Inter Press Network

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Strike before Iran's nukes get hot

Did we invade the wrong country? One of the lessons now being drawn from the 9/11 report is that Iran was the real threat. The Iraq War critics have a new line of attack: We should have done Iran instead.

Well, of course Iran is a threat. But how exactly would the critics have "done" Iran? Iran is a serious country with a serious army. Can you imagine the Iraq War critics actually supporting war with Iran?

If not war, what then? The Bush administration, having decided that invading one axis-of-evil country was about as much as the country can bear, has gone multilateral on Iran. Washington delegated the issue to a committee of three - the foreign ministers of Britain, France and Germany - that has been meeting with the Iranians to get them to shut down their nuclear program.

The result? They have been led by the nose. Time is of the essence, and the runaround that the Tehran Three have gotten from the mullahs has meant that we have lost at least nine months in doing anything to stop the Iranian nuclear program.

Iran instead of Iraq? The Iraq critics would have done nothing about either country. There would today be two major Islamic countries sitting on an ocean of oil, supporting terrorism and seeking weapons of mass destruction - instead of one.

Two years ago, there were five countries supporting terror and pursuing WMDs - two junior-leaguers, Libya and Syria, and the axis-of-evil varsity: Iraq, Iran and North Korea. The Bush administration has just eliminated two: Iraq, by direct military means, and Libya, by example and intimidation.

Syria is weak and deterred by Israel. North Korea, having gone nuclear, is untouchable. That leaves Iran. There are only two things that will stop the Iranian nuclear program: revolution from below or an attack on its nuclear facilities.

The country should be ripe for revolution. But the mullahs are very good at police-state tactics. The long-awaited revolution is not happening. Which makes the question of preemptive attack all the more urgent. Iran will go nuclear during the next presidential term. If nothing is done, a fanatical terrorist regime openly dedicated to the destruction of the "Great Satan" will have both nuclear weapons and the terrorists and missiles to deliver them. All that stands between us and that is either revolution or preemptive strike.

Both of which, by the way, are far more likely to succeed with 146,000 American troops and highly sophisticated aircraft standing by just a few miles away - in Iraq.

Originally published on July 23, 2004

Their Gift to our Future

By Kirwan

So nice that we’ve all been treated to this little chat about the events of September 11, 2001. It was amazing to learn that the point and purpose of this exhaustive 20 plus months of “investigation” was undertaken, NOT to place blame, but to give a gift to the future. “The Gift” was to have been an analysis of what went wrong, so that “it would never happen again.” How nice.

The heads of the commission were determined, that above all, this inquiry was not to be a partisan affair, in any way. No one was charged with inaction, dereliction of duty, failure to perform, or any of the more serious charges that could have been leveled against those who are responsible for the deaths of all those people on that day. But, in the trite language of the chairman, “that would not have been productive – in fact that would have unleashed a firestorm, that would have overwhelmed the government.”

Quite so Mr. Chairman – why do you think they called this the 911 Commission, it was to have been your task to lay blame, to level charges and to get to the bottom of this mud bath. The commission for its part wanted to insure that such a thing “never happens again.” you said. However with the same people and same policies in place – of course it will happen again, only bigger next time.

What this commission essentially has told this nation is that our government, that behemoth that takes half of everything most people make every year – is useless, and is not capable of managing anything. What the Commission has said of this affair is that government employees are as dumb as doorposts, and are, as a rule, too stupid to figure out how to avoid having Americans blown off the face of the earth. Also implied but not stated is the fact that the nation is really just too big to be governable, and therefore no government personal can be held responsible for the failings that led to 9-11.

Now that we’ve had the NO blame section of the investigation, when will we get to that portion of this that will deal with pointing fingers leveling charges and holding trials?

Think of it this way. The events of that day were not an act of nature. The president has constantly screamed about the USA having been attacked on 911. When an attack occurs then someone or something has physically done something against a target. For people to have succeeded means that someone, or lots of someone’s, had to have failed for this attack to succeed. Why is the subject of who failed us - NOT of concern to those who say they wanted to get to the bottom of the events of that day?

The same people with the exception of the head of the CIA, who resigned, are still in place now. So how are we any safer knowing that these same dumbbells are still doing exactly what they did on 9-11, while we are supposedly waiting for a much larger attack that the government has decided will now happen to interrupt the elections. (Just exactly how is it that these same complete incompetents now suddenly: know this to be a fact)?

Watching the coverage of all this on PBS, was like being a fly on the wall at a Thanksgiving dinner. Here was this literal parade of criminals and liars sitting around chatting and nodding very calmly – and all because none of them would now be going to jail, to await their trials for treason. No tough questions were expected, none were asked, and it was all very ‘in the family.’ It was also clear that America has only one political party now, and that is the party in and of, POWER.

Why the hell should we be paying these incompetent and completely useless people to “govern” us when they have just proved to the world that they can manage nothing? They couldn’t even do a decent cover-up. They had the nerve to cite this government for a “failure of imagination.” Just try and imagine a government agent or agency that has ever had any imagination: That has to be a classic that should live in infamy!

They dottered and stammered around being very concerned not to damage any of the reputations of any their fellows, so focused were they, on assuring anyone who cared to listen – that no matter what “might have done that day, the attacks couldn’t have been stopped.”

