FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

On the Brink of War

We are on the brink of a war that will undoubtedly be disastrous for the people of Iraq, and likely even more so for the people of the United States. Listening to President Bush’s rhetoric, one has the feeling that it is Hate Week in Orwell’s 1984.

Surely, Saddam Hussein is a dictator who has committed atrocities in the past. Surely, the American people can be aroused to hate Saddam. These are the buttons that are being pushed by Bush and his militant advisors who are eager for war.

As Bush raises shrill charges against Hussein, US troops take up their positions on his orders surrounding Iraq. According to Bush, “Saddam has the motive and the means and the recklessness and the hatred to threaten the American people.”

But exactly what motive could he have? Self-destruction? The desire to see himself and his country destroyed? On the contrary, his motivation seems to be to hold off a war by allowing free access in his country to the United Nations weapons inspectors.

But still Saddam is easy to hate, and the Bush administration is pressing for a war. “The United States,” says Bush, “along with a growing coalition of nations, is resolved to take whatever action is necessary to defend ourselves and disarm the Iraqi regime.”

But how exactly is Saddam threatening us? What exactly are we defending against? These are among the questions that go unanswered by the administration and the media as Bush pushes for war.

In fact, the Iraqi regime has been largely disarmed. It will be a fairly easy target for the US military with its crushing might, a far easier target of attack than North Korea.

Sometimes in the flurry of administration invective, it is difficult to remember that it is the United States that has an arsenal of 10,000 nuclear weapons and Iraq that has none, or that it is the US military that is surrounding Iraq and that Iraq has not actually made any threat against the US.

Neither the Bush administration nor the American media has paid much attention to the consequences of a US attack to “disarm” Saddam. They do so at their peril and at the peril of the American people because the consequences will be grave.

The consequences will include the deaths of many innocent Iraqi civilians and young American troops. They will include increased hatred of the US throughout the Arab world, and a corresponding rise in terrorism. They will include the undermining of the international law of war and of the United Nations. The global economy could be sent into a tailspin, and there will potentially be serious adverse effects on the environment.

This war will cause major rifts in the Western alliance. It will provide a precedent to other leaders who want to solve international conflicts by means of preemptive unilateral wars. It will encourage the proliferation of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction in countries likely to be threatened by the US in the future.

In the end, it will be the American people who will pay the heaviest price for Bush’s ill-considered war. We will be the victims of future acts of terrorism and our civil liberties will continue to be diminished as power is concentrated in a dictatorial president.

We should not lose track of the fact that George Bush was not elected. He was selected by a small group of conservative justices on the US Supreme Court. This makes it even more tragic that he is leading our country into a disastrous war.

Nelson Mandela, one of the great moral leaders of our time, recently expressed his sense of the Bush administration’s policies: “It is a tragedy what is happening, what Bush is doing in Iraq. What I am condemning is that one power, with a president who has no foresight, who cannot think properly, is now wanting to plunge the world into a holocaust.”

Only the American people can stop this war, and only if they act now in overwhelming numbers.

DAVID KRIEGER is President of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation. He can be contacted at dkrieger@napf.org.

 

More articles by:

David Krieger is President of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation (www.wagingpeace.org). 

Weekend Edition
November 16, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Jonah Raskin
A California Jew in a Time of Anti-Semitism
Andrew Levine
Whither the Melting Pot?
Joshua Frank
Climate Change and Wildfires: The New Western Travesty
Nick Pemberton
The Revolution’s Here, Please Excuse Me While I Laugh
T.J. Coles
Israel Cannot Use Violent Self-Defense While Occupying Gaza
Rob Urie
Nuclear Weapons are a Nightmare Made in America
Paul Street
Barack von Obamenburg, Herr Donald, and Big Capitalist Hypocrisy: On How Fascism Happens
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Fire is Sweeping Our Very Streets Today
Aidan O'Brien
Ireland’s New President, Other European Fools and the Abyss 
Pete Dolack
“Winners” in Amazon Sweepstakes Sure to be the Losers
Richard Eskow
Amazon, Go Home! Billions for Working People, But Not One Cent For Tribute
Ramzy Baroud
In Breach of Human Rights, Netanyahu Supports the Death Penalty against Palestinians
Brian Terrell
Ending the War in Yemen- Congressional Resolution is Not Enough!
John Laforge
Woolsey Fire Burns Toxic Santa Susana Reactor Site
Ralph Nader
The War Over Words: Republicans Easily Defeat the Democrats
M. G. Piety
Reading Plato in the Time of the Oligarchs
Rafael Correa
Ecuador’s Soft Coup and Political Persecution
Brian Cloughley
Aid Projects Can Work, But Not “Head-Smacking Stupid Ones”
David Swanson
A Tale of Two Marines
Robert Fantina
Democrats and the Mid-Term Elections
Joseph Flatley
The Fascist Creep: How Conspiracy Theories and an Unhinged President Created an Anti-Semitic Terrorist
Joseph Natoli
Twitter: Fast Track to the Id
William Hawes
Baselines for Activism: Brecht’s Stance, the New Science, and Planting Seeds
Bob Wing
Toward Racial Justice and a Third Reconstruction
Ron Jacobs
Hunter S. Thompson: Chronicling the Republic’s Fall
Oscar Gonzalez
Stan Lee and a Barrio Kid
Jack Rasmus
Election 2018 and the Unraveling of America
Sam Pizzigati
The Democrats Won Big, But Will They Go Bold?
Yves Engler
Canada and Saudi Arabia: Friends or Enemies?
Cesar Chelala
Can El Paso be a Model for Healing?
Mike Ferner
The Tragically Misnamed Paris Peace Conference
Barry Lando
Trump’s Enablers: Appalling Parallels
Ariel Dorfman
The Boy Who Taught Me About War and Peace
Binoy Kampmark
The Disgruntled Former Prime Minister
Faisal Khan
Is Dubai Really a Destination of Choice?
Arnold August
The Importance of Néstor García Iturbe, Cuban Intellectual
James Munson
An Indecisive War To End All Wars, I Mean the Midterm Elections
Nyla Ali Khan
Women as Repositories of Communal Values and Cultural Traditions
Dan Bacher
Judge Orders Moratorium on Offshore Fracking in Federal Waters off California
Christopher Brauchli
When Depravity Wins
Robby Sherwin
Here’s an Idea
Susan Block
Cucks, Cuckolding and Campaign Management
Louis Proyect
The Mafia and the Class Struggle (Part Two)
David Yearsley
Smoke on the Water: Jazz in San Francisco
Elliot Sperber
All of Those Bezos
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail