Voice from the Commonwealth
Commentary, World Views and Occasional Rants from a small 'l' libertarian in Massachussetts

"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and leave us in peace. We seek not your council nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." - Samuel Adams

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

Members of the Iraqi exile community in New Zealand speak up.

Saddam Hussein must be toppled, says the Napier-based former chief of Baghdad's air defences - but afterwards the US should let the Iraqi people choose their own Government.

Shamel Majid works for the Refugee and Migrant Service, helping about 40 Iraqi refugees settle into their new homes in Napier.

But before fleeing his homeland and arriving in New Zealand as a refugee five years ago, he was an Iraqi air force pilot.

He flew in the Iran-Iraq war and rose through the ranks, eventually commanding the Baghdad air defence centre.

"It is a good idea to topple Saddam Hussein, whatever the cost - the important thing for the Iraqi people is to live life free," he said.

"We don't want them to bomb the Iraqi people or what's left of the civilian infrastructure - the water plants, power stations and bridges - like they did last time ... They said they won't attack Iraqi people, and we hope they are honest and serious about this."

"The problem is that the Iraqi regime has always hidden weapons in civilian neighbourhoods, that's why civilians are killed by the American bombs," he said.

< email | 3/18/2003 02:54:00 PM | link

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