The New York Times came out with a very fine editorial this morning (Oct 07, 2004), “The verdict is in.” However, unlike its tradition of doing right assessments and giving wrong conclusions, this time it came with no conclusion at all.
Instead it gave a bottom-line to the conclusion of Bush’s hand picked investigator’s report on Iraqi Weapons of Mass Destruction. What the New York Times calls a verdict is not a verdict at all.
It says: “Sanctions worked. Weapons inspectors worked.” Then what? Here we find something of value missing. It is not less than an attempt to avoid the actual verdict in the name of a verdict.
The so-called verdict is simply continuation of the same crime against humanity that started with Bush and his team’s lies with full backing of the US media up to the time when Bush and his allies were knee deep in innocent blood.
The whole world knew all along that Bush and his team are lying to their nation, to the United Nations and to the whole world. The whole world knows that the same team has been justifying the decision to invade and occupy Iraq by agreeing with Bush that Saddam Hussein was "a gathering threat" to the United States.
Like the New York Times’ earlier belated apology for its incorrect reporting on Iraq’s WMD, it matters little that a report which took 18 months to get prepared -” when most of the irreversible damage has already done -” has now confirmed that Iraq had no chemical, nuclear or biological weapons. We all knew this all along.
Similarly the New York Times verdict is nothing new. The real verdict is: Bush and his allies were wrong and Saddam Hussain was right on the WMD issue.
As the report issued yesterday goes further to say that Iraq had no factories to produce illicit weapons and that its ability to resume production was growing more feeble every year, it makes Bush administration and his political and intellectual allies even more guilty for the death and destruction of thousands of innocent lives.
Both the report and the New York Times editorial are still coming from the war infected, biased and brainwashed mentality. That’s why both say that the genocidal international sanctions that Mr. Bush dismissed and demeaned before the war – and still does – were astonishingly effective.
Of course they were effective but only in killing 1.8 million Iraqis, not eliminating WMD which did not exist in the first place. How can one call them effective against WMD when they did not exist in the first place? How can one call the genocidal sanctions effective when the same report concedes that the Iraqis lacked even a formal strategy or a plan to reconstitute their weapons programs if -” repeat if -” it did?
Now that it has been proved without any reasonable doubt that administration officials in Washington lied and then kept on lying to try to deflect the reality that they invaded Iraq under false pretenses and have urged critics to wait for Mr. Duelfer’s verdict on the weapons search, the verdict should be totally different than what the New York Times is presenting as a verdict.
“Sanctions worked. Weapons inspectors worked.” These are partial facts. Yes sanctions worked for wiping out 1.8 million Iraqis. Yes weapons inspectors worked but when the damage was already done. The total facts are: the basic premise for imposing sanctions was wrong because there was no WMD program at all. The invasion and occupation was wrong because there were no weapons of mass destruction at all.
The actual verdict should come now as the authoritative findings of Iraq Survey Group have now left the administration’s rationale for war more tattered than ever. It is not sufficient for the New York Times to repeat that stories of “looming mushroom cloud conjured by the administration to stampede Congress into authorizing an invasion – was a phantom.”
The verdict is Bush and all those who supported in his decision to invade and occupy Iraq are guilty of mass destruction and continued massacre in Iraq. The crisis will go on and on unless immediate steps are taken to punish the guilty and make a course correction to clean up the mess.
1). Bush and his administration needs to be smoked out of the power houses in Washington.
2). They should be tried as war criminals in an international court for distorting the reality with lies upon lies, taking lives of thousands of innocent people and making the world more unstable than it was before their much vaunted noble war.
3). Withdraw all occupation forces from Iraq and Afghanistan within a specified period of time and these should be replaced by UN or forces from Muslim countries funded by the US.
4). Remove the US installed puppets and prepare the way for free and fair elections both in Iraq and Afghanistan (with absolutely no interference of the US whatsoever).
5). Saddam Hussein should be given political asylum in any outside country of his choice (or the country which is willing to give him asylum) because he is not the only dictator in the world. If his dictatorship be the criteria and justification for punishing him, then this selective justice would not make any difference without taking similar action against other blood suckers like Hosnie Mubarak, Islam Karimov, General Musharraf and many other kings, sheikhs and “democratic” Sharon ruling in the Middle East.
6). The US should pay for clearing the mess in Iraq. It should pay all damages to Iraq for the lives it has taken and the destruction has done in the past 18 months.
7). The UN should compensate Iraq for the damage it has inflicted on Iraq due to the genocidal sanctions that were approved and imposed under its grand auspices.
This is the way to fairness and justice. This is the blueprint to real freedom. Anything less than this will simply perpetuate and intensify the global tyranny we are facing at the hands of United States today.
. To be exact, the crime may have begun even earlier, which we can name
UNSCR 661 from 6 Aug 1990 as the official starting point of a policy of mass extermination of Iraqi people committed by the ‘international community’ in the name of the UN.
The ABC + missiles (misnamed WMD) issue was only added later (after Iraqi capitulation) as a tool to humiliate Iraq, restrict its national sovereignty and as a legitimization to continue sanctions forever (or as long as the aggressors want). The Iraqi Chemical weapons capabilities proved useful in the war with Iran but didn’t provide much beyond that. Its missiles were rather primitive and harmless. Nuclear deterrence was just a far dream.
. Even this could be a recommendation for alternative occupation troops for which some use the euphemism ‘peacekeepers.’ The right approach would be to leave Iraq to Iraqis. To help avoid civil war and chaos we honestly trust in the UN, forgetting that it is the UN and not the US which is responsible for most of the Iraqi deaths.
The right demand would be to begin with totally unconditional withdrawal of all foreign troops from Iraq. Let it be the Iraqi people to decide what they want to do and if and who they allow to ‘help’ them.
. Free and fair elections is a general comment. It is that may be elections are not the best way to move ahead? Once the occupiers are gone, those things which they imposed (e.g. the mock constitution, privatization) and positions which depend on the occupation (e.g. government) will most likely be removed or reversed one way or another and it would be up to the locals to decide what they consider is right.