Who’s going to pay for this immoral, obscenely expensive, clearly unjustified, totally unnecessary, fraudulently induced and illegal war with Iraq? Answer: The American taxpayers, that’s who!
This is so, despite the fact the people have not consented to this war. The only way they could have given their lawful agreement is through a declaration of the U.S. Congress. Only the Congress, under the Constitution, Article 1, Section 8 (11), has the power “to declare war.”
The resolution the Congress passed in Oct., 2002, on the possibility of war with Iraq issue, attempted to unlawfully delegate that ultimate responsibility to the executive branch of the government. This is not permitted under the Constitution and our Republican form of government. In addition, the Bush Administration now stands in violation of the Charter of the United Nations, and Treaty obligations, too, affirmed by the U.S. Senate, with respect to the creation of that international agency, in 1945.
Leave it to the “most trusted man in America,” retired CBS TV Evening News anchorman, Walter Cronkite, now 86, to put this matter in proper perspective. Speaking at Drew University, in Madison, NJ, he said, “We are going to be in such a fix when this war is over. Our grandchildren’s grandchildren are going to be paying for this war.” He added, that he saw America’s future as “being very, very dark” (Daily Record News, 03/19/03, by Rob Jennings).
Cronkite continued, “The arrogance of our spokespeople, even the president himself, has been exceptional.” He also chided the do-little Congress for “not looking closely enough at the war and attempting to ascertain a viable estimate of its eventual cost, particularly in light of Bush’s commitment to tax cuts.” In his blistering dissent, Cronkite expressed, too, his concerns about the refusal of many traditional allies, such as France, to join the war effort. He believes that this signaled, “something deeper, and more ominous, than a mere foreign policy disagreement.”
On the media front, the vicious demonizing of France, led by Rupert Murdock’s rag, the NY Post, has reached levels of venom not seen since the bashing of the Japanese after its sneak attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. The Post is also encouraging the public not to support the work of Hollywood and TV stars, who have dared to oppose the Iraqi war. It labeled the celebs as “appeasement-loving” (Page Six, 03/19/03).
The price tag for this outrageous conflict has been estimated in the $100 to $300 billion range. This includes the cost of the military invasion of Iraq, the rebuilding and occupying of that country after the bombing has stopped, and the related Homeland Security expenses, as well. The occupation of Iraq, which can last years, will require at least 90,000 U.S. troops. The cost of the disability payments, that will be required for the care of the returning veterans from Gulf War II, has yet to be computed.
Missing, too, from these numbers are the grants to be given to the likes of Israel and Turkey. One economist, Thomas Stauffer, has estimated that since 1973, Israel has cost the U.S. a total of $1.6 trillion (Christian Science Monitor, Dec. 9, 2002 and WRMEA, March, 2003).
Back at home, the red ink at the local level is running unchecked. According to a report of the American Legislative Exchange Council, (03/03/03), state legislatures are facing a $100 billion budget deficit for the coming fiscal year. Social, educational and medical support services, as well as funding for the Arts, will most likely be hit the hardest when the time comes for the lawmakers to submit their draconian cost-cutting budgets.
Our personal liberties are also being systematically curtailed. The nation is already staggering under the implications of the Orwellian USA Patriot Act, passed in the middle of the night by the Congress, without a public hearing, in the aftermath of the 9/11 tragedy. And, an even more oppressive Patriot Act II is presently being hatched for a furtive introduction by government bureaucrats.
It is hard to trust any of our own statesmen, when Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman (D-CT), said, “Now is the time for all Americans to join together in support of our commander in chief, and the brave men and women of our armed forces.” He left out the fact that he is a notorious War Hawk, whose incestuous ties to militant Zionism, Israel, and Ariel Sharon, have contributed to the warmongering ethos. Also, House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, sounding like a raving Salem witch hunter, accused Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle for his criticism of President Bush as being “mighty close” to giving aid to the enemy.
Finally, Resolution 82, was introduced in the Senate, on March 12. It looks like a script written by that cunning Neo-con and Likudnik, Richard Perle. It targets yet another Muslim country for regime change: Iran! Thank you Tel Aviv!
Black’s Law Dictionary (5th Ed.) defines the crime of theft as follows: “The taking of property without the owner’s consent.” The Bush-Cheney gang by engaging in this war with Iraq is taking now, and will take in the future, resources that rightfully belong to the people. They will be doing so without the consent of those charged with paying for this war. This act of grand larceny will burden future generations of Americans with national debts for years to come. No matter how it is paid off, by confiscatory inflation or on a dollar for dollar basis, it will be satisfied by scuttling the liberty and happiness of the present-day youth of this country.
The war without end, prophesied by the great George Orwell in his tome, 1984, has started. And, so has the extorted obligation of the duped taxpayers to fund it. If this isn’t theft, then there is no such crime.
WILLIAM HUGHES is the author of 3Baltimore Iconoclast2 (Writer’s Showcase), which is available online. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.