Monday, February 26, 2007

Mission Still Accomplished!

Today is Monday, 26 February 2007.

On Tuesday last, American Army troops raided the offices of the Iraqi Journalists’ Syndicate. They kidnapped five security guards, vandalized the offices, and looted five computers, plus ten portable electric generators meant for the families of assassinated Iraqi journalists. More ominously, the troops stole files listing the home addresses of Syndicate members.

On Friday last, American troops conducted a similar raid on the offices of official newspaper of Dawa, a Shiite political party, again vandalizing and looting.

Also on Friday, American troops temporarily kidnapped Amar Abdul Aziz al-Hakim, son of the leader of SCIRI (Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, the largest Shiite political formation). The younger Mr. al-Hakim is a political leader in his own right.

In recent days, car bombs have continued to explode in Baghdad, killing and maiming hundreds. We're counseled to give the Great Baghdad Security Blitz yet more time. Given that we were told this was "Mission Accomplished!" almost four years ago, how many decades should we give it? How many more tens of thousands must be killed and maimed in pursuit of continually-tweaked and continually-failing policies?

Readers of this column will recall that, in recent months, American troops kidnapped representatives of the Iranian government, in Iraq at the invitation of the obviously not-really-sovereign Iraqi government.

The traditional definition of a sovereign government is one which has an absolute monopoly on the use of legitimate violence on its soil. It is obvious that, the pretensions of the Bush-Cheney Junta to the contrary, this has not been the case in Iraq since the Conquest.

I’m certain that many Americans condemned to fight in Iraq believe they are engaged in a noble struggle for the liberation of Iraq. That is their subjective belief. Objectively, they are merely serving the imperial fantasies of W. Bush and the cabal of neoconservatives who seized control of the government after the stolen presidential election of 2000.

Unfortunately, the American military is not serving the interests of the American nation. Objectively, they have been turned into the private militia of Bush and the neoconservatives. Objectively, the role they play is no different than that of competitors such as the Mahdi Army of al-Sadr and the Badr Brigades of SCIRI.

How long will the American people stand by, while their military, whose only legitimate purpose could only be self-defense, is dragged in the mud of aggression and conquest by Bush and the neoconservatives?

And this at a time when returning American troops are subjected to unsanitary and harmful conditions in military hospital wards across the country, and the military admits to a 40% shortfall in the number of psychological professionals needed to assist returning troops with problems of post-combat stress, and there is still a major shortfall in up-armored vehicles and personal armor?

If this is the vaunted “supporting our troops”, what would neglecting them look like?


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