Damn! What a Week (and it’s only Wednesday) By William Bowles

4 February 2004

Hard to know where to begin what with Blair desperately seeking solutions. Kay, Jones, Powell and co, all spilling the beans (not, I add of the ricin kind) and jumping ship in what now looks remarkably like a total rout for the imperium. Blair protests in Parliament that Saddam’s ‘plans’ are pretty much the same thing as actually having the weapons (gasps of disbelief) and then not content with this, he goes on to say that ‘battlefield weapons’ are actually WMDs but by another name (more gasps of disbelief).

He then refuses point blank to entertain the idea of actually investigating whether or not it was right to go to war. But then if I was a Bliar like he is, I wouldn’t want anybody nosing around in my dirty closet either.

The Independent’s ‘scoop’, the interview with the former intelligence chief, Brian Jones really blows the lid off the entire mess, but never fear, Blair will (and already has) started to shift the goal posts from WMDs being the reason for the invasion to one of ‘well he had to go anyway’. Issues like lying and deception are, according to Blair, not really relevant in his world of real politik.

And more talk by the pundits about this “being the biggest crisis confronting the state since Suez” and well they might because it is. If I was a betting person, I’d put money on Blair being history by the summer as his megalomania is such a serious threat to the state, that he’ll have to go before the edifice called the state, collapses.

Yet amazingly, in spite of the entire shebang coming off the rails there are still people (one of whom shall now be named) trying to justify the obscene enterprise. Enter one Johann Hari, opinionator extraordinaire of the Independent who in his column on 04/02/04 has this to say on the subject of the invasion of Iraq under the heading “The weapons were never the best reason for war” so he’s come up with some pretty amazing alternatives for us to mull over starting with:

“The best case for war was always that the Iraqi people wanted and needed an outside force to depose Saddam, because his tyranny was so vicious they couldn’t do it themselves.”

It’s a pity nobody (including the excreable Hari) ever bothered to ask the Iraqi people whether they wanted the shit bombed out of their country, polluted with uranium, have its infrastructure destroyed and have it occupied it for the foreseeable future. But above all else, what Hari reveals is his racist, patronising attitudes toward people who ain’t white like he is, people who are according to Hari, unable to make decisions for themselves. Instead they need people like Hari, Blair and Bush to make the decisions for them.

He then goes on to tell us that the next ‘reason’ was:

“…a projection of American power to ensure that other countries fell into line with US security demands.”

How ‘US security demands’ square with Hari’s (and ergo the US’) professed concern for the Iraqis is not explained, except the following unproven and unsubstantiated claims that Hari makes:

“…[T]here was a real concern about Saddam developing WMD over time not the least because the sanctions regime was falling apart. The fact that he was sitting on so much of the world’s much-needed oil supplies made this especially dangerous.”

Gulp! Well what does one say to this tripe? Sanctions, according to Hans Blix and the UN were working, that’s a recorded fact. The inspectors were ordered out by the US. Sanctions regime falling apart? The sanctions plus years of bombing had effectively reduced one of the most developed economies in the Middle East to penury. Developing WMD over time? Well really Hari, after the ‘revelations’ of the past week, all I can say is you must have been asleep at the wheel. But the last claim about the “much-needed oil” reveals his real attitude toward Iraq as it’s clear he regards the oil not as belonging to Iraq but to the West as it’s “needed” by the world (read the West). Well at least we now know for sure which side Hari’s on and that all his talk about Saddam’s tyranny is merely a sideshow.

But wait, there’s much, much more from this reactionary who has the nerve to call himself a ‘socialist’. He then goes on to tell us in some kind of weird reversal of reality that the third reason for invading Iraq is because:

“The Americans were aware that their policy of fostering and supporting a culture of tyranny in the Middle East had bred psychotic political movements like Al-Qa’ida. The political slum created by America had to be cleared and Iraq seemed as good a place to start as any.”

Now let me get this right; after installing Saddam in 1963 (after two failed attempts), arming him and ‘egging him on’ to invade Iran, it was now time to get rid of him? Is Hari saying that the US wasn’t aware that it had created and supported a ‘political slum’ (we’ll not go into the nature of this phrase considering the political slum that produced the invasion) for forty years but then one morning it woke up and realised what it had done and had a sudden attack of conscience? This is pure ahistorical nonsense and factually untrue. It avoids any investigation of why the US propped up a series of dictatorships not only in the Middle East but all over the planet, or perhaps Hari has, like his ‘hero’ Tony Blair, access to secret documents nobody else is allowed to see.

