Dy’er Sez: I, for one, have grown very weary of people in suits who hold positions of power, stand behind a podium and flat out lie to the American people. I never tolerated it under past administrations, and I will not tolerate it under this one.
The reason for my present angst is a speech given by the president two nights ago at West Point where he announced that he was planning on sending at least another 30,000 American troops into Afghanistan. In my opinion, this is an incredibly bad idea as every other country (like Russia, for one) who has attempted to do the same has left with their tail between their legs and a check mark in the loss column. But to add insult to injury, the President’s speech was full of so many inaccuracies, deceptions and flat out lies that I feel compelled to point them out (note that what follows is a very breif overview of a comple situation).
The first issue I have to mention is that the President mentioned that the reason for our war in Afghanistan was due to the attacks of 9/11. Often forgotten is that 15 of the 19 hijackers were from Saudi Arabia; BinLaden is from Saudi Arabia with extremely close ties to the royal house of Saud (who have extremely close ties to the Bush family); and Kalid Sheik Mohamed is from Kuwait. Even with the obvious ties of 9/11 to Saudi Arabia (including members of the Royal House being caught red handed funneling money to Al Qaeda), the US has never made a military move nor a public diplomatic overture to lay some blame on them.
Of course, our government claimed that Al Qaeda supposedly trained in Afghanistan and BinLaden was supposedly hiding out there after 9/11, but we never even glanced at Saudi Arabia; in fact, the ONLY civilian air traffic allowed in the days following 9/11 was to allow members of the Royal House of Saud to jump on a plane and leave the US.
Another oft forgotten tid-bit of history is that Al Qaeda was, for the most part, a creation of US intelligence agencies. When the Soviets invaded Afghanistan in the 80’s, the US viewed this as an expansion which threatened the oil supplies (and some say the poppy supplies) from the middle east to the US. Huge amounts of money flowed from the US to fund the Mujahideen (this was a CIA project called Operation Cyclone) in their fight against the Soviets. These US backed terrorists (or freedom fighters, depending on which side you were on) would eventually evolve into Al Qaeda.
In addition Obama mentioned our fight against the Taliban in Afghanistan and accused them of harboring Al Qaeda, specifically BinLaden, after 9/11. This may be true, but again we are faced with the reality that the US drove an awful lot of money towards the Taliban during the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. In fact it was (again) the CIA in tandem with the ISI (the Pakistani intelligence agency) who funneled arms and money to the Taliban and actually recruited Muslims from around the world to join with the Taliban to fight the Soviets.
And where exactly is BinLaden? The only way that he could have gotten away from the might of the American military and the all seeing eye of federal intelligence agencies is if we simply weren’t all that hot to get him in the first place. That means that regardless of the rhetoric coming out of the Bush administration at the time (and the Obama administration now), our mission in Afghanistan was far, far different than the one the American public was given.
One of the reasons that we may not have wanted to ‘get’ Binladen is that our government knows he may have had nothing to do with 9/11 itself. He (nor Al Qaeda) never claimed responsibility for 9/11. If you or your organization just pulled off one of the most horrible terrorist incidences in modern history, wouldn’t you lay claim to such a feat in order to galvanize support for your cause and strike fear in the hearts and minds of your enemies? Also, if you check out the FBI’s most wanted list, Binladen is NOT wanted for 9/11; he is on the list (notably for the attack on the USS Cole) but not for the event he is considered most infamous for.
But let’s go with the supposition that he was the man behind the curtain. Bin Laden only laid claim to two Fatwas against America – the first was due to US troops based on Saudi soil, and the second was because of US support of Israeli military aggression in the region and US troops on Saudi soil. So, if BinLaden was the one who gave the orders, it wasn’t because he necessarily wanted a war with the western world nor about how he ‘hates our freedoms’; it was because he was pissed that there were US troops on Saudi soil, again pointing the finger of blame for 9/11 in the direction of Saudi Arabia…not Iraq or Afghanistan.
The second thing I must bring up is the mention of the ‘draw down’ of our forces in Iraq. Obama mentioned that, “…we are bringing the war to a responsible end..” and that the plan was to remove our combat forces by next summer, and the remainder of our troops by 2011.
Considering that we went to war with Iraq on a lie in the first place (let’s not forget that there were no WMD’s, no connection to 9/11, that PNAC had been urging war with Iraq for years in order to destabilize the region to pave the way for corporate raping of energy resources and immeasurable funding of the military industrial complex, and that PNAC’s member read like a who’s who of the neo-conservative movement with luminaries such as Kristol, Rumsfeld, Cheney and many more), that we invaded a sovereign country and toppled a government that posed no direct threat to us nor had anything whatsoever to do with 9/11, and that we have left over 1,000,000 Iraqi’s dead, I can’t see how anyone with half a brain in their head (much less someone who has a Nobel Peace Prize on their mantle) can claim that this war is coming to a ‘responsible’ end.
And although our troops are leaving the Iraq theater of operations (and will, more than likely be shipped off to Afghanistan or to the pending military conflicts with Iran or Pakistan or Somalia or Venezuela) Obama never makes mention that none of the mercenaries or contractors on the payroll of our government are going anywhere. The last publicized account of the ratio of merc’s to troops was five to one in country; why leave our military there when we can leave Obama’s private army on the ground to occupy the country.
The third point I must address was this remark by Obama: “Although a legitimate government was elected by the Afghan people, it’s been hampered by corruption, the drug trade, an under-developed economy, and insufficient security forces.’ Followed a few minutes later by this, : “In Afghanistan, we and our allies prevented the Taliban from stopping a presidential election, and — although it was marred by fraud — that election produced a government that is consistent with Afghanistan’s laws and constitution.”
First, let’s take Hamid Karzai, the US installed president of Afghanistan. To say the least he has a bit of a spotty past: he was once a member of the Mujahadeen (the same group funded by our CIA in the 80’s which would later morph into Al Qaeda), a supporter of and fund raiser for the Taliban, has a brother who is purportedly the biggest drug lord in the region (Karzai even kept the US pesticides far away from the poppy fields so that the ‘local farmers’ like his drug kingpin brother, would not lose any profits), and claims alliance with Iran (even though they are supposedly an enemy of the US and are, according to unsubstantiated news reports, sending in insurgents to both Iraq and Afghanistan).
Indeed, Karzai’s government has been a centerpiece for corruption in the region, highlighted by his re-election to president earlier this year; by all accounts the voting process was totally rigged to make sure he came out on top. Yet Obama has the audacity to not only support this man and his administration, but to also blame the Taliban for the fraud during the election itself.
Additionally, Karzai’s drug-lord brother is currently in the employ of the CIA, who is keeping him on the pay roll while at the same time he takes chunks of his ill gotten gains and supports the Taliban fighters in the region with whom our forces are fighting.
The idea that a ‘legitimate’ government is in place in the country is completely ludicrous, and for Obama to even remotely claim it as such is a blatant and outright lie.
Finally, Obama claims that the terrorist extremists must be rooted out and eradicated because they are a direct threat to America, that they are plotting against us even as he speaks, that there have been dangerous terrorists caught within our borders recently who were plotting to kill us, blah, blah, blah, fear, fear, fear, 9/11, 9/11, 9/11. This kind of rhetoric is the same steaming pile of bovine excrement that Bush tried to serve up during his administration to justify this unending and ever expanding ‘War on Terror’ and the erosion of our Constitutional rights and civil liberties over concerns for our national security.
None of the countries in which we currently have a fighting military force has ever attacked the United States. People are shooting at our troops in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, and Somalia not because they hate our supposed freedoms, but because we invaded their countries when they had not attacked us. If we are to believe that BinLaden was the prime mover of 9/11, then the same reasoning holds true – he attacked us to get our troops out of his country. Interestingly enough, the countries at that we are at war with are the same ones who wouldn’t ‘play ball’ with the oil and energy companies when they came calling to try to scam resources or build pipelines. Wouldn’t you expect that our country and countrymen would respond in a like fashion if we were invaded similarly?
That being the case it’s a safe bet that if we simply got out of the region, and stopped playing corporate fueled political games and dropping bombs on poor brown people and their children, that within a generation we would see the recruiting pool for terrorism dry up and peace blooming not only in the middle-east but in our country as well. At least it’s worth a shot and would probably fare us better than the road we are traversing right now. And if there was still a problem with terrorism at the end of that road, then we could deal with it and yet retain the moral high-ground. As it is now WE, the country who used to be admired and respected by the world at large, are the BAD GUYS. I just want us to be seen as the good guys once more before I shirk this mortal coil.
And thanks to the combined efforts of the Bush’s, Clinton’s, and Obama’s of the world I doubt that my dream will ever be more than wishful fantasy.