Dr. Paul Craig Roberts
Ten years ago today the Bush regime invaded Iraq. It is known that the justification for the invasion was a packet of lies orchestrated by the neoconservative Bush regime in order to deceive the United Nations and the American people.
The US Secretary of State at that time, General Colin Powell, has expressed his regrets that he was used by the Bush regime to deceive the United Nations with fake intelligence that the Bush and Blair regimes knew to be fake. But the despicable presstitute media has not apologized to the American people for serving the corrupt Bush regime as its Ministry of Propaganda and Lies.
It is difficult to discern which is the most despicable: the corrupt Bush regime, the presstitutes that enabled it, or the corrupt Obama regime that refuses to prosecute the Bush regime for its unambiguous war crimes, crimes against the US Constitution, crimes against US statutory law, and crimes against humanity.
In his book, Cultures Of War, the distinguished historian John W. Dower observes that the concrete acts of war unleashed by the Japanese in the 20th century and the Bush imperial presidency in the 21st century “invite comparative analysis of outright war crimes like torture and other transgressions. Imperial Japan’s black deeds have left an indelible stain on the nation’s honor and good name, and it remains to be seen how lasting the damage to America’s reputation will be. In this regard, the Bush administration’s war planners are fortunate in having been able to evade formal and serious investigation remotely comparable to what the Allied powers pursued vis-a-vis Japan and Germany after World War II.”
Dower quotes Arthur Schlesinger Jr.: “The president [Bush] has adopted a policy of ‘anticipatory self-defense’ that is alarmingly similar to the policy that imperial Japan employed at Pearl Harbor on a date which, as an earlier American president said it would, lives in infamy. Franklin D. Roosevelt was right, but today it is we Americans who live in infamy.”
Americans paid an enormous sum of money for the shame of living in infamy. Joseph Stiglitz and Linda Bilmes calculated that the Iraq war cost US taxpayers $3,000 billion dollars. This estimate might turn out to be optimistic. The latest study concludes that the war could end up costing US taxpayers twice as much. (Source)
In order to pay for the profits that have flowed into the pockets of the US military-security complex and from there into political contributions, Americans are in danger of losing Social Security, Medicare, and the social cohesiveness that the social welfare system provides.
The human cost to Iraq of America’s infamy is extraordinary: 4.5 million displaced Iraqis, as many as 1 million dead civilians leaving widows and orphans, a professional class that has departed the country, an infrastructure in ruins, and social cohesion destroyed by the Sunni-Shia conflict that was ignited by Washington’s destruction of the Saddam Hussein government.
It is a sick joke that the United States government brought freedom and democracy to Iraq. What the Washington war criminals brought was death and the destruction of a country.
The US population, for the most part, seems quite at ease with the gratuitous destruction of Iraq and all that it entails: children without parents, wives without husbands, birth defects from “depleted” uranium, unsafe water, a country without hope mired in sectarian violence.
Washington’s puppet state governments in the UK, Europe, the Middle East and Japan seem equally pleased with the victory–over what? What threat did the victory defeat? There was no threat. Weapons of mass destruction was a propaganda hoax. Mushroom clouds over American cities was fantasy propaganda. How ignorant do populations have to be to fall for such totally transparent propaganda? Is there no intelligence anywhere in the Western world?
At a recent conference the neoconservatives responsible for the deaths and ruined lives of millions and for the trillions of dollars that their wars piled on US national debt were unrepentant and full of self-justification. While Washington looks abroad for evil to slay, evil is concentrated in Washington itself.
The American war criminals walk about unmolested. They are paid large sums of money to make speeches about how Americans are bringing freedom and democracy to the world by invading, bombing and murdering people. The War Crimes Tribunal has not issued arrest warrants. The US Department of State, which is still hunting for Nazi war criminals, has not kidnapped the American ones and sent them to be tried at the Hague.
The Americans who suffered are the 4,801 troops who lost their lives, the thousands of troops who lost limbs and suffer from other permanent wounds, the tens of thousands who suffer from post-traumatic stress and from the remorse of killing innocent people, the families and friends of the American troops, and the broken marriages and single-parent children from the war stress.
