Adam's blogbox: the truth about Iraq you won't get from Bush/Cheney or our media
The weird thing about Iraq is that it has no central government –- whatsoever.
The official US-sanctioned ‘government’ sits in the Green Zone and has no power. Mostly, these officials travel overseas on our tax money, sometimes to stand by Bush or Blair and make announcements. At one point this year the entire Iraqi cabinet was overseas.
Meanwhile, outside the Green Zone, amidst the facts on the ground that people are always talking about, various militias are running various parts of the country. And in those parts they’re running, they devote their time to offing their ethnic rivals in what some call "sectarian violence" and others "civil war," and what I'd call your basic Middle East government: warlordism.
It would be easy to split this no-central-government country in three – under the Kurds, who’ve run themselves for years now, and whose warlords don’t allow any Arabs in, and under the Sunni and the Shiite warlords (which the Sunnis don’t want to do, because their area has no oil, and they, who ruled Iraq under Saddam, would find themselves fatally impoverished).
So you can divide the country in three, but how do you divide Baghdad? It would be like trying to separate a rabid threesome of snakes on Viagra. In the capital, Sunnis and Shiites live cheek by jowl. Neighborhoods are mixed; unmixed Sunni and Shiite neighborhood sit right next to each other, on both sides of the river. That’s why the killing in Baghdad goes on regardless, openly in daylight on the streets for all to see, as Shiites and Sunnis try to consolidate the neighborhoods they can consolidate.
The ‘government’ of Iraq is not a government like we understand it. If the US pulled out today, the Iraqi ‘government’ would immediately flee overseas, back to where many of its members have come from -- expats who returned to their home country when Saddam was overthrown. They returned after being away for 30 years, not knowing a damn thing about their country anymore, in order to batten on the largesse of the US occupation. This they know how to do -- vampire fleas sucking themselves fat as hogs from our tax dollars like it's warm blood on tap. We’re not just talking thousands and millions; we’re talking billions as well. These guys are more corrupt than a clusterfuck of Abramoffs.
They’re making hay while the sun shines, because they know that once the US pulls out, they’ll have to get out of Dodge pronto themselves -- to escape being whacked by their own angry citizens.
The truth about Iraq is that it has become a vast boondoggle for the benefit of this corrupt 'government" and our own military-industirla complex: for Halliburton’s KBR, for Bechtel, for the extended Bush family (Bush Sr, who gets greased by the Carlyle Group, Uncle ‘Bucky’ Bush, who runs the military contractor ESSI, Neil Mallon Bush of the Silverado savings and loan scam, who helps companies cash in on Iraq, and Marvin Pierce Bush), and for other Bush/Cheney cronies who've connected their fat butts via a direct pipeline into our Treasury, and who've dialed the sucking force of said butts right up to eleven (see Iraq pieces below).
Iraq itself is a mess, warlorded by militias, who use drills and blowtorches on their opponents before they shoot them in the back of the head. Great swathes of Shiite Iraq are under the control of the Mahdi Army, who are killing Sunnis like they’re drowning fresh grosses of kittens every day.
And who created this mess? One Paul Bremer of the CPA, when he disbanded the Iraqi army, and sent them home unemployed with no further pay, but with their guns and ammo in their hands, to fuel the insurgency and "sectarian violence."
That was bad enough. What was maybe worse was firing the entire Iraq bureaucracy that ran the country, because they were Baathists. They were Baathists because they had to be Baathists to get a job from Saddam, but Bremer thought they were the brethren of Satan, so he de-Baathified the administration and Armageddoned Iraq's entire administrative structure.
In two fell swoops, Bremer destroyed the two institutions that held the country together. He left Iraq without any functioning administration, and then ducked out himself.
The irony is he didn't have be the stupidest administrator since a horse was declared a Roman Senator by its proud emperor-owner. He had a great historical precedent to learn from. How did we get Germany back on its feet after WW2? We pumped in a lot of money, yes. But mainly, we tried and executed a handful of the top Nazi brass, but we weren’t so dumb as to de-Nazify the whole place from top to bottom. We sort of interviewed people about their backgrounds and lectured them about their politics, but basically we let the rest of the Nazi businessmen, officials, lawyers and others return to their business as usual to build their country back up.
In Iraq, our neocons were too stupid to follow our own successful historical blueprint. These guys are so dumb, they miss the toilet when they sit down to take a shit. For some pie-in-the-sky conservative dream state, ideologue Bremer wrecked the government that was there. God knows what he was thinking. Did he think he was going to build a new country by letting a bunch of twenty-something rightwing American staffers in the Green Zone run a foreign place along evangelical lines? Or create a conservative haven with his decrees about a maximum of 15% corporate taxes and other conservative BS -- with nobody to enforce these laws? Or privatize the economy and sell it to Halliburton and other US corporations for them to run some capitalist-type heaven in the midst of a civil war? The same US companies who've not been able to get electricity and water back to pre-war levels? The same companies that charge the American taxpayer up to 45% percent overhead for their own staff salaries and housing out of their ‘reconstruction’ budgets, and overcharge the Pentagon for not reconstructing anything?
Today Iraqis are longing for the days of Saddam, when they had security. And when there was much less snuffing of the neighbors. The country is thoroughly butt-bonked, blood-assed and bum-buggered for the next 20 years. And we did it, not the Iraqis. We destroyed their institutions, and let them vote for a bunch of corrupt pols who play us for suckers and sit high and dry in the safety of the Green Zone and act like they’re running the country, a country they’re too afraid to travel in, unless surrounded by US Army tanks, jeeps and Humvees.
What a mess. It’s insoluble. Bush says we’re training the Iraqis to stand up so we can stand down. Such BS. What we’re actually doing is training the Shiites in the army to kill the Sunnis, and giving them the arms to do it with. That’s what we’re doing. We’re knee-deep in a civil war, on the side of the Shiites.
Is Bush telling us any of this? No. All we get from him are the usual. Lies, lies, and more lies. The man can't open his mouth and a lie falls out, which he sucked out of Karl Rove's ass the night before.
It’s an abdication of responsibility last seen in the governments of Caligula and Nero.
Impeachment. Jeez, that’s not enough. In any other epoch, there’d probably be some kind of military tribunal court-martial thing. In our country, the whole nation deserves to be court-martialed. We have completely destroyed another country. For what? Not even Bush or Cheney could tell you straight anymore, even if they wanted to. They’ve probably forgotten by now that originally, hyped up by the quick success of the Afghan War, they thought the Iraq invasion would net them a friendly puppet regime under Chalabi, who’d give their Texas oil buddies the exploration rights that Saddam gave to the Russians and Chinese. And also score us 14 big fat military bases which the Pentagon are still building in Iraq, from which they hoped to rule the Middle East. There's about us much chance of that happening as Paris Hilton making a videotape of her and Bill Frist doing each other doggie-style.
And what did Bush/Cheney get besides billions for their cronies? Thousands of dead American soldiers, this October closing in on 100 killed and another 400 wounded, the worst month ever -- plus 665,000 dead Iraqis.
What they got was blood on their hands, buckets and rivers and Niagara Falls of it.
This is what your President has done, America. This is what your country has done. Your President refuses to acknowledge any responsibility. He’ll never have the guts to do it.
So the question we as a nation have to ask ourselves is this: will we?