pictures at an exhibition…

Posted on Thursday 28 May 2009

Larisa Alexandrova [At-Largely, Raw Story] has a few photos that might come from the "secret" ones – Photos Obama won’t release include images of rape…(warning, graphic). I know warnings to not look fall on dead ears, but I’m actually sorry I looked at them. It’s the kind of "bad apple" stuff that Cheney is still trying to say didn’t come from above. Baloney is all I know to say. I’d bet that if you ask people who had been in the service if it’s possible that this kind of thing went on without permission or even encouragement from above, we’d vote nearly unanimously that it’s not possible. About the only kind of thing you can do in the service without permission or close scrutiny is commit suicide [and there’s plenty of that these days].

At times, when I’m ranting about this last eight years, I’m overcome with a feeling that combines grief, shame, and outrage. It’s like I have to remind myself daily that this stuff is real because I hate that feeling, and I would rather do any other thing and forget it all. Then something comes along like a PBS Special I watched last night about the very early WWII years in Germany and Russia. Stalin is exterminating 22,000 Polish Army officers in the Katyn Forest, while on the German side, the Death Camps were being constructed. And I see Hitler riding in a parade with Germans cheering madly, and it reminds me of what can happen when people don’t pay attention. They hate it when we make analogies between the Nazis, Stalin, and the Neoconservatives, but that doesn’t disuade me – false calls to war, invasions, torture, spying on civilians, secret documents. Just because they didn’t set up mass death camps doesn’t change the name of the game. It’s still tyranny. And it’s still racism. And the dead are just as dead. I make the same analogies with al Qaeda, and with the Taliban, and even Saddam Hussein, for what it’s worth.

Decrying war and barbarism is pretty easy in the abstract. But it’s harder when something like 9/11 happens, at least it was for me. I could understand why Osama Bin Laden was mad when he returned from the Afghanistan/Russia War to Saudi Arabia and found an American Base in his country. I could understand his protesting it. He lost me when he started his Terrorism attacks. 9/11 was inexcusable by any criteria and he deserves to be hunted down for it. I can still feel the fire in the belly about that attack. But our Invasion of Iraq makes me just as ill. We had no cause. We could’ve kept up the pressure on Iraq and achieved even better results with much less loss of face and life. That is unquestioned.

So, why did we have to invade? Why did we have to ‘hunt down’ the people on that deck of cards? Why did we have to mistreat and torture our prisoners? Why did we have to essentially assasinate Saddam Hussein? Why did we dissemble their army? Why would we invade a country that might have WMD’s [Iraq] but not chase Bin Laden into a country that did have WMD’s [Pakistan]? Karl Rove, in a 2008 interview with O’Reilly, probably came as close to telling us their real fantasy as anyone:
"That the Muslim world is waiting to see who is going to win the conflict. Is it going to be the West or is it going to be Al Qaeda? And by winning, we will send a powerful message that the momentum is on our side. And it will rally the Muslim world to us. It will also create a huge influence in the Middle East. Think about the creation of the democracy in the historic center of the Middle East with the third-largest oil reserves in the world. If we have a functioning democracy in Iraq, that’s an ally in the war on terror, a counterweight to mullahs Iran and to Assad in Syria, this will create a very hopeful center of reform and energy for reform throughout the Middle East."
So what’s wrong with this fantasy? Everything. You don’t create an ally by torturing people, sexually humiliating detainees, destroying the army, chasing down officials, assasinating leaders, etc. So I have to conclude something else. The Bush Administration wanted to install a government like the Shah of Iran – a puppet government. Why else would they try to eliminate the whole existing government? They probably actually thought they could put master-sociopath Amhad Chalabi and his CIA-created Iraqi National Congress in charge of the Iraq. And the notion that "… we will send a powerful message that the momentum is on our side. And it will rally the Muslim world to us. It will also create a huge influence in the Middle East" is laughable at best, nearly psychotic in fact. Given the track record of such theories and their beyond awkward implementation, the odds of such a scheme actually working out would be kind of like winning the mega-millions lottery. So we’re left in the poor house, in the dog house, with a bunch of pictures of our trip that we’d really rather not see…
    May 29, 2009 | 10:46 PM

    I will try not to bore you too much about another book I’ve been reading which gives you another perspective of things happening since 911, it’s title “In A Time Of War” . It’s about the West Point class of 2002. It’s compelling, maddening, and at times very sad. I just can’t stomach Bush/Cheney being treated like celebrities on tour. I want them treated they way they deserve to be treated with contempt. Look what they have done to our country and Iraq.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.