Saturday, June 10, 2006

Ding Dong! Zarqawi's still dead and Bush's campaign of war crimes is still alive

The media celebration of Al Zarqawi's alleged death last week is uninformed, stupid, obscene. No one ever said Zarqawi was a boy scout. The media ignores some important facts. The "insurgency" could not target U.S. troops if they weren't there! Bin Laden —about whom this war we were told was begun —was never said to have been in Iraq, but, nevertheless, Iraq was Bush's first choice for attack. Iraq had better targets, it was said. That's the logic of the drunk who searches for his lost keys under the street light because the light is better. It's also Bush's logic.

Bin Laden is most certainly safe in the mountains of Pakistan secure in the knowledge that Bush's second statement about him is correct:
Q But don't you believe that the threat that bin Laden posed won't truly be eliminated until he is found either dead or alive?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, as I say, we haven't heard much from him. And I wouldn't necessarily say he's at the center of any command structure. And, again, I don't know where he is. I -- I'll repeat what I said. I truly am not that concerned about him. I know he is on the run. I was concerned about him, when he had taken over a country. I was concerned about the fact that he was basically running Afghanistan and calling the shots for the Taliban.

George W. Bush, Press Conference by the President, The James S. Brady Briefing Room, March 13, 2002, 4:00 P.M. EST

Earlier, September of 2001, Bush launched his fraudulent war on "tuhruhrr" with one of his first broken promises. Bush called upon the Afghan people to break with the Taliban and help him "...smoke [Islamic "terrorists] out; get them running so we can get them." Bush promised to "...bring them to justice".

None of that happened! Secondly, I would like to know when Bin Laden ever took over a country. When did Bin Laden call the "...shots for the Taliban"? When is the MSM ever going to challenge Bush's seemingly endless string of lies, absurdities, stupid remarks, and inanities? George W. Bush has most certainly murdered more Iraqi citizens than Al Zarqawi and Saddam Hussein together.

It's hard to believe that it was in the year 2004 that the Washington Post reported that at least 100,000 Iraqi civilians may have died because of the U.S. invasion.[100,000 Civilian Deaths Estimated in Iraq, Rob Stein, Washington Post Staff Writer, Friday, October 29, 2004; Page A16] On January 9, 2006, Bush himself estimated Iraqi civilian deaths may be well over 180,000. By now, possibly, half a million. Deaths attributed solely to Zarqawi are not nearly so high. Moreover, Zarqawi most certainly would not be in Iraq had not Bush invaded that country to begin with. Tragically —Bush cannot be trusted to sort out the dead. He merely delivers them up and leaves to bereathed families the task of burying his victims.

Oddly, Donald Rumsfeld told the truth —however inadvertently. "It [insurgency] was more than had been predicted," Rumsfeld told CNN. He blamed the insurgency itself on "imperfect intelligence" and acknowledged that the American presence had been been "feeding" the "insurgency".

The word "insurgency" is Bush newspeak. Bush won his first propaganda battle when the MSM picked up the word and repeated it without questioning its appropriateness. It's called "framing". Insurgency does not describe a situation characterized by sectarian violence, possibly civil war. Insurgency does not describe a chaotic anarchy fed and purposefully aggravated by the very presence of U.S. troops. U.S. troops now appear to have waged a deliberate war of atrocity against the civilian population; the word "insurgency", therefore, sounds hollow, disingenuous, purposefully untruthful. Better terms to describe Iraq are "civil war" and "resistance to an aggressor".

The fact never reported by MSM is that the U.S. attack and invasion of Iraq, a sovereign nation, was from the very start an illegal war of naked aggression, a capital crime under U.S. law. But, I am wasting my breath. When Bush is charged under 18 § 2441, a packed, GOP appeals court will uphold his decree that if " the President does it, it's legal!". Why didn't Hermann Goring and the hanged Nazi war criminals think of that? They might have survived to advise the GOP!

