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Redemption Within Reach for the American Empire

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By Jason Miller

America's "strong and resolute" Commander in Chief is safely enjoying a five week vacation on his Texas ranch. Yes, that would be the ranch he owns by virtue of that silver spoon that was dangling out of his mouth as he passed down the birth canal. Following his example from Vietnam, his daughters remain stateside as Bush pontificates the nobility of the cause for which 2,000 Americans have died in Iraq. Despite his unflinching conviction, Mr. Bush lacks the courage to confront Cindy Sheehan and explain to her why her son really died. Ultimately George Bush bears the responsibility for the death of Casey Sheehan, yet he refuses to take a few minutes of his precious "R&R" to impart his wisdom to Cindy about the noble reasons for which he is putting our troops in harm's way. He owes her and the rest of America an answer, but this Evangelical crusader cannot summon the mettle to meet with her on his own doorstep.

Your lies are revealed and your cover is blown

Support for the war continues to wane. According to a recent poll conducted by the highly respected, non-partisan Pew Research Center, 51% of Americans believe that Bush deliberately misled the public about whether or not Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction (the primary justification for initiating the war). 58% of Americans now believe that the US will not be able to establish a democratic, stable government in Iraq (the notion that the US would establish the Iraqi government underscores the imperialistic nature of America's intentions). Only 43% of Americans are now predicting a victory in Iraq. It is time to start bringing our troops home to safety and to stop the senseless slaughter of Iraqi civilians (the "collateral damage").

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Since Saddam Hussein had no weapons of mass destruction and no ties to Osama bin Laden, why have 2,000 Americans and at least 15,000 innocent Iraqi civilians died in Iraq? One could justify the American cause by stating that we toppled a brutal dictator who committed genocide against the Kurds (native Iraqis), but Hussein was a US ally while he was committing these atrocities (until Bush the First duped him into invading Kuwait so the US could justify the Gulf War against Iraq). Besides, there are multiple nations in the grips of ruthless autocrats who are committing murders and atrocities, and America is not rushing to the aid of those innocent victims. In fact, the United States government has installed and supported many murderous regimes throughout its history. In the paradigm of the Global Empire of the United States, abuse of power and murder is acceptable as long as it coincides with American economic and military interests. Why the sudden pangs of concern about the plight of the Iraqi people under Saddam, Mr. Bush?

The Grimm truth

If fairy tales were true, the United States would be involved in the truly noble cause of "spreading freedom", and America would have "firmly planted the flag of liberty" in Iraq. However, reality keeps rearing its ugly head to mock the Neocons and their fiction that the US is an altruistic, benevolent super-power sowing the seeds of democracy in the Middle East. For openers, consider the deaths of thousands of innocent Iraqis resulting from "collateral damage" inflicted by the American military. Bestowing a "better government" as an altruistic gesture would not involve obscene and scandalous profits for members of the military industrial complex like Bechtel and Halliburton, would it? What spiritually aware human being could overlook the widespread Iraqi civilian suffering and death caused by the brutal economic sanctions the US spear-headed for 10 years prior to the war and perpetuated by the American invasion and occupation? How about the Neocon's use of lies and defiance of the UN to initiate the invasion? Torture and abuse of prisoners of war are not characteristic actions of a nation "spreading freedom" or planting a "flag of liberty". Tragically, as was the case with Vietnam, there will be no happy ending to the "Tale of the Iraqi Invasion". Suffering, war, terror, and death are the bitter harvest the Iraqis are reaping, and the flag firmly planted in their soil is one of economic servitude to the American Empire.

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Behind the vacuous rhetoric about America "spreading freedom" lays a much more sinister motive for the Iraqi invasion. The Neocons launched the war in Iraq to begin implementing the Bush Doctrine, their strategy to advance US global domination. Invasion and occupation of Iraq afforded them what they believed would be a "soft target" (obviously someone forgot to account for the challenges of "post war" Iraq) to engage the four principles of their grand blueprint. They exercised preemption by invading a country which they deemed a threat to the United States. Acting in opposition to the United Nations, they attacked Iraq unilaterally. Placing over 100,000 American troops in harm's way, they placed Congress in a moral Catch-22 as they demanded billions of additional dollars to perpetuate the American military's "strength beyond challenge". Despite their constituency's growing opposition to the war, Congress could hardly deny American troops the funding they needed. To complete the "quadrifecta" of principles forming the bedrock of the Bush Doctrine, the Neocons are carrying out their morally despicable invasion and occupation under the guise of "promoting democracy and freedom".

It is critical to note that the chief architects of the Bush Doctrine, which ensures that the poor and working class of America were (and will continue to be) thrust into the inferno of war, found ways to evade conscription into service during previous US imperialistic endeavors. Bush, Cheney, "Scooter" Libby, Karl Rove, and Paul Wolfowitz each sat safely on the sidelines during the Vietnam invasion, which claimed the lives of 58,000 Americans (and an estimated 3 million Vietnamese). Donald Rumsfeld rested comfortably in his dorm room at Princeton while 37,000 Americans died in Korea (with an estimated 2.5 million Koreans). As a vehement opponent of US imperialistic wars, I would laud them for choosing not to participate in those wars were it not for the fact that now that they are ineligible for military service (and enjoy more security than any humans on the planet), they use the poor and working class as disposable components of their military industrial machine to advance US corporate and plutocratic interests. While one could argue that the current military personnel joined voluntarily, it is quite reasonable to conclude that most US soldiers did not sign on to die for the expansion of an imperialistic empire and the further enrichment of America's elite.

"We the People" still have a voice

On September 24, United for Peace and Justice (http://unitedforpeace.org/) and International ANSWER (http://www.internationalanswer.org/) will orchestrate a non-violent march to the White House (involving an anticipated hundreds of thousands of advocates for peace and social justice). The participants will make the following demands upon the administration:

1. Stop the war in Iraq

2. End colonial occupation from Iraq to Palestine to Haiti

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3. Support the Palestinian People's Right of Return

4. Stop the threats against Venezuela, Cuba, Iran, and North Korea

5. US out of the Philippines and Puerto Rico

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Jason Miller, Senior Editor and Founder of TPC, is a tenacious forty something vegan straight edge activist who lives in Kansas and who has a boundless passion for animal liberation and anti-capitalism. Addicted to reading and learning, he is mostly (more...)

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