Sanctions are an act of war, as the representatives of Palestine, Yemen, North Korea, Venezuela, and Iran explained in a webinar about the impact of the sanctions on the daily lives of ordinary people before and during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The representative Medical Doctor Medhat Abbas, who works at the Al-Quds hospital in Gaza, made an emotional plea to the world to please help us or rather to pressure Israel, the EU, and the US to lift the sanctions so medicine and aid are allowed to come in.
He also asked to help the destroyed communities inside Gaza, the largest open prison in the world. People died before COVID-19 because they were not allowed to leave Gaza to receive treatment for cases of cancer or other diseases.
Gaza is also the place where Israeli and US drones are continously flying overhead, and rocket attacks and bombs have been the “new normal” for Palestinians for many years already. They are a people under siege who struggle to survive these attacks and now COVID-19 too.
The Palestinians are blockaded and sanctioned by the richest countries in the world because of the imperialist colonial dreams of Israel.
The representative Prof. Yahia Mohammed Salah Mursed tried to explain the daily impact of war and sanctions on the Yemeni people, whilst doing that he was “sanctioned“ straight away. The Internet was bad and Skype and Zoom are not permitted by Saudi Arabia and its sponsor the US.
Since 2015, a war is raging in Yemen, fueled by Saudi Arabia and the US, which killed approximately 100,000 people. Saudi Arabia is bombing the Houthis of Yemen on a daily bases and destroy their hospitals, schools, residential areas, and historic buildings.
Sana‘a, the capital of Yemen, was famous for its beautiful houses that were once declared by UNESCO as a World Heritage site but are now destroyed. The world has gone mad since 2001, the start of the so-called War on Terror.
Sanctions and war leave a devastating impression in Yemen, where babies die of malnutrition and now people die from COVID-19.
The Western media is giving little to no attention to the atrocities committed by Saudi Arabia, who are sponsored with weapons by the US and France. European taxpayers’ money is killing people in Yemen.
In France, a leaked report stated that “the war in Yemen has resulted in the widespread destruction of infrastructure, an unprecedented famine the likes of which has not been seen in the world in 100 years according to the UN, the deaths of 100,000 people, including civilians, and the displacement of millions more.
Unfortunately, the protracted war has received minimal exposure in mainstream media, and the majority of French citizens are unaware of the extent of their government’s exacerbation of one of the bloodiest civil wars in modern history“.
Medical Doctor Kee B. Park of North Korean descent but who’s been a US citizen for a while now spoke about the inhumane conditions in his country. He is assisting North Korean doctors inside North Korea and travels on a regular basis to his country of origin.
He cleared the rumors of the Western media saying that in 2018, more than 4,000 children under the age of five died because of the sanctions of the US-EU and not because of what the West would like to call the “regime“ (government).
As all representatives of the other countries pointed out, sanctions are hurting ordinary citizens and are an act of war on them, who suffer the most. In all sanctioned countries, they are deprived of the international banking system, which is crucial for trade, including the purchase of medicine and medical equipment.
This forced North Korea, like all the other sanctioned states, to find a broker (middleman) to buy the goods that they need in hard currency. The West made many documentaries about this, including a new one that just came out called “Buro-39“, where they spread propaganda and say that North Korea is a criminal state.
But honestly, what would you do if you don‘t have food or medicine and are on the brink of starvation? Right, buy what you can, legally or illegally, since it‘s a matter of survival.
We all know the clumsiness, as I would call it, of the failed regime change attempts, where it was obvious who was behind it: the US and the EU states. The Venezuelan people didn‘t go for it, they didn‘t want a puppeteer from the West called Juan Guaido.
Even more painful for them was the latest coup attempt. The headlines this week were about the Iranian oil tanker that went to Venezuela to deliver oil and spare parts for their refineries. Iran had broken the sanctions imposed by the US and the EU.
The representative Dr. Carlos J. Ron Martinez from Venezuela explained the impact of the sanctions. It is the same story as in the other sanctioned countries. They target the banking system, medical supplies, and food aid. But another important issue is the Venezuelan oil.
Venezuela is the eleventh-largest oil-producing country in the world. Unfortunately, the Venezuelan people don‘t benefit from it because of, once again, the US sanctions.
The biggest oil company Citgo, which is jointly US-Venezuelan-owned, pumps up the oil, then it is brought to the US for refinery and not brought back to Venezuela, which is an economic crime. Also, the spare parts for the oil company can‘t be purchased due to the sanctions. Crimes upon crime, painfully exposed during the COVID-19 crisis.
Since the Trump regime, the US and EU have given Iran the most destructive and harsh sanctions, the worst since the beginning of the sanctions against Iran forty years ago.
Ambassador Syaed Hosein Musavian also mentioned the “forgotten“ Iran-Iraq war from 1980-1988, where more than 100,000 Iranians were killed due to the chemical weapons used by Iraq.
This could be an explanation for the high death toll from the COVID-19 virus too, since the surviving soldiers from 1980 are now in their fifties or sixties, their lungs affected by the chemicals.
This time, according to the representative of Iran, the sanctions are out of proportion, especially during the COVOD-19 crisis, where no medicine and aid is coming into the country. President Trump is openly declaring that the aim of the sanctions is to drive the people to riots and regime change.
Another problem is the cancellation of the nuclear agreement. Iran delivered its commitment but the US unilaterally cancelled the agreement, terminating IAEA-UN resolution 2231. The US forbids all oil imports from Iran, which caused a forty percent inflation and reduced the economy by ten percent. Medial aid and food can‘t be imported.
More than 10,000 people died in the last months from the COVID-19 virus. The representative emphasized that without the determination and steadfastness of the Iranian people, Iran would not have survived the hybrid war on it.
He also mentioned that the “great“ imperials like the US and EU showed their weakness in offering no diplomacy, or the will to implement the diplomacy, since their only offer is war which kills people.
The 21st Century
The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of 21cir.