Already, the United States has unilaterally exempted U.S. troops from war crimes prosecution in the Hague. A bill entitled To protect United States military personnel and other elected and appointed officials of the United States Government against criminal prosecution by an international criminal court to which the United States is not party was introduced by Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX) as an amendment to H.R. 1646, The Foreign Relations Authorization Act of 2001, on May 8, 2001. It passed the House 282-137 on May 10 and introduced as S. 857 in the Senate on May 9 by Senators Jesse Helms (R-NC), Zell Miller (D-GA), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), John Warner (R-VA), Trent Lott (R-MS), Richard Shelby (R-AL), and Frank Murkowski (R-AK).

The bill authorized Bush " use all means (including the provision of legal assistance) necessary to bring about the release of covered U.S. persons and covered allied persons held captive by or on behalf of the Court [International Criminal Court, ICC, in the Hague]. Some highlights:

The President is authorized to invade The Hague. Specifically, the bill empowers Bush to use all means necessary and appropriate to bring about the release from captivity of U.S. or Allied personnel detained or imprisoned against their will by or on behalf of the Court. Dutch cartoonists have depicted U.S. paratroopers dropping down on the international court; U.S. assault forces hitting Netherlands beaches like D-Day!

No U.S. governmental entity --including State or local governments and court of any U.S. jurisdiction --may cooperate with the ICC in arrests, extraditions, searches and seizures, taking of evidence, seizure of assets, or similar matters.

No classified national security information can be transferred directly or indirectly to the ICC or to countries Party to the Rome Statute.

These provisions are in addition to existing U.S. law (the 2000-2001 Foreign Relations Authorization Act) which prohibits any U.S. funds going to the ICC once it has been established unless the Senate has given its advice and consent to the Rome Treaty.

Here's some more ancient history. Forty-four members of the U.S. House of Representatives on July 19, 2001 urged Bush "... to remain engaged with the Court, and demonstrate America's commitment to the often-difficult and complicated international effort to promote justice and human rights", the Bush administration, nevertheless, rejected the ICC treaty. A letter from US envoy Ambassador Pierre-Richard Prosper to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said that Washington had no intention of ratifying the treaty and considered itself “ longer bound in any way to its [the treaty's] purpose and objective.”

Clearly —this represented at the time an unprecedented rift between the United States and its European allies; American isolation has only increased since then. Over the five years or so since Bush declared the U.S. above international laws that the U.S. had, in fact, insisted upon, Bush continues to thumb his nose at the civilized world while the United States plays the roll of a rogue, out of control nation dominated by a militant, extremist, right wing junta.

Iraqis are worse off under Bush —an undeniable fact glossed over by a kool-aid addicted American media. It's time to connect the dots. The United States is building permanent bases in Iraq. The observable permanent state of turmoil and chaos in Iraq is as good a pretext as any for a continued U.S. aggression and war crime. After all, there is little chance of appealing to law and treaty when it is the "President" of the United States who thumbs his nose at them. Denial and delusion are more palatable than truth: Bush invaded Iraq in order to steal its oil for his base back home: big oil! Additional resources:

The Existentialist Cowboy

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Forget the Iraq civil war; the U.S. cultural war rages on

In 1992 Pat Buchanan addressed the Republican National convention with talk of great "culture war" that would be waged in America. What he didn't tell the convention was that the right wing would declare the war by attacking the U.S. Constitution.

Buchanan didn't tell his audience that his culture war would pit Americans against one another. He didn't tell America that his culture war was purely partisan. He didn't tell those not supporting that convention that they would become targets of a right jihad.

He didn't tell the nation that his culture war would be an entirely negative, destructive war that would treat citizens as enemies of the state —though they are protected by the Constitution and are, in fact, on the right and historically correct side of the Constitution.

From the psychotic viewpoint of the increasingly radical right wing, it must destroy and subvert the Constitution in order to wage this war on the American population. Put another way: under Bush, the right wing has learned how to make legal what had been illegal under the Constitution.

In a monument to backward thinking and circular logic, the GOP will justify its subversion of the rule of law because it is necessary in order to achieve the right wing agenda.

