for Bush's little war in Iraq, whose numbers are diminishing
in the face of relentless reality, have invested a
mighty labor in dismissing two claims; that the war
in Iraq is about oil, and that there is a comparison
to be made between the Iraq War and the Vietnam War.
war was never intended as a liberation, the bullshit
story that went center stage when the weapons lies
fell apart . It was always a re-colonization, now
euphemized even by many Democrats as "re-construction."
Nonetheless, the Bush administration believed they
would be welcomed as liberators, because Bush has
surrounded himself with people whose principle skill
is self-delusion, and whose principle aversion is
hearing anything that doesn't conform to their preconceptions.
If Daddy supervised the tragedy, Junior is supervising
the deadly farce.
who only want to hear good news from their own perspective
are easily taken in by con men, and the con man this
time was Ahmed Chalabi, an Iraqi expatriate facing
22 years at hard labor in Jordan for embezzlement.
This is the character upon whom Donald Rumsfeld and
Paul Wolfowitz--themselves (neo)con men--relied for
insight into Iraq, and who told them they'd be welcomed
by cheering, flower-bearing, confetti-slinging crowds
not unlike Parisians in 1945.
Chalabi hadn't been in Iraq for decades hasn't deterred
our intrepid neo-con ideologues. They still want to
make Chalabi the Quisling leader of Iraq, under the
Kissinger-tutored Viceroy Paul Bremer's. Neither were
the neocons deterred by intelligence summaries that
told them there was no threat from Iraq. They just
made shit up, repeated it five million times to a
credulous, tele-hypnotic American majority, and we
swallowed it whole... sugar provided by the ersatz
journalism of America's entertainment media. Hearing
only what we want is a generalized cultural characteristic
shared by leaders and followers alike.
as a child, I had told lies as transparent as this
administration's, Mother would have sent me out to
the privet hedge to get her a switch. But white America
(Let's be clear here. The Republican Party's single
unifying principle is white supremacy.) finds the
real world just too much to bear, and so clings desperately
to the skirts of its simplified, racialized world
view . That's why even "liberal" white America
finds itself incapable of perceiving the Iraqis as
capable of self-governance, and now calls for a UN
occupation, imagined under the direction of European-extracted
officials bearing the white man's burden now recoded
as "democratization. In the real world, Bush's
little junta wanted control of the oil, and that was
always the reason, and it never changed. If Iraq's
principle resource had been chick peas, our troops
wouldn't be there. There were never any mushroom cloud
ready to bloom over New York, and never any connection
between September 11th and Iraq. The only mushroom
cloud was the smoke blown straight up America's ass
by these shameless thugs. It was oil. It still is
oil. They are waging economic war on Europe and Asia,
and oil is the lever. And so they repeat the word
"liberation, liberation, liberation" like
repetition of words like 'remnants' and 'foreigners'
is another childish cover story (It's a good thing
my Mom isn't in DC, or she'd tear that ass up.) to
conceal the fact that the Iraqis are not conforming
to the neo-con script. In Vietnam, there was a huge
effort, once the US military was entrenched, to convince
the American public that foreigners were the aggressors,
and that the resistance to military occupation was
not indigenous. But it was. The resistance in Iraqi
is indigenous, too. Operations like the ones being
conducted by Iraqi guerrillas can not happen without
roots in the local populations. In Vietnam, troop
morale plummeted as the lies about the reasons for
war became ever more apparent. The morale of the troops
in Iraq began to fall as soon as the reality that
they weren't liberating anything sank in. Most troops
are prepared to face danger and hardship. They just
don't like facing them for lies. Since the political
decision in August to cut US casualties, the US has
minimized operations and largely drawn the troops
back inside the concertina wire. They were tangled
up with pinprick strikes, and the slow, steady stream
of US casualties was harming Bush politically. It
still isn't working. Fixed installations need logistical
support, and that means convoys, so the Iraqi resistance
is schooling itself on the art of ambush.From an operational
tempo that was lethally strenuous, American troops
are now subjected to mind-numbing boredom, where they
can concentrate on how slowly the calendar pages turn,
how hot it is, how bad the sand fleas are, how much
they miss home-cooked meals and making love and air-conditioning.
The occasional mortar attack gives them something
to talk about. The US is stuck right now, having lost
the battlefield initiative, and is losing the war.
This is another parallel to Vietnam.
Defense Policy Board has usurped the Department of
Defense, just like Lyndon Johnson's Defense Secretary
Robert McNamara's "whiz kids" that oversaw
the Vietnam defeat. If McNamara was Johnson's bad
counsel, Rumsfeld appears to be Bush's Rasputin. Another
flim-flam artist, with his silly robo-war doctrine.
Even the generals despise this arrogant pretender.
The generals apparently still remember Vietnam, about
which Bush's cabinet has experienced a deep amnesia,
but even they--especially they--will protect their
careers and remain largely silent
as they are led into the swamp.
we need to revisit some good advice from Vietnam.
When asked how we could get out of Vietnam, one simple
answer was tragically ignnored: With ships and airplanes.
The Iraqis--a talented people with 5,000 years of
experience in civilization--are more qualified to
determine their own future, however painful that process
may be, than Bush's cabinet, or the UN for that matter.
End the occupation. Bring the troops home now.
Stan Goff is the author of "Hideous Dream:
A Soldier's Memoir of the US Invasion of Haiti"
(Soft Skull Press, 2000) and of the upcoming book
"Full Spectrum Disorder" (Soft Skull Press,
2003). He is a member of the BRING THEM HOME NOW!
coordinating committee, a retired Special Forces master
sergeant, and the father of an active duty soldier.
Email for BRING THEM HOME NOW! is email@example.com.
Goff can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
above article was carried with the author's permission.
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