The Good War Goes Hot

Defense Secretary Gates said last night that the United States was considering sending yet more troops to Afghanistan later this year. Around 68,000 US troops are there now, over twenty-thousand of those are part of the Obama surge. A further forty-thousand troops contribute to the imperialist occupation in a NATO capacity. Casualties are skyrocketing as the Marines are deployed to back up the Brits in Helmand and the insurgency spreads north and east. July is just half through and already casualties have already surpassed any previous month’s totals since the occupation began in 2001.

And yet it is nearly absent from the news. Very few reporters from the networks are even in the region and coverage is minimal. Michael Jackson has dominated the news for the past weeks and the mass media, with all of their resources, play only one note at a time. Anyway, Obama gets a pass on this as, with the exception of the anti-imperialist left, what remains of the anti-war movement built up around the Iraq war can’t seem to find its way to challenge Obama on Afghanistan. With the war so far from the public consciousness, even as the bodies pile up, developing an anti-war movement would be difficult even without the equivocations of the “progressives”.

A brutal war at America’s behest across the border in Pakistan has killed thousands and displaced millions. The cross-border drone war has also escalated with the Obama administration. Piloted from air conditioned rooms in New Mexico with all of the bravery of being out of range one wonders what kind of medal a “pilot” would get for dropping death on Waziristan. A joy-stick and a lightening bolt?

Joe Biden and Howard Dean talk women’s rights as reason for the war. Joe has always fancied himself a real protector of women. It is, after all, the way a real man acts. If I were the Saudi royal family, which rules over a a system of gender apartheid, I’d be scared at this turn of events. Will they soon be in the cross-hairs of those feminist armies of liberation now hunkered down on those vast bases in Iraq? I wait with bated breath.

Obama’s yardstick for “victory” in Afghanistan is as amorphous, if more modest, as Bush’s was for Iraq. He offers no time line and no exit. The war escalates and continues indefinitely. Billions are spent on the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan. The wars serve as the excuse to further expand the standing army as the military-industrial complex remains the last solvent industry in the land.

Confirmation, if any was needed, that the “change candidate” was elected to the Presidency of The Empire. Imperialism is the job description. And Obama seems to relish his job as a grin hasn’t left his face since he took the oath. We’ve all seen that grin since Obama’s visage is everywhere as he saturates the media with his presence. He even muscled into the broadcast booth of the All-Star game forcing me to temporarily switch to the Create! channel and macrame. Afghanistan has, however, wiped off the smug smiles of a number of others who have attempted to occupy the place.

The wars begun under the Bush administration are set to continue. The Democrats idea of change has been to give more of it and recently passed an enormous funding bill. The war in Iraq is not over even if the foreign press bureaus are closing up shop. Pakistan and Afghanistan have seen a marked escalation. The consequences of the escalations are uncertain. One thing, however, is certain and that is the Democrats and Obama have now taken full responsibility for the wars in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq. And we cannot let them escape that responsibility.

MATT SIEGFRIED can be reached at: almata@hotmail.com








More articles by:
April 23, 2018
Patrick Cockburn
In Middle East Wars It Pays to be Skeptical
Thomas Knapp
Just When You Thought “Russiagate” Couldn’t Get Any Sillier …
Gregory Barrett
The Moral Mask
Robert Hunziker
Chemical Madness!
David Swanson
Senator Tim Kaine’s Brief Run-In With the Law
Dave Lindorff
Starbucks Has a Racism Problem
Uri Avnery
The Great Day
Nyla Ali Khan
Girls Reduced to Being Repositories of Communal and Religious Identities in Kashmir
Ted Rall
Stop Letting Trump Distract You From Your Wants and Needs
Steve Klinger
The Cautionary Tale of Donald J. Trump
Kevin Zeese - Margaret Flowers
Conflict Over the Future of the Planet
Cesar Chelala
Gideon Levy: A Voice of Sanity from Israel
Weekend Edition
April 20, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Ruling Class Operatives Say the Darndest Things: On Devils Known and Not
Conn Hallinan
The Great Game Comes to Syria
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Mother of War
Andrew Levine
“How Come?” Questions
Doug Noble
A Tale of Two Atrocities: Douma and Gaza
Kenneth Surin
The Blight of Ukania
Howard Lisnoff
How James Comey Became the Strange New Hero of the Liberals
William Blum
Anti-Empire Report: Unseen Persons
Lawrence Davidson
Missiles Over Damascus
Patrick Cockburn
The Plight of the Yazidi of Afrin
Pete Dolack
Fooled Again? Trump Trade Policy Elevates Corporate Power
Stan Cox
For Climate Mobilization, Look to 1960s Vietnam Before Turning to 1940s America
William Hawes
Global Weirding
Dan Glazebrook
World War is Still in the Cards
Nick Pemberton
In Defense of Cardi B: Beyond Bourgeois PC Culture
Ishmael Reed
Hollywood’s Last Days?
Peter Certo
There Was Nothing Humanitarian About Our Strikes on Syria
Dean Baker
China’s “Currency Devaluation Game”
Ann Garrison
Why Don’t We All Vote to Commit International Crimes?
LEJ Rachell
The Baddest Black Power Artist You Never Heard Of
Lawrence Ware
All Hell Broke Out in Oklahoma
Franklin Lamb
Tehran’s Syria: Lebanon Colonization Project is Collapsing
Donny Swanson
Janus v. AFSCME: What’s It All About?
Will Podmore
Brexit and the Windrush Britons
Brian Saady
Boehner’s Marijuana Lobbying is Symptomatic of Special-Interest Problem
Julian Vigo
Google’s Delisting and Censorship of Information
Patrick Walker
Political Dynamite: Poor People’s Campaign and the Movement for a People’s Party
Fred Gardner
Medical Board to MDs: Emphasize Dangers of Marijuana
Rob Seimetz
We Must Stand In Solidarity With Eric Reid
Missy Comley Beattie
Remembering Barbara Bush
Wim Laven
Teaching Peace in a Time of Hate
Thomas Knapp
Freedom is Winning in the Encryption Arms Race
Mir Alikhan
There Won’t be Peace in Afghanistan Until There’s Peace in Kashmir