Since 1992, the GOP has waged this war on many fronts: the schools, congressional districts, the courts, and, most insidiously, the validity of the ballot box itself. It is a war on anyone disagreeing with a narrow, increasingly rabid, fanatical Weltanschauung.

Under George W. Bush, the GOP has waged this war on fellow Americans as Hitler waged his war on the Jew, that is, by denying the blessings of Due Process of Law to anyone who dares to dissent. It is a political war that exploits the advantages of corporate power by forging a fascistic partnership with the corporate community. In alliance with big, corporate media, for example, the right wing junta slanders individuals, undermines the Bill of Rights, and, in other ways— legal and illegal —destroys the very underpinnings of American society. This is, for them, as it was for Hitler, a single-minded quest for raw power. It is total cultural war.

The mere impeachment and imprisonment of George W. Bush will not begin to address the crisis. As many bloggers have pointed out recently: Bush is —as he has said —a war President. What escapes mere words is Bush's role. He has become the impresario of a radical, right wing, fascist agenda that pits American against American, citizen against citizen. Bush's war is not against Iraq; it is against America, the American people, the Constitution, the rule of law, and Due Process of Law. We have seen the enemy and it is George W. Bush, the GOP and all their "fellow travelers"!

Revolution is not always waged with violence in the streets. But, with Bush, there seems to be a resurrection of old tactics. Among more prominent examples is the gang of GOP "brownshirts" who feloniously attacked the recount rooms in Florida. More recently in Sugar Land, TX, a gang of thugs —supporting Tom DeLay --violently attacked a peaceful rally held by DeLay's Democratic opponent. Clearly —the right wing will not be satisfied until the Constitution is overthrown and a dictatorship installed; it has shown itself capable of violence and thuggery to make it happen.

Some recent events here at home illustrate how the right wing has racheted up their practices, strategies, lies and histrionics. Recent comments by Bill O'Reilly illustrate the extremes to which they will resort. It was bad enough that Ronald Reagan paid his "respects" to the Nazi SS at Bitburg, saying that they were likewise "victims" of Hitler's right wing regime, now we are expected sit quietly while Bill O'Reilly blames Amercans —not Nazi SS —for the massacre at Malmedy.
R. Reagan Paying Homage to SS at Bitburg

At a time when the GOP seems to have adopted Nazi tactics —rewriting history among them —it is more than merely suspicious when a right wing, GOP apologist gets on television and tells the nation that it was U.S. troops who massacred SS combatants at Malmedy —and not the other way 'round.

The facts are these: it was the SS —not U.S. troops —who did the shooting. The SS literally set up a machine gun and mowed down U.S. troops who had been taken prisoner during the Battle of the Bulge.
During the Ardennes Offensive (Battle of the Bulge) the Combat Group of the 1st SS Panzer Division, led by SS Major Joachim Peiper, was approaching the crossroads at Baugnes near the town of Malmédy. There they encountered a company of US troops (Battery B of the 285th Field Artillery Observation Battalion) from the US 7th Armoured Division. Realizing that the odds were hopeless, the company's commander, Lt. Virgil Lary, decided to surrender. After being searched by the SS, the prisoners were marched into a field adjacent to the Cafe Bodarwé. The SS troops moved on except for two Mark IV tanks Nos. 731 and 732, left behind to guard the GIs. A couple of GIs tried to flee to the nearest woods and an order was given to fire. SS Private Georg Fleps of tank 731 drew his pistol and fired at Lary's driver who fell dead in the snow. The machine guns of both tanks then opened fire on the prisoners. Many of the GIs took to their heels and headed for the woods. Incredibly, 43 GIs survived, but 84 of their comrades lay dead in the field, being slowly covered with a blanket of snow. No attempt was made to recover the bodies until the area was retaken by the 30th Infantry Division on January 14, 1945, when men from the 291st Engineers used metal detectors to locate the bodies buried in the snow.

The Malmedy Massacre

It's easy enough to dismiss O'Reilly as either stupid or ignorant. It's hard to believe, however, that he's never seen a movie —many of which accurately portray the events at Malmedy. What's O'Reilly's excuse? What's his motive for defending Nazis?

Either O'Reilly is appallingly ignorant of American history which means he is both the product and the victim of GOP public education policies. Or —he deliberately reversed the roles of Americans and Nazis during World War II. If this is the best the right wing has to offer, then we are in deep stuff. Interestingly, right wing "commentators" —most prominently Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh, and Bill O'Reilly —are mean spirited and venomous. They will bend facts, lie, and re-write history to serve the interests of right wing propaganda. Their morality is a relative one; every crime is justified if it serves the party agenda.
Nevertheless, we can mourn the German war dead today as human beings crushed by a vicious ideology!

Ronald Reagan at Bitburg
I rather think Ronald Reagan missed the point. The SS were not the common foot soldiers Reagan described. They were the Nazi elite; they were not the victims but the co-conspirators in Hitler's dreams of absolute dictatorship and vainglorious world conquest.
New York Times (6 May 1985): "It's over, but the Bitburg blunder, too, should not be forgotten. President Reagan's regret at having promised such a cemetery tribute was palpable. He walked through it with dignity but little reverence. He gave the cameras no emotional angles. All day long he talked of Hell and Nazi evil, to submerge the event. . . . Not even Mr. Reagan's eloquent words before the mass graves of Bergen-Belsen could erase the fact that his visit there was an afterthought, to atone for the inadvertent salute to those SS graves."

Memo To Bill O'Reilly: The Nazis Were The Bad Guys.

by tristeroClick and watch it all.

Bill O'Reilly's outrageous attempt to paint the Nazis as victims of an American atrocity at Malmedy when in fact Nazis slaughtered American troops should have led to his immediate firing and ostracism from American airwaves. What did Fox do? They tried to scrub the transcript, but were caught and restored it.

But that's not all. Watch and marvel at the sordid history of right wing denial of the Malmedy atrocity, complete with genuinely ugly eruptions of American homegrown anti-semitism. And don't miss a cameo appearance by Joe McCarthy, which should thoroughly discredit anyone malicious enough to try to whitewash that scoundrel's reputation.

And you know what's the worst part of this? No one really cares that much, no one that matters. "Oh, that's just Fox News, that's just O'Reilly, whaddya expect?" The level of bullshit, ignorance, bigotry, and malicious stupidity is so high we don't even notice it anymore. Worse, the stench is so bad and is so far over our heads already, we don't even notice when it's reached a new height.

But we're not done yet. If O'Reilly can keep his job - and he can and will - after smearing American WW II soldiers (as well as sending covert signals of support to all the David Irvings in America), then he will feel compelled to top that.

Anyone care to predict the next O'Reilly outrage?I don't. If you had told me that Bill O'Reilly could get away with rewriting Malmedy, I would have said you were mad. But what we do know is that the goal posts have moved and right wing extremism is just is only slightly less extreme than it had been.

Let's call it the Neiwert Effect, in honor of the expert in how extreme rightwing memes get mainstreamed. Last week's racist anti-immigrant remarks seem downright moderate compared to re-casting Nazis as innocents when they were cold-blooded murderers. And since there were no consequences for him doing so, O'Reilly now has permission to be as publicly bigoted against Mexicans and Hispanics as Stephen Douglas was against African Americans.

Zarqawi: Dead Again

Al-Zarqawi dies for the umpteenth time but now the US government says sincerely Zarqawi is really, really dead again.

The story goes something like this:
The house began to pitch, the kitchen took a slitch
It landed on the wicked witch in the middle of a ditch
Which was not a healthy situation for the wicked witch
Who began to twitch, and was reduced to just a stitch
Of what was once the wicked witch

But we've got to verify it legally

To see...

To see...

If he...

If he...

Is morally, ethically

(Munchkin 1)
Spiritually, physically

(Munchkin 2)
Positively, absolutely

(Munchkin Men)
Undeniably and reliably dead

As Coroner , I thoroughly examined him
And he's not only merely dead
He's really most sincerely dead

Zarqawi has been upheld both in official statements and the media as head of "the Sunni insurgency", leader of "al-Qaeda in Iraq", allegedly responsible for the killings of thousands of civilians.

To be less than satirical, the pictures of his alleged corpse are surprisingly photogenic considering that the U.S. Military does not claim to have dropped a house on Zarqawi —merely two 500-pound bombs at the conclusion of a three day operation. Amazing that he is both recognizable and in one piece. But the U.S. Military would not lie about this...would they?
Ding-dong the witch is dead
Which old witch? The wicked witch
Ding-dong the wicked witch is dead
Wake up you sleepyhead
Rub your eyes, get out of bed
Wake up the wicked witch is dead
She's gone where the goblins go

Below - below - below

Yo-ho, let's open up and sing and ring the bells out
Ding Dong' the merry-oh, sing it high, sing it low
Let them know the Wicked Witch is dead

In the meantime, there is evidence even in the MSM that Zarqawi was part of a Pentagon disinformation campaign. It was said to have been launched in 2003 to justify Bush's attack and invasion of Iraq. Zarqawi played so valuable role in U.S. propaganda that he was killed and revived many times. I've lost count. According to leaked military documents published by the Washington Post, the Pentagon had set up a "Zarqawi program" in which Zarqawi's role was deliberately "magnified" to galvanized U.S. public support for Bush war of aggression in Iraq:

"The Zarqawi campaign is discussed in several of the internal military documents. "Villainize Zarqawi/leverage xenophobia response," one U.S. military briefing from 2004 stated. It listed three methods: "Media operations," "Special Ops (626)" (a reference to Task Force 626, an elite U.S. military unit assigned primarily to hunt in Iraq for senior officials in Hussein's government) and "PSYOP," the U.S. military term for propaganda work..."

"the Zarqawi PSYOP program is the most successful information campaign to date."

—Washington Post, April 10, 2006)

I have no idea how Bush plans to capitalize on the death of a man who obviously had more than one life to give for his cause. And to be fair, there is no reason to believe that he will not be resurrected again.
I would not be just a nuffin'
My head all full of stuffin'
My heart all full of pain
I would dance and be merry
Life would be a ding-a-derry
If I only had a brain

—Possibly G.W. Bush in an unguarded moment

But try to have a nice day knowing that all is screwed up in Kansas, Texas, and most certainly Washington D.C. where the U.S. Military has no credibility whatsoever.
Some day I'll wish upon a star
And wake up where the clouds are far behind me
Where troubles melt like lemon drops
Away above the chimney tops
That's where you'll find me
Ah! Lost innocence!

The Existentialist Cowboy

Monday, June 05, 2006

How the U.S. Military deliberately lied about Haditha and tried to cover it up

The official military cover story goes like this:
[Fifteen Iraqis] "...were killed yesterday from the blast of a roadside bomb in Haditha. Immediately after the bombing, gunmen attacked the convoy with small arms fire. Iraqi army soldiers and Marines returned fire, killing eight insurgents and wounding another."

—Marine spokesman, Capt. Jeffrey S. Pool, Iraq,

It's hard not to conclude that the lie is deliberate.

Here's one of the best summaries of what really happened to be found on the internet:
On the morning of 19 November 2005, U.S. Marines were on their way to Haditha, in northwest Iraq. When they were attacked and later failed to find their attackers, they deliberately and indiscriminately massacred 24 Iraqi civilians in the Subhani district of Haditha. The victims ”range from little babies to adult males and females." Initially, the U.S. Marines alleged that 15 “insurgents” and civilians were killed in “cross fire." As usual, the U.S. Marines lied about the massacre and tried to cover it up. It was the video of an Iraqi journalism student from Haditha which prompted Time magazine to investigate the massacre.

—Ghali Hassan, Online Journal

What is known about the massacre at Haditha? We know that a responding unit found the bodies of 24 Iraqi civilians —babies, women, children shot in the head. The body of an old man was found still in his wheelchair, shot nine times. One wonders if the man in the wheelchair is the one referred to by 9 year old Eman Waleed, who survived by faking her own death.
Eman Waleed, a 9-year-old girl who survived the massacre told the told Time: “First, they went into my father’s room, where he was reading the Koran, and we heard shots. Then, the soldiers came back into the living room. I couldn’t see their faces very well -- only their guns sticking into the doorway. I watched them shoot my grandfather, first in the chest and then in the head. Then they killed my granny."

Online Journal

Girls —ages 1 to 14 —lay dead.

Clearly —none of them had been killed by a bomb as the U.S. military would have had you believe. Rather —all 24 dead had been killed by U.S. military gunfire. The source for that information are the death certificates themselves.

The U.S. military deliberately ignored accounts by eyewitnesses, letting stand a U.S. cover story for a period of six months. The truth about the case is still hidden under the cover of an "on-going" investigation. It is doubtful that any meaningful investigation has ever been conducted into the "...countless My Lai massacres" in Iraq.
"Two Afghan prisoners who died in American custody in Afghanistan in December 2002 were chained to the ceiling, kicked and beaten by American soldiers in sustained assaults that caused their deaths, according to Army criminal investigative reports.

At least 26 prisoners have died in American custody in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2002 in what Army and Navy investigators have concluded or suspect were acts of criminal homicide, according to military officials

In Fallujah, 40% of the buildings were completely destroyed, 20% had major damage, and 40% had significant damage. That is 100% of the buildings in that city."

—Mike Ferner, Lew Rockwell

Among the "...countless My Lai massacres" that have been referred to in recent days, three incidents are under current investigation: Ishaqi, Haditha and Hamandiya.

Given the utter collapse of credibility in the U.S. military and Rumsfeld Pentagon specifically, there is no reason not to believe that many other incidents are still covered up and will remain forever un-investigated. Rumsfeld's Pentagon no longer has the benefit of the doubt. The latest revelations must not be considered in isolation and higher ups —to include Donald Rumsfeld himself —must not be left off the hook.

The only way to get at the truth now is to convene a Federal Grand Jury and a Special Prosecutor with sweeping subpoena powers. Just as Sy Hersh connected the Abu Ghraib abuses to Donald Rumsfeld and even George W. Bush himself, a real investigation must not stop before it implicates the higher ups. The pattern of heinous and insane atrocities that characterize the Bush administration's illegal and treasonous occupation of Iraq can be found in various "snapshots" available from time to time. One of the most vivid is from Abu Ghraib:
In her video diary, a prison guard said that prisoners were shot for minor misbehavior, and claimed to have had venomous snakes bite prisoners, sometimes resulting in their deaths. By her own admission, that guard was "in trouble" for having thrown rocks at the detainees.[11] Hashem Muhsen, one of the naked men in the human pyramid photo, said they were also made to crawl around the floor naked and that U.S. soldiers rode them like donkeys. After being released in January 2004, Muhsen became an Iraqi police officer.
More pieces of this evil mosaic can be found in the following links courtesy Cindy Sheehan writing for Buzzflash:
The invasion of Iraq is a preventive war of aggression against a country that was no threat to the USA or the world and was expressly prohibited by the Geneva Conventions.
Additional resources: It's time the American people demanded an end to the Bush pattern of cover up, white wash, and lies. This illegitimate administration must be ended, and, if it is not, America is finished.

An update on the American cover up of "...countless My Lai massacres":

Press Accounts Suggest Military 'Cover-up' in Ishagi Killings

By Greg MitchellPublished: June 03, 2006 1:40 PM ET

NEW YORK The U.S military said Saturday it had found no wrongdoing in the March 15 raid on a home in Ishaqi that left nine Iraqi civilians dead. But, as with the apparent massacre in Haditha, will a military "coverup" in this case come undone? E&P coverage from back in March, and other evidence, suggest that the official story may soon unravel.

The Iraqi police charge that American forces executed the civilians, including a 75-year-old woman and a 6-month-old baby. The BBC has been airing video of the dead civilians, mainly children, who appeared to be shot, possibly at close range. Photographs taken just after the raid for the Associated Press and Agence France-Presse, and reports at the time by Reuters and Knight Ridder, also appear to back up the charge of an atrocity. ...

The Existentialist Cowboy