Amazing stuff but when we read the next reason that forms part of Hari’s fantasy, an even more bizarre justification surfaces:

“Finally, the shifting of American troops to Iraq from Saudi Arabia, only possible because of the war, has ended the provocation of US troops on “holy soil” – thus ensuring that the key grievance voiced by Osama bin Laden has been dealt with. Any investigation into WMD has to be seen in this context.”

Talk about grasping at straws! So the invasion was really about relocating US troops to Iraq because the Americans didn’t want to continue to offend the rulers of the worst of the “political slums” in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia and because it was pissing off Osama. And even though many observers say that the invasion of Iraq has actually increased the chances of terrorism, Hari claims that by invading Iraq Osama’s key grievance has been ‘”dealt with”? This is pure madness, but then it occurs to me that perhaps this is a spoof column that somehow ‘escaped’ from the ‘Onion’ except theirs is a whole lot funnier.

And according to Hari’s ‘logic’, the US (led of course by the noble and heavily armed and flack-jacketed Hari) should be occupying Riad about now as part of its mission to rid the Middle East of yet another “tyranny”. Hmm, hell will freeze over before Hari hauls his tired arse anywhere near a real fight. Much safer to tell others what’s best for them.

What seems to escape the irrational Hari is that all his so-called arguments cancel each other out. He would have done much better to stick to the ‘political slum’ approach rather than pile on all this other nonsense. But then what can one expect from someone who is totally ignorant of the facts and totally ignorant of history. This is semi-literate writing and not worthy even of the columns of the Independent.

Look there’s even more of Hari’s awful, nonsensical garbage but it hardly seems worth dealing with the rest of it, except for the fact that Hari needs to be called to task for writing such rubbish. And what’s just as important is why the Independent chooses to give this imbecile and his irrational rantings column space? It just reinforces my view that today’s journalists are, by and large, ignorant louts, who have no real knowledge of the past (let alone the present) and who are complicit in the process of obscuring reality from the reader rather than illuminating the events that threaten to destroy us all.

Yet when one views our political ‘leaders’, it does make some kind of mad sense that an ignoramus like Hari supports an ignoramus like Blair, they’re one of a kind. They both deserve to be sent to the front, arm in arm, to confront all those political tyrants that the US has created over the past decades now the imperium has woken up to how badly it has behaved. So Hari, when can I look forward to reading your first report from democratic Saudi Arabia and then from other points East?

Reason for the war was that Blair needs a friend says Cooke
On the same page as the Hari we have yet another column by a more literate but equally misleading (misled or just plain balmy?) Robin Cooke, who tells us that.

“Britain joined the war because the Prime Minister wanted to prove to President Bush that Tony Blair was his best friend”

More gob-smacking journalism that in its way, is even more obscene than the ravings of Hari, for what Cooke is telling us is that an entire country has been destroyed, thousands murdered, the world thrown into chaos simply so Blair can have a friend to play with? What’s the problem Tony? Nobody wants to play with you in your backyard, so you and your ‘best friend’ Dubya had to invade somebody else’s? What a load of rubbish and what an insult to the reader’s intelligence. Yet the reality is that Cooke and his kind actually get taken seriously, that’s how ethically (not to mention intellectually) bankrupt the system has become.

The rest of Cooke’s multiple column inches is really not worth commenting on as I think the pull-quote above pretty well says it all don’t you think? All in all, it’s indicative of a dominant culture that’s completely lost the plot and is grasping at straws in a vain attempt to justify the unjustifiable. The bankruptcy of Cooke’s ‘opposition’ to the invasion is revealed in all its glory as so much hot air, not because Cooke was opposed to the invasion per se but because the ‘Labour government’ didn’t come up with a good enough excuse to justify it.

With ‘friends’ like Cooke, no wonder Blair’s hanging out with Bush. But the ‘friendship’ may not last, because in line with a long tradition of dumping your allies (eg Saddam Hussein), Bush may just have to dump Blair as being a threat to his own chances of getting reelected.

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