INDEX - WAR & PEACE ID#0717-16



POSTED: 15 MAY 2007 - 1:30pm HST

3,500 Strikes and You're Out

by Jonathan Jay 10 May 2007

Contrary to the opinions of they vast majority, the Cheney-led Iraq Campaign has been and continues to be a tremendous success - of biblical proportions in fact. If you don't find this to be true, you have just not been to the right parties.

Is the American experiment in Empire paying off? Yes it is - but only for the few. We are all paying, they can't stop playing - with our money, millions of lives and the world as their toy. The productive sectors of our economy are flat or falling, but destruction surges, stock-markets shoot through the stratosphere, and pentagon spending soars into the heavens. Is something wrong with this picture?

Hundreds of Billions of dollars in public assets have been liquidated, poured into the pockets of a handful of NeoCons, and their Military Corporate Contractor Masters. Iraq has been decimated: 1 million dead, 4 million refugees bombed or shot out of their homes, nations on the brink of a world war four... all to secure command and control of the 'geo-strategic' petro-resources of the region; the black industrial blood; Oil. What is wrong with this picture?

It has become clear that those who use fear and division as a means to their ends, are ending much more in their pursuit of Imperial Expansion and tax free Corporate Profit. Over 3 1/2 thousand American service men & women have lost their lives. The civil rights of 300 million Americans have been 'locked up for our safety', and our Democratic Republic is mutating strictly into a billionaire-controlled Mega-Media elephant and pony show. Something IS wrong with this picture - we keep watching.

Let us end this nightmare, for there is no mending.

If congress can't pull the plug, the American Taxpayer needs to do the deed. I recall from Social Studies classes as a kid something about 'No Taxation Without Representation.' Does this ring any liberty bells? Here is a pop quiz: If you want the war to end, why should you pay taxes if Congress fails to represent you by giving your money to an unelected 'War Time President' to fund the 'Forever War'? The correct answer: Only you know.

Honestly, this war is like the kid who just won't come home from 'playing out in the field' even though it is already dark outside, and it's long since past time to come home and clean up. Wouldn't it be great if America could 'come home and clean up'? I also to recall a story of a disobedient boy who drove drunk, wrecked the family car, and told his parents to 'stuff it' when they tried to call him to task. Push-over parents. Does this sound familiar? It should - that boy was George and Barbara Bush's eldest son, George W... and evidently, he still is. Have you been a push-over tax payer? For how long will you remain a push-over tax payer?

Perhaps now is a good time for some very, very, very tough love.

Three and a half thousand strikes - you're out. This ain't no game.



POSTED: 14 MAY 2007 - 9:30pm HST

Iraqi Parliamentarians Sign Withdrawal Petition

"Down U.S.A" on a wall in the small Iraqi town of Mahmudia about 20 kilometers south of Baghdad

They Want Us Out
by Tom Hayden on 14 May 2007 in The Huffington Post

In an historic step, the besieged Iraqi parliament has taken a stand against the US occupation and for a rapid withdrawal of American troops. This is the perfect opportunity for a face-saving and orderly US withdrawal based on the request of a sovereign government. To reject the offer would paint the US as a naked imperialism without a fig leaf of legitimacy.Some crucial details of the parliamentary call remain murky.

First, 144 parliamentarians have signed a petition that has yet to be translated into legislation. Second, to the dismay of some in the peace movement, the timeline for withdrawal is unsettled but sure to be one year or even longer. In interviews with Iraqi parliamentarians last summer, the consensus favored two simultaneous timelines: one for withdrawal and another for "fixing the problems" caused by the occupation. That will not change. And third, under the Iraqi constitution it appears that any measure on this subject passed by a majority of those present and voting has the force of law.

Iraq therefore is on the brink of officially setting in motion the end of its occupation.

What is most puzzling is the blindness of the mainstream media, the White House and the military to these developments. As if the measure isn't very fit to print, the New York Times reported the petition on page A6 with no emphasis on its implications. Last December the Washington Post reported that the signature count had reached 131, but only in passing. Back in mid-2005 when the petition first surfaced with 82 signatures, it was reported only in Knight-Ridder. The Institute for Policy Studies later estimated that approximately 102 MPs had signed on.

But trees fall in the forest whether reported or not. The Iraqi people, aside from the secession-bent Kurds, have wanted the US out of their country for at least three years, in percentages ranging from two-thirds to 80 percent, with 61 percent claiming a right to national resistance through armed struggle. This news, never reported in headlines, is the underlying basis for the elected parliament's stance. In fact, the CIA warned that Iraq's first elections might produce a mandate for withdrawal, a warning characterized by the Times as "grim" news.

But the convergence between the US Congressional majority and the Iraqi parliamentary majority is grim only for the occupation. It is a moment when more Americans might learn what the Iraqis already know, that formal democracy becomes a sham when it conflicts with military and economic occupation. The war cannot long continue with such feeble public support in both countries. Even if a two-year deadline becomes official, a "decent interval" so to speak, it will accelerate the momentum towards ending the occupation on the ground.
Who will want to die ten days, or even ten months, before withdrawal is officially concluded?

What American parent will want their kid to risk death in Iraq now that their parliament wants us out?

If the Iraqis demand that we leave, what case is left for protecting them from themselves?

The peace movement, the Congress, and even the Baker-Hamilton group should seize on this news in pressing the case for withdrawal. Anyone who favors "staying the course" is overriding the democratic will of both the American and Iraqi people.

see also
Island Breath: Feingold on Iraq
Island Breath: End War Petition
Island Breath: The Cyclops has no Loincloth 1/2007
Island Breath: Get out of Iraq Now 1/2007
Island Breath: It a Civil War 2/2006
Island Breath: Iraq Conspiracy 2/2006
Island Breath: End Iraq War 1/2006
Island Breath: Tell Bush War is Over 8/2005
Island Breath: Bring Troops Home 7/2005