World threat?

Recovered from the Wayback Machine.

This is my last posting on Iraq. I cannot effect change with this weblog. The only change I can effect is on the street and in the ballot, though with the complacent smugness and arrogance of the American people, I doubt I will ever be able to effect change. As for elections, I have little faith in the electoral process after the election of Bush.

I don’t know how to make a difference in this country now.

I watched the bombing of Iraq today. Worse, I listened to the bombing of Iraq today. I watched the so-called journalists mouth the words given to them by the US government, spending all their time focusing on the flag and the yellow ribbons back home. They’re so sold on Bush and the invasion that I feel I have walked into my worst science fiction scenario – group think and group speak from journalists more concerned about their ratings then the story.

(Hmmm. Sounds like some webloggers I know.)

As for the UN, and the Secretary General of the UN, Annan – I agree with the Iraqi ambassador to the UN today, Annan should resign. Rather than condemn the United States, Annan basically says, well the past is past, let’s move on. If he is afraid of the US, he should quit, and go home. It would seem that the only ones with any guts left are Russia, France, Germany, and those others that have not been bought out or scared into compliance by the US and Britain.

Today’s best Irony: The US tells Turkey not to invade into North Iraq. They do so anyway. Who is the US to say to one country or another that they can or cannot invade? We’re the ultimate thief in the night.

The two worst scenarios for the US in this battle with Iraq is that the war is too hard, or the war is too easy. Too hard, and you risk too many civilian deaths, as well as deaths of US and British soldiers. This will anger the world and the folks back home. However, too easy a victory, and the US has basically proven that Iraq is not a threat, and never had the capability of being an imminent danger to the US or any of its allies.

Regardless of whatever we call this battle, this “Iraqi Freedom” campaign, we justified our invasion on Iraqi’s non-compliance with exposing weapons of mass destruction. If the only ones that surface are the pathetically useless missles that have been fired, no matter how light the casualities the world will be angered at the “American bully”. If not, and thousands of civilians are killed, the world will still be angered. And we’ll be sitting in control of a country right in the middle of a community that will see us as an aggressor only biding time until we invade their countries, too.

We’ve seen American reports from the battlefield, but the rest of the world hears reports such as this from the Sydney Morning Herald. Reports of dropping napalm on an Iraqi observation post, and “bodies everywhere” – especially since the US has been careful not to give an Iraqi soldier body count – are only going to fuel the anger against us.

Yet, rather than work with the international community to diffuse this anger, we continue making enormous blunders.

The US expelled Iraq diplomats yesterday, giving them an ultimatum: defect or face the consequences when we enter Baghdad. The US also demanded yesterday that other countries expel Iraqi diplomats, so that, according to the Boucher from the State Department:

Once an interim new government takes over in Baghdad, it will name diplomats who “truly represent the interests of the Iraqi people, rather than represent a corrupt and ruthless regime”.

We have no justification based in international law to make these demands, and to make these determinations for another country. It was highly inappropriate of us to ask that Iraqi diplomats be expelled from other countries, particularly those not involved in this military operation. It is especially inappropriate to make these assertions now, on behalf of the ‘interim’ government, when we know that this government will be controlled by the US military.

In addition, we have no justification to make demands for all Iraqi assets, supposedly to be held in trust by us for the Iraqi people. According to this article:

(Treasury Secretary) Snow said his department could “take countermeasures and sanctions against any institution that does not comply with these international objectives, including cutting off access to the U.S. financial system.”

All of this courtesy of that abysmal Patriot Act our Congress was so foolish to pass. All assetts are to be wired to the Federal Reserve in New York for safekeeping. A question then arises – why not have the money wired to a trust fund managed by the UN, rather than a US bank? What happened to Tony Blair’s promised UN Trust Fund?

Today’s second irony: all of this so-called ‘blood money’ that we’re so eager to freeze was money paid to Iraq and Saddam Hussein for oil by American and British oil companies. By companies such as BP and Chevron.

These actions only add to the growing distrust of this country and its motives. When one considers that the only companies being allowed to bid on the so-called rebuilding of Iraq are American firms, including our old friend Halliburton, what is the story we’re telling the world? Well whatever it is, it’s a story that the American people seem to be incapable of hearing.

You cannot speak out in this country, now. If you do, you’re considered unpatriotic, and a traitor. Worse, and this is insidious, if you speak out, you’re letting down the soldiers. And to make this point, the news focused tonight on the families of the dead soldiers, playing their recorded words against a backdrop of the bombing of Baghdad.

A survey taken in St. Louis reported that 22% of the respondents feel we have no right to question the war now. 56% said it’s okay to question the war, but only 23% believes it’s okay to protest the war.

Well, with all due respect St. Louis, to hell with you. Don’t you all have an arch to polish or something?

Today the President’s outrageous and fiscally irresponsible tax cut was passed in Congress. This during a war, and this with the worst projected deficit in US history. Do you know why Congress passed it, other than having no courage? Because they have been assured that the Iraqi assets will be used to pay for this war and the aftermath. Does this sound familiar? Think back: when was the last time you heard of a powerful country invading a less powerful one, and then taking their assets to pay for the invasion?

France came out today and said that the US and Britain should not be allowed to help re-build Iraq, since we’re the one responsible for much of its destruction. If we didn’t have intentions of profiting from this war, we would bow out, and gladly. But after the last few days, I no longer have any faith in the government. We are true thiefs in the night.

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