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by Comrade X
Tuesday, Mar. 09, 2004 at 5:44 PM
Writing about the situation in Iraq recently Robert Fisk compared it to finding a razor blade in a bar of chocolate, that is, it’s the same old Iraq under the banner of a new Iraq. In fact, Fisk assures us that it’s actually worse. (1) The illusions of a “New Iraq” dissipate quickly as one sees the brutal reality and cost of occupation.
The “new” Iraq looks more like a battle ground of terrorism and occupation, with imperialism fighting on one side, radical Arab militants on the other, and the Iraqi people are stuck in between this bloodshed. And unfortunately it is the Iraqi people who have suffered the most. Even though the Central Command under the leadership of General Abizaid have set up Iraqi police units and the army patrols much of Baghdad, the security promised to the Iraqi people seems to be an illusion as well.
One of the most horrific losses of life occurred on March 3, when suicide bombers set themselves off along with other bombs in Baghdad and Karbala. In result of these actions 271 Iraqi’s lost their lives and 398 remained seriously injured. This was the body count according to the President of the Iraq Governing Council Mohammed Bahr al-Ulloum. The occupation forces however downplayed the numbers as the Associated Press reported that day that only 117 had died. But like everything in Iraq these days nothing is certain.
Nevertheless the American’s are suffering as well. The Associated Press reported on March 5 that 550 American servicemen had died in combat since the war began. 171 of those died from non-hostile combat. The most staggering number so far is not the growing casualties but the wounded from “hostile actions” is 2,743. Those wounded from non-hostile actions numbered 421. Since the flamboyant display of pride and propaganda aboard the U.S.S. Lincoln on May 1, 2003, 264 Americans have died from hostile actions and 148 from non-hostile. The British have lost 58, and other members of the coalition forces have lost no more then a soldiers combined. (2) In the light of these deaths it has been estimated that over 8,000 Iraqi’s have died as a direct result of the American and British invasion and occupation.
Looking at these numbers we must remember why this war was waged in the first place. The fundamental ideological force behind the invasion was the security of America in context to its War on Terrorism. Countless times representatives of the government have claimed that the world is a “safer place” without Saddam, supposedly these statements are to reflect that we are advancing in our war on terror, and that this war on Iraq has indeed helped America destroy Al-Qaeda and other threats to America and democracy in general. Unfortunately it doesn’t look like that’s the case.
Much of the blame for the “mixed” intelligence that served as the driving force behind the invasion has been blamed on the CIA. On February 24 the Director of the CIA George Tanet said that Al-Qaeda still had the capability to conduct a terrorist attack on the same scale as that of September 11. (3) Tenet also admitted in February that Iraq posed no “immanent threat” to the United States.
Hence it is reasonable to conclude, once again, that the invasion has produced neither security (in Iraq or the United States) or has in any significant way affected the power, or capabilities, of terror groups. It would be disrespectful to say that all those lives were lost meaninglessly; perhaps we should just say that they were lost in a meaningless war.
Nevertheless the truth comes out, and little by little the media is beginning to report the sad truth to the American people. Senator Edward Kennedy, referring to the 2002 congressional elections, said that “the only imminent threat was the November congressional election. The politics of the election trumped the stubborn facts.” And now with growing casualties, greater insecurity, and the threat of another terror attack is forcing even mainstream politicians to admit that this war was a fraud.
So far the administration and the hawks have been able to suppress much of the unhealthy coverage of the war. They have been able to downplay much of the debate over the contracts awarded to companies in Iraq, over the hidden agenda behind the war, and over the actual legitimacy of the invasion. But sooner or later truth will catch up to them.
We must pay particular attention to the trails that the United States and the Governing Council in Iraq are setting up for the Bathists. Most importantly we must pay attention to the upcoming trail of Saddam Hussein, who is currently being held as a Prisoner of War by the United States. The United States wants to make the trails appear as a process not conducted by the United States but by the Iraqis and the world community. Nevertheless on March 7 the AP reported that a team of 50 Department of Justice prosecutors are setting off for Iraq in order to compile war crime cases against Saddam and his regime. It would be interesting to see what evidence the United States will actually use in the “Iraqi” courtroom.
