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The Right's Mendacious March to War
July 17, 2003
By punpirate

Maybe it's time to stare the Bushies in their collective face, and speak the truth - they're bald-faced liars about the reasons for war.

While we endure endless Sunday pundits repeating the administration line that the President considers the matter closed, and George Tenet has, as more than one headline has put it, fallen on his sword for the administration, the truth in the reasons for war is still to be determined, and the truth likely will not be found in the Executive Branch, given its general aversion to speaking the truth.

What no one in the administration wants to admit (or will admit) is that the war was a con job. As recently as Sunday, July 13th, Condoleezza Rice was heard to say, when questioned about the validity of Bush's Niger/Iraq uranium claim in his State of the Union speech, "The statement that he made was indeed accurate. The British government did say that."

Well, take me to logic prison and put me in Nietzsche's cell. The intent of Bush saying that was to convince Congress and the American people of the rectitude of a pre-emptive war.

Much of the recent debate is centered around the particulars of one document, which has since been clearly determined to be a forgery. However, the point is not just this one issue of whether or not intelligence or the President was deceived by it. There is a mass of evidence, now apparently forgotten, which bears on the matter. The principal nuclear operation in Iraq at Tuwaitha had been under IAEA seal long before the appearance of the forged document. Both UN inspection teams had revealed no new nuclear processing facilities. The much-heralded high-strength aluminum tubes which "could" be used for gas centrifuge enrichment were quickly determined to be unusable for that purpose. Later, even the strength of the alloy specified was questioned as suitable for centrifuge use. Lost further in the argument is that the tubes were never delivered.

The thousands of tons of chemical weapons, anthrax and other biological agents said to have been harbored by the Iraqis, capable of being deployed in "45 minutes" (thus suggesting that Hussein's military was an "imminent threat to the U.S.") have yet to be found, let alone capable of being deployed quickly against U.S. citizens.

The drones capable of showering U.S. territory with deadly chemical and biological weapons turned out to have been little more than crudely-built model airplanes with ranges not in the thousands of miles, or even hundreds of miles, but, rather more like five miles (at least that's about as far as they got in testing).

The alleged liaison between al-Qaeda and Hussein was found to be non-existent. The threat posed by Ansar al-Islam turned out to be a fiction.

The repeated stories of so-called "evidence" have come and gone. Three-hundred pound bags of castor beans found in a factory were "evidence" of a massive bioweapons program. That they were found in a factory which made brake fluid (castor beans being what brake fluid used to be made of - does anyone know how the brand name "Castrol" was derived?) seemed not to be of interest.

Indeed, the manifold assertions from the British and U.S. governments that they'd found the mobile weapons labs which their intelligence (rumors from INC exiles) proved existed no longer have much clout - even though the intelligence agencies of those two countries still insist they've got the incontrovertible proof, bioweapons specialists are saying quite the opposite, that the trucks were precisely for the purpose described by the Iraqis, for the generation of hydrogen gas for artillery balloons. That the British themselves sold the trucks to the Iraqis seems to have been downplayed a good deal since the original find.

The simple truth is this: virtually all of the assertions made by both Tony Blair and George Bush about Iraq being an imminent threat to the "world" are just so much nonsense. They were nonsense right from the start. They were intended to be nonsense, right from the start. The U.S. public was led to supporting the war by an administration which used the ignorance of a compliant press about such matters, and by stoking the fears of the public over the possibility of another attack on the U.S. similar to that of 9/11.

Bush and administration officials are quick to say they never asserted there was evidence of Iraq being responsible for the attack. But, they never missed an opportunity to put Iraq, Hussein and 9/11 together in the same paragraph. Such is the power of suggestion, and of propaganda, that nearly two-thirds of Americans polled believed not only that Hussein had orchestrated the attacks, but that Iraqis were among the hijackers, as well. In other words, two-thirds of Americans believed fiction and innuendo to be true. Two-thirds of Americans had been suckered by the Bush administration with the help of the mass media.

Does no one remember that the overthrow of Iraq was a plank in the Republican platform for the 2000 election? Does no one recall that a declaration written by the Project for the New American Century think-tank which included the domination of the Middle East, by force, if required, was signed in September, 2000, by several people who are now influential members of the Bush administration, along with the current President's brother, Jeb? Does anyone recall that changes in the national security strategy to include pre-emptive war came well before the pre-emptive war on Iraq? Does anyone recall that on the day of 9/11/01, both Richard Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, even though the sensible and expected thing to do would be to find the truth, were exhorting their assistants to find connections between Iraq and the attacks?

Apparently not.

Years from now, perhaps when the people regain their senses, and vote in a government with saner and cooler heads prevailing, we will discover the truth about these times. That truth will likely be that Bush and his administration used 9/11 to accomplish a long-standing goal of the right - to topple Iraq, for personal, political and economic reasons. Years from now, the government will speak of what should have been obvious to the populace had it not been whipped into a patriotic, unthinking frenzy by the cheerleader in the Oval Office through an uninquisitive press - that the war itself was a con job, that the plans for Iraq after the war had nothing to do with liberty and democracy, that the open-ended war contracts given to friends of the administration were graft, and that privatization of an entire country was the ultimate aim, including its lucrative oil fields.

That economic domination of the world through trade treaties wasn't quick enough, or profitable enough, for America's multinational corporations, so military force would be used to change governments and regions of the world to its liking. That the United States of America finally, openly, became the bully-in-arms that the countries of the world had known it to be in trade. That, through Iraq, the right wing in the U.S. had finally expressed its desires to dominate not just its own country, but the world, as well, and had been planning the march to war for a very long time.

punpirate is a New Mexico writer, remembering Phil Ochs' advice.

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