A Year after the Start of the War against Iraq
19 March 2004
- RENGO stands in a clear, basic position to oppose to any war on any condition and for any reason. Objecting to the use of armed force without a new United Nations resolution, we have called the Japanese government to make an effort towards a peaceful solution. Since the dispatch of the SDF troops became a crucial political issue at the end of last y ear, we have protested against and demanded to call off the dispatch for the following reasons:
- Doubts over the legitimacy of the US and UK attacks are growing;
- The SDF dispatch to a combat zone in Iraq is against the Special Law on Iraq, which the government uses to the justify the dispatch;
- The government and the ruling coalition ignored their accountability and rammed the bill through the Diet, in spite of the majority of the people either opposing to the dispatch or feeling government’s explanations are insufficient.
- RENGO made presentations to Prime Minister Koizumi, as well as the US, UK and Iraqi embassies in March last year and organised various campaigns for a peaceful solution, including the 10 March rally. RENGO President Sasamori requested in his meeting with Prime Minister in December last year that the SDF dispatch be reviewed, followed by the 14 December rally jointly organised by RENGO and civil society organisations.
- One year after the start of the Iraqi war and two months after the fist SDF dispatch, the Iraqi situation has not improved, but internal strife has been even aggravated. It is now doubtful whether the sovereignty will be transferred in June. The terror attacks on trains and rail stations in Spain regarded an act by extremists points out a possible terror attack on Japan for the SDF dispatch. Tensions both within and outside Iraq have not been eased at all.
- RENGO does not accept the SDF dispatch as a fait accompli. The dispatch to Iraq is obviously a policy mistake in the current situation. The Koizumi administration must fix its gaze upon the real situation, not repeatedly stressing the primacy of the Japan-U.S. alliance relationship. There should not be a case that Japan and its people are targeted by a terror attack because of the SDF dispatch to Iraq