Mass Murderers

It is time to call the war in Iraq what it really is: the mass murder by the United States of America of at least 150,000 civilians – mostly women and children.

We say “at least” because the Bush administration’s propaganda machine goes to great lengths to hide the exact number of innocents who have died as a result of our invasion of the country two years ago.

The warmongers who try to con us into accepting murder as a justifiable means to an end claim the invasion was a necessary part of the so-called war on terror. Bullshit. The attacks against the Taliban in Afghanistan may have been necessary to flush out al Qaeda and punish those responsible for the 9/11 terrorist attacks but, as we should have known but learned all too late, the Iraq invasion was an ill-conceived military FUBAR based on lies, manufactured intelligence and hidden political agendas.

And, according to the International Red Cross, this illegal invasion of a country that posed no immediate threat to this country has resulted in the death of at least 150,000 civilians – mostly women and children – at the hands of the U.S. and coalition forces.

This number does not include the rising toll of civilian deaths from the almost daily suicide bombers – terrorists who have entered the country and have flourished since President George W. Bush flew onto an aircraft carrier in a ridiculous photo op two years ago and declared “mission accomplished.”

Iraq today is a country in chaos, bordering on civil war. No amount of manufactured news generated by the Dubya’s spin masters can obscure those sad facts. More than 1,900 American soldiers have died in the war, one quarter of them members of the Reserves and National Guard.

Americans who die in service to their country should, and must, be honored for their sacrifice even when their deaths come in a shameful war like Iraq. But their deaths must also be recognized as something that should never have happened. We should have learned that lesson in Vietnam but now we make the same mistakes in Iraq. How many more Americans must die to pay for George W. Bush’s lunacy?

And how many more women and children must be bulldozed into mass graves to hide the true costs of an immoral invasion of a foreign land by a country that once valued life and stood for decency and morality? How many more American men and women must die in this insanity?

Yes, America – like much of the so-called civilized world – faces threats from international terrorists. But invading a country when the facts did not support a President’s bias and “gut” does not make America safe. Instead, it creates more enemies and increases the threat against our way of life – a way of life threatened more by George Bush’s insanity than Osama bin Laden’s bombs.

A once-respected America has become a laughing stock on the world stage. The so-called “threat” that all but shut down the New York subway system over the weekend turned out to be a hoax perpetuated by an Iraqi con man who wanted to extort money from the U.S. It’s not the first time our intelligence community has been had by a fast-talking liar with money on his mind.

Other, more accomplished intelligence agencies around the world look at the many blunders by our spy agencies and shake their head.

“You were never that good when it came to understanding the minds of terrorists,” says a Mossad agent I’ve known for 25 years.  Another acquaintance, a career officer with England’s Secret Intelligence Service (SIS), otherwise known as MI-6, says his agency no longer trusts intel from the Central Intelligence or National Security Agency.

“We prefer intelligence based on facts not political expediency,” he says.

But let’s forget the politics, the spin and the propaganda from the invasion of Iraq. When you put all the hyperbole aside you are left with the sad fact that this is murder: Cold blooded, heartless murder of more than 150,000 Iraqi civilians – far more than the 30,000 to 50,000 Iraqi citizens estimated to have died at the hands of Saddam Hussein during his years of tyranny.