UCD president Hugh Brady awarded former US president Bill Clinton with the Ulysses medal last night as the war criminal visited the Clinton Institute for American Studies on campus. The medal, UCDs highest accolade, is awarded to those who have made “an outstanding global contribution”.
Among Clintons outstanding global contributions are the bombing of civilian facilities in Sudan, the imposition of ‘sanctions of destruction’ in Iraq, supplying Turkey with arms in their war against the Kurds, and providing aid to a Columbian government affiliated with paramilitary organisations. As media analyst, and Manufacturing Consent co-author Edward S Herman describes:
“Clinton’s crimes range from ad hoc bombings to boycotts and sanctions designed to starve into submission, to support of ethnic cleansing in brutal counterinsurgency warfare, and to aggression and devastation by bombing designed to return rogues to the stone age and keep them there.”
Following attacks on US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, the Clinton administration retaliated by bombing alledged terrorist targets in Sudan and Afghanistan. One of those targets was the Sudanese El Shifa Pharmaceutical Industries factory which produced 50% of the Sudans pharmaceutical products, including drugs to combat TB and malaria.
Clinton alledged that the factory was linked to Osama Bin Laden and had been producing chemical weapons, but the US refused to produce any evidence to back-up the allegations. The UN had perviously approved the factory for supplying vetinary medicine for the ‘Oil for Food’ program, and the company had also registered 33 commercial products with various regulatory authorities and organisations.
Following the bombing, Sudan sought a UN inquiry into the justifcations for the bombing. The inquiry was blocked by the US.
The blow to the production of vital drugs, combined with US sanctions which prevented the importation of medicine, has been attributed to the deaths of several thousand Sudanese civilians – a number far in excess of the deaths on 9-11. The targeting of a civilian facility and a failure to the UN Security Council prior to the bombing contravened international law.
Clintons Foreign Policy included:
- Allowed US arms (averaging $800 million a year) pour into Turkey while it was committing atrocities against the Kurdish population
- Providing over $1.3 billiion in aid to a Colombian governemnt which funded right-wing paramilitaries in a campaign of terror against peasants, trade unionists, and human rights activists calling for social reform
- Imposing ‘sanctions of destruction’ on Iraq which various UN agencies have attributed to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians
- Targetting civilian facilities in the US led war against Yugoslavia, including the bombing of over 300 schools, 30 hospitals, farms, housing estates, hotels, libraries, youth centres, theatres, museums, churches and 14th century monasteries on the World Heritage list.
Photo credit : Julien Behal/PA Wire