by Jacob G. Hornberger
I wonder how many U.S. soldiers who died in Iraq, or have who lost arms or legs or mental stability from their invasion or occupation of the country, figured that the reason they were making such an enormous sacrifice was so that Iraq could ultimately get to the point where it would be helping Iran secretly avoid the economic sanctions that the U.S. government has placed on Iran.
What a glorious thing to die for. What a noble thing to become a paraplegic for. What a grand thing to lose your mind over.
According to an article in the New York Times Saturday, “Iraq has been helping Iran skirt economic sanctions imposed on Tehran because of its nuclear program…. the administration has held private talks with Iraqi officials to complain about specific instances of financial and logistical ties between the two countries, officials say.”
Oh, no! Does that mean that there is a chance that the U.S might be going to war against Iraq again? Why, it’s only been eight months since U.S. forces evacuated the country!
U.S. interventionists would undoubtedly puff out their chests and proudly proclaim, “This shows how well we did in creating a sovereign and independent country!”
But they’re just blowing smoke and they know it. The aim of the U.S. Empire is not to create sovereign and independent states. It’s instead to create pro-U.S. regimes. After all, if the creation of sovereign and independent regimes was the ideal, they’d be leaving Iran alone. Instead, they’re trying to do with Iran precisely what they did with Iran in 1953 (and what they tried to do with Iraq) — oust an independent, recalcitrant regime and install a pro-U.S. dictatorship in its stead.
During the 1980s, the dictator Saddam Hussein was their man. That was when Saddam’s forces were attacking Iran. That’s why U.S. officials loved him. That’s why they furnished him with those infamous WMDS that they later used as the fake and false justification to invade the country — so that Saddam could use them against the hated Iranians, given that the Iranians had audaciously ousted their CIA-installed dictator, the Shah of Iran, and replaced him with a sovereign and independent regime.
But when Saddam went independent by invading Kuwait over a border dispute, U.S. officials decided they needed a new dictator in Iraq, one that would loyally take orders from the U.S. government. That’s, of course, what the brutal U.S. and UN sanctions on Iraq were all about. The sanctions were intended to squeeze the Iraqi people into getting rid of Saddam and replacing him with a pro-U.S. dictator. When the sanctions didn’t succeed, that’s what the invasion of Iraq was all about — to do what the sanctions — and the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi children from the sanctions — had failed to do.
But things didn’t work out too well for the U.S. Empire in Iraq. Instead of installing a pro-U.S. regime into power, an independent, pro-Iran regime made its way into power. And Iran, needless to say, is the archenemy of the U.S. government.
Meanwhile, U.S. officials continue to steadfastly maintain, with straight faces, that their intervention in Iraq has been a tremendous success — that it has brought into existence a paradise of democracy, freedom, peace, prosperity, and stability. And Americans are expected to believe such nonsense no matter what they read, see, or hear.
The reality is that Iraq closely resembles a nation that Dr. Frankenstein would have created. Iraq is nothing more than a daily orgy of death, destruction, torture, indefinite incarceration, bombings, terrorism, suicide bombings, executions, brutal prisons, censorship, and, of course, friendship with the U.S. Empire’s archenemy, Iran.
The best confirmation of the reality, as compared to the delusion, is that not one U.S. official has taken his family on summer vacation to Iraq since the creation of this Frankenation in 2003.
Meanwhile, a website called Al Arabiya News is reporting that General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, is flying to Iraq to explore reports that Baghdad “has signaled a readiness to bolster military ties with the U.S.”
Dempsey stated: “I believe they’ve concluded that they missed a window of opportunity to establish a more normal relationship with us.”
Now, think about that: a “normal relationship.”
Dempsey’s statement perfectly epitomizes what passes for a “normal relationship” in a society where a national-security state plays the dominant role. For him, indeed for every member of the national-security state, a “normal relationship” means close military ties between the United States and foreign nations. It means foreign aid to foreign militaries, joint training exercises, and a close working relationship between the militaries and intelligence forces of the two countries.
But that’s about as far from a genuinely normal relationship as two nations can get.
A normal relationship is one in which the private sectors of two nations are peacefully interacting with each other, including such things as free trade between the citizens of two nations, free travel and immigration between them, and cultural exchanges, economic interdependencies, and sports competitions.
And no military exchanges. No joint military exercises. No foreign aid. In fact, a genuinely normal relationship between two nations leaves the respective governments out of it. A real normal relationship has no role for military visits, a military empire of foreign bases, foreign interventionism, invasions and occupations, sanctions, embargoes, assassinations, torture, and regime-change operations. Indeed, as our American ancestors understood so clearly, it doesn’t even include a standing army, much less a vast military-industrial complex, a joint chiefs of staff, a Pentagon, or a CIA.
In a society in which the dominant force is a national-security state, military generals will be our nation’s good-will ambassadors, especially in those Frankenations that the U.S. government creates, such as the one in Iraq. In a free, prosperous, and peaceful society, American businessmen, cultural groups, church groups, sports teams, tourists, and others in the private sector will be our nation’s good-will ambassadors who interact with the people of the world.
Jacob Hornberger is founder and president of the Future of Freedom Foundation.
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