing the daylight our of Iraq will solve this problem. They have become totally bankrupt of any other civilised idea of solving the menace of Saddam.

Still, they have laid their egg. Now they have to wait till it is hatched. The results are not too promising considering the designs of who govern the US.

Bless you for being a human being who shares in the sufferings of Iraqis. God indeed judges us by our intentions.

Ahmed Asgher
2003-04-20

OPEN MIND FROM USA said:
It is indeed gratifying to have amongst us one as honorable as Josh Frank whose moral integrity compelled him, in the least, to address citizen of Iraq - a nation in chaos; millions of US citizens share the subtle expression of humanity penned in his article.

USA is indeed a nation that justifies and protects human values of integrity, honesty that imbue greatness. We know and understand destroyed loves, lives and hopes of many Iraqi may never recover for years - if never in this lifetime.

Down the road, it is an aspiration that history will be kind in judging and record the sentiments of the faceless Americans cringe in our shame and in pain of those whose lives are in the state it is.
2003-04-19

ROBIN RICHARDSON FROM USA said:
There are many of us that are awake and want peace for everyone. I believe that you have the right to live in peace. By using fear and intimidation, my government has failed us and you. My country, which I love, has a lot of growing and learning to do. Please forgive, if you can, the atrocities that have taken place in your country by ours. Many people here continue take action to create leadership that supports peace and freedom together until one day we can all live on this earth free from threat, free from fear. Our children and grandchildren deserve it.
2003-04-19

MIKE HALE FROM USA said:
Josh should just apologize for his ignorance.
2003-04-19

AHMAD SIRAJUDIN FROM MALAYSIA said:
I too feel sorry for the American. Ithink their government has some how been high jacked by a group of people you did not even elect. I am talking about Geroge Bush cabinet. He appointed them himself. So I was made to understand.
God bless America, the America that belongs to the Americans and not the America that George Bush controls. Thank you.
2003-04-19

KEN OSTOWARI FROM USA said:
Thank you for your touching comment Mr. Frank, I am sure majority of US citizens feel exactly the wat you do. However we have to start accepting the responsibility for what WE the people have done. We have committed a hugh crime. We have killed innocent people who their only crime was to want to live a life. We have distroyed the lives & hopes of many who may never recover for years to come. We the, All American Citizens, have blood on our hands wheather we were for or against this war, it is irrelevant. We have a govenment of the people -by the people - for the people who represents the worst the human race has to offer. This is our government, this is our crime. Applogies to a 5 year old that has been mamed for life and who has lost his or her family due to our murderous act, will not help in any shape or form to the future of that child. The sooner we accept this as being our masterpiece, maybe we can help get rid of the the New Hitler in the White house and his facist crew. We are all criminals at this point of tine Mr. Frank, this is the way the history will be judging us, lets start accepting that and know we all have blood on our hands.
Thank You
Ken Ostowari
2003-04-19

GERRY FROM AUSTRALIA said:
This is the first time I have read anything by Josh Frank. His views are shared by many people in Australia as well. But when all is said and done, his comments simply reflect those of a minority (sizeable but still well and truly a minority)an dhe should respect the view of the majority. Many of the assertions he uses to build his case are, however,inaccurate. He pussy-foots around the issue of soldiers' culpability in 'war' Why?
I am told that many tens of thousands of people would certainly have died in future years if Saddam had continued in power. Was Josh planing to write an open letter to those tens of thousands of dead and appologise for causing their death by inaction?
Whilst his concern for harm to the relatively small number iof 'innocents' is conmendable, will Josh also write an open letter to all those 'innocents' murdered by their mothers under the name abortion? If Josh has no stand against the abortion of millions of 'innocents' each year, he is simply shown to be crying crododile tears over the death of Iraqi children.
2003-04-19

KAREN TAYLOR FROM USA said:
I am grateful that someone has taken action for letting the citizen's of Iraz know we are horrifed, ashamed and immensely sorry about the action that our government has taken. There is no way we can atone for the irreparable loses you are suffering with, but somehow we must do something.

