Stands >2004 Stands >The Stand of Rabih1 28, 1425H / May 18, 2004 A.D.

American Sanctions on Syria

Sayyed Fadlullah: let us be honest with ourselves and punish America for its arrogant sanctions

Asked in his weekly seminar the following question: How do you view the American use of the weapon of economic sanctions against anyone who dares to oppose its policies, especially after it has included Syria?

The Religious Authority Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah said:

There is nothing new in the sanctions the American President announced against Syria except the threats the American Administration made to escalate its sanctions to include military ones. Nevertheless, such a threat conforms fully with the American imperial mentality that resorts to all possible means of intimidation to secure its hegemony over the world in general and over the Arab and Islamic World in particular.

In the last decade, the American Administration has accused about fifty states of various charges including violating international law, supporting terrorism and seeking to possess weapons of mass destruction, aiming at subduing the countries which opposed the American policies. But these accusations and the sanctions that were imposed as a result were useless because the states that decided to take the American train were not doing so out of fear of the sanctions, but because they found that this is the best way to preserve their rule.

If we study the sanctions America has imposed on Iraq, we will find that they affected the Iraqi people killing hundred of thousands of children and the elderly as a result of hunger and the shortage in water and medication.

It did not affect the well being of the ruler who continued to live in prosperity until the US decided that it no longer needs him.

But Syria is not Iraq, whether with respect to its role, its prominent position in the Arab and Islamic issues, or the way strategic affairs are run without any adventurism or acrobatic stunts. Thus no one will be able to deny Syria its role or force her to forego its strategic principles of embracing Arab and Islamic causes.

In this respect, we believe that Syria holds several cards that would enable her to overcome the mounting pressures that aim at making her act as a security police to the American occupation in Iraq, as it has previously thwarted the Israeli pressures to turn its presence in Lebanon on a security belt for Israel.

Moreover, America knows quite well that the pretense of WMD has proved to be a failure in Iraq. America itself has sunk in the Iraqi quagmire and lost its credibility before the entire world. On the other hand, talking about supporting terrorism is useless since the world is quite aware of America's support of Israeli terrorism, and its going out of its war to ensure Israelís possession of WMD and nuclear weapons.

It is ironic that America, that occupies Iraq, practices all kind of abuse of human rights there and announces that it will extend its occupation of Iraq for a long period, pretends to care about the Lebanese sovereignty claiming that it is violated by Syria, despite all the understanding and cooperation between the two sister countries.

America's attempt to give its pressures against Syria the label of fighting terrorism and halting the spread of WMD is hopeless; for it will not provide a way out for the American Administration from the dilemma it has sunk itself in when it occupied Iraq.

The American Administration actions do not follow a moral set of values Ö It rather aims to promote the interests of the oil and weapons industries to secure its hegemony over the entire world.

We call on all free and honest people in the world, and on the Arab and Islamic peoples in particular, to take a practical stand of punishing America.

They ought to boycott American commodities and adopt a political and practical stand that make it pay the price of its arrogant policy of imposing sanctions ... We have to be honest with ourselves and punish those who commit aggressions against us. Let us at least return the favor for the Iraqis and Palestinians and protest in a practical manner against the American arrogant policies.