|COLONEL MARTIN - Time To Stop Appeasing The Fundamentalist Regime|
|Sunday, 03 June 2012 12:05|
Washington, May 30, 2012 - My brothers, my sisters --
AUDIENCE: We love you.
COLONEL MARTIN: I love you.
AUDIENCE: God bless you.
COLONEL MARTIN: Thank you, my friend. I'd like to today speak once again on behalf of my brothers and my sisters at Ashraf. (Applause.)
COLONEL MARTIN: One would think with as many Great American leaders for democracy that have spoken out and stated that, State Department, you are wrong in having the MeK on the terrorist list, the MeK on the terrorist list. When we have men like John Bolton, Tom Ridge, Louie Freeh and the list goes on and on and on.
As a second lieutenant I learned if everyone tells you one thing and you think something else, maybe you're wrong and you should readjust and come to a better conclusion. And yet the State Department bureaucrats don't seem to get the message.
The invasion of Iraq only succeeded in replacing one brutal dictator with another.
As Saddam, in his early days of power, Maliki has the support of the U.S. Government. Unlike Saddam, every day Maliki aligns himself closer to Tehran while the U.S. administration downplays his connection.
To claim, as Vice President Joe Biden recently did, that Iranian influences greatly exaggerated is a discredit to all the coalition forces who fought and died and bled in Iraq and to all the Iraqi citizens and the Ashraf residents who have paid that price.
To be part of the solution and to show good faith in the U.N. refugee determination process, MeK leadership agreed to the transfer from Ashraf to Hurriya.
Now as we all know 2,000 members have made that move. This relocation has been with numerous problems. Continually the call is rendered by the United Nations and the U.S. State Department this relocation requires cooperation of all parties concerned.
The Iraqi government has created one difficulty after another. It should not be forgotten it was the Iraqi government that prevented the United Nations from traveling to and conducting the process at Camp Ashraf.
Furthermore, the officer in charge of this transfer mission is the same person who commanded the 2009, 2011 Iraqi military attacks on Camp Ashraf, Sadeq.
Camp Hurriya, less than one half of square mile in size, is correctly referred to by Rudy Giuliani as a concentration camp. Before the arrival of the first bus by Ashraf, Camp Hurriya had already been looted by the Iraqi military. Cabinets that could have been used for storage were intentionally damaged.
The black water storage tank ruptured the first day due to lack of maintenance. The water treatment plant built in 2006 by the United States military had been stripped by the Iraqis. Now the MeK must pay for water to be shipped in. The quantity of water has never met any of the population that has been there.
Often part of the problem as U.N. Ambassador Kobler himself, he has proven to be very quick to accept Maliki's word on most everything. Even assuring everyone that Hurriya was in good shape.
The pristine photos he provided to support his claim were not the same facilities our brothers and sisters found upon their arrival. He criticized the residents for the Black water tank breaking down and blamed them for trashing Hurriya to stage a photo opportunity for insanitary conditions.
In doing so in his blame it was overlooked the fact that it was United States generated trash. His theory also required it to have been overlooked during the multiple searches by the Iraqi guards.
Even from, even getting from Ashraf to Hurriya has been loaded with obstacles. The Iraqi government has not honored formal agreements. This includes generators for power, vehicles for transporting disabled people, medical equipment supplies and personal items.
Having worked both with the Iraqi government in the former national liberation Army of the MeK I can understand what's happened. The deny of supplies and equipment will make life that much more difficult for the residents.
Also, the more that is left at Camp Ashraf means the more the Iraqi government can loot. On the 6 very last convoy two trucks of personal clothing disappeared. When MeK leadership directly questioned Sadeq on this, he responded the clothing belonged to the Prime Minister's office. The very searches of the convoy and the people prior to departure have been exercises in harassment and brutality. What has been searched gets searched again and again. The process lasts for a day and a half without rest. It was on this process that a good friend Bardia, a 48-year-old engineer died of a stroke.
In another instant the Iraqi military convinced beaten Ashraf residents to include with batons resulting in 29 MeK members injured. Despite all this torment and all the years of torment, our brothers and sisters at Ashraf have not broken ranks, not one single person has left or defected. That speaks great and that speaks about their dedication to democracy and their dedication to the cause.
COLONEL MARTIN: Loudspeakers at Ashraf has taken on a different level at Hurriya. Multiple observation posts and patrols inside the camp continually used to dehumanize the residents. Consolidation at Hurriya when life support itself is dependent upon the ever watchful and demeaning Iraqi military supports Mayor Giuliani position that this a concentration camp. Unfortunately one spark could easily set this camp ablaze of slaughter that would dwarf the 2009 and 2011 attacks, then Hurriya becomes an extermination camp.
In her testimony to Congress last February, Secretary Clinton stated there have been some minor, minor issues with the transfer to Camp Liberty. During that same testimony when asked about the de-listing, Secretary Clinton stated that it is directly related to the movement from Ashraf to Hurriya.
Once again, this proves Hillary Clinton and her department fails to understand the Former National Liberation Army. The NLA was the military arm of the MeK with one mission only: Direct military engagement with the Iranian government, not the U.S., nobody else, not the Israeli government, the Iranian government. It never had any other mission.
NLA membership surrendered every one of their weapons and leadership, signed a cease fire agreement with the U.S. military. You have heard me say many times before; no one despises war more than the warrior. No one despises the breaking of a cease fire agreement or a surrender agreement than the warriors who secured it and worked it and yet we watched our State Department do exactly that over the honor and the dignity of the United States military.
For Secretary Clinton to associate the move from Camp Ashraf to Hurriya as being part of the requirements for de-listing the MeK requires her belief that somehow out of Ashraf and Liberty under all this Iraqi security they are capable of breaking out, somehow getting to Baghdad International Airport and launching an attack on the United States. It is impossible.
And furthermore, it will never happen because I testify to you today as Dave Phillips has and many others, when we were at Ashraf, the MeK were the best allies we had. (Applause.)
COLONEL MARTIN: In April, State Departments and Ambassador *Benjamin stated before Congress that the terrorist designation is dependent upon seeing what weaponry the MeK still has at Ashraf. This was later repeated and quoted by Robert Lowe at the Court of Appeals and somehow they would have to wait until the Iraqi government got in there to look for all of those weapons.
Dave Phillips has testified before, I have, Leo McCloskey has testified we have gone through that compound over and over again. There are no weapons at Camp Ashraf. And to suggest that the word of the corrupt Iraqi government is to be taken over the American officers who served there is nothing short of despicable.
COLONEL MARTIN: Once Camp Ashraf is cleared of the MeK the Iraqis will go in to loot just like they did at Liberty and all other U.S. vacated compounds and following the fall of Saddam Hussein.
Evidence then will be generated. Suddenly they will come up with a bunch of weapons and declare that they had been found at Camp Ashraf and the State Department is going to embrace those like a mother embracing her child and say, oh, this is the fact that we have been looking for.
The State Department intelligence specialists and Hillary Clinton herself claim to have highly classified information about the MeK's terrorist activities. None of that information had been put out for external review. Once again today, Ambassador Bolton, Tom Ridge and I jointly challenge the State Department to produce that information and put it up to our top secret clearances and background investigations. (Applause.)
COLONEL MARTIN: On the 23rd of March Senator Blunt, also said, show me the facts, and show me the officer. He's still waiting.
Up to this point, State Department has continually been assuring Congress they are aggressively working on a designation that will comply with the court decision. 24 months in going to comply with a six-month mandate is not in compliance. Obviously State Department has a different meaning of aggressively working than in the Defense Department. The U.S. military has spent less time in World War I than the State Department has spent in making this one decision.
As mentioned, the State Department intelligence claims to have classified information that can be shared with no one. These are the same exact people who declared Saddam had weapons of mass destruction. They paid Chalabi $33 million for that information. Now 4,500 American warrior deaths later the State Department intel is serving Hillary Clinton no better than they served Colin Powell.
I further submit to the United Nations Executive Branch, the United States Executive branch and the United Nations are doing no better to support an effective resolution to the Ashraf situation than either organization did to support General Dallier’s heroic fight to stop the genocide in Rwanda. Sadly I see a similar fate preparing to take place.
Yet our State Department continues to stumble along offering appeasements in exchange for dialogue that goes no where. The ultimate victims of these appeasements are the Iranian people themselves, right now 3,200 former NLA members trapped inside Iraq when U.S. led coalition forces invaded.
Somehow the State Department bureaucrats think continuing to demonize MeK as terrorist will persuade the Iranian government from becoming more difficult. I fail to understand this logic. The Iranians developed a nuclear weapons capability. Plan to kill the Saudi ambassador on American soil. Is primary supporter through Syrian government. Is determined to destroy Israel. Kidnapped American hikers for half a million dollars ransom each. Sentenced a Canadian citizen to death for alleged spying. Sentenced 12 Iranian Christians to death on Easter Sunday and the list goes on.
It is time to stop appeasing the fundamentalist government of Iran and start supporting humanity. Concern in Ashraf and achieving that goal, the best thing both Canada and the United States can do is to remove the MeK from the terrorist list, hold the Maliki government accountable for its misconduct and bring former NLA members off to safe locations.
Right now the State Department is saying, okay, we're looking at bringing out 100 to the United States. Right now before you I say I am ready at my place in western New York to sponsor 10 members of the MeK. (Applause.)
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