FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Mourning in America

 

The New York Times, in lead article on Monday headlined (on the jump) “Bush Mourns 9-11 at Ground Zero,” reported that a “visibly moved” president laid a wreath Sunday at the memorial in the hole that is what’s left of the World Trade Center, saying, “Laura and I approach tomorrow with a heavy heart.”

I’m sorry, but there’s no way this disaster of a president, this serial trasher of the Constitution, this slaughterer of 100,000 innocent Iraqis, this waster of nearly 30,000 American lives (the dead and the maimed victims in uniform of his pointless invasion of Iraq), was mourning anything. My guess is that he thanks god every day of his sorry administration for the events of 9-11, which rescued his presidency from history’s toilet.

Remember, on September 10, 2001, George Bush was being widely written off as a failed president. His poll numbers were falling faster than Enron stock, he was becoming a national joke for the number of days he spent vacationing, and his political strategist, Karl Rove, was in a tizzy trying to figure out an angle to salvage things.

Then came those hijacked planes, and the smoking ruins on Wall Street and at the Pentagon, and suddenly Bush had it made. He really didn’t have to do anything. The country needed a leader to rally around, and Bush, with the help of his trusty speechwriters, gave them that leader by default.

Karl Rove, his strategy dilemma solved, made Bush’s administration 9-11 24/7. It was “War on Terror” time in America. In short order, the U.S. was at war in Afghanistan, with B-52s and B-2s carpet bombing one of the poorest countries in the world, the USA PATRIOT Act was stripping Americans of their two-centuries old birthright of free speech, freedom of assembly, freedom from government spying, the right to a speedy trial by a jury of peers, the right to an attorney, the right to face their accusers, and any Democrats who expressed concerns about the direction the country was going were labeled cowards and “supporters of the terrorists.”

And then there was the invasion of Iraq-something Bush and Cheney had dreamed of doing since before they took office, but had not figured out how to get the country to buy into.

On September 11, 2001, it all fell into place for this intellectually deficient and morally stunted man who in 2000 actually lost the election for president, but who found himself in the White House anyhow, thanks to the conniving of five unprincipled Supreme Court Justices willing to place loyalty to party ahead of loyalty to the People and the Constitution.

I’ll be generous and assume that Bush is serious when he says he is a religious guy and that his God talks to him, but I’ll bet you anything that when little he talks back to Big Him, as he did when he prayed Sunday at New York’s St. Paul’s Chapel and Monday at the National Cathedral, he offers fervent thanks for that terrible day.

Without it, he would not have had a Republican majority in the Congress in 2002, and without it, he would not have been returned to the White House in 2004.

Bush didn’t even have the grace to wait until the day of the fifth anniversary of the 9-11 attacks had ended to go from fake mourning mode into attack mode, once again appropriating the tragic deaths of over 2900 Americans to launch into a defense of his indefensible and disastrous war in Iraq, which his own generals say is going to hell. Nor did he wait until the day had passed to return to attacking Democrats.

In an address to the nation broadcast nationally at 9 pm on 9-11 (which the Times curiously headlined “Bush urges unity in a continuing war” in a report the next day), Bush attacked those calling for a timetable for withdrawal from Iraq. Said Bush, “the worst mistake would be to think that if we pulled out the terrorists would leave us alone. They will not leave us alone.”

Never mind that Iraq had nothing to do with 9-11, as even the President has been forced to admit, and as the Republican-led Senate Intelligence Committee has belatedly confirmed.

Fortunately, this fake “war on terror” that the president has wrapped himself up in, is starting to wear thin with the American public, as is his increasingly strained effort to link the fiasco in Iraq with that other fake war.

That may explain the sincere look of serious reflection on the normally twisted cynical face of Vice President Dick Cheney during a moment of silence at a Monday ceremony at the Pentagon. The Vice President, who like Bush surely hasn’t been genuinely mourning 9-11, may well have been brooding over the train wreck that this administration is becoming, in large part because of Cheney’s own mad obsession with military adventurism and presidential power grabbing.

Both he and Bush may even have been praying on Monday that the next anniversary of the 9-11 attacks doesn’t see them both in the dock being impeached for their crimes.

DAVE LINDORFF is the author of Killing Time: an Investigation into the Death Row Case of Mumia Abu-Jamal. His new book of CounterPunch columns titled “This Can’t be Happening!” is published by Common Courage Press. Lindorff’s new book, “The Case for Impeachment“,
co-authored by Barbara Olshansky, is due out May 1.

He can be reached at: dlindorff@yahoo.com

 

 

More articles by:

Dave Lindorff is a founding member of ThisCantBeHappening!, an online newspaper collective, and is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press).

Weekend Edition
December 14, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Andrew Levine
A Tale of Two Cities
Peter Linebaugh
The Significance of The Common Wind
Bruce E. Levine
The Ketamine Chorus: NYT Trumpets New Anti-Suicide Drug
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Fathers and Sons, Bushes and Bin Ladens
Kathy Deacon
Coffee, Social Stratification and the Retail Sector in a Small Maritime Village
Nick Pemberton
Praise For America’s Second Leading Intellectual
Robert Hunziker
The Yellow Vest Insurgency – What’s Next?
Patrick Cockburn
The Yemeni Dead: Six Times Higher Than Previously Reported
Nick Alexandrov
George H. W. Bush: Another Eulogy
Brian Cloughley
Principles and Morality Versus Cash and Profit? No Contest
Michael F. Duggan
Climate Change and the Limits of Reason
Victor Grossman
Sighs of Relief in Germany
Ron Jacobs
A Propagandist of Privatization
Robert Fantina
What Does Beto Have Against the Palestinians?
Richard Falk – Daniel Falcone
Sartre, Said, Chomsky and the Meaning of the Public Intellectual
Andrew Glikson
Crimes Against the Earth
Robert Fisk
The Parasitic Relationship Between Power and the American Media
Stephen Cooper
When Will Journalism Grapple With the Ethics of Interviewing Mentally Ill Arrestees?
Jill Richardson
A War on Science, Morals and Law
Ron Jacobs
A Propagandist of Privatization
Evaggelos Vallianatos
It’s Not Easy Being Greek
Nomi Prins 
The Inequality Gap on a Planet Growing More Extreme
John W. Whitehead
Know Your Rights or You Will Lose Them
David Swanson
The Abolition of War Requires New Thoughts, Words, and Actions
J.P. Linstroth
Primates Are Us
Bill Willers
The War Against Cash
Jonah Raskin
Doris Lessing: What’s There to Celebrate?
Ralph Nader
Are the New Congressional Progressives Real? Use These Yardsticks to Find Out
Binoy Kampmark
William Blum: Anti-Imperial Advocate
Medea Benjamin – Alice Slater
Green New Deal Advocates Should Address Militarism
John Feffer
Review: Season 2 of Trump Presidency
Rich Whitney
General Motors’ Factories Should Not Be Closed. They Should Be Turned Over to the Workers
Christopher Brauchli
Deported for Christmas
Kerri Kennedy
This Holiday Season, I’m Standing With Migrants
Mel Gurtov
Weaponizing Humanitarian Aid
Thomas Knapp
Lame Duck Shutdown Theater Time: Pride Goeth Before a Wall?
George Wuerthner
The Thrill Bike Threat to the Elkhorn Mountains
Nyla Ali Khan
A Woman’s Selfhood and Her Ability to Act in the Public Domain: Resilience of Nadia Murad
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
On the Killing of an Ash Tree
Graham Peebles
Britain’s Homeless Crisis
Louis Proyect
America: a Breeding Ground for Maladjustment
Steve Carlson
A Hell of a Time
Dan Corjescu
America and The Last Ship
Jeffrey St. Clair
Booked Up: the 25 Best Books of 2018
David Yearsley
Bikini by Rita, Voice by Anita
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail