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From The Socialist newspaper, 11 June 2008

Fast news

Permanent occupation

AHEAD OF November's presidential election, the Bush administration is attempting to establish 50 permanent US armed bases in Iraq.

According to The Independent's Patrick Cockburn, a new treaty with the beleaguered Iraqi government of prime minister Nouri al-Maliki would allow US troops to "occupy permanent bases, arrest Iraqis and enjoy immunity from Iraqi law". For good measure, Washington also wants control of Iraqi air space. As Cockburn remarks, this treaty will "destabilise Iraq's position in the Middle East and lay the basis for unending conflict".

But Bush's plans to turn Iraq into a US colony, supported by Republican presidential candidate John McCain, could come unstuck if Iraq's Shia leaders - Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani and nationalist cleric Muqtada al-Sadr - force Maliki to hold a referendum on the treaty.

War crimes immunity

MEANWHILE, A US military jury has acquitted a marine of charges that he helped cover up the killing of 24 unarmed Iraqi civilians in Haditha in Iraq, in 2005. Four marines and four officers were initially charged with murder and with failing to investigate the deaths, but the case against five of them was dropped.

Iraqi witnesses said the US troops shot dead five unarmed men at the scene of a car bombing. The troops were then accused of going into nearby houses and killing a further 19 civilians.

There was no full US investigation into what happened until January 2006, when video footage emerged of the aftermath. And an investigation by Time magazine said that most of the dead Iraqis were shot by marines after the bombing.

  • Demonstrate against George Bush who is visiting the UK - Sunday 15 June, 5pm. Parliament Square, London, SW1. Called by Stop The War Coalition.
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    In The Socialist 11 June 2008:


    Socialist Party NHS campaign

    Stop the NHS sell-off

    Banking on NHS profits

    My pain - and privatisation


    Anti-racism

    Racist BNP have no solutions!


    Socialist Party editorial

    Will Obama win?

    Obama declares victory, and shifts to the right


    Socialist Party campaigns

    "Anti-terror" laws are no solution


    Defend Tommy Sheridan

    Stirring rally backs Tommy Sheridan

    Unison witch-hunt hits Northern Ireland


    Campaign for a New Workers Party

    Come to the Campaign for a New Workers' Party Conference

    New Labour's parallel universe

    Waltham Forest protest

    Them & Us


    Socialist Party youth and students

    Underfunding youth facilities: It makes no sense!


    Socialist Party feature

    Oil price shock - the chaos of capitalism

    Sudan's poor paying the price for oil

    Fast news


    Socialist Party review

    Immortal Technique at the Coronet, London 4 June 2008


    Socialist Party workplace news

    Usdaw needs a fighting leadership

    Organise to fight the public-sector pay robbery

    National Shop Stewards Network second conference

    Fujitsu workers strike to save jobs

    The costs of privatisation

    Brighton bus drivers strike


     

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