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Pilger on Gatsby and Iraq

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In today’s online edition of The Guardian, Australian journalist John Pilger surveys the mess that is contemporary Iraq, under the headlines

We’ve moved on from the Iraq war – but Iraqis don’t have that choice

Like characters from The Great Gatsby, Britain and the US

have arrogantly turned their backs and left a country in ruins

After surveying the horrendous spike in cancer cases and birth defects which local doctors and World Health Organisation researchers attribute to the use by US and UK forces of over 300 tonnes of depleted uranium (a metal which is highly toxic aside from its radioactivity), he writes:

Iraq is no longer news. Last week, the killing of 57 Iraqis in one day was a non-event compared with the murder of a British soldier in London. Yet the two atrocities are connected. Their emblem might be a lavish new movie of F Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. Two of the main characters, as Fitzgerald wrote, “smashed up things and creatures and retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness … and let other people clean up the mess”.

Read Pilger’s article in full at We’ve moved on from the Iraq War – but Iraqis don’t have that choice.

Originally published by AWPR, 27 May, 2013 | 4:33 pm


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