Other Americans have suffered on the home front. Those whose moral conscience propelled them to protest the war were beaten and abused by police, investigated and harassed by the FBI, and put on no-fly lists. Some might actually be prosecuted. The United States has reached the point where any citizen who has a moral conscience is an enemy of the state. The persecution of Bradley Manning demonstrates this truth.
A case could be made that the historians’ comparison of the Bush regime with Japanese war criminals doesn’t go far enough. By this October 7, Washington will have been killing people, mainly women, children, and village elders, in Afghanistan for 12 years. No one knows why America has brought such destruction to the Afghan people. First the Soviets; then the Americans. What is the difference? When Obama came into the presidency, he admitted that no one knew what the US military mission was in Afghanistan. We still don’t know. The best guess is profits for the US armaments industry, power for the Homeland Security industry, and a police state for the insouciant US population.
Washington has left Libya in ruins and internal conflict. There is no government, but it is not libertarian nirvana.
The incessant illegal drone attacks on Pakistani civilians is radicalizing elements of Pakistan and provoking civil war against the Pakistani government, which is owned by Washington and permits Washington’s murder of its citizens in exchange for Washington’s money payments to the political elites who have sold out their country to Washington.
Washington has destabilized Syria and destroyed the peace that the Assad family had imposed on the Islamic sects. Syria seems fated to be reduced to ruins and permanent violence like Libya and Iraq.
Washington is at work killing people in Yemen.
As the video released to WikiLeaks by Bradley Manning shows, some US troops don’t care who they kill–journalists and civilians walking peacefully along a street, a father and his children who stop to help the wounded. As long as someone is killed, it doesn’t matter who.
Killing is winning.
The US invaded Somalia, has its French puppets militarily involved in Mali, and perhaps has Sudan in its crosshairs for drones and missiles.
Iran and Lebanon are designated as the next victims of Washington’s aggression.
Washington protects Israeli aggression against the West Bank, Gaza, and Lebanon from UN censure and from embargoes. Washington has arrested and imprisoned people who have sent aid to the Palestinian children. Gaza, declares Washington which regards itself as the only fount of truth, is ruled by Hamas, a terrorist organization according to Washington. Thus any aid to Gaza is aid to terrorism. Aide to starving and ill Palestinian children is support of terrorism. This is the logic of an inhumane war criminal state.
What is this aggression against Muslims about?
The Soviet Union collapsed and Washington needed a new enemy to keep the US military/security complex in power and profits. The neoconservatives, who totally dominated the Bush regime and might yet dominate the Obama regime declared Muslims in the Middle East to be the enemy. Against this make-believe “enemy,” the US launched wars of aggression that are war crimes under the US imposed Nuremberg standard that was applied to the defeated WWII Germans.
Although the British and French started World War II by declaring war on Germany, it was Germans, defeated by the Red Army, who were tried by Washington as war criminals for starting a war. A number of serious historians have reached the conclusion that America’s war crimes, with the fire-bombings of the civilian populations of Dresden and Tokyo and the gratuitous nuclear attacks on the civilian populations of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, are of the same cloth as the war crimes of Hitler and the Japanese.
The difference is that the winners paint the defeated in the blackest tones and themselves in high moral tones. Honest historians know that there is not much difference between US WWII war crimes and those of the Japanese and Germans. But the US was on the winning side.
By its gratuitous murder of Muslims in seven or eight countries, Washington has ignited a Muslim response: bitter hatred of the United States. This response is termed “terrorism” by Washington and the war against terrorism serves as a source of endless profits for the military complex and for a police state to “protect” Americans from terrorism, but not from the terrorism of their own government.
The bulk of the American population is too misinformed to catch on, and the few who do
understand and are attempting to warn others will be silenced. The 21st century will be one of the worst centuries in human history. All over the Western world, liberty is dying.
The legacy of “the war on terror” is the death of liberty.
This article first appeared at Paul Craig Roberts’ new website Institute For Political Economy. Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal. He was columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate. He has had many university appointments. His Internet columns have attracted a worldwide following.