Investigations On WMD Lies That Led To Iraq War

That rant was quite satisfying. I’ve noticed lately a lot of frustrated ranting from progressive liberals, specifically from people who aren’t known for their ranting. The guy in the above video is someone I regularly watch and I don’t recall ever having seen him gone off on a rant like that. Another example of this is Thom Hartmann which I made a longer post about:

I’ve grown tired of the weak sauce moderate centrists that have taken over the Democratic Party. Bill Clinton and Barack Obama seem like nice people. I respect them as far as my respect goes for most professional politicians of the moderate centrist variety, but I don’t respect them as liberals and for damned sure I don’t respect them as progressives… because they are neither.

I’d love to see Washington politics filled with passionate defenders of progressive liberalism. People like Bernie Sanders, Anthony Weiner, and Alan Grayson. I don’t care if I entirely agree with everything these people say and do. I just want people who have strong convictions that they are willing to fight for. I don’t want professional politicians who only care about maintaining their power by maintaining the status quo, who only care about advancing their careers.

I want a functioning democracy where citizens have real influence. I want civic participation like never seen before. I want people angry and out in the streets.

I know I’m part of the problem. Like most Americans, I’m apathetic and cynical. But, at least, I’m not ignorant. I know what is going on and I know I don’t like it. I want to live in a society where everyone matters, not just the rich and powerful. I want to live in a society where justice and fairness matters.

I don’t want to live in a society where the powerful get away with lying to the public, get away with blatant corruption, get away with war crimes. Is that too much to ask for? I don’t know. I too often feel isolated in caring about any of this. The media seems to intentionally isolate us. The mainstream media personalities usually just distract us from anything of consequence. When someone in the media actually says something true and says it with passion (which usually only happens in the alternative media), I feel part of myself wake up from apathy.

I want all of society to wake up. I was reading a book about the Populist Era where a person of that time was quoted. The person spoke of it in the terms of a whole generation waking up to the corruption as if the flames of the Holy Spirit brought forth a revival across the land. It’s amazing to read about that time. People were content and apathetic… and then all of a sudden they were fighting for a whole new vision of society. What wakes up a generation like that? What is the event that finally pushes people just too far and it somehow becomes collectively determined that they can’t, won’t take it anymore? How do people go from feeling like powerless individuals to feeling like a collective force to be reckoned with?

– – –

I was looking through my books about the Populist Era, but I couldn’t find the exact quote I was thinking of. Instead, I found a couple of passages from one book that describe clearly what was going on at the time.

Rebirth of a Nation
by Jackson Lears

Location 2964:

…had demonstrated what insurgents could do by connecting monetary reform to a wide range of egalitarian and anti-monopoly policies. They could challenge the notion that government was a private (white) men’s club; they could widen the public sphere by creating common ground among the indebted classes, linking farmers and laborers, even blacks and whites. Of course these alliances were shaky and easily toppled. But they provided political outsiders—people who had never imagined themselves acting effectually in public—with a glimpse of what an insurgency could do. As the historian Lawrence Goodwyn has argued, this was a crucial moment in the creation of a “movement culture”: a mass of insurgents becoming visible (to themselves and others) as political actors for the first time.

Farther west, the Farmers’ Alliances had embarked on a similar project. The organization began in Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Kansas as a counterforce to the feelings of isolation and impotence that enveloped the countryside in the 1880s. Dividing into Northern and Southern Alliances, the farmers nevertheless soon began to see themselves as part of a huge and effectual national movement—and not merely another interest group scuffling for narrow gain.

Location 3035:

Indeed, Kansas was one of the states where the Farmers’ Alliance began to take on the characteristics of a regenerative mass movement—described by various observers as “a pentecost of politics,” “a religious revival,” and “a crusade.” Along with stump speeches by Macune and other orators, Farmers’ Alliance meetings featured long parades of wagons stretching for miles, decorated with evergreens to symbolize the “living issues” of the Alliance rather than the dead tariffs and bloody shirts of the existing two-party system. The plain people could see themselves acting politically en masse. In Kansas as elsewhere, farmers fired up by the experience of participatory democracy began to take matters into their own hands. The insurgent culture produced insurgent politics. In Harper County, Kansas, the Alliance demanded stricter usury laws; in Brown County they protested “the extortions of the binding twine trust” and proceeded “at once to the erection of a co-operative manufactory for binding twine.” This was how a democratic social movement was born.

Still, the Alliance had to overcome the power of regional and racial mistrust. Little more than twenty years earlier, Midwesterners and Southerners had been killing each other at Fredericksburg and Chickamauga. Old resentments died hard, as Garrison understood when he recommended the bloody shirt to Republican orators. At the same time, the two regions’ shared evangelical ethos began to acquire greater strength and political significance, bringing old antagonists together on common cultural terrain.

13 thoughts on “Investigations On WMD Lies That Led To Iraq War

  1. I’ve been crazy busy over the past couple of days.

    But anyways, it is looking like the emergence of ISIS (a not entirely unexpected “Blowback”) was not entirely unexpected from what I have read outside the mainstream media.

    Patrick Cockburn is a good journalist to read up on for information about ISIS.

    Oh and the surge it looks like was entirely a myth.

    So far though, they have gotten away with it.

    • As the dust settles, a lot will become ever more clear. With increasing distance from the entire fiasco, people will become more willing to speak out and tell what they know. It might take a while, though.

      It took decades for an honest discussion to be possible about the Vietnam War. It’s just been recent years that my conservative parents have begun to admit that the Vietnam War was a more complex problem than they had thought, with even soldiers sabotaging the war because they saw it was based on lies and propaganda, not just hippies protesting in the streets.

