FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Marley’s List for Santa in Wartime

by WILLIAM S. LIND

Back in my tadpole days, sometime in the Pleistocene, my fellows at Roehm Junior High (Frederick, not Ernst) enjoyed hanging the name of “Scrooge” around my neck. Whether or not they did so in response to my “Bah! Humbug” attitude toward Christmas (“Angels we have heard on high, telling us go out and buy”), I do not now recall. I do remember with perfect clarity my invariable reply: “Bah! Humbug” attitude toward Christmas (“Angels we have heard on high, telling us go out and buy”), I do not now recall. I do remember with perfect clarity my invariable reply: “Scrooge? Scrooge? How dare you call me Scrooge! Scrooge was a weakling. Scrooge gave in – to all that poppycock about Tiny Tim and Christmas goose for common clerks. I assure you, I am no Scrooge. I’m Marley.”

As I sat by my fireside the other evening, smoking my pipe, drinking a bottle of old Port and occasionally kicking the cat, I thought again about my exemplar, Jacob Marley. What would Marley have made of the colossal mess that Bush, Cheney & Co., have pulled us into? Then it came to me: Marley’s Christmas list! Out of the stony cockles of his hard old heart, Marley would have known what each and every dramatis personae deserved. I suspect Marley’s list for Santa might go something like this:

* For President George W. Bush, a slightly nicer hole than Saddam’s, to hide in once the American people figure out that he started two wars, and lost both.

* For Dick Cheney, a late night visit from the ghost of Colonel John Boyd, whose briefings Mr. Cheney heard and whose wisdom he totally ignored in whooping it up for war with Iraq. Also, at least one foreign policy advisor who is not a neo-con.

* For the neo-cons themselves, those wonderful people who believe in promoting democracy on the tips of American bayonets, Robespierre bobble-heads for one and all. Also, their children get drafted and sent to Iraq for the duration. * For secretary of State Powell, a small desk plaque that reads, “There is no position more difficult than that of minister to an idiot king.”

* For Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, a portrait of Robert McNamara, to sit on his desk as a reminder that we’ve been down this road before (“Metrics, give me metrics, stout-hearted metrics…”).

* For Condi Rice, the title that goes with her duties: concierge.

* For Pompey, alias Mr. Wolfowitz, some clean underwear to replace that “lost” at the al Rashid hotel.

* For the U.S. Navy, complete irrelevance to future war, plus plans for the F-18Z to fill all those carrier deck spots in the year 2104.

* For the U.S. Air Force, status of “worse than useless” for future war, plus F-22s to shoot down Taliban flying carpets.

* For the U.S. Army, hope that the new chief may be the Army’s Al Gray.

* For the United State Marine Corps, the ultimate —- sandwich, in the form of orders back to Iraq in the spring. Also Arabic phrase books that start with, “We’re not like those other guys who just left.”

* For the U.S. Army generals in Iraq, British uniforms, circa 1776.

* For U.S. troops in Iraq, tickets home, with no return.

* For the people of Iraq, Operation Iraqi Freedom, which happens when the last “Coalition” soldier leaves.

* For the American People, President Hillary Clinton. This one has a note on it, in Marley’s own crabbed scrawl: This is actually from the neo-cons.

* And finally, for old Saddam himself, his very own reality TV show, in the form of a show trial running right through the American Presidential campaign and election, where he can talk about all kinds of interesting things like how the Bushes were so helpful when it came to using chemical weapons against Iran.

I thought that was the end of my old friend Marley’s list. But then I found something written on an envelope. “For all true conservatives who opposed this counterproductive war from the outset, the strategic advice of Tokugawa Ieyasu: ‘Wait.'”

WILLIAM S. LIND’s On War column appears weekly in CounterPunch.

 

More articles by:

WILLIAM S. LIND, expressing his own personal opinion, is Director for the Center for Cultural Conservatism for the Free Congress Foundation.

November 20, 2017
T.J. Coles
Doomsday Scenarios: the UK’s Hair-Raising Admissions About the Prospect of Nuclear War and Accident
Peter Linebaugh
On the 800th Anniversary of the Charter of the Forest
Patrick Bond
Zimbabwe Witnessing an Elite Transition as Economic Meltdown Looms
Sheldon Richman
Assertions, Facts and CNN
Ben Debney
Plebiscites: Why Stop at One?
LV Filson
Yemen’s Collective Starvation: Where Money Can’t Buy Food, Water or Medicine
Thomas Knapp
Impeachment Theater, 2017 Edition
Binoy Kampmark
Trump in Asia
Curtis FJ Doebbler
COP23: Truth Without Consequences?
Louisa Willcox
Obesity in Bears: Vital and Beautiful
Deborah James
E-Commerce and the WTO
Ann Garrison
Burundi Defies the Imperial Criminal Court: an Interview with John Philpot
Robert Koehler
Trapped in ‘a Man’s World’
Stephen Cooper
Wiping the Stain of Capital Punishment Clean
Weekend Edition
November 17, 2017
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Thank an Anti-War Veteran
Andrew Levine
What’s Wrong With Bible Thumpers Nowadays?
Jeffrey St. Clair - Alexander Cockburn
The CIA’s House of Horrors: the Abominable Dr. Gottlieb
Wendy Wolfson – Ken Levy
Why We Need to Take Animal Cruelty Much More Seriously
Mike Whitney
Brennan and Clapper: Elder Statesmen or Serial Fabricators?
David Rosen
Of Sex Abusers and Sex Offenders
Ryan LaMothe
A Christian Nation?
Dave Lindorff
Trump’s Finger on the Button: Why No President Should Have the Authority to Launch Nuclear Weapons
W. T. Whitney
A Bizarre US Pretext for Military Intrusion in South America
Deepak Tripathi
Sex, Lies and Incompetence: Britain’s Ruling Establishment in Crisis 
Howard Lisnoff
Who You’re Likely to Meet (and Not Meet) on a College Campus Today
Roy Morrison
Trump’s Excellent Asian Adventure
John W. Whitehead
Financial Tyranny
Ted Rall
How Society Makes Victimhood a No-Win Proposition
Jim Goodman
Stop Pretending the Estate Tax has Anything to do With Family Farmers
Thomas Klikauer
The Populism of Germany’s New Nazis
Murray Dobbin
Is Trudeau Ready for a Middle East war?
Jeiddy Martínez Armas
Firearm Democracy
Jill Richardson
Washington’s War on Poor Grad Students
Ralph Nader
The Rule of Power Over the Rule of Law
Justin O'Hagan
Capitalism Equals Peace?
Matthew Stevenson
Into Africa: From the Red Sea to Nairobi
Geoff Dutton
The Company We Sadly Keep
Evan Jones
The Censorship of Jacques Sapir, French Dissident
Linn Washington Jr.
Meek Moment Triggers Demands for Justice Reform
Gerry Brown
TPP, Indo Pacific, QUAD: What’s Next to Contain China’s Rise?
Robert Fisk
The Exile of Saad Hariri
Romana Rubeo - Ramzy Baroud
Anti-BDS Laws and Pro-Israeli Parliament: Zionist Hasbara is Winning in Italy
Robert J. Burrowes
Why are Police in the USA so Terrified?
Chuck Collins
Stop Talking About ‘Winners and Losers’ From Corporate Tax Cuts
Ron Jacobs
Private Property Does Not Equal Freedom
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail