IT IS the United States of America that is being humiliated in Iraq and not Saddam Hussein.
The idea that putting pictures – provided by the CIA or US military intelligence – into a British newspaper of Saddam Hussein in his underpants would demoralise the Iraqi resistance and ‘break the spell’ that Saddam has over Iraq is so loopy as to be insane.
The Arab world is furious that the same techniques that were used at the notorious Abu Ghraib prison are now being used against the Iraqi president (who is the victim, along with the Iraqi people of an illegal war and an illegal occupation) to try and demoralise the Iraqi people as a whole.
Iraqis see this latest US effort as an indication that the imperialists are desperately clutching at straws, that they are the ones who are demoralised, and that in stooping to such tactics they are in fact humiliating nobody but themselves.
The essence of the issue is that since the US attacked Iraq in March 2003 it has been humiliated in a way that has not been seen since the closing stages of the Vietnam War.
Two years after the occupation of Iraq began over 1,500 US soldiers have been killed, over 15,000 have been seriously wounded, and thousands of US troops have been invalided out of Iraq after suffering mental breakdowns and serious illnesses.
The US army has been so stretched and so extended and so humiliated by the scope of the insurgency, that up to half of its forces are made up of reservists, many of them over 45 years of age, and many of them serving very much against their will.
One of the biggest humiliations for the world’s number one imperialist power is the knowledge that if US forces left tomorrow the puppet regime that they would leave behind would be gone in 24 hours.
In two years of bloody occupation they have achieved nothing.
The demoralisation of the US forces is now so deep that an officer at a press briefing in Baghdad on Thursday, declared to the assembled media, that the US army could be defeated in Iraq, while his commander stressed that there was no way that US troops could leave that country for years ahead.
And what of their commander in chief, President George W Bush.
This brilliant military leader declared in May 2003, two years ago, that the war was over, while his chief of occupation Bremer was so intoxicated with the ‘victory’ that he ordered the disbandment of the entire Iraqi army and Iraqi security forces, without pay or compensation, providing at one brilliant stroke tens of thousands of fighters against the occupation.
And what of the US’ allies. They have been humiliated as well, and most of them have now melted away into the night – Spanish, Ukrainians, Poles, Czechs, Salvadorans etc, with the Italians about to follow them.
The exceptions are the Australians and the British. They are frantically seeking a way out, but the consequences of losing access to Middle Eastern oil are so odious for them, they now realise that getting out of Iraq will be far more difficult than getting into it ever was.
It is not the Iraqi people or Saddam Hussein that are being humiliated. They are standing tall. The insurrection is expanding and becoming more powerful every day, while the Iraqi leader’s appearance in court last year showed him to be defiant.
It is US and UK imperialism that is being humiliated.
The British workers must now take action to complete that humiliation by bringing down the Blair government to go forward to a workers’ government that will withdraw all British troops from Iraq at once.