Monday 18th of June 2018

voodoo media .....

voodoo media ....

from Mike Carlton ….

'WMD doubts are ludicrous'. Headline, The Australian, July 10, 2003.

"Obviously, the immensely difficult situation in Iraq is not resolved. Despite the election for the national assembly and provincial legislators, full democracy is still some time off ... But, now, at least Iraq has a chance of establishing a system of representative government ... There is a real possibility now that Iraq might become one of the few representative governments in the Middle East. – Gerard Henderson, The Sydney Morning Herald, February 1, 2005.

"The Iraq war was the right war against the right enemy at the right time, and waged for broadly the right reasons. There is no need to apologise about it. Notwithstanding many mistakes in execution in the peace-keeping phase, provided the coalition of the willing retains its nerve there is every chance of achieving a reasonable outcome still ... the decision to go to war was the right one. George Bush, Tony Blair and John Howard deserve praise for their courage." – Greg Sheridan, Foreign Editor, The Australian, March 22, 2006.

"The battle is actually over. Iraq has been won. I know this will seem to many of you an insane claim. Ridiculous! After all, haven't you read countless stories that Iraq is a "disaster", turned by a "civil war" into a "killing field"? You have. And you have been misled ... Violence is falling fast. Al Qaeda has been crippled. There is no civil war. The Kurds have not broken away. Iran has not turned Iraq into its puppet. And the country's institutions are getting stronger. The Iraqi army is now at full strength, at least in numbers. Iraq not only remains a democracy, but shows no sign of collapse. I repeat: the battle for a free Iraq has been won." – Andrew Bolt, the Herald Sun, November 2, 2007.Advertisement

Sorry to inflict this drivel upon you, but there are some points to be made. George W. Bush and the neo-cons of Washington who fomented the war in Iraq bear a heavy responsibility for the catastrophe engulfing the country today. So, too, the principal leaders of that now risible coalition of the willing, including Britain's Tony Blair and our own John Howard (Dubya's Man of Steel.)

In prosecuting that war they were cheered all the way by the unquestioning Tory toadies of the Australian media, principally – although not solely – in the Murdoch press. The hubris, the evasions, the lies, the errors, the lethal incompetence – the whole ghastly march of folly – was trumpeted to the skies by these people even as the ground shifted and chasms of fact and logic opened beneath them. 

They seized upon any piece of official idiocy to make their case. And not just Saddam Hussein's non-existent weapons of mass destruction. Vice-President Dick Cheney's boast that US soldiers would be garlanded with flowers in Baghdad and welcomed as liberators ... George Bush's "mission accomplished" ... Donald Rumsfeld's unknown unknowns, John Howard's claim that Saddam Hussein operated a "people-shredder" ... nothing was too bizarre to be pressed into service by the media propagandists.

If you dared to question the war, in concept or execution, they branded you anti-American. Ideological claptrap, of course, but the worst of Tory insults. You were disloyal, even treasonous. Anti-war marches were organised by communists, Bolt claimed, and the protesters were full of "self loathing hatred of our civilisation and its freedoms".

Now we reap the whirlwind. Democracy in Iraq evaporated with the oppression of Sunni Muslims by the corrupt and ineffectual Shiite Prime Minister, Nouri al-Maliki. When push came to shove, Baghdad's army, upon which the Americans spent so much blood and treasure, simply melted away. The wretched Iraqi people find new and unspeakable horrors visited upon them by Islamist fanatics reputedly too extreme even for al-Qaeda to countenance.               

It was all so predictable, so inevitable. We saw in Vietnam that democracy cannot be imposed at gunpoint.

Wilfully blind to the errors of history, the fools repeat them.




from moscow with criticism...


"Don't you just love the way the Western media avoids mentioning the 2003 invasion in its coverage of the current mess in Iraq," a Russian diplomat told me. "It's as if what happened then has absolutely no bearing on what's going on in Iraq now."

I believe that Russian diplomat is right. It's embarrassing to watch Western hacks doing their best to make it look as if the onslaught of the Sunni militants on Baghdad has only to do with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's failures and his inability - or refusal - to create a government of national unity and succumbing to corruption. As if Iraq, after the US troop withdrawal, was a country ready to enter a democratic era.

"Iraq is imploding from within," said one grandee of British broadcasting commenting on the current crisis and missing the irony of his own words by about a mile.  

It's pretty clear now that the Obama Administration has been taken by complete surprise by the so-calledIslamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), taking over the north of Iraq with such ease. It has also been a major embarrassment for the Pentagon that the Iraqi government forces simply deserted - by the thousands - the second largest city, Mosul, and other towns for insurgents to take over, leaving behind their fancy US arms and military hardware.

Some Russian military experts claim the US spent up to $450bn on training and arming the Iraqi government forces - albeit, a report issued by the US government states over $25bn was committed to training the Iraqi army. 

Varying political viewpoints  

US President Barack Obama has already made a number of bizarre statements on Iraq, saying, for example, that it's up to the Iraqis themselves to sort out the current crisis. He made a 30-minute address on Iraq and it amounted to him basically saying that he didn't really know what to do, and will tell the world later what his plan might be.

British Prime Minister David Cameron, who has done his utmost, incidentally, to prevent the Chilcot report on the war in Iraq from seeing the light of day in Britain, has stayed very quiet in the days when Mosul fell and the Sunni insurgents started heading for Baghdad.

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the sad outcome of wars on foreign lands...

KABUL — Col. Samuel Whitehurst had been consumed with work in the last days of his brigade’s nine-month deployment in eastern Afghanistan when alarming news about his former battleground in northern Iraq began to reach him.

Whitehurst fired off an e-mail to the mayor of the Iraqi city of Samarra, who had become a close friend, saying he was thinking of him. Days after a band of Islamic militants took over Mosul and several towns in the north in early June, he got terrible news: Col. Gayath Sami, the Iraqi officer Whitehurst had groomed to run Samarra’s security command center, had been slain in the fighting.

“To find out that he had been killed,” said Whitehurst, who commands the 3rd Brigade Combat Team of the 10th Mountain Division, deployed in Paktia province. “Those are the things I worry about — the friends I met there and what’s going to happen to them.”

The catastrophic turn Iraq has taken in recent weeks has startled U.S. veterans who spent years seeking to set up the country, and particularly its security forces, for success. The Iraq war killed nearly 4,500 U.S. troops and, by some estimates, cost taxpayers more than $2 trillion dollars. The country’s violent downward spiral as Islamist militants seized large swaths of territory has been particularly unsettling to those who are currently in Afghanistan at the tail end of America’s longest war and hoping for a better outcome.

“Watching how much everybody worked to continue to have hope and progress for that country and to watch it crumble is fairly disheartening,” said Lt. Gen. Joseph Anderson, who spent 42 months in Iraq and is now tactical commander of U.S. and allied troops here. “It’s very personal when you get letters and notes and e-mails from all the people you know there who used to work for you saying: ‘Can you get my family out of there, everything is collapsing.’ ”

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