2003-04-18

SHAHNAZ FROM US said:
In the long run evil in the extremes will be the end of those who do evil;for that they rejected the signs of allah and held them up to ridicule.Al-Qran 30:10
2003-04-18

MAP FROM USA said:
Gosh Josh you are no real friend of Iraqi citizens. Where was your voice and sympathy when innocent Muslims were being gassed, tongues being cut out, people being put through a shredder head first (if they had mercy) or feet first so they could hear the screams (music to their ears). Rape rooms being video tapped for Saddam's pleasure?
No human being should ever have such evil control over anybody else and people like you Josh are just as evil for condoning such atrocities. There is no good explanation for this. Shame on you!
2003-04-18

ALEX KALANI FROM USA said:
Thank you Josh for showing a true Amreican.
2003-04-18

NOSHEEN KHAN FROM US said:
thankyou very much for thinking and expressing the truth, truth is bitter but truth.
2003-04-18

IMRAN FROM USA said:
Just keep giving American people (not all,but mostly) techniques how to master sex, and indulging in worshiping money, drinking beer, eating red meat, in return they will worship the giver NO QUESTION ASK.
2003-04-18

YAHYA BERGUM FROM USA said:
For those who have suffered in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere - there are additionally people in America who want to pay their debts (for what they had supported and also for what they know has caused their own circumstances to improve), Insha'Allah. As Salaamu Alaikum wa Rahmatuallah wa Barakatuhu.
2003-04-17

ESTHER FROM USA said:
Nice to hear that Asif Ameer almost thought September 11 was justified.
2003-04-17

NASIM FROM USA said:
Dear Josh Frank,
I read your letter and it touched my heart.
Thank you so much for being open, sensitive and honest.
As a citizen of United States I'm truly disguted by the hypocracy and it's open violation of the international law. As a muslim I'm deeply pained by the death of so many innocent people who became a victim of these greedy leaders of the so called superpower. It makes me question if it is a superpower or an evil power?
I'm frustrated and dismayed at the media which is only a puppet in the hands of the government.I see that voices of truth are constantly stiffled by Dan Rathers and other medai hosts.
We need a more independent press which is not controlled by governments.
I hope that these crazy,fanatic and cruel people who are running this country are kicked out of the office quickly. But they will still be around for 2-3 years and I'm scared that they will do a lot of damage until then which could be irrepairable.
I'm surprised and shocked by the ignorance of the public here who do not know the truth. Even in poor countries like India people are far more aware of what's going on and what their governments are doing and boy if anything they see is unjustified the have toppled their governments. The public is a force to reckon. Why don't we see such kind of public power here? Why do people here confuse with militarism and patriotism.
I hope and wish there were more people like you,people with conscience and wisdom who come on the stage and raise their voice against injustice.
2003-04-17

ROGLYN WILLIAMS FROM USA said:
Beautifully stated.
2003-04-17

ASIF AMEER FROM TEXAS, USA said:
If it weren't for people like Josh Frank, I wouldnt have grieved on September 11th. I would have ignorantly said "OK.. War is war!" But people like Josh, I have pause and have to think twice before I think about justifying the incidents in September.

Just the way, the US troops are following orders, just the way the US bombs follow the laser patterns on Pragnent's house, the very same way those from the "terrorist" side will ram their planes into your and my buildings Josh. Just like the US Troops, I can't blame them either. They are only following orders, orders to retaliate.

I dont know if there is enough time to still open our eyes or its too late.
2003-04-17

RUQIYA HASSAN FROM USA said:
Thank you for your honest opinion on what is really going on in Iraq. I know the Iraqi people have suffered. I hope that soon this atrocity would be over, and hopefully the Iraqi people would have their lives back. Again I want to thank you as a muslim for speaking for the Iraqi people.
2003-04-17

N. KHAN FROM UNITED KINGDOM said:
Dear Josh,

I have read your article " Dear Iraqi Citizen" and was very impressed. I am a muslim, educated and doing own business in UK.

when i see your president and his officials, i get dismay as these individuals do not have a shredd of sympathy and regards towrards the lives of the innocent people in the world. They seem to be keen on crushing people like a man walking down a foothpath crushing ants.

They have used all types of weapon in their disposable in Iraq and Afghanistan and yet they want to make the world safer place. When i see Bush speaking about peace, democracy and human rights, i start vomiting. Who has given the rights to America to make and use any weapon they think fit for the situation, whereas other countries are asked to abandoned them.

Before Bush took over, i thought American are wondeful people and one day i will visit there.
No more i want to visit there and no more i like American who support Bush. He is simply mad and do what his heart and mind ask him to do.

There are alot of problems and conflicts around the world. If America want to be a super power, they need to invest their energy toward solving the problems and conflicts peacefully and stand as a mediator among nations, but not as a invador. This way more and more people will respect their invlovement. Right now the muslim world consider American as alien who came to wage crusade against them. No muslim can withstand this situation.

I wish the American have seen enough in these 2-3 years and will get rid of Bush in next election.

Regards.
N.Khan

2003-04-17

ABDUL-MANI FROM NIGERIA said:
I commend Frank Joshua for his thoughtful write up and his sympathy for the Iraqi people. We all know that the objective of this invasion was not to liberate Iraq but a brazen display of raw power and redefinition of the New World Order.

I agree with Frank that the average American did not endorse the invasion of Iraq by the Anglo-American forces (forget coalition forces). The obvious beneficiaries are the hawks in Bush Administration, the weapon industry, big businesses and Israel.

We are told that Saddam evil rule was on for more than 20 years, what they refused to tell us was that half of those years had their active participation. Have the WMD being found?

thank you.
2003-04-17

ALIREZA SEFATI FROM UNITED STATES said:
I ask you not to confuse the policies of the American government with the will of the American people.

Polls show that majority of American people were pro this war. There are three possibilities:

1. Polls don't represent the true American opinion
2. American people were given wrong information regarding this that is why they supported it.
3. American people wanted this war regardless and Bush really represents the majority of American people.

I think I could agree with the third one. Despite the war protests by thousands, I have also observed many pro war protests specially where I live Bakersfield, California. There are a lot of so called conservative people who live in this Area and I am amazed there is such as strong support for war in California because California is supposed to be a liberal state.

Anyhow, just as TV and media shows Palestinian kids dancing when WTC is attacked (although just a few of them), Arab TV shows American dancing and celebrating as each time a Muslim or Arab state falls ! Whether it is terrorist Taliban or dictator Saddam. Soon it maybe Syria as we see in the news or Iran. Who knows who is next but I do see a lot of ignorance going around in this country.
2003-04-17

NASREEN KAMAL FROM CANADA said:
Thankyou for your open letter to the Iraqi people as a muslim I thank you for writting the letter.
2003-04-17

TEXAN FROM USA said:
Thanks, I wish more were like you. I wish people like you could make an impact. I also would like to add the global impact this has made on muslims, expecially in this country who are now being victimized, because of the propaganda. Only God can undo the damage that satan and his followers have done.
2003-04-17

BARBARA GOLDIN FROM USA said:
It is my hope that many freedom and liberty loving American Muslims, would-be American Muslims, American Jews, and American Christians can come together and help the Iraqi people.

I think this would be a wonderful Passover gift for everyone. Barbara Goldin, SSG, US Army, Retired.
2003-04-17

JAN SHOGAA FROM USA said:
Mr. Frank has stated beautifully, I believe, exactly what so many Americans feel in their heart. For me personally, if I lived under the rule of the worst dictator imaginable, "liberation" is not worth the cost of my loved ones' lives. If I should think otherwise, then I do not deserve to be a mother, wife, daughter, sister or even friend. There was no justification whatsoever for this war. Any American who feels otherwise has been sorely misled. For the 70% or so who support and agree with Bush for this war, all I can say is history will prove one of us right. For the safety and security of my family and country, I'm hoping and praying it's you.........but I don't think it will be.
2003-04-17

ANN-PHANJARART WIJAYASINHA FROM THAILAND said:
I want to submit a story about a FBI agent in Thailand which is set up to follow up Arab movements in Bkk, please let me know who I can contact. (my number is (66-01-9176439)
2003-04-17

ASOFAN FROM USA said:
Amazing. It is people like him that reestablish my belief that there is hope for good in this country (the US). I hope lots of arabs read this now.

Bush has made arabs think of the american people as greedy monsters who are only after money, even if it means killing innocent children.

Although most of us are not this way, the majority of us are ignorant and careless to seek the truth behind what is pleaseantly displayed in the TV screens.

Mr. Frank, u have my respect.
2003-04-17