Bu-lat-lat (boo-lat-lat) verb: to search, probe, investigate, inquire; to unearth facts
Volume 3, Number 17 June 1 - 7, 2003 Quezon City, Philippines
Bush Lied and Soldiers Died
appears the Bush administration was well aware of these facts, but proceeded to
use "diplomacy" to convince the American people, and anyone else
without shouting distance, that Iraq was an imminent threat to the U.S. and its
allies. Unfortunately for Mr. Bush, this deception left a trail.
the war and in his address to the United Nations, Colin Powell asserted in no
uncertain terms that Saddam Hussein had stockpiled massive amounts of chemical
and biological weapons and was prepared to use them at the first available
opportunity. Vice-President Dick Cheney went so far as to say that,
"he (Saddam) has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons." Ari
Fleischer also promised reporters on multiple occasions that weapons of mass
destruction are "what this war is about." And in an interview
with Al Jazeera, Donald Rumsfeld plainly stated that the war, "is about
weapons of mass destruction. It is unquestionably about that."
along the line, this rhetoric came to a grinding halt. Several weeks have now
passed since the end of the war, and WMD's have yet to be found in Iraq.
Specialized teams of engineers, scientists, and intelligence agents have been
searching for these weapons since the outbreak of war, yet have been unable to
locate even the slightest trace of chemical and biological weapons.
(Nuclear weapons were essentially dismissed as a possibility sometime before the
the greater scheme of things, the War on Iraq was assumed to be part of the much
larger "War on Terrorism." It is disappointing, then, to learn that
the U.S. military occupying Iraq has not found any terrorists, weapons for
terrorists, money for terrorists, or any possible connection between Al Qaeda
and the now dissipated government of Iraq. If the War on Iraq was a remedy
for the growing threat of terrorism to the U.S., one could easily conclude our
mission was a dismal failure.
Saddam Hussein's military provided hardly any resistance to US forces when the
invasion began, thus proving that Iraq posed no danger to the U.S. or any of its
allies. Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV) stated, "What has become painfully
clear in the aftermath of war is that Iraq was no immediate threat to the U.S.
Ravaged by years of sanctions, Iraq did not even lift an airplane against us.
Iraq's threatening fleet of unmanned drones about which we heard so much morphed
into one prototype made of plywood and string. Their missiles proved to be
outdated and of limited range. Their army was quickly overwhelmed by our
technology and our well trained troops."
rebuilding of Iraq is also developing into a significant embarrassment for the
Bush administration. In a Senate meeting with Paul Wolfowitz, Sen. Christopher
Dodd, (D-CN) said, "It is very hard to fathom what the administration's
strategy is with respect to the immediate stabilization of the situation, let
alone the longer-term reconstruction of Iraq." Sen. Richard Lugar, (R-IN)
head of Senate Foreign Relations Committee, stated, "The planning for peace
was much less developed than the planning for war." Sen. Chuck Hagel,
(R-NE) also remarked, "we may have underestimated or mischaracterized the
challenges of establishing security and rebuilding Iraq."
great deal of animosity is also evolving out of a disastrous situation in
Afghanistan, where the last few weeks have yielded a great deal of unfortunate
news. A British aid worker recently reported that, "The country is on
its knees: roads, bridges, tunnels, schools, homes, hospitals, and farmlands are
reduced to rubble and dust. Only 5% of the rural population have access to
clean water, 17% have access to medical services, 13% have access to education,
25% of all children are dead by the age of five."
Afghanistan has now regained its title as the world's largest opium producer.
Opium, according to the Bush administration, provided enormous funding for some
of the terrorist organizations responsible for 9/11. The Taliban have also
recently taken responsibility for several killings involving U.S. soldiers,
Afghan soldiers, and Afghan civilians. Amazingly, as of today, the United States
military controls just one city.
the interim, the Al Qaeda terrorist network has reorganized its command
structure and is flagrantly boasting that it is stronger than ever before.
Jonathan Stevenson, senior fellow for counter-terrorism at London's
International Institute for Strategic Studies said, "The US war on Iraq
gave Al Qaeda the opportunity to reinvigorate its weakened terrorist network
with new recruits and more funding. The Iraq war clearly increased the
terrorist impulse." Paul Wilkinson, head of the Center for the Study
of Terrorism and Political Violence also stated, "The political masters in
the US and Europe underestimated the extent to which bin Laden would use the war
in Iraq as a propaganda weapon to rejuvenate the movement and attract more
funds. As far as the war against Al Qaeda goes, it possibly has been
counterproductive. We face turbulent times ahead."
events suggest this line of reasoning is legitimate. Saudi Arabia and Morocco
were rocked by terrorist bombings last week, and the Israeli-Palestinian
conflict is continuing to produce incessant terrorism from each side. The
Pentagon has also reported that Al Qaeda leaders are coordinating terrorist
attacks from Iran; regime change is now under consideration. Furthermore,
Osama bin Laden continues to traverse the world as a free man. Saddam
Hussein, the anthrax killer, and the senior leadership of Al Qaeda are also
evading the "resolve" of Mr. Bush. And for whatever reason, the
Homeland Security Department has recently raised the America's terror alert to
considering present circumstances, it appears that the U.S. is, by any logical
standard of measurement, losing the War on Terrorism. Just a brief review
of events from the world stage should provide even the most credulous American
with incontrovertible proof that the world is not a safer place since Mr. Bush
took office. The international community, and specifically the Arab world,
has never been more candid about their contempt for US policy.
it is an incontestable fact that the gigantic chore undertaken by the United
States Military, the State Department, the Pentagon, and U.S. intelligence
agencies to invade and occupy Iraq has not yielded one single victory in the War
on Terrorism. Mr. Bush's strategy to combat terror was undoubtedly doomed
to fail from the beginning. Military force was his one and only answer to the
events of 9/11, and despite massive increases in defense spending and a
budget-busting war in Iraq, America has nothing to show for its efforts in the
War on Terrorism. These immense costs, coupled with Mr. Bush's
trillion-dollar tax cut package, are directly responsible for what is now the
biggest budget deficit in United States history.
America's economy continues to nosedive, the gap between the haves and have-nots
will most assuredly widen. Concurrently, less and less funding will be
delivered to places like Afghanistan and Iraq, where our failure to establish a
structured government system is producing harsh criticism from the United
Nations. As these countries and the surrounding areas continue to suffer,
Al Qaeda will assuredly prosper. Fueled by disdain for U.S. international
policy, new recruits for the terrorist networks of the world will join the fight
against what they believe is an ungodly, aggressor nation. Our government,
and specifically the Bush administration, bears responsibility for this
upheaval, and should begin taking immediate steps to ameliorate the suffering
caused by U.S. led military combat.
Francis lives in Jacksonville, Florida. He can be reached at email@example.com
May 31, 2003