FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Rummy’s Quagmire of Lies

by MIKE WHITNEY

 

“Destroying cities and torturing prisoners are things you do when you are losing the real war, the war your enemies are fighting. They are signals of moral bankruptcy. They destroy the confidence and respect of your friends, and reinforce the credibility of the enemy”.

William Pfaff

The Pentagon issued a statement saying an attack that killed 22 people at a camp near Mosul was likely carried out by a suicide bomber who may have had inside information.

Wrong.

At the Pentagon Wednesday, Gen. Richard Myers, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said a suicide bomber had apparently strapped an explosive device to his body and entered the dining hall where the blast occurred.

Wrong.

Military officials in Iraq said Wednesday that shrapnel from the explosion included small ball bearings, which are often used in suicide bombings but are not usually part of shrapnel from rockets or mortars.

Wrong.

Let me give you five reasons why the 22 deaths and 72 wounded were not the result of a “suicide bomber” as the Pentagon alleges. 1

WMD 2

Jessica Lynch 3

Statue of Saddam being toppled in Fidros Square. 4

The death of Pat Tillman in a Taliban firefight 5

Abu Musab al Zarqawi conducting his terrorist operations from Falluja

Just look at this dismal record of intentional lying and decide whether or not the Pentagon can be trusted. Their statement means nothing.

Prove. Corroborate. Verify.

Nothing that the War dept. says can be trusted. But don’t take my word for it. Consider the well-publicized debate going on within the Pentagon itself. Recent reports in newspapers across the country confirm that an argument is raging within the military about the extent to which the use of misleading information serves their overall objectives. On one side, we have the conventional approach, which believes that it is permissible to disseminate false information in the foreign and domestic media to ensure force protection and battlefield secrecy. The military has always done this and always will. At the other extreme, we have Rumsfeld and Co. who believe that information is simply a tool that should be used to conform to their narrow political goals. Rumsfeld’s development of Office of Strategic Intelligence (OSI) was intended as a spy agency (to collect every bit of information on Americans; including banking, medical, library records etc.) as well as a facility for formulating bogus information that would be planted into the media. It’s part of a greater scheme to use psy-ops (psychological operations) on the public wherever they may create a political advantage. The culture of lies that Rumsfeld has developed in the Dept of Defense reflects his belief that the people should be left in the dark when it comes to matters of state. (Choreographed incidents, like the Jessica Lynch story or the toppling of Saddam’s statue in Fidros Square, fall under the psy-ops rubric)

It’s not difficult to find proof that the Pentagon is intentionally lying to the public. An article by Mark Mazzetti of the LA Times states that, “the decision by commanders in Iraq in mid-September to combine public affairs, psychological operations and information operations into a “strategic communications” office.”

Psy-ops and information operations? In other words, the military has integrated public affairs (PA) which includes the daily briefings from Iraq, with information operations (IO)

Oooops! Sounds like someone’s lying in the war dept.

Gen. Richard B. Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who has been concerned about the credibility problems related to this new union of PA and information operations IO issued a letter which said,

“Although both PA and IO conduct planning, message development and media analysis, the efforts differ with respect to audience, scope and intent, and must remain separate. While organizations may be inclined to create physically integrated PA/IO offices, such organizational constructs have the potential to compromise the commander’s credibility with the media and the public.”

What gibberish. All Meyers needs to say is that he’s worried that the public will find out that the military is LYING AS A MATTER OF POLICY.

I have some news for Meyers: The war dept has no credibility to begin with. The architects of Falluja and Abu Ghraib are as dissolute and immoral as any who’ve ever held office in our 200 year history. Anyone who expects more than lies from the Bush claque is either blinded by religious zealotry or a dolt.

Information as a Weapon

It’s clear that Rumsfeld and Co. would like to persuade the public that the 22 deaths were the result of a terrorist bomb. What else could they say; that Americans were killed needlessly by a national liberation movement trying to expel US forces from Iraq? The Bush administration’s last vestige of credibility depends on their ability to convince the public that Iraq is the heart of a nebulous war on terror. It’s not, but we can expect that the military will continue to create a narrative that supports that theory.

We can also expect to see terrorists appear wherever policy objectives need to be met. In this case, the Bush team needs a shadowy fundamentalist group as a scapegoat, so “Presto”, the radical Muslim group Ansar al-Sunna, is dredged up from Rummy’s Rolodex and put to work. How convenient. Next, a statement from the Pentagon is issued to the press, and in mere hours every media outlet in the nation is broadcasting uncorroborated nonsense about “suicide bombers” and “martyrdom operations”. (no questions asked)

General Myers said at a news conference that the attack was “the responsibility of the insurgents, the same insurgents who attacked on 9/11. The way you prevent this is to win the war on extremism.”

