FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

You Say ISIL, I Say ISIS, Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off

by

John McCain frequently justifies his most war whacky ideas with, “I’d rather fight them over there than fight them here.” As if those are the two choices. As if presenting a non sequitur null set false dichotomy is a response would ever work.

Right, well, the joke is on us. It works all the time—not to actually fix the problem, but rather to extend it for the benefit of those who profit from it. It is a horrific piece of false logic that has many nodding their heads and ceding authority and dominant opinion to an elite group who profit in money or power or status when they lead us into more bloody hell. After Obama gives in, they all pile on and screech “Too little! Too late!” Obama is not barreling quite fast enough in the wrong direction for them.

And McCain is simply typical, not a bit out of lockstep with this woefully incomplete consideration of options.

There are excellent reasons that most Iraqis believe that the US government provides support for ISIS. The evidence may be circumstantial but the old adage, There is no such thing as a coincidence, is one that militates toward generation of such conspiratorial notions.

Based on lies, we invade a relatively stable country—Iraq—driving it into receivership. We fire their military from their jobs with nothing to which they can transition—of course they are going to self-organize and seek financial and trade backing to set up shop as a violent insurgency. We ludicrously claim to be productively training in the Iraqi police and soldiers, none of which takes. Indeed, they present a tempting target for anyone with an idea of political power.

Who benefits? Who loses?

US elites benefit. Owners of military contractors benefit the most ($711,000,000 the last day of 2015 alone, nearly $40 million per hour around the clock), and they share their largesse with those who serve them best—friendly bellicose politicians, persuasive media, high-level military officers.

Iraqis, now Syrians, and by extension even the Europeans who are now awash in refugees from the wars we help foment, and the US taxpayer, and, documented by a Brown University study, the US job seeker—these are the losers. Every $billion spent on the military is a significant job loss, since taxpayer money spent on education, health care, clean energy development, or infrastructure upkeep creates many more well paying jobs for Americans.

May 2016 be the year we turn this around.

Tom H. Hastings is core faculty in the Conflict Resolution Department at Portland State University and founding director of PeaceVoice

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
December 02, 2016
Friday - Sunday
John Pilger
The Coming War on China
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: The CIA’s Plots to Kill Castro
Paul Street
The Iron Heel at Home: Force Matters
Pam Martens - Russ Martens
Timberg’s Tale: Washington Post Reporter Spreads Blacklist of Independent Journalist Sites
Andrew Levine
Must We Now Rethink the Hillary Question? Absolutely, Not
Joshua Frank
CounterPunch as Russian Propagandists: the Washington Post’s Shallow Smear
David Rosen
The Return of HUAC?
Rob Urie
Race and Class in Trump’s America
Patrick Cockburn
Why Everything You’ve Read About Syria and Iraq Could be Wrong
Caroline Hurley
Anatomy of a Nationalist
Ayesha Khan
A Muslim Woman’s Reflections on Trump’s Misogyny
Michael Hudson – Steve Keen
Rebel Economists on the Historical Path to a Global Recovery
Russell Mokhiber
Sanders Single Payer and Death by Democrat
Roger Harris
The Triumph of Trump and the Specter of Fascism
Steve Horn
Donald Trump’s Swamp: Meet Ten Potential Energy and Climate Cabinet Picks and the Pickers
Louis Proyect
Deepening Contradictions: Identity Politics and Steelworkers
Ralph Nader
Trump and His Betraying Makeover
Stephen Kimber
The Media’s Abysmal Coverage of Castro’s Death
Dan Bacher
WSPA: The West’s Most Powerful Corporate Lobbying Group
Nile Bowie
Will Trump backpedal on the Trans-Pacific Partnership?
Ron Ridenour
Fidel’s Death Brings Forth Great and Sad Memories
Missy Comley Beattie
By Invitation Only
Fred Gardner
Sword of Damocles: Pot Partisans Fear Trump’s DOJ
Renee Parsons
Obama and Propornot
Dean Baker
Cash and Carrier: Trump and Pence Put on a Show
Jack Rasmus
Taming Trump: From Faux Left to Faux Right Populism
Ron Jacobs
Selling Racism—A Lesson From Pretoria
Julian Vigo
The Hijos of Buenos Aires:  When Identity is Political
Subcomandante Insurgente Galeano
By Way of Prologue: On How We Arrived at the Watchtower and What We Saw from There
Dave Lindorff
Is Trump’s Idea To Fix the ‘Rigged System’ by Appointing Crooks Who’ve Played It?
Aidan O'Brien
Fidel and Spain: A Tale of Right and Wrong
Carol Dansereau
Stop Groveling! How to Thwart Trump and Save the World
Kim Nicolini
Moonlight, The Movie
Evan Jones
Behind GE’s Takeover of Alstom Energy
James A Haught
White Evangelicals are Fading, Powerful, Baffling
Barbara Moroncini
Protests and Their Others
Joseph Natoli
The Winds at Their Backs
Cesar Chelala
Poverty is Not Only an Ignored Word
David Swanson
75 Years of Pearl Harbor Lies
Alex Jensen
The Great Deceleration
Nyla Ali Khan
When Faith is the Legacy of One’s Upbringing
Gilbert Mercier
Trump Win: Paradigm Shift or Status Quo?
Stephen Martin
From ‘Too Big to Fail’ to ‘Too Big to Lie’: the End Game of Corporatist Globalization.
Charles R. Larson
Review: Emma Jane Kirby’s “The Optician of Lampedusa”
David Yearsley
Haydn Seek With Hsu
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail