Are They That Stupid?

Are they really that stupid that they could present a plagiarized paper by a UCLA graduate student pulled off the internet as their “top secret proof” of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction, and think that nobody would notice? Hard to believe, but that’s exactly what Prime Minister Tony Blair did, and what US Secretary of State Colin Powell cited as “proof”.

Are they really that stupid that they could offer detailed “before and after” satellite photos of Iraqi trucks said to be “possibly” transporting Iraqi weapons, and then an empty space as “proof” that the trucks loaded up and quickly departed without acknowledging that the photos, as pointed out by Hans Blix, were actually taken two weeks apart?

Are they really that stupid that they could brag about their amazingly invasive surveillance technology that could read the license plate off a truck from a satellite in space, and then claim that they “have no idea” where the trucks went?

Are they really that stupid that they’d assume we’ve already forgotten that it was Colin Powell himself who in 1990 held up satellite photos showing Iraqi troops massing on Kuwait’s border with Saudi Arabia as rationalization for US bombardment, only to be proven as forgeries after the war in which 200,000 Iraqis were blown to smithereens by US “smart-bombs” and other accepted weapons of mass destruction?

Are they really that stupid that they could remove 2/3rds of Iraq’s 12,000-page submission to the members of the Security Council of the United Nations, and expect that no one would ask “What was in those missing pages?”

Are they really that stupid that they could claim that they know for certain the intricate details of every gram of Iraq’s biological and chemical weapons and expect that no one would ask, “How are you so certain?” And Bush’s answer, as the current widespread joke goes, is “We kept the receipts.”

Are they really that stupid that no one would remember the photographs of the famous handshakes between former President Bush and Saddam Hussein in the late 1970s, or Donald Rumsfeld and Saddam Hussein in the 1980s, when Saddam–who was installed in power with the help of the CIA–was “our boy in Western Asia.”

Are they really that stupid that they’d think that no one would notice that Donald Rumsfeld headed the Searle pharmaceutical company, that George H.W. Bush directed the Eli Lilly company, and that the pharmaceutical companies are being sued by the parents of autistic children due to impurities in their vaccines administered to children, or that Sen. Robert Frist would add an amendment to the Homeland Security Act that would remove from liability those pharmaceutical companies, which are also manufacturing anthrax and other vaccines being administered to US soldiers?

Are they really that stupid that they thought they could get away with dumping Trent Lott (who was opposing the administration on the pharmaceutical question) by claiming he was a racist, and appointing Frist–whose record is every inch as dirty as Lott’s — to take his place?

Are they really that stupid that they thought that Colin Powell could hold up a tiny vial of unknown white powder at his UN speech and claim that Iraq could use a similar amount of Anthrax spores to wipe out an entire city, when it turns out that the Anthrax actually sent through the US mails last year was manufactured at the US bio-chemical warfare lab at Fort Detrick, Maryland?

Are they really that stupid that they thought that no one would notice the tight business connections between the Bush family and the bin-Laden family, going back decades and continuing right up to 9-11?

Are they really that stupid that they thought that no one would notice that Missouri Democratic Party politician Mel Carnahan’s plane crashed and the Senator perished during his tight Senate race against John Ashcroft, or that the election continued with Carnahan’s name on the ballot and that Ashcroft lost that race to a dead man, and Carnahan’s wife was appointed to take his seat? Or that immediately following his electoral loss, Ashcroft was plucked from obscurity to serve as Bush’s Attorney General? Or that Democratic Party Senator Paul Wellstone’s plane crashed at a crucial juncture in a tight Senate race in Minnesota, at a time when his wife and daughter were with him on that plane, thus enabling a Republican victory in that Senate race and tipping the balance in the US Senate?

Are they really that stupid that they thought that no one would notice that George Bush did NOT win the 2000 Presidential election’s popular vote; that his brother orchestrated the disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of Black voters, and supervised the preparation of loony ballots that had Jewish voters surprised when their votes were counted for arch anti-semite Pat Buchanan, and not Al Gore? Are they really that stupid that they can say “Code Orange,” and think that Americans will forever demand “Duct Tape”?

Are they really that stupid that they can still cite the “incubator” fairytale, and expect that Americans have forgotten that it was the Hill & Knowlton public relations firm that invented it, as a means of promoting the “tie a yellow ribbon” campaign and corralling the US Senate to support the bombardment of Iraq?

Are they really that stupid that they can threaten the entire world with nuclear annihilation, and people would remain dumbed down forever, saying nothing, and allowing them to get away with it?

Are they really that stupid that they can offer us a future of global ecological devastation, fascism at home, and endless war and we would respond: “Thank God for Bush and Cheney’s strong leadership with no self-serving interests”?

Are they really that stupid that they figured no one in America could spell the word “O-I-L”?

That is the question. Could they possibly be that stupid, that arrogant? Or is there something we are missing here, some larger strategy that is being concealed by their apparent overwhelming stupidity?

Are WE really that stupid that we can believe that they are really that stupid?

MITCHEL COHEN, editor, Green Politix, the national newspaper of The Greens/Green Party USA. He can be reached at: mitchelcohen@mindspring.com


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Mitchel Cohen is Coordinator of the No Spray Coalition in New York City.

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