9-11? Are you kidding me?

Meyers, statement was followed by U.S. Gen. George W. Casey Jr., who commands the multinational force in Iraq, opined, “We will not allow terrorist violence to stop progress toward elections.”

Terror, terror, terror. You get the idea.

Needless to say, neither Meyers nor Casey provided any evidence to substantiate their claim. They also failed to mention that the mess tent where the bombing took place was well within the reach of insurgents and has been HIT MORE THAN 30 TIMES THIS YEAR (according to the UK Guardian) More than likely; the attack was just routine fire that hit a densely populated area.

The fact of the matter is (as this recent attack illustrates) we are losing the war in Iraq, and it’s creating a growing sense of desperation at the Pentagon. The military brass is spinning as hard as they can, but the litany of lies only adds to their credibility gap. As distrust grows, the support for the war will erode as well. That’s the real cost of Rumsfeld’s “culture of lies”.

MIKE WHITNEY lives in Washington state. He can be reached at: fergiewhitney@msn.com

 

MIKE WHITNEY lives in Washington state. He is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press). Hopeless is also available in a Kindle edition. He can be reached at fergiewhitney@msn.com.

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
January 20, 2017
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Divide and Rule: Class, Hate, and the 2016 Election
Andrew Levine
When Was America Great?
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: This Ain’t a Dream No More, It’s the Real Thing
Yoav Litvin
Making Israel Greater Again: Justice for Palestinians in the Age of Trump
Linda Pentz Gunter
Nuclear Fiddling While the Planet Burns
Ruth Fowler
Standing With Standing Rock: Of Pipelines and Protests
David Green
Why Trump Won: the 50 Percenters Have Spoken
Dave Lindorff
Imagining a Sanders Presidency Beginning on Jan. 20
Peter Lee
The Deep State and the Sex Tape: Martin Luther King, J. Edgar Hoover, and Thurgood Marshall
Pete Dolack
Eight People Own as Much as Half the World
Roger Harris
Too Many People in the World: Names Named
Stephen Zielinski
It’s the End of the World as We Know It
David Swanson
Six Things We Should Do Better As Everything Gets Worse
Alci Rengifo
Trump Rex: Ancient Rome’s Shadow Over the Oval Office
Brian Cloughley
What Money Can Buy: the Quiet British-Israeli Scandal
Kent Paterson
Mexico’s Great Winter of Discontent
Norman Solomon
Trump, the Democrats and the Logan Act
David Macaray
Attention, Feminists
Yves Engler
Demanding More From Our Media
James A Haught
Religious madness in Ulster
Patrick Bond
Tripping Up Trumpism Through Global Boycott Divestment Sanctions
Robert Fantina
Trump: What Changes and What Remains the Same
David Rosen
Globalization vs. Empire: Can Trump Contain the Growing Split?
Elliot Sperber
Dystopia
Dan Bacher
New CA Carbon Trading Legislation Answers Big Oil’s Call to Continue Business As Usual
Wayne Clark
A Reset Button for Political America
Chris Welzenbach
“The Death Ship:” An Allegory for Today’s World
Patrick Hiller
Guns Against Grizzlies at Schools or Peace Education as Resistance?
Ron Jacobs
Singing the Body Electric Across Time
Ann Garrison
Fifty-five Years After Lumumba’s Assassination, Congolese See No Relief
Christopher Brauchli
Swing Low Alabama
Jon Hochschartner
The Five Least Animal-Friendly Senate Democrats
Pauline Murphy
Fighting Fascism: the Irish at the Battle of Cordoba
Louis Proyect
Is Our Future That of “Sense8” or “Mr. Robot”?
Charles R. Larson
Review: Robert Coover’s “Huck out West”
January 19, 2017
Melvin Goodman
America’s Russian Problem
Dave Lindorff
Right a Terrible Wrong: Why Obama Should Reverse Himself and Pardon Leonard Peltier
Laura Carlsen
Bringing Mexico to Its Knees Will Not “Make America Great Again”
John W. Whitehead
Nothing is Real: When Reality TV Programming Masquerades as Politics
Yoav Litvin
Time to Diss Obey: the Failure of Identity Politics and Protest
Mike Whitney
The Trump Speech That No One Heard 
Conn Hallinan
Is Europe Heading for a “Lexit”?
Stephen Cooper
Truth or Twitter? Why Donald Trump Is No John Steinbeck
Binoy Kampmark
Scoundrels of Patriotism: The Freeing of Chelsea Manning
Ramzy Baroud
The Balancing Act is Over: What Elor Azaria Taught Us about Israel
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail