Posted by: quiscus | March 1, 2011

March 1, 2011

1.  “No Consequences for Those Who Got Iraq So Wrong

For instance, what about the top editors at the Washington Post, the New York Times and a host of other establishment publications and TV outlets who hopped on the pro-war bandwagon and mocked anyone who suggested that negotiations or some less violent means might be preferable?

If even a long-time war hawk like Gates recognizes the obvious – that committing U.S. land forces to such conflicts is nuts – then what’s to be said about the Post’s editorial-page editor Fred Hiatt or the Times’ executive editor Bill Keller or a host of other senior media executives and pundits who endorsed the wars and have suffered no dents in their shiny careers?

These hot-shots got the biggest stories of their lives dead wrong – and countless thousands have paid with their lives, not to mention the $1 trillion-plus drain on the U.S. Treasury – yet they float along as if nothing happened. ”

http://www.consortiumnews.com/2011/022711.html

2.  “For Money, For Oil? Why Wars Really Happen

Many discussions of lies that launch wars quickly come around to the question “Well then why did they want the war?” There is usually more than one single motive involved, but the motives are not terribly hard to find.

Unlike many soldiers who have been lied to, most of the key war deciders, the masters of war who determine whether or not wars happen, do not in any sense have noble motives for what they do. Though noble motives can be found in the reasoning of some of those involved, even in some of those at the highest levels of decision making, it is very doubtful that such noble intentions alone would ever generate wars.

Economic and imperial motives have been offered by presidents and congress members for most of our major wars, but they have not been endlessly hyped and dramatized as have other alleged motivations. War with Japan was largely about the economic value of Asia, but fending off the evil Japanese emperor made a better poster. The Project for the New American Century, a think tank pushing for war on Iraq, made its motives clear a dozen years before it got its war — motives that included U.S. military dominance of the globe with more and larger bases in key regions of “American interest.” That goal was not repeated as often or as shrilly as “WMD,” “terrorism,” “evildoer,” or “spreading democracy.”

The most important motivations for wars are the least talked about, and the least important or completely fraudulent motivations are the most discussed. The important motivations, the things the war masters mostly discuss in private, include electoral calculations, control of natural resources, intimidation of other countries, domination of geographic regions, financial profits for friends and campaign funders, the opening up of consumer markets, and prospects for testing new weapons.

If politicians were honest, electoral calculations would deserve to be openly discussed and would constitute no ground for shame or secrecy. Elected officials ought to do what will get them reelected, within the structure of laws that have been democratically established. But our conception of democracy has become so twisted that reelection as a motivation for action is hidden away alongside profiteering. This is true for all areas of government work; the election process is so corrupt that the public is viewed as yet another corrupting influence. When it comes to war, this sense is heightened by politicians’ awareness that wars are marketed with lies.

Profiting from the waging of war has been a common part of U.S. wars since at least the Civil War. During the 2003 War on Iraq Vice President Cheney directed massive no-bid contracts to a company, Halliburton, from which he was still receiving compensation, and profited from the same illegal war he defrauded the American public into launching.

Another economic motivation for war that is often overlooked is the advantage war presents for a privileged class of people who are concerned that those denied a fair share of the nation’s wealth might rebel. In 1916 in the United States, socialism was gaining in popularity, while any sign of class struggle in Europe had been silenced by World War I. Senator James Wadsworth (R., N.Y.) proposed compulsory military training out of fear that “these people of ours shall be divided into classes.” The poverty draft may serve a similar function today. The American Revolution may have as well. World War II put a stop to depression-era radicalism that saw the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) organizing black and white workers together.

World War II soldiers took their orders from Douglas MacArthur, Dwight Eisenhower, and George Patton, men who in 1932 had led the military’s assault on the “Bonus Army,” World War I veterans camped out in Washington, D.C., pleading to be paid the bonuses they’d been promised. This was a struggle that looked like a failure until World War II veterans were given the GI Bill of Rights.”

http://globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=23443

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