June 8, 2003
Robin Cook is a great American! Actually he's British, but in the absence of American public figures with the courage to speak plain logic and truth against liars who abuse their awesome power, Americans may have to settle for Brits to champion the people. Former Blair ally and cabinet member and foreign minister Robin Cook is telling the awful truth about the deception and fraud of the Bush administration in its efforts to drag the world with it on its invasion and occupation of Iraq.
Cook's piece in The LA Times doesn't pussyfoot around in the manner Americans have become used to in their own politicians and media. Rumsfeld lied, and it wasn't even a believable lie. But the administration was arrogant enough to think it could get over on pure power, whether the lie had the slightest credibility or not. It's become used to getting its way that way in the US, where it is never challenged by its own compliant media or its wimpy "opposition" party.
When none of the alleged massive stockpiles of weapons were found in Iraq, Rumsfeld just said Saddam Hussein must have destroyed them on the eve of the invasion -- as Cook points out, a most implausible explanation, that he would destroy his means of defense just as he was being attacked. Why? To hear Rumsfeld tell it, that snaky Saddam just did it to embarass his old friend Don Rumsfeld. Suicide is always a good way to sock it to your old friends.
But Cook isn't buying it, and maybe finally some American politicians will get brave enough to argue against the logic of a two-year-old being used to justify international crime. Anyone applying rudimentary logic could have proven the invalidity of the Bush administration arguments, if anyone had cared to. Certainly American politicians and media were not willing to.
The alleged chemical weapons have a shelf life of a few years at best, more like a few weeks in the case of the poor quality material the Iraqis had in 1991 according to the Pentagon. The Americans were saying we know he has them because he had them in 1991 and we know because we provided him with them. But the weapons of 1991 have long-since expired and the Americans knew it. They just "settled on weapons of mass destruction" as Wolfowitz put it, because it was expedient to justify their aggression. Maybe not so expedient in the long run, if their lies to justify war finally catch up to them. People died, including Americans. Americans are still dying over this fiasco.
But if the American political establishment continues to show no backbone and no integrity, the Bush administration may get away with it again, and proceed farther, into Iran as Rumsfeld advocates, and into a more totalitarian state at home as Ashcroft advocates.
But the chorus of outrage is rising now, and if it gains critical mass even the spineless American politicians and media may finally join the herd. They may have to.
Because Americans were not willing to stand up to the criminal activities of their own politicians, it has fallen to the rest of the world to do it. The "coalition of the willing" is freaking out. Blair's government is imploding over the issue and now there are waves in Spain. A Spanish judge is being asked to file charges against the US officers responsible for killing journalists in the Palestine Hotel, which was supposed to be in a safe zone. (See The Asia Times.)
Once again, those in other countries are not so compliant. History shows repeatedly that when you give in to tyrants, they only push farther, until they finally meet resistance. The resistance against the Bush fascists failed in the US. So they pushed farther and tried to apply their same arrogant illogic to justify their crimes in the rest of the world, a world they understand only in the most primitive terms. They've created havoc, and now it may finally be coming back to bite them.
Going after Martha Stewart is "distinctly unsatisfying," says the Madison Capital Times, when there are so much more worthy rogues on the loose. Ken Lay comes to mind immediately, and even the corporate Pravda AOL asked, "Why Martha and not Ken?". Kenny Boy is George W.'s friend, of course, and provided Dubya with a corporate jet for his campaign for president. Never mind that it was with money stolen from Enron's employees, from consumers being ripped off by manipulated energy prices in California, from taxpayers who shouldered Enron's share of the tax burden, and from others around who were victims of Enron schemes around the world. But what about George W. himself? His selling of his Harken stock just before the company reported massive losses was a far more egregious case of insider trading than Martha is guilty of. Bush was on the board. He could not pretend not to know what had already been reported to the board. Why not indict George W. Bush?