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Volume 2, Number 47              January 5 - 11, 2003            Quezon City, Philippines

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American's Human Shield Plan For Iraq 
Ex-Marine's Peace Protest

By Sky News (Britain)

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A former US marine is leading a campaign against a second Gulf war by going to Baghdad to become a human shield.

Ken Nichols O'Keefe wants to prevent attacks on the Iraqi people. He claims to have been "overwhelmed" by the number of others who want to take similar action.

"I believe our so-called democracies are not representing the views of their people," he told Sky News. "Polls show people are against war but governments are clearly leading us into a conflict."

"George W. Bush has more than 7,000 nuclear weapons. He has said as recently as last month that he is willing to use them. The US must disarm first, then the rest of the world would be justifiably compelled to do the same."

Mr O'Keefe served in the first Gulf War in the early 1990s but later renounced his American citizenship.

He strongly denies he is being supported by the Iraqi government.

"It's a ludicrous suggestion, " he said. "But I'm not a pacifist, either. I just believe people have the right to fight back if they are threatened. I stand by what I believe in - I'm concerned about the state of the world.

"People in the West are lulled into a state of prosperity and comfort which makes them quite naive to the fact that we are on the brink of a global revolution."

Mr O'Keefe warned that the US had no interest in popular democracy in Iraq.

"If that was so, the oil would have to be distributed equitably. Any government after Saddam would be a puppet regime doing the bidding of the US and protecting its oil interests."

Mr O'Keefe plans to leave for Iraq on January 25.

He claims that huundreds of people have volunteered to go there, in what he calls a mass migration, "with the ultimate goal of saving thousands of brothers and sisters whose only crime is the existence of oil beneath their feet".

January 14, 2003


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