But, they completely missed the point that was: Once the attack began, it should have been immediately interrupted and limited to the first hit on the trade towers. Laws were already in place to do just that – and there was never any clear or concise explanation of why the US Air Force failed to act on that day. Just as there was no credible explanation of why the president acted as he did, or whatever the hell happened with Cheney during those events. The head of NORAD should have been court marshaled, and the President and Vice President should have been dragged up before the Congress for cowardice in the face of the enemy. The only way that should not have happened, would have been IF this had been deemed a crime, and not a military attack by another country.

But since Bush insisted that this was an attack upon this nation by a foreign power, then he should have faced questions immediately about why these attacks were allowed to proceed for an hour and forty-five minutes with no visible American response to interrupt, or to stop this continuing slaughter. That lapse belongs squarely on the shoulders of the Congress and the people of this country.

What has been cleared up by this “inquiry” is that this country clearly cares not at all about the people who are this nation, or about the laws that were put in place decades ago to prevent just such an action, as we all witnessed on September 11th. The American public actually watched this entire attack, and did not react as a people that had been betrayed by their government, by their leaders, and by their armed forces – which is exactly what happened on that day! Too many were in shock, and the rest just went along with the plan.

Yes Mr. Chairman – there would have been hell to pay if your commission had actually gone after those who are still guilty of the failures on 9-11 – and that is what should have happened. Instead you chose to take this inquiry into the fairytale kingdom of abstract theoretical discussions, to arrive at feel good double-speak, about something that has changed the course of human events in the entire world. You and your cowardly commission will be remembered for you contributions to the New World Order. And you will forever be a traitor in the hearts of all who care about justice.

This is not a partisan view; this is about what happened, and what has not been done about what happened on 9-11. And the commission can now join the rest of those responsible for covering up the crimes committed on the day that was one of the blackest days in our history. It’s no wonder Bush did not take any questions, Mr. Chairman, when he met with you in the Rose Garden this morning – because someone might have asked him about some of the above? Nah - no one in that press corp. would have dared!

An Old Vet's Opinion: Bush and the Torturing of Iraq’s Children

By Jack Dalton

“…some men in order to present the supposed intentions of their adversaries have committed the most enormous cruelties…” Clearchus, a Spartan General 500B.C.

It appears that the torturing of Iraq’s children is now a part of the Bush cabals “policy” of “bringing democracy, liberation and freedom” to the Iraqi people. This goes way past just simply outrageous.

Of the 535 members of congress, only one member has a child in Iraq, or in uniform for that matter. Not one within the executive branch can make any claim as not one of their children is in uniform, let alone in Iraq.

These are the people sending your sons and daughters off to kill and be killed in this Bush murderous mis-adventure in Iraq.

Perpetual war for perpetual peace. In the meantime the dead grow in numbers like some kind of obscene monument basking in the self-righteousness of Bush and his group of Mayberry Machiavelli’s, which now includes the torturing of children.

The horrific reports of torture, rape and murder at Abu Gharib, as well as the other prisons in Iraq and Afghanistan, are disappearing from U.S. media while not one word has been “reported” by them on the torture of children at the hands of U.S. personnel. So much for keeping the public informed.

For over a week I’ve been reading reports from multiple sources, the International Red Cross, UNICEF, Amnesty International about the young kids being held by the U.S. and the torture of them that has been caught on tape; but still not word in the U.S. media.

The reports are in the hands of our congress, but still not one word in corporate media, nor from congress. What ever happened to the right of the public to be kept informed?

Seymore Hersh, a reporter for the New Yorker magazine has yet to release the videos in his possession of the torturing of these children, but as he said, he is not done reporting on this yet…more to come. Screams of young boys being sodomized by U.S. personnel at the U.S “detention” centers.

What has happened to the soul of this nation that it can and will allow this kind of thing to happen and at the same time still support those that created the situation and environment that sanctions the rape and torture of children??? Is this a part of the American “values” we keep being told about by Bush and those that support him?

So much for “Christian American values.” It’s our actions that are hated with such passion not our “freedoms.”

It behooves me to understand how the torturing of children is making America safer from those we are told “hate our freedoms.” Good grief people, the lunatics are in charge of the asylum!

How can anyone continue to support this? You cannot separate support for Bush from events like this, doesn’t anyone understand this? Continued support for him is continued support for what is being done including the rape and torture of children.

I no not know what country I now in reside as it is not the country I served in uniform and war, nor is it the country I grew up learning about and believing in during the 40’s and 50’s.

This country pontificates and pats itself on the back about being a nation of law, compassion, truth, justice and that believes in God. It does this while being eye-ball deep in the commission of war crimes. If the torturing of children does not fit the definition of war crimes, nothing does!

There is no justification for the torturing of children for any reason, under any circumstances by anyone anytime, ever…period, end of story!

Due to and because of this, I accuse George W. Bush and his entire executive cohorts of:

Crimes against humanity;

Abuse of Power and office;

And War Crimes

While children are being tortured in Iraq, the headline story on CNN is about the torturing of chickens by KFC suppliers. What has happened to this country’s priorities? Where is its conscience and soul?

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Al-Jazeerah, July 22, 2004