Bush, Cheney and the Iraq Propaganda Blitz

11-23-05, 9:31 am

The Iraq occupation continues and people die every day in attacks and counter-attacks, mostly Iraqis, but also Americans. The number is now above 2,000 and rising. The former Comptroller for the U.S. occupation force has been charged with massive bribe taking, and it has been revealed now that he served a prison term in the 1990s for fraud (but he was, I am sure, a 'good Republican'). And Cheney and Bush are off on the hustings calling those Democratic Party leaders who have criticized them, 'hypocrites,' 'morally reprehensible,' and 'Iraq war revisionists.'

This is the usual 'stab in the back' stuff. (In German it was called 'Dolchstoss von Hinten' when Corporal Schickelgruber and his demobilized right-wing buddies blamed the Socialists, the Communists, and the Jews for betraying Germany in WWI rather than the Kaiser and the military leaders who launched and directed the war.) 'The terrorists believe,' Cheney squeaks, 'by controlling an entire country they will be able to establish a radical Islamic empire from Spain….to Indonesia….arm themselves with weapons of mass destruction….destroy Israel….intimidate all Western countries…..cause mass death in the United States.'

So we have to stand by our honest, anti-revisionist government, which invaded Iraq based on 'weapons of mass destruction' that weren’t there, which, as it turns out, they were told over and over again couldn’t be found, and which Hussein had not used against U.S. forces when he did have them in the first Gulf war. I mean the poison gas that he used against Iranians and Kurds with the knowledge of his allies, the Reagan administration, who ran interference for his government in the UN, since they were supporting him during his war against Iran. This government deserves our loyalty and trust because they will protect us from terrorists who have now flocked to Iraq. The Bush administration stands bravely against the forces of international Islamic terrorism even though its predecessors, Reagan and Bush I, worked with Saudis money men like Osama Bin Laden and the right-wing clerically based dictatorship in Pakistan to fund, arm, and train those terrorists when they were called 'freedom fighters' in the war in Afghanistan in the 1980s.

We must keep them from taking over a country, even though they already have de facto control of large areas of Pakistan, where international news sources (not US news sources) report that pro-Taliban local governments in the same Afghanistan-Pakistan border regions that the CIA and its Pakistani allies used a generation ago to train Bin Laden and his 'holy war' fighters. Now they have set up arms factories for the holy war, are actively recruiting fighters for Iraq from the disaffected and unemployed, and are educating them in religious fanaticism and a cult of violence with Saudi money.

Although there are deeper causes rooted in imperialism, the historical development of the cold war, transnational oil company alliances with the feudal Persian Gulf states that control nearly one-third of the world’s oil reserves, the Bush administration and its predecessors, the Reagan and Bush I administrations, made and implemented all of the disastrous political decisions that led to the two Gulf Wars, the creation of first the warlord and then the Taliban regime in Afghanistan and the Al Qaeda terrorist group.

U.S. politicians have long assumed, as advertisers do, that the electorate has a 'twelve year old' mind, and can be sold anything. But the Bush administration’s current propaganda campaign goes beyond that. It seems to assume that the American public has the mentality of catatonic schizophrenics, that is, people who have withdrawn from all reality and can be made to repeat in a robotic way anything that they are told. It is an expression of contempt for the people and for any process of political discussion, even by the not so high standards that we are used to in this era.

By the way, Vice President Cheney should know that this war and occupation hasn’t lasted long enough to create an orthodox view that would have 'revisionists,' except in the Orwellian or Hellerian (Catch-22) sense where everything is its opposite and lies are truths.

--Norman Markowitz is a contributing editor of Political Affairs and can be reached a pa-letters@politicalaffairs.net.