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SHOCK AND AWE OVER GAZA — Jonathan Cook reports from the West Bank on How the Media and Human Rights Groups Cover for Israel’s War Crimes; Jeffrey St. Clair on Why Israel is Losing; Nick Alexandrov on Honduras Five Years After the Coup; Joshua Frank on California’s Water Crisis; Ismael Hossein-Zadeh on Finance Capital and Inequality; Kathy Deacon on The Center for the Whole Person; Kim Nicolini on the Aesthetics of Jim Jarmusch. PLUS: Mike Whitney on the Faltering Economic Recovery; Chris Floyd on Being Trapped in a Mad World; and Kristin Kolb on Cancer Without Melodrama.
Hell for Leather

Bullets, Bombs, Bibles and Bush

by CHRIS FLOYD

Even as the sleek techno-wizardry of "Shock and Awe" gives way to the old-fashioned slog of "Blood and Guts" on the battlefields of Iraq, the Bush Regime’s postwar plans continue apace. It’s now clear that the Bushists aim to turn Iraq into an American protectorate–a supine dependency like Guam, Puerto Rico or Britain–by controlling every aspect of life in the conquered land.

The blueprint for colonial rule, being drawn up by Project for the New American Century alum Paul Wolfowitz (without any input from those silly-billy Brits or–it goes without saying–that discarded hunk of junk, the UN), will install an American arms merchant, former general Jay Garner, as civilian supremo, the Guardian reports. Garner–who has publicly declared his admiration for Israel’s highly successful methods of administrating occupied Arab territories–will oversee a coterie of American proconsuls and Iraqi factotums, including the self-proclaimed, Washington-paid "leader" of the Iraqi opposition, Ahmed Chalabi, a convicted bank fraudster who has not lived in his native land since 1956.

American masters will determine Iraq’s domestic government, foreign policy, economic system, even the education of its children. (The ones who haven’t been killed by their liberation, that is.) Reconstruction contracts will be awarded to favored American companies, and the Bushists will seize control of the UN’s "food-for-oil" program to finance this ladling of prime political pork. As imperial architect Wolfowitz himself puts it: "There’s a lot of money out there. To assume we’re going to pay for this war is just wrong."

But you mustn’t think that all this moolah-mongering means Iraq’ spiritual needs are being ignored. As always with your classic Anglo-American imperial conquest, sword, flame, bullet and bomb will be accompanied by the maniacal whacking of Biblical leather. Just this week, Bush of Arabia’s favorite preacher announced he was mustering an evangelical army to Christianize the defeated heathen hordes, Newhouse News Service reports.

Of course, Christianity has existed in Iraq for two thousand years–rather longer than in, say, Texas–but such nuances are lost on the Bushist Party’s much-coddled "core supporters" in the hardline Christian Right. And so the Reverend (sic) Franklin Graham, son of famed evangelist Billy Graham, declared that his relief group, Samaritan’s Purse, will follow the Anglo-American invaders with blankets, food–and Jesus on tap. He was quickly joined by America’s largest–and most Bushist–Protestant sect, the Southern Baptists, who proclaimed their plans to launch a second front of their own in the bread-for-souls campaign.

As we all know, Daddy Graham sealed his place in history about 15 years ago by convincing the booze-guzzling, nostril-burning–but eminently well-connected–George W. Bush to trade Jack Daniels for Jesus Christ. Graham also schooled his acolyte in the inherent damnability of perfidious Jewry–a lesson little Georgie was a bit too apt to repeat in mixed company, until his handlers finally got him under control.

[Yes, we know about the influence of the small group of Likud -leaning, war-whooping Jewish "neo-conservatives"--Wolfowitz, the disgraced Richard Perle, the convicted perjurer Elliot Abrams, etc.--whom Bush has brought into power. But these figures--representing a tiny, extremist sliver of the vast and variegated glory of Jewish thought--are merely useful tools for the "Dominion Christians" who serve as the fedayeen of the Bushist Party. For believers of Bush's primitivist ilk, Israel's only importance is its role as the staging ground for the universal genocide of Armageddon--a feast of carnage and obliteration for which the Dominionites yearn with a deep, erotic fervor. Come the Rapture, they will joyfully ship the Jews to Hell.]

Now, with Billy ailing, son Franklin has taken over the pastoring of Bush’s soul (or the "Jack Daniels watch," as it’s sometimes called). He even gave the invocation at Bush’s inauguration (or the "Loser Takes All Ball," as it’s sometimes called). We’re sure that Franklin’s deep and sensitive understanding of Islam–which he calls "a very wicked and evil religion"–will serve him well as, with the president’s blessing, he spreads the good news of Christ Militant amongst the smoldering ruins and uranium-choked dust of Basra and Baghdad.

But of course, the war is not yet won. Young American men and women are still in the field, caught in a vortex of fear, death, rage and atrocity. And so another group of busy Bushist beavers is helping these war-battered troops stay focused on the most important thing of all: praying for George W. Bush.

Leather-whacking televangelist Charles Stanley has supplied thousands of U.S. soldiers with a list of daily prayers for the Dear Leader–and his holy family too. There’s even a tear-out card to mail the pledge directly to the White House: "I have committed to pray for you, your family, your staff and our troops." (Note the careful ordering here–gotta get your priorities straight!) Soldiers are directed to ask that God keep the precious Bushist leaders "safe, healthy, well-rested and free from fear" (unlike the poor suckers praying for them).

Finally, the ritual supplications adjure our well-rested Crusader chieftains to "recognize their divine appointment" and rule according to holy scripture–perhaps by following the postwar policy of the Lord Himself (Numbers, Chapter 31) after His troops routed the Midianite army: "Now kill all the boys. And kill every woman who has slept with a man, but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man."

Yep, that old whacked leather is just chockfull of handy wartime hints.

CHRIS FLOYD is a columnist for the Moscow Times and a regular contributor to CounterPunch. He can be reached at: cfloyd72@hotmail.com


Today’s Features

Uri Avnery
A Crooked Mirror: Presstitution and the Theater of Operations

David Vest
Can You Hear the Silence?

Anthony Gancarski
Colin Powell Telemarketer

David Lindorff
Takoma: the Dolphin Who Refused to Fight

Michael Roberts
War, Debts and Deficits

Ramzy Baroud
Now That Iraqis Are Being Killed Is Israel Any More Secure?

Jo Wilding
From Baghdad with Tears

Anton Antonowicz
Cluster Bombs on Babylon

Alison Weir
Israel, We Won’t Forget Rachel Corrie

Bruce Jackson
Hating Wolf Blitzer’s Voice

Eliot Katz
War’s First Week

Steve Perry
War Web Log 04/03

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