Today’s Google Experiment – Why Are We Going To War?

I was listening to a talk show on local station KGO, and the guest William Clark was talking about a paper he has written describing how Iraq switching their sale of oil from dollars to Euros imperils our economy. Here is the paper, The Real Reasons for the Upcoming War With Iraq: A Macroeconomic and Geostrategic Analysis of the Unspoken Truth, by W. Clark and it is well worth reading.

During the radio show, they said that the URL for finding this paper was too long to give over the air, but that listeners can go to Google and search for “The real reason behind the Iraq war”. They said it would be the first that comes up. (It isn’t.)

This morning I searched, and it turned out that it wasn’t the first item found (in fact I never found it that way). But Google found hundreds of items when searching for the real reasons we are going to war, and this is what I want to write about. In fact, the first item found by Google was very good and summed up the problem. This was an editorial from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“The official story on Iraq has never made sense. The connection that the Bush administration has tried to draw between Iraq and al-Qaida has always seemed contrived and artificial. In fact, it was hard to believe that smart people in the Bush administration would start a major war based on such flimsy evidence.

The pieces just didn’t fit. Something else had to be going on; something was missing.”

Here is what I want to say today: Everyone understands that we are going to war for other reasons than those stated by the Bush administration. Everyone!

In this morning’s San Jose News, as usual, most of those letters to the editor favoring this war had the premise that Iraq was responsible for 9/11. Most of the people I have talked to who favor the war cite this as their reason. If you listen to Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity, they reinforce this repeatedly. President Bush implies, but does not say, that Iraq was behind 9/11. (I’ve learned that to understand what right wingers are saying, look to what the intended audience hears.)

Also in today’s San Jose News is this front page story, Key advisers see Iraq war as test case.

Long before he branded Iraq part of the “axis of evil,” when the twin towers of the World Trade Center were standing and the White House was Democratic, Iraq was a potential target on George W. Bush’s radar screen.

“I am very worried about a Saddam Hussein who’s not held to account,” then-Texas Gov. Bush said in a television interview in January 2000. “And if I’m president, and catch him in any way, shape or form building weapons of mass destruction, they’ll be taken out.”

Now, galvanized by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and undeterred by the strong objections of longtime allies, President Bush is poised to make good on that vow. Iraq has emerged from the shadows of the 2000 campaign to become the bull’s-eye for America’s military as it prepares to act for the first time under the Bush administration’s policy of pre-emptive attacks.

The looming war with Iraq has been brewing for several years, analysts said, advocated by a coterie of conservative foreign-policy specialists who were among Bush’s top campaign advisers and now hold key positions in the administration — among them Vice President Dick Cheney, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and his top deputy, Paul Wolfowitz.

They view Iraq not only as a significant national security threat, but also as an ideal proving ground for the full military might of the United States and a perfect test bed for democracy in the Middle East.

On the day that the war is likely to start, a major newspaper is still trying to find the real reason we are going to war.

The President says we are going to war to protect Americans from the imminent threat posed by Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. But in reality, everyone understands that we are going to war for other reasons than those stated by the Bush administration. Everyone!

Those opposed to this war pick apart the publicly stated justifications. We know that there is no valid evidence that Iraq is currently engaged in developing nuclear weapons – that the evidence presented by the Bush administration has turned out to be phony. Then over time, we were presented with different reasons and justifications, many clearly developed using focus groups. “He gassed his own people” is a focus-group phrase, for example. As each new reason was shot down by facts, new reasons were presented. Then the facts were shot down.

Those supporting this war also understand that there is another, hidden agenda. But like so much of the right-wing agenda, they understand that the public face must be separated from the real agenda. They understand and agree that the public must be deceived. They wink and nod, and it is understood by all. How many right wing pundits, webloggers and other spokesmen have recently switch to the “war is to free the people of Iraq” rationale? But the President says that this war is necessary because of the imminent threat to Americans from Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. Are these right wingers calling the President a liar? Yes, and with the full understanding that they are supporting the right’s real agenda.

David Brock, in his book Blinded by the Right, writes from the inside about this shared sense of purpose among “movement conservatives,” and the shared understanding that the ends justifies the means. He also writes about how they were taught that lying is not only allow, but necessary.

One booklet on political tactics published by the Weyrich organization [Free Congress] included a section saying that for the right reasons lying was to be regarded as a permissible “mental reservation.” (Moon, too, taught that lying is necessary, even under oath, when one is doing “God’s work.”)

As I said, NO ONE believes that we are going to war for the publicly stated reasons – that Iraq has refused to disarm and that this represents an imminent threat to the safety of the American public. Very often I see this wink-and-nod “other hidden agenda” understanding at work in thew writings of the right wingers, and I urge the reader to look for this and point it out as well. ANY time you read or hear a right winger saying that this war is to “free the people of Iraq,” or any reason other than the imminent threat to Americans from weapons of mass destruction, ask them why they are calling the President a liar!

Update – Illustrating my point, this vomitous story, with vomitous headline Bush Scrutinizes Final Iraq Battle Plans:

Bush himself sent Congress formal notice that he had determined “further diplomatic and other peaceful means alone” would not be enough to contain the “threat posed by Iraq.” Bush has contended that Saddam possesses chemical and biological weapons that he could use on his enemies or slip to terrorists.

This is the official reason, given to Congress to justify this war.