Sunday, April 11, 2004

The massacre in Falluja: are Iraqis better off now?

The United States hasn't engaged in a massacre like Falluja since Vietnam days, and despite all the nasty things I write about the United States, I am a little shocked. It all happened so quickly and so easily, and American troops committed the vilest of war crimes with no obvious complaints. One theory is that the style and intensity of the fighting is a reflection of American weakness in Iraq, with the Rumsfeld/Wolfowitz changes to the American military leaving it so undermanned that it has to resort to mass civilian slaughter to achieve what a proper army could do more humanely. Whatever the reason, the Americans hit all the high points:

  • extremely violent collective punishment against thousands of civilians supposedly for having had something to do with the deaths of four Americans who were said to be civilian security guards;

  • breach of every international law you could think of;

  • murder of hundreds of civilians, including women and children, and the denial of medical treatment and supplies to the surviving wounded, who may number in the thousands;

  • the Israeli style of slaughter introduced to the American army;

  • bombing of at least one mosque;

  • senseless and counterproductive carnage which will have the opposite effect than the stated goal of pacifying the population, and has served to radicalize the whole country, if not the whole world;

  • all of the above immediately broadcast in living color to the entire Muslim world (wonderful recruiting posters for violent Islamic fundamentalists).

All of this goes on while Bush catches fish and Cheney is in Japan. Have the Americans gone mad, or is this the conclusive proof that the insane neocons are trying to start WW III? They are already starting to blame Iran for the unrest in Iraq, a story reminiscent of the lies they told about Iraq to justify that attack. As far as I can tell, Americans could care less that they are morally responsible for all this mayhem. All they care about is being whipped up into a jingoistic fury because a few American mercenaries might have died on some mysterious mission in the middle of a war zone. It's funny that the last excuse the Americans have for the attack on Iraq, all the other justifications having proven to be lies, is that the lives of Iraqis are better than they would have been under Saddam. Even the so-called left-wingers continue to trot out the excuse that a dictator as evil as Saddam had to be removed. Whatever you may say about Saddam, he would never have committed this kind of atrocity as collective punishment for the deaths of four of his security guards. There is no longer any possible argument that the Iraqi people are better off under the American dictatorship than they were under Saddam's dictatorship. Every single last argument for the attack, both from the right and the 'left', has died along with the many victims of the American massacre in Falluja.