March 20, 2009

Mission Marred

Whose blood is fet from fathers of war-proof!
Fathers that, like so many Alexanders,
Have in these parts from morn till even fought
And sheathed their swords for lack of argument:
Dishonour not your mothers; now attest
That those whom you call'd fathers did beget you.
Be copy now to men of grosser blood,
And teach them how to war.

Today marks the 6th anniversary since the U.S. invasion of Iraq. reports that there have been 4,259 American military personnel killed and some 31,089 wounded. JustForeignPolicy, meanwhile, estimates that over 1.3 million Iraqis have been killed. As for another important cost, reports that "USD $656.1 billion dollars have been allocated to the war in Iraq". 

So, here's the Iraq war in a nutshell, according to libertarian website Serendipity: "The main reasons for the US invasion of Iraq were to gain control of Iraq's oilfields (so as to keep the oil in the ground and drive up oil prices), to establish military bases in Iraq from which to dominate the Middle East and eventually (by controlling oil supply) to establish control over all countries dependent on oil, and (most important to the neo-cons Wolfowitz, et al.) to remove the threat to Israel posed by Iraq."

A typical conservative response would be (care of Fred Soto): “Our nation is safer because we elected George W. Bush, liberal allegations of impropriety in the White House amount to propaganda that has inspired paranoia and fear over non-issues (see FISA, Kucinich Impeachment, water-boarding).  Our efforts in Iraq must continue or we’ll have to fight the terrorists at home or worse, head back to Iraq to finish the job.  Further, if we do not ‘get the job done’, all credibility will be lost".

I like Tom Matzzie's thoughtful reflection on this sad anniversary: "It will be easy to thrust responsibility on to the hawks and warmongers, but those of us who opposed the war--and the politicians we supported--are essentially running the country now. This is our challenge. We have obligations both to our veterans and to the Iraqi war victims. It will continue to cost tens of billions in the years ahead but that is the necessary cost of our irresponsibility as a country getting into Iraq. And while we focus on healing those in the war we should also seek to heal the first casualty of this and every war--the truth. There are still questions that haven't been answered about how we got into the war and what happened once we were in it. We deserve answers."


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