Archive for the ‘BUSH AS WAR CRIMINAL’ Tag

JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: SHOE-THROWING MUNTADHAR AL-ZEIDI RELEASED FROM JAIL IN IRAQ: A HERO FOR OUR TIME   Leave a comment

JOHN CHUCKMAN
 
POSTED RESPONSE TO A COLUMN IN TORONTO’S GLOBE AND MAIL

Muntadhar al-Zeidi will always be a genuinely heroic figure.

Bush was never in any danger from the shoes, but that brave man spoke eloquently for a great part of the world with his one brief act.

Think of all the cowards in “the Land of the Free” who never made any genuine, meaningful protest against mass murder in their names.

And here, in a country that remains anything but free, a country shattered by American military brutality, one man made the only meaningful gesture in eight years against a genuine war criminal.

JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: SEEKING EXCUSES FOR BUSH’S AND BLAIR’S WAR CRIMES – INVASION OF IRAQ AND WAR CRIMES AND THE STUNTING OF GENUINE EMERGING DEMOCRACY   Leave a comment

JOHN CHUCKMAN
 

POSTED RESPONSES TO A COLUMN BY DANIEL FINKELSTEIN IN THE TIMES

I can’t agree, Daniel.

Tony Blair is the perfect example of a politician lacking real ethics, not ready to stand up for anything in the face of a challenge.

He knew Bush was lying. He knew Bush was forging evidence. He knew Bush was a man incapable of reliable and logical thinking.

But he went along anyway because that was the easy thing to do.

America can bring – and does in such cases – immense behind-the-scenes pressure on a government to go its way, through finances, trade, diplomacy, and favored status.

And the opposite is true too: there are personal rewards for going along. Blair’s entire set of sinecures in retirement are examples of this.

Many, like Canada’s Chretien, were able to resist joining in this vast war crime – for that is what the Iraq invasion is, a war crime.

But Blair was not, and I’m afraid you are weaving a fantasy explanation of his shameful behavior.

America and Britain have killed more Iraqis and destroyed the lives of more who lived than Hussein ever dreamed of doing.

Iraq, an advanced Arab state, would have naturally moved towards a more democratic future with the passing of Hussein. That’s the experience of the entire Western, advanced world.

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John Swaine,

You do appear to know too little history to engage in a debate like this.

The cases are countless of offspring who do not manage to do what their dictator fathers did.

We see this phenomenon, too, in wealthy families. Often the second or third generation loses the family fortune or sinks into a humdrum existence.

But most important is you also do not understand the way in which democracy evolved in Europe.

Once a large middle class is established in a country through sustained economic growth – something that took a few centuries in Europe – there are many people with influence who no longer see their interests being represented by an autocrat.

And Iraq was prosperous and growing. A flourishing middle class was in the making. Now many have been killed, others deprived of employment, and many, many have left the country. It is an economic disaster.

And please try to avoid unwarranted characterizations like “studiously ignores.” They only make you seem small.

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Craig,

You really should know the words to the song before you get up to sing.

There have been several reliable studies done of excess Iraqi mortality. Two of these were done by highly qualified people, and they were published in peer-reviewed journals. One found 650,000 deaths owing to the war; the other found 400,000.

Then there were the thousands maimed, the hundreds of thousands who lost their employment, and the two million who emigrated.

And don’t forget the ghastly destruction of some of the world’s most precious ancient artifacts.

The United States has always kept its own estimates quiet so as not to disturb complacent people who don’t seek information, just as it did in the first Gulf War when it slaughtered tens of thousands of Iraqi conscripts by carpet-bombing their pitiful sand redoubts in the desert. It then bull-dozed over the mass graves.

Then there were the tens of thousands of Iraqi children who perished in a long, brutal embargo.

Today the poisonous dust from depleted uranium shells is all over Iraq, and it will kill for generations to come.

America’s treatment of Iraq is a total and unqualified disaster.