  2. The media seems to portray the development of ISIS as a sudden, unexpected development.

    This is not entirely the case. For many years now, the US government has been supporting the Iraqi government, which has done some pretty terrible things to the Sunni people in particular, who before the invasion had a pretty decent middle class. That is one of the reasons why ISIS has gained support amongst the Sunni population rapidly.

    It’s a blowback as Chalmers Johnson would describe it.

    • The US government has had an on-and-off relatinship with Iraq for many decades. Saddam Hussein was our ally for a long time.

      The very reason it was at all plausible to claim he had WMDs is because, many years before, we sold them to him. While our ally Hussein used those US-originated WMDs on his own people, the US government stood by watching and did nothing.

      So, the pretext for going to war yet again against our old ally was because of a knowingly false claim that Hussein had WMDs. It was knowingly false because the US government knew that the only WMDs he ever had were given to him by us and at this point they would have been to old to still be viable for use.

      Iraqis aren’t as stupid as the American public. They know the US government doesn’t give a fuck about them. The US government has no loyalty to anyone. It’s only loyallty is to power, money, and resources. They take what they want from anyone and then, when it suits their purposes, they will turn on former allies in an instant.

      One of these days the US government is going to wonder where all of its ‘friends’ went.

    • Yeah I would agree with that.

      Most people invaded know the truth. Heck, most people outside the US know the truth.

      Here in Canada, public opinion of the US has gone down a lot since Bush took office. Same with in Europe, and I am told in Australia as well.

      Out of curiosity, what do you think about the articles by Patrick Cockburn? It’s quite terrifying what has happened over the past few years.

    • “Here in Canada, public opinion of the US has gone down a lot since Bush took office. Same with in Europe, and I am told in Australia as well.”

      I’m glad to hear it. Most Americans need a wake-up call… or else a knock to the head, whichever would get their attention. Someone needs to remind Americans that the world doesn’t revolve around them. When that happens, it will be a rude awakening.

      “Out of curiosity, what do you think about the articles by Patrick Cockburn? It’s quite terrifying what has happened over the past few years.”

      I’m not sure. It’s depressing, as it was entirely unnecessary and avoidable. At the same time, I’m not sure ISIS is any worse than the alternatives.

      The US destroyed a functioning secular society, toppled a government that maintained order, and killed and maimed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis (and that doesn’t include the vast death and destruction that the US has committed in other Middle Eastern countries and around the world). ISIS couldn’t achieve all of that in its wildest and most demented theocratic fantasies.

      A single US bomb or drone attack kills more innocent people than a single ISIS suicide bombing. Even US allies such as Saudi Arabia and Israel kill as many or more people on a regular basis than ISIS could ever hope of achieving.

      The havoc of ISIS is puny in comparison. The terror spread by the US military dwarfs that of a small time operation like ISIS.

      If I was an Iraqi, I’d probably fear Americans more than I’d fear ISIS. That is saying a lot, considering how bad is ISIS. Iraqis have no good choices available to them. All they can hope for is whichever side is least likely to kill them and that is just a crap shoot.

      It would be one thing if American military power led to order and stability. The old colonial powers, like Britain, would at least often invest massive amounts of money and manpower over decades to take over from previous governments or to rebuild what was destroyed in the act of conquering. The US wants all the spoils of being an empire with none of the responsibilities.

      I’m for the policy of, “If you break it, you buy it.” We should never have gone in Iraq. But once we destroyed their government, we should have rebuilt it like we did with Germany and Japan after WWII. We should have covered that country with military bases and had a military-run government for a significantly long transitional period.

      The problem is that everyone knows the US will never do that. The US military too often leaves countries worse than when they found them. The present Iraqi government is just a puppet state for US neo-imperialism, and it will only be defended and supported for as long as it is convenient and doesn’t cost too much. Don’t expect American troops to sacrifice their lives to take responsibility for the harm they cause others. That isn’t the American way of doing things.

      That leaves average Iraqis in an impossible situation.

  3. I have become convinced that often abundance of natural resources can be a curse. IF it were not for the oil, then nobody would care that much about Iraq.

    Same with so many of the other dictatorships.

    • I’ve heard of the resource curse. It seems to apply at least to some cases, and maybe to all cases in varying degrees.

      I might argue that the US falls into the trap of the resource curse. One could say that it’s because we have so many resources to be had that democracy has failed here and corporatism taken over. The US isn’t so different from the other post-colonial countries plagued by the resource curse.

      The ruling elite now is not so different than the ruling elite during colonialism. The resource curse has its origins in colonialism, when globalized capitalism took shape. Even when colonialism ended, the colonial market relationships were maintained by the former colonial countries.

      The only difference is that the ruling elite came to realize they could take the resources through threats of military force without necessarily having to offer anything in return. The old method of maintaining social order in order to maintain markets went out the window. In place of that, the smash and grab became one of the preferred methods.

      Why have an expensive colonial government when for the fraction of the cost you can have puppet states and failed states that are easily manipulated?

  4. It’s the 15th anniversary of the Invasion of Iraq.

    Senator Robert C Byrd – Today I Weep for My Country:

    One of the few people who “got it” and had the guts to stand up for what he believed in.

    • The history books will remember him for standing up and saying what needed to be said. But it unfortunately didn’t make much difference at the time. Still, there is power over time when enough people keep standing up and speaking the truth, both truth to power and truth of those within power.

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