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Speaking out against Iraq occupation, for march on RNC

Sami Rasouli in Chicago
by Joe Iosbaker |
June 17, 2008
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Sami Rasouli and Cliff Kelley
Sami Rasouli in the studio with Cliff Kelley of WVON Radio (Fight Back! News/Staff)

Chicago, IL - Sami Rasouli is an Iraqi American. “When the U.S. invaded, I felt like I was attacking myself. I was the oppressed and the oppressor.” Rasouli emigrated from Iraq to the U.S. in 1976 and became a U.S. citizen in 2001. He moved back to his home in Najaf, Iraq in 2004 to help counter the U.S. occupation. Since then he has returned the U.S. each year to speak, explaining the disastrous impact of the occupation on the Iraqi people and to seek support for his efforts. Rasouli is in the U.S. now; he travels back to Iraq in July, but will be back in Saint Paul, Minnesota by Sept. 1 to join the protests at the Republican National Convention.

On June 11, Rasouli traveled here, sponsored by Chicago-based organizers of the Coalition to March on the RNC and Stop the War. In addition to speaking to a packed room of anti-war activists at the Eighth Day Center for Justice, he gave numerous interviews, including to the Cliff Kelley Show. Kelley hosts the most popular Black radio call-in show in Chicago on WVON.

Rasaouli condemned the newest development from the Bush administration: imposing 58 permanent U.S. military bases on the regime in Baghdad. Rasouli explained that even President Malaki can’t accept this. The puppet government in Iraq has so little support among the people of Iraq that it is housed in the Green Zone, protected by U.S. occupation forces.

When Rasouli was asked about the U.S. elections and how they will impact the war, he declared, “If we have a responsible president, he must admit the U.S. occupation has failed; agree to withdraw, leaving no military force behind, including equipment; and sit down with the national resistance forces of Iraq.”