Written by Chris Floyd
Michael Schwartz paints a picture of what Barack Obama and John McCain have both called the "success" of George W. Bush's "surge" in Iraq. Indeed, Obama has stated that the "surge" -- the euphemism immediately adopted by the entire press and political establishment for what used be known in plain English as an "escalation" -- has "succeeded beyond our wildest dreams": a mighty strong endorsement from a man who way, way back in olden times -- the cave-man days of, oh, 2006 or so -- was once perceived as "anti-war."
A rich enemy excites their cupidity; a poor one, their lust for power. East and West alike have failed to satisfy them.... To robbery, butchery, and rapine, they give the lying name of "government"; they create a desolation and call it peace.
Below are a few snapshots of the desolation that the next president of the United States -- both the likely Obama and the long-shot McCain -- calls "success." From Michael Schwartz:
Schwartz also mentions what has been one of the most morally hideous aspects of the war (aside from the mass murder and vast human suffering, of course): the American establishment's callous denigration of the very people they have ravaged and despoiled, condemning their victims for not being able to stand up with their kneecaps broken and a big jackboot on their necks:
Yes, practically the only part of the Iraq debacle highlighted in the presidential campaign has been the shiftless, thieving Iraqis' petulant refusal to spend the nest egg of oil money -- wrung from their own soil -- that has somehow ended up in American banks. Yet as Schwartz points out, "even this bounty reflects the devastation of the war":
Yet the basic trope now adopted by both parties is that all of this is now the Iraqis' responsibility. It's the Iraqis' fault. As I noted here a few weeks ago, right after Obama's aria of praise for the dreamy success of the surge:
Obama also emphasized the obscene and morally depraved position that has become the Democrat's standard line on Iraq: that the lazy, no-good Iraqis "still haven't taken responsibility" for running "their own country." The arrogance and inhumanity of this position is staggering, almost indescribable. The United States of America invaded Iraq, destroyed its society, slaughtered its citizens, drove millions from their homes, occupied the country and made itself the ultimate master and arbiter of the conquered land -- but still the Iraqis are condemned for "not taking responsibility for their own country."
You know, I'm no idealist, no ideologue; I don't demand perfection in politics, don't have a party line, don't require that candidates march in lock-step with me on every single issue. I can stomach a good deal of spin and waffling and gameplaying and hypocrisy, even a dollop of chicanery and corruption here and there; that's human nature, it's in us all. And I can understand and respect the argument that says, well, it's a horribly brutal and rapacious system we've got here, but one side might possibly mitigate some of its worst aspects and even do a bit of good around the edges, so you must go for the lesser of two evils, and so on and so forth.
But great God Almighty, shouldn't "change" -- or even slight mitigation -- be made of sterner stuff than this?