ZNet is updating constantly now, many times daily...and use of the site
is escalating as well. We now have over 101,000 update recipients.
That's you, of course!

Recent changes on the site include many new Venezuela articles added, a
major update of Venezuela Watch, and of course continuing coverage of
on-going issues regarding Iraq, TerrorWar, the Mideast, etc.

There are two new interesting multipiece exchanges -- between Michael
Berube and Edward Herman -- and between George Monbiot and David Edwards
and David Cromwell.

There is a major new article in three parts from Irene Gendzier on oil
and the mideast.

And there is much more, of course.

But I am writing this time to note, celebrate, and congratulate the new
round of anti-war demonstrations across the U.S. and also much of
Europe. While it is the statement by numerous Hollywood actors opposing
war that is getting most media visibility, of course it is what goes on
in the homes and streets and workplaces leading to outpourings across
the country that is most central to the emerging movement. Still, the
Hollywood statement does evidence the remarkably advanced situation of
U.S. antiwar dissent. It was a good six years of organizing, maybe more,
before comparable steps by large numbers of prominent actors were taken
regarding Vietnam. Yet the Hollywood statement does leave room for
further development. For example, perhaps soon, writers and actors and
others in the U.S. will be uttering words with passion more or less akin
to those the Great British Playwrite Harold Pinter just published in
London, evidencing, I think, the direction of developing sentiment
around the world...

Daily Telegraph
December 11, 2002 

The American administration is a bloodthirsty wild animal 
By Harold Pinter 

Earlier this year, I had a major operation for cancer. The operation and
its after effects were something of a nightmare. I felt I was a man
unable to swim bobbing about under water in a deep dark endless ocean.
But I did not drown and I am very glad to be alive. 

However, I found that to emerge from a personal nightmare was to enter
an infinitely more pervasive public nightmare - the nightmare of
American hysteria, ignorance, arrogance, stupidity and belligerence; the
most powerful nation the world has ever known effectively waging war
against the rest of the world. 

"If you are not with us, you are against us," President George W. Bush
has said. He has also said: "We will not allow the world's worst weapons
to remain in the hands of the world's worst leaders." Quite right. Look
in the mirror, chum. That's you. 

America is at this moment developing advanced systems of "weapons of
mass destruction" and is prepared to use them where it sees fit. It has
more of them than the rest of the world put together. It has walked away
from international agreements on biological and chemical weapons,
refusing to allow inspection of its own factories. The hypocrisy behind
its public declarations and its own actions is almost a joke. 

America believes that the 3,000 deaths in New York are the only deaths
that count, the only deaths that matter. They are American deaths. Other
deaths are unreal, abstract, of no consequence. 

The 3,000 deaths in Afghanistan are never referred to. The hundreds of
thousands of Iraqi children dead through American and British sanctions
which have deprived them of essential medicines are never referred to. 

The effect of depleted uranium, used by America in the Gulf war, is
never referred to. Radiation levels in Iraq are appallingly high. Babies
are born with no brain, no eyes, no genitals. Where they do have ears,
mouths or rectums, all that issues from these orifices is blood. 

The 200,000 deaths in East Timor in 1975 brought about by the Indonesian
government but inspired and supported by America are never referred to.
The 500,000 deaths in Guatemala, Chile, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Uruguay,
Argentina and Haiti, in actions supported and subsidised by America, are
never referred to. 

The millions of deaths in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia are no longer
referred to. The desperate plight of the Palestinian people, the central
factor in world unrest, is hardly referred to. 

But what a misjudgment of the present and what a misreading of history
this is. People do not forget. They do not forget the death of their
fellows, they do not forget torture and mutilation, they do not forget
injustice, they do not forget oppression, they do not forget the
terrorism of mighty powers. They not only don't forget: they also strike

The atrocity in New York was predictable and inevitable. It was an act
of retaliation against constant and systematic manifestations of state
terrorism on the part of America over many years, in all parts of the

In Britain, the public is now being warned to be "vigilant" in
preparation for potential terrorist acts. The language is in itself
preposterous. How will - or can - public vigilance be embodied? Wearing
a scarf over your mouth to keep out poison gas? 

However, terrorist attacks are quite likely, the inevitable result of
our Prime Minister's contemptible and shameful subservience to America.
Apparently a terrorist poison gas attack on the London Underground
system was recently prevented. 

But such an act may indeed take place. Thousands of schoolchildren
travel on the Underground every day. If there is a poison gas attack
from which they die, the responsibility will rest entirely on the
shoulders of our Prime Minister. Needless to say, the Prime Minister
does not travel on the Underground himself. 

The planned war against Iraq is in fact a plan for premeditated murder
of thousands of civilians in order, apparently, to rescue them from
their dictator. 

America and Britain are pursuing a course that can lead only to an
escalation of violence throughout the world and finally to catastrophe.
It is obvious, however, that America is bursting at the seams to attack

I believe that it will do this not only to take control of Iraqi oil,
but also because the American administration is now a bloodthirsty wild
animal. Bombs are its only vocabulary. Many Americans, we know, are
horrified by the posture of their government, but seem to be helpless. 

Unless Europe finds the solidarity, intelligence, courage and will to
challenge and resist American power, Europe itself will deserve
Alexander Herzen's declaration - "We are not the doctors. We are the

The article is taken from an address given by Harold Pinter on receiving
an honorary degree at the University of Turin.

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