December 12, 2002

SYSTEM OF A DOWN vocalist Serj Tankian is not in favor of the U.S. going to war with Iraq. He told Launch there are plenty of countries that don't pose a realistic threat to the United States, which he equates with an empire.

"When was the last time Iraq attacked America? OK? When was the last time Libya or Panama attacked America? When was the last time Grenada attacked America? When was the last time Nicaragua attacked America? When was the last time El Salvador attacked America? Chile, when was the last time Chile attacked America? We have troops in all these countries. When was the last time they attacked us?"

Tankian believes American's foreign policy is all about business. "We've got to really, really, understand what's going on here. What's going on here is a pursuit of business of business abroad, not for you and I's sake, but for major multinationals who aren't even employing American employees anymore who are opening shop in Indonesia and elsewhere because labor is cheaper, in Mexico, et cetera, et cetera. I wouldn't even call them American companies anymore. Our government works for them and not us."

"And the damage that we're doing by overthrowing democracies... And if you want examples you can start with Iran in 1950 with the Mohammed [Mossadegh] government, who was the prime minister, during the Mohammed [Mossadegh] era, and we overthrew that and put a king there. That's the CIA's work. We put a king in a democracy, for God's sake."

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