[I made this comment while I was still posting on Iraq Today. I am no longer doing that. I did modify the comment some to bring it up to date in 2011.]
Whenever we put these posts together, we do read a lot.
And a great deal of it is confusing. I have read that America invented al Qaeda, al Qaeda is the true Iraqi resistance, and al Qaeda is run and funded by Saudi Arabia.
I read that the Kurds causing trouble for the Turks are actually Turkish Kurds. I read the US is really running the PKK. I read about tribes in Iraq turning on al Qaeda - but it seems to me that they are fighting US troops LESS not because they turned on al Qaeda, but because the US is paying them off (I am all for that, by the way, although it does have it's problems).
I remember the US military saying their policy was to "villainize Zarqawi, leverage xenophobic response"-- which just makes me sick to think they have a policy of making ordinary people afraid.
But of course, that was the whole point behind "shock and awe" wasn't it? So, would they invent al Qaeda? Is Sy Hersch correct in claiming that the bush administration is arming and funding Sunni extremist groups in parts of the Middle East? I think so.
But there are a few things that are true - I know they are true - in this post. First, is the picture of the ordinary man calling his family to reassure them. That is (or was) 95% of Iraqi people.
And a couple more true things are in the articles under COMMENTARY. Americans are willfully ignorant. [Still true in 2011]
And, we are also a nation of people deep in denial - we have a new candidate for Attorney General who cannot figure out if torture is torture - or if it is illegal. And that is because about 40% of our willfully ignorant nation supports torture. They stupidly believe that it will give us good information, and excuse it on that ground. And then there is a small minority who are just sick sadistic fucks.
And lately, we have the myth being pushed by our politicians that the occupation of Iraq was a noble endeavor, with great sacrifice and bravery by our US troops, which was just mismanaged AND/OR ruined by the ingrate Iraqis. In short, our intentions are good and our actions are benign (or we try our best to be benign).
THIS IS A FUCKING LIE.
I recently came across articles from Rep. Waxman asking if was worth it to have US troops die for Mylaki's corruption..... with no mention of the corruption and plunder done by US citizens and troops in Iraq, which is vastly worse.
I often here or read about US Democratic candidates talking about how our "brave" and "unselfish" troops are just being asked to do too much, and do it under incompetent leadership (meaning Bush - they never see their own part in it - they too are willfully ignorant). They never seem to notice the Iraqi people and how many of them are suffering from the presence of US troops in their country.
And I wonder if American society can ever be stopped from all this militarism and war-mongering and human rights abuses - in short, from all this EVIL.
I really wonder.
…..In most wars, nations that send their men and women off to fight in distant lands don't want to learn too much about the violence being committed in their name. Facing up to this would cause too much shame, would deal too great a blow to national self-esteem. If people were to become too aware of the butchery wars entail, they would become much less willing to fight them. And so the illusion must be maintained that war is a noble enterprise, that the soldiers who wage it are full of valor and heroism, that in the end their intentions are good and their actions benign.