The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

Editorial:
Oppose the Endless U.S. Wars in the Middle East

Jan 6, 2020

U.S. war tensions with Iran have been growing rapidly, especially after a U.S. Reaper drone fired a missile at a truck convoy in Iraq, killing the most powerful Iranian general, Qassim Suleimani. Thousands of U.S. troops are now being deployed to the Middle East to prepare for a possible new war against Iran.

Working people in this country cannot just blame these latest war threats on some sudden impulsive decision by Trump and his entourage of armchair warmongers. For decades, the U.S. superpower has invaded and bombed one country after another in a region that includes not just the Middle East, but parts of North Africa and Central Asia. In order to maintain its domination, the U.S. has built up military bases scattered throughout this region. Meanwhile, the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet, based in Bahrain, patrols the oceans and seas, with its war ships carrying tens of thousands more troops, bombers and artillery.

In its quest for domination of this vast region and its riches, the U.S. super power has systematically played one country against the other. It has divided entire populations against each other, promoting racism, hatred, bigotry, often through religious fundamentalism and fanaticism in order to blind and control entire populations.

This latest U.S. confrontation with Iran is only the latest example of this policy of divide and conquer. Close to two decades ago, the U.S. military had no choice but to seek the help of the Iranian military after the U.S. invaded Afghanistan and then Iraq. In later years, the U.S. military even worked with the Iranian military in its war against ISIS in Syria and Iraq. But once those wars were completed, the U.S. no longer needed Iran’s help. And it began to turn on Iran.

Because of it its size, resources and history, the Iranian regime is not completely dependent on U.S. imperialism. It has shown that it can carry out its own independent policy throughout the region. For U.S. imperialism that has been a problem ever since its puppet, the Shah of Iran, was overthrown 40 years ago.

So, the U.S. government moved to contain the Iranian regime’s power and reach. The U.S. carried out an economic war against Iran, banning the sale of its huge oil and gas resources on the world market. The U.S. government imposed this ban not only on U.S. companies, but any companies from any country. Any company that did business with Iran without U.S. permission was banned from the U.S. market.

This ban, this economic war, has strangled the Iranian economy and provoked military confrontations that have quickly escalated, from tanker wars in the Straits of Hormuz to rocket attacks against Saudi oil facilities. The latest confrontations have been in Iraq, where the U.S. continues its military occupation, run out of the biggest embassy in the world, a compound covering 114 acres, a U.S. city inside the Iraqi city of Baghdad.

After the U.S. had bombed and killed close to three dozen Iranian-backed militia members in Iraq in late December, Iranian-backed forces carried out a 48-hour siege of the U.S. embassy in Iraq. Nobody in the embassy was killed or even hurt. But the siege embarrassed the Trump administration, because this symbol of U.S. power had been shown to be vulnerable. So, the U.S. upped the ante by assassinating Suleimani, the top Iranian general.

Who knows what barbaric military actions will follow, leading to how much more death and destruction. But one thing is sure: U.S. working people have every reason to oppose this latest U.S. imperialist war, which we are paying for in every way possible.

Our real enemy is the U.S. capitalist class that is driving these wars to further its own domination and plunder, while exploiting working people in this country for their own profits. Our real allies are the Iraqi and Iranian working people and poor, who have been risking their lives, demonstrating and demanding jobs, bread and services, opposing the corruption and theft of their own government and leaders, and often even opposing the ethnic and religious divisions that have been imposed on them from on high.

By taking the road of struggle, those working people in Iraq and Iran are showing us, the workers in this country, the only way out of this barbaric trap that the capitalists have us in is our own struggle for what we need.