FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Attention Deficit America

by PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS

 

Excuse me, but the story is not CBS and the George W. Bush National Guard documents.

The story is: How did the US Congress, the opposition party, the news media, and the US public let the Bush administration start a war based on phony documents?

If someone deceived CBS and passed off forged documents as real, at least CBS consulted experts about the documents before going on the air.

Speaking of questionable documents, the Bush administration has swallowed a large number. What about the obviously forged “yellowcake” documents that were the basis for the “mistaken” claim that Saddam Hussein had a nuclear weapons program?

The Bush administration did not check out the “stovepiped” phony “intelligence” fed them by Iraqi exiles with an agenda and by neoconservatives determined to turn the “war on terror” into a war against Iraq, Iran, and Syria.

The Bush administration ignored all warnings from real experts and CIA and State Department analysts. Bush invaded a country that not only posed no threat to the United States, but also had no weapons of mass destruction and no connections to Osama bin Laden.

The Bush administration’s forged war has cost more than 1,000 American families their sons, husbands, fathers, brothers and a few their sisters, daughters and mothers. Another 7,000-8,000 American soldiers have been wounded, more than half too grievously to be returned to combat. Many have lost arms, legs, eyes.

What have we achieved with these enormous casualties?

We have committed war crimes by bombing residential neighborhoods and killing thousands of women and children.

We have made ourselves infamous as prison torturers.

We have created an insurgency that we cannot put down.

We have given bin Laden an enormous boost in credibility and terrorist recruitment.

We have lost the world’s sympathy.

We have aroused massive anger from Muslims the world over and started a process of Muslim reunification.

We have wasted $200 billion that had high opportunity costs in terms of real needs that went unmet.

We made these egregious mistakes because the Bush administration and the President of the United States used questionable documents that Dan Rather and CBS would have rejected.

You have to ask yourself, why is the front page story CBS? If CBS had forged the documents in order to intentionally mislead to the public the way the Bush’s government used phony documents to start a war, yes there would be a story.

If someone fooled CBS with forged documents, the only story is: what was that person’s agenda? Why did he do it? Did the forger intend it as an offset dirty trick to the “swift boats” dirty trick against Kerry, or was it a blow aimed at CBS?

The CBS report is about something we already know–the missing gap in Bush’s National Guard service. If the CBS report fails to illume that gap, then the story remains to be told. News organizations should get off CBS and on the story.

Whether documents are forged or authentic, the CBS investigation of Bush’s National Guard service is far less important than Bush’s war based on intentional deception.

Will the American public focus long enough to demand the real story?

PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS is John M. Olin Fellow at the Institute for Political Economy and Research Fellow at the Independent Institute. He is a former associate editor of the Wall Street Journal and a former assistant secretary of the U.S. Treasury. He is the co-author of The Tyranny of Good Intentions.

 

 

Paul Craig Roberts is a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal. Roberts’ How the Economy Was Lost is now available from CounterPunch in electronic format. His latest book is The Neoconservative Threat to World Order.

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

August 31, 2016
NEVE GORDON - NICOLA PERUGINI
Human Shields as Preemptive Legal Defense for Killing Civilians
Jim Kavanagh
Turkey Invades Syria, America Spins The Bottle
Dave Lindorff
Ukraine and the Dumbed-Down New York Times Columnist
Pepe Escobar
Brazil’s Dilma Rousseff, a Woman of Honor, Confronts Senate of Scoundrels
Jeff Mackler
Playing the Lesser Evil Game to the Hilt
Steve Horn
Dakota Access Pipeline Tribal Liaison Formerly Worked For Agency Issuing Permit
Patrick Cockburn
Has Turkey Overplayed Its Hand in Syria?
John Chuckman
Why Hillary is the Perfect Person to Secure Obama’s Legacy
Manuel E. Yepe
The New Cold War Between the US and China
Stephen Cooper
Ending California’s Machinery of Death
Stacy Keltner - Ashley McFarland
Women, Party Politics, and the Power of the Naked Body
Hiroyuki Hamada - Ikuko Isa
A Letter from Takae, Okinawa
Aidan O'Brien
How Did Syria and the Rest Do in the Olympics?
David Swanson
Arms Dealing Is Subject of Hollywood Comedy
Jesse Jackson
The Politics of Bigotry: Trump and the Black Voter
August 30, 2016
Russell Mokhiber
Matt Funiciello and the Giant Sucking Sound Coming Off Lake Champlain
Mike Whitney
Three Cheers for Kaepernick: Is Sitting During the National Anthem an Acceptable Form of Protest?
Alice Bach
Sorrow and Grace in Palestine
Sam Husseini
Why We Should All Remain Seated: the Anti-Muslim Origins of “The Star-Spangled Banner”
Richard Moser
Transformative Movement Culture and the Inside/Outside Strategy: Do We Want to Win the Argument or Build the Movement?
Nozomi Hayase
Pathology, Incorporated: the Facade of American Democracy
David Swanson
Fredric Jameson’s War Machine
Jan Oberg
How Did the West Survive a Much Stronger Soviet Union and Warsaw Pact?
Linda Gunter
The Racism of the Nagasaki and Hiroshima Bombings
Dmitry Kovalevich
In Ukraine: Independence From the People
Omar Kassem
Turkey Breaks Out in Jarablus as Fear and Loathing Grip Europe
George Wuerthner
A Birthday Gift to the National Parks: the Maine Woods National Monument
Logan Glitterbomb
Indigenous Property Rights and the Dakota Access Pipeline
National Lawyers Guild
Solidarity with Standing Rock Sioux Tribe against Dakota Access Pipeline
Paul Messersmith-Glavin
100 in Anarchist Years
August 29, 2016
Eric Draitser
Hillary and the Clinton Foundation: Exemplars of America’s Political Rot
Patrick Timmons
Dildos on Campus, Gun in the Library: the New York Times and the Texas Gun War
Jack Rasmus
Bernie Sanders ‘OR’ Revolution: a Statement or a Question?
Richard Moser
Strategic Choreography and Inside/Outside Organizers
Nigel Clarke
President Obama’s “Now Watch This Drive” Moment
Robert Fisk
Iraq’s Willing Executioners
Wahid Azal
The Banality of Evil and the Ivory Tower Masterminds of the 1953 Coup d’Etat in Iran
Farzana Versey
Romancing the Activist
Frances Madeson
Meet the Geronimos: Apache Leader’s Descendants Talk About Living With the Legacy
Nauman Sadiq
The War on Terror and the Carter Doctrine
Lawrence Wittner
Does the Democratic Party Have a Progressive Platform–and Does It Matter?
Marjorie Cohn
Death to the Death Penalty in California
Winslow Myers
Asking the Right Questions
Rivera Sun
The Sane Candidate: Which Representatives Will End the Endless Wars?
Linn Washington Jr.
Philadelphia District Attorney Hammered for Hypocrisy
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail