Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Lying About Iraq And Terrorism -- Australian Style

It's the same as American-style, British-style, and Afghani-style...

Australia's Prime Minister John Howard and his merry band of war criminals have been both echoing and foreshadowing American "president" George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair, and their bands of merry war criminals, in lying about Iraq, terrorism and the recently leaked and/or partially declassified National Intelligence Estimate, in which America's intelligence agencies clearly state that they are full of manure -- all of them.

Today, for your dining and dancing pleasure, we'll look at two very similar articles from Australia's The Age, in which the lying war criminals down under are given ample space to sling their manure. It's tough not to notice how similar it smells to the American and British and even Afghani varieties. Clearly the so-called leaders of all these so-called nations are reading from the very same script.

Today: September 27: Terrorism predated Iraq war, says govt
The government maintains the scourge of modern terrorism predates the war in Iraq despite an assessment from American spies that it has increased the threat from extremists.
Apparently we're not supposed to notice that the two assertions are not mutually exclusive. In other words, it is quite possible for both of them to be true at the same time. And in fact they are both true; terrorism obviously "predates the war in Iraq" but that has no bearing on the fact that the war has increased the threat from extremists.
Prime Minister John Howard, who has not yet read the report, resisted the cause and effect implications suggested by the US analysis.
It's probably best that the Prime Minister hasn't read the report. Clearly, this puts him on much stronger footing than some others, such as your frozen correspondent, who has read the parts which have been declassified.
"There is no doubt that Iraq is very much in the front line of the fight against terrorism. The Americans repeatedly say that and they are right," he said.
There is plenty of doubt, Mr. Howard. Everything depends on what you mean by "terrorism". If by "terrorism" you mean an indigenous liberation movement trying to evict the invaders turned occupiers who defile their country with their very presence, not to mention polluting it beyond habitability with their depleted uranium, then Iraq is clearly the front line. But normally the term "terrorism" refers to politically motivated attacks against innocent civilians, and in this sense the terrorists are ... who exactly? Did you say the members of the so-called "coalition"? If you did say that, you're getting close to the truth.
"But it's also correct ... that the Bali attack that killed 88 Australians took place before the military operation in Iraq.
Of course it is correct, but it's irrelevant. Nobody has ever said that the invasion of Iraq was the beginning of terrorism. All we've been saying for the past three and a half years is the stunningly obvious truth: that the invasion, destruction and occupation of Iraq has made the global terrorist threat worse than it was before.

Watch this next bit closely, in which Howard displays breathtaking ignorance:
"It's also true that the first terrorist attack that we know of in the modern understanding of the term was in 1993 - the first attack on the World Trade Centre.
I will grant that the 1993 attack on the World Trade "Centre" (look, I'm even spelling it like an Aussie now) was the first major false-flag attack on American soil. But to call it "the first terrorist attack that we know of in the modern understanding of the term" is nothing if not ridiculous.

... unless "the modern understanding of the term" -- "terrorism" now refers exclusively to major false-flag attacks. And -- really, I'm not kidding now -- I'm starting to think that this may be the case. Because the so-called leaders in the so-called War against so-called Terror constantly refer to a few key incidents -- NY/DC, Madrid, Bali, London -- which were all very clearly false-flag attacks.
"All of those events occurred and many other events occurred before Iraq."
Of course they did. There's no denying it. But so what?

Howard's assertion has nothing to do with the claim made and supported by the NIE, namely that the war in Iraq has made terrorism a worse problem than it was before. There are many reasons for believing this very obvious fact, and many reasons why it happens to be true. But apparently John Howard is not at liberty to talk about any of them. Fortunately, your humble and very cold blogger labors under no such constraint.
Senior bureaucrat Michael L'Estrange, secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, says the issue is not black and white.

But Mr L'Estrange, Australia's former high commissioner in Britain, says it's perverse to use the war as some kind of rationalisation for growing terrorism.
Nobody to my knowledge is attempting to rationalize terrorism. On the contrary, some of us are trying to find out what's causing it. And others know very well what's causing it and are saying so.
"But to pretend somehow that you can rationalise the action of terrorists on the basis of what has happened in Iraq, I think is somewhat perverse.

"It defies the historical course of events, turns a blind eye to what the agenda of the terrorists really is."
What the agenda of the terrorist really is? That's a good one! Who has been obscuring the motives of the terrorists? Who keeps telling us they hate us because of our freedoms?

If you listen to the "terrorists" themselves you will learn that their motives are very simple, and very clear. They hate us because of our foriegn policy. They hate us because we despoil their countries with imperial armies, because we prop up the most vile and corrupt of dictators (as long as they are friendly to "our", that is to say, "multinational" business). They hate us because we torture their men and rape their women -- and young boys and girls! How could they feel any other way?

How would you feel if your country was occupied by foreign troops, if they had invaded on false pretext, if they were wantonly destroying your cities and torturing your people? How would you feel if you knew that a foreign government was not only arming and motivating roving death squads but also fomenting terrorist groups in your midst? Would you bring them flowers as they intentionally drove your country to civil war? Or would you start learning how to make Improvised Explosive Devices?

I submit that there's no question. Any reasonable person would do exactly the same thing. But unfortunately, some people -- people whose hands rest on the levers of global power -- are anything but reasonable.
Mr L'Estrange suggested it was fantasy to think that the withdrawal of coalition troops in Iraq would put an end to all terrorism.

"The alternative of saying if only this stopped, then terrorism would stop, really is living in dreamland," he said.
Nobody says that the withdrawal of coalition troops from Iraq would put an end to all terrorism. It's a ridiculous straw-man argument which nobody should ever take seriously. It is also completely irrelevant. But unfortunately for the war criminals, ridiculous irrelevant straw men are all they have left.

Tomorrow: September 28: PM dismisses US intelligence on Iraq
Although Mr Howard said he had not seen the whole report, he played down the declassified excerpts, saying US agencies had propagated false intelligence in the past.

"Intelligence agencies have different views at different times," he told ABC radio.

"Some of the intelligence agencies that were involved in this assessment were telling us … that Iraq in 2003 had weapons of mass destruction."
And why, exactly, were they telling us that, sir? Could it be because they were being intimidated -- through blatant political pressure -- into fabricating lies that could be used to support an invasion which had been planned, not to say drooled over, many years in advance?

Last summer, while guest-hosting at The BRAD BLOG, I wrote a piece called "Double Whammy: Fixing The Intelligence, Breaking The Agencies". It was about how the FBI and the CIA had been pressured into doing less than their best, and then were blamed for the failures caused by such blatant political pressure. The impacts of that Orwellian -- not to say Rovian -- policy are in full force today. I've posted a slightly modified version of "Double Whammy" here, for those who prefer black text on a light background. And I really don't care where you read it. But if you have any doubt about what I am saying here, then I urge you to read it. Somewhere. Please.

These vicious lying scoundrels have ruined half-a-dozen countries already, and they're still going.

Only the truth can possibly stop them.

And maybe the truth won't even do it. I can easily see Bush saying
"So we lied! So what? What the hell are you going to do about it? Fuck yeah! I lied, Cheney lied, Rumsfeld lied, Powell lied, Rice lied; So what? It happens all the time. Bill Clinton lied and my father lied too. What the hell do you think you can do about it now, you pathetic powerless pissants? Why don't you just go fuck yourselves?"
Can't you just see him saying that? It's no stretch of the imagination for me. So perhaps I should rephrase:

Only the truth -- and an inordinate amount of courage -- and a powerful stroke of good fortune -- can possibly stop them.

If anything can.