Category Archives: Just War

NEW COLUMN: No Pardons For Neocon War Crimes (Part 2)

Foreign Policy, Intelligence, Iraq, Just War, Morality, Neoconservatism, The State, War

NEW COLUMN, “No Pardons For Neocon War Crimes” (Part 2), is on WND.COM and The Unz Review.

An excerpt:

“HOW does America change if our intelligence agencies were more accurate in their assessment of Saddam Hussein’s chemical and nuclear weapons programs?”

The question was posed, just the other day, in “Make America Competent Again,” by David French, at the Dispatch, a neoconservative website. The tract is an agony aunt’s meander that calls on shoring-up competency in state and civil society.

But first: Dissecting, deconstructing and exposing the neoconservative mindset and machinations matters. The reason is this:

Thanks to President Trump, neoconservatives are not exactly having a moment—they’re down in the doldrums. But they’ll be back. For neoconservatives and liberal interventionists make up the Permanent State. The ideology the likes of David French, formerly of National Review, and his ilk promote—foreign-policy bellicosity, endless immigration, mindless consumerism, racial shaming, “canceling” of deviationists and conformity to an American identity that’s been melted away in vats of multiculturalism—is in our country’s bone marrow, by now.

Therefore, the fighting words in response to French’s framing of the invasion of Iraq as a mere glitch in intelligence are these:

Oh no you don’t, you so-and-so!!

No creedal neoconservative should be able to get away with the claim that a problem of criminality is really just a problem of competency.

You’d think that a military man like Mr. French would know that fixing problems rests on defining them with precision. Recasting state corruption and war crimes as incompetence cures neither state crimes nor incompetence.

America’s war on Iraq was a war crime, plain and simple. It was a reflexive collaboration between elements in a vast, by now familiar, intelligence bureaucracy, comprised of neoconservative and liberal interventionists, whose aim was to help The Powers that Be pulverize a country, Iraq, for the purpose of making it over in the image of America.

Contra Mr. French, the war on Iraq cannot be reduced to systemic incompetence. Anyone who doggedly tracked and documented the ramp up to war, as this column did, can attest that the United States bullied its way to war, monomaniacally. …

… READ THE REST. NEW COLUMN, “No Pardons For Neocon War Crimes” (Part 2), is on WND.COM and The Unz Review.

Using Wall Money To Bomb Syria

Constitution, Debt, Homeland Security, IMMIGRATION, Just War, Nationhood, Reason, War

No idea why bootlickers are elevating Laura Ingraham’s mild objections to the Syria strikes. It looks like what she’s saying is that “if we had the money; then OK. But we’re broke, so not now.” Tucker Carlson, on the other hand, offers principled objections to The American Way (intervening everywhere).

Sure, money is an important consideration, but it’s entirely a side issue here—Ingraham’s utilitarianism makes no appeal to the Constitution, to the War Powers Act (a bad bit of legislation, but still); not to the sovereignty of nations, or to justice. Yes, her protestation is better than nothing, but arguments like hers are dodgy.

You see, the same argument is made against The Wall. This, as we use so-called wall money to bomb Syria. Even if we had the money, we don’t have the right, really. We do, however, have the obligation to stop aggressors from entering the US—whether they wage welfare, bring in hitherto eradicated diseases, or harbor hatred for Americans that spills over into hate crimes (terrorism and racially motivated crime).

Kurdish Separatists: They Fight ISIS, But Threaten Statists

Federalism, Foreign Policy, Iraq, Just War, Middle East, Nationhood, States' Rights

The Turks lump together as terrorists both the Islamic State and the paramilitary wing of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, which is fighting ISIS. “Kurds in Iraq and Syria are among the most formidable opponents of the extremist group.” And the US agrees. Americans, after all, hate separatists. It reminds them of their lost right of secession, removed by force by Abe Lincoln. Born of a loose confederation of independent states, Americans now favor a strong, overweening central state, and they want to see the same in the tribal lands of the Middle East.

Turkey’s military has been ramping up attacks on Kurdish separatists since last month. The government decided to join the U.S.-led military campaign against Islamic State while simultaneously launching assaults on the PKK, which is listed as a terrorist organization by the U.S. and Turkey.

MORE.

#IraqWar Liars: We Knew Then What We Know Now

Bush, Iraq, Journalism, Just War, Media, Republicans, WMD

“Iraq Liars & Deniers: We Knew Then What We Know Now” is the current column, now on WND. An excerpt:

“If we knew what we know today, we would not have gone into Iraq”: This is as good an apology Republicans vying for the highest office are willing to offer, 12 years after launching a war that was immoral and unjust from the inception—as some of us pointed out from the inception—cost trillions in treasure, tens of thousands of lives (American and Iraqi), and flouted America’s national interests.

The big reveal began with Jeb Bush, who told anchor Megyn Kelly that knowing what we know now about Iraq, he would absolutely still have invaded Iraq. Broadcaster Laura Ingraham was having none of it. With the benefit of hindsight, she had arrived at the belated conclusion that the invasion was wrong. Ingraham suggested that Bush III was insane for sticking to his guns about Iraq.

Next to disgrace was Sen. Marco Rubio, also in the running. Six weeks back, Rubio had been unrepentant about the catastrophic invasion. After The Shaming of Jeb, Rubio changed his tune.

The title of Judith Chalabi Miller’s “rehab book tour” is, “If we knew what we now know … .” Over the pages of the New York Times, Miller, the Gray Lady’s prized reporter had shilled for the Iraq war like there was no tomorrow. In her reporting, she channeled Ahmad Chalabi, an Iraqi conman who fed the moronic Miller with misinformation and lies about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction (WMD). The other conman was Bush II, president at the time. His administration assisted Miller—a woman already prone to seeing faces in the clouds—to tune-out and become turned-on and hot for war (also the title of a January 2003, “Return To Reason” column). No tale was too tall for our Judith; no fabrication too fantastic.

Miller’s “mistakes,” and those of America’s news cartel, are no laughing matter. But it took a Comedy Central icon to deconstruct her national bid for redemption. The fact that others were on board, Republicans and Democrats, is not exculpatory. Idiocy is bipartisan. Not everybody got it wrong. Miller and her ilk chose not to consult those who got it right.

Miller had company. The Fox News war harpies were certainly a dream come true for many American men. Who cared about honest reporting or basic fact-checking when a heaving bosom is yelling from the screen, “Sock it to Saddam, Dubya!”?

In any event, the meme, “If we knew what we know now, we would not have gone to war in Iraq,” is false; a lie. We most certainly knew what we know now as far back as 2002, which was when this column wrote:

Iraq is a secular dictatorship profoundly at odds with Islamic fundamentalism. No less an authority than the former head of the CIA’s counterterrorism office, Vincent Cannistraro, stated categorically that there was no evidence of Iraq’s links to al-Qaeda. Even the putative Prague meeting between Mohamed Atta, the ringleader of Sept. 11, and Iraqi intelligence, turned out to be bogus. … Iraq has been 95-percent disarmed and has no weapons of mass destruction, an assessment backed by many experts in strategic studies.

The column excerpted was published on September 19, 2002, in Canada’s national newspaper. On that day, the flirty notes and the gracious dinner invitations from America’s leading neoconservatives ceased.

Indeed, there were many experts, credible ones, who categorically rejected the contention that there were WMD in Iraq. But they were silenced …

Read the rest. “Iraq Liars & Deniers: We Knew Then What We Know Now” is now on WND.