Among the many interests that lay in this trail is how the Americans are going to be able to cover the direct involvement and support that the United States provided to Saddam Hussein during his most brutal and oppressive times. Especially impressive is the list of these political supporters who thought of Saddam as a vital ally in the Middle East. Saddam Hussein was in power from 1979 until the spring of 2003. His most famous acts of brutality were in the late 80s and early 90s, most notably when in 1988 he gassed the Kurds and in 1991 suppressed the Shiite rebellion.
In a January 25 article in the Toronto Star Noam Chomsky writes that “for a truly fair trial, it's surely relevant, as an abundance of congressional and other records show, that Washington made an unholy accommodation with Saddam during the 1980s.” (4) Chomsky also adds that it would be reasonable to call Colin Powel to the stand, as well as George Bush senior, Dick Cheney, and Donald Rumsfeld; all those who directly communicated with Saddam and who supported him during the war with Iran and the times of terror. In fact, in 1989, Bush said that "normal relations between the United States and Iraq would serve our longer-term interests and promote stability in both the Gulf and the Middle East." (5) Apparently these relations did not serve our long-term interests.
These trails have the capability of putting much of this information out into the public view. But of course we must also remember that it will be the Iraqi’s who are on trail, not America, and so probably all of that information will be claimed as irrelevant with the actions of Saddam Hussein.
Time has tested this occupation and so far it has been proven to be greatly flawed. Iraq is completely unstable, and many Iraqi leaders are admitting that Iraq is on the verge of a civil war. In light of all this we can gather that the Middle East is less stable, the threat of a terror attack greater, and the hate towards Western Imperialism, primarily symbolized by the United States, has intensified.
As the election approaches we see Democrats like Kerry abusing the words that the anti-war movement proudly yelled and fought for on the streets throughout the world. Kerry now opposes the war, when he actually voted for it, and his congressional record shows that he is not dramatically different from the Republicans. Directly after 9/11 when it became unfavorable for public figures to criticize military actions everyone looked upon the anti-war movement and previous radical movements as un-American and un-patriotic. Today the Democrats are trying to collect some votes from this movement in a pathetic and hypocritical attempt to dismantle their guilt in this war. The blood is on the hands of the Democrats as much as it is on the Republicans. When the protesters pointed out the connections, the deceit, and the hidden agenda the media dismissed it as conspiracy theory. Today it seems less like conspiracy and more like reality.
(1) Fisk, Robert. Same Old Iraq. Znet, March 8, 2004.
(2) This is the latest number of casualties as according to the Associated Press, the U.S. did not issue any statistics concerning casualties since March 5. A Look At U.S. Military Deaths. March 7, 2004.
(3) This article also reported that: “Director [FBI] Robert Mueller described al Qaeda as flexible and adaptable with the capability to strike "with little or no warning" inside the United States and overseas.” And that "there are strong indications that al Qaeda will revisit missed targets until they succeed, such as they did with the World Trade Center," Mueller said. "The list of missed targets now includes the White House as well as the Capitol." CIA Chief: Al Qaeda Can Still Do 9/11 Style Attack. Reuters. February 24, 2004.
(4) Noam Chomsky. What a Fair Trail for Saddam Would Entail. Toronto Star. February 25, 2004.
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|clear intent inside the occupation
||Yorgel the Bastard
||Tuesday, Mar. 09, 2004 at 7:26 PM
|It IS a safer world.
||Walker, Texas Plumber
||Wednesday, Mar. 10, 2004 at 1:16 AM
|How's the weather in Mayberry,
||Wednesday, Mar. 10, 2004 at 5:34 AM
||ketchup, mustard & onions
||Friday, Mar. 12, 2004 at 2:58 AM
|Is "Bush Admirer" an insult? Maybe in Bizarro world.
||Walker, Texas Plumber
||Friday, Mar. 12, 2004 at 12:16 PM
||Friday, Mar. 12, 2004 at 1:35 PM
|Get that damned Walker!
||Walker, Texas Plumber
||Saturday, Mar. 13, 2004 at 11:38 AM
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