Rummy’s Quagmire of Lies



“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.


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.


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.


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


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.

October 06, 2015
Vijay Prashad
Afghanistan, the Terrible War: Money for Nothing
Mike Whitney
How Putin will Win in Syria
Paul Street
Yes, There is an Imperialist Ruling Class
Paul Craig Roberts
American Vice
W. T. Whitney
Why is the US Government Persecuting IFCO/Pastors for Peace Humanitarian Organization?
Kathy Kelly
Bombing Hospitals: 22 People Killed by US Airstrike on Doctors Without Borders Hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan
Murray Dobbin
Rise Up, Precariat! Cheap Labour is Over
Ron Jacobs
Patti Smith and the Beauty of Memory
David Macaray
Coal Executive Finally Brought Up on Criminal Charges
Norman Pollack
Cold War Rhetoric: The Kept Intelligentsia
Cecil Brown
The Firing This Time: School Shootings and James Baldwin’s Final Message
Roger Annis
The Canadian Election and the Global Climate Crisis
Jesse Jackson
Alabama’s New Jim Crow Far From Subtle
Joe Ramsey
After Umpqua: Does America Have a Gun Problem….or a Dying Capitalist Empire Problem?
October 05, 2015
Michael Hudson
Parasites in the Body Economic: the Disasters of Neoliberalism
Patrick Cockburn
Why We Should Welcome Russia’s Entry Into Syrian War
Kristine Mattis
GMO Propaganda and the Sociology of Science
Heidi Morrison
Well-Intentioned Islamophobia
Ralph Nader
Monsanto and Its Promoters vs. Freedom of Information
Arturo Desimone
Retro-Colonialism: the Exportation of Austerity as War By Other Means
Robert M. Nelson
Noted Argentine Chemist Warns of Climate Disaster
Matt Peppe
Misrepresentation of the Colombian Conflict
Barbara Dorris
Pope Sympathizes More with Bishops, Less with Victims
Clancy Sigal
I’m Not a Scientologist, But I Wish TV Shrinks Would Just Shut Up
Chris Zinda
Get Outta’ Dodge: the State of the Constitution Down in Dixie
Eileen Applebaum
Family and Medical Leave Insurance, Not Tax Credits, Will Help Families
Pierre-Damien Mvuyekure
“Boxing on Paper” for the Nation of Islam, Black Nationalism, and the Black Athlete: a Review of “The Complete Muhammad Ali” by Ishmael Reed
Lawrence Ware
Michael Vick and the Hypocrisy of NFL Fans
Gary Corseri - Charles Orloski
Poets’ Talk: Pope Francis, Masilo, Marc Beaudin, et. al.
Weekend Edition
October 2-4, 2015
Henry Giroux
Murder, USA: Why Politicians Have Blood on Their Hands
Mike Whitney
Putin’s Lightning War in Syria
Jennifer Loewenstein
Heading Toward a Collision: Syria, Saudi Arabia and Regional Proxy Wars
John Pilger
Wikileaks vs. the Empire: the Revolutionary Act of Telling the Truth
Gary Leupp
A Useful Prep-Sheet on Syria for Media Propagandists
Jeffrey St. Clair
Pesticides, Neoliberalism and the Politics of Acceptable Death
Lawrence Ware – Paul Buhle
Insurrectional Black Power: CLR James on Race and Class
Joshua Frank
The Need to Oppose All Foreign Intervention in Syria
Oliver Tickell
Jeremy Corbyn’s Heroic Refusal to be a Nuclear Mass Murderer
Helen Yaffe
Che’s Economist: Remembering Jorge Risquet
Mark Hand
‘Rape Rooms’: How West Virginia Women Paid Off Coal Company Debts
Michael Welton
Junior Partner of Empire: Why Canada’s Foreign Policy Isn’t What You Think
Yves Engler
War Crimes in the Dark: Inside Canada’s Special Forces
Arno J. Mayer
Israel: the Wages of Hubris and Violence
W. T. Whitney
Cuban Government Describes Devastating Effects of U. S. Economic Blockade
Brian Cloughley
The US-NATO Alliance Destroyed Libya, Where Next?