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November 06, 2005


It's allllllllllll coming out in the wash, ain't it?

I am disgusted as hell.


Still more evidence of administration deception (sigh)

In the current (and previous) drumbeat of right-wing spin, the Bush-Cheney message “justifying” the Iraqi War, that claims no intelligence agencies dissented from the Bush propaganda line, always conspicuously omits two key major facts (as well as misrepresenting many minor ones).

The UN inspectors (the only agency with extensive HUMINT collection with access in Iraq) consistently refused to assert as a positive, or as proven, that Saddam had WMD (other than some short-range missiles)--and as a result the UN inspectors were persistently castigated by the Bush Administration as flat wrong. Recently the Nobel Committee recognized M. El Baradi and the IAEA for their courage and accuracy in consistently debunking the Bush “mushroom cloud” and other WMD mythologies.

The details of the many intelligence agencies’ evidence (now proven wrong, and gradually being shown as discredited at the time) were always mostly secret. The evidence of the UN inspectors (now proven right, and defamed then by the Bush Administration) was always largely public.

Second, the UN Security Council, following the infamous Powell briefing and Bush’s General Assembly plea, did not authorize another war with Iraq, and instead recommended continued monitoring by the UN inspectors.

Consequently, as Kofi Anan has gently suggested, under the UN Charter (an historical creation of the US) the “Coalition’s” invasion of Iraq was then, and still is, illegal--the same crime, in effect, that Saddam committed on Kuwait fifteen years ago.

Rightwing spin-meisters, before the war and now, act as if these inconvenient two facts do not exist.

All of which underscores the point that, even when motives are pure (and in this case they are almost certainly not), worst case decision-making can be as costly (or more so) than a prudent, evidence-based decision.

One is reminded of another empire that made a foolish decision to fight an unneeded war (and paid the price of ultimate disintegration and demise):

"What used to be described as a thoughtless act of aggression was now regarded as the courage one would expect to find...to think of the future and wait was merely another way of saying one was a coward; any idea of moderation was just an attempt to disguise one's unmanly character; ability to understand a question from all sides meant that one was totally unfitted for action." Thucydides, The Peloponnesian War

Those who attend to moral and political philosophy may recognize a direct philosophical line from Plato to Strauss to the NeoCons, and their corresponding respect for truth and the voters and their representatives; a line for which that good soldier, Thucydides, had nothing but unbrided scorn in his day. Other soldiers, in our day, have expressed similar opinions about cabals so inclined.

A modern warrior offered an appropriate warning:

Once upon a time, a mighty king gathered a superb collection of loyal knights. One day, an enthusiastic and powerful knight clad in red armor returned to the king’s castle after months away, the marks of much battle apparent on his armor. The king was pleased with the obvious efforts of the Red Knight and asked him where he had been fighting.

The Red Knight leaned on his sword and proudly said, “My Lord, I have been fighting in the west, laying waste to the enemies of the king!”

The king pondered this, then replied in a puzzled voice, “But good sir knight, I don’t have any enemies in the west.”

The Red Knight straightened up, saluted the king, and said, “Well, sire, you do now.” Rear Admiral James Stavridis, The Tale of the Red Knight

The King today is “We, the People,” and the Red Knights we elected and pay to defend us have provided us with many more enemies.

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