Sunday, April 18, 2004

American Propaganda Revisited!

Dr. Khaled M. Batarfi,

The American propaganda machine is trying to justify the killing of over 30,000 Iraqis and the destruction of their country (in order to rebuild it) by saying that: This is the tax of war. We are here to help. Just look down the road, the New Iraq is just around the corner. If you just wait a little bit longer, it will turn out just fine.
The Afghans were given that “round the corner” promise and are worse off today, with a government based only in the city of Kabul while the rest of the country is in the hands of gangs and drug lords.
Apparently, the Iraqis know better. Besides, if the US is really just there to make them “happier”, it follows logic that they would leave once it becomes clear that they have overstayed their welcome.
Stalin once said, kill a man and it is tragedy, kill a million and it is a statistic.
Why is the burning of four mercenaries from Blackwater, a US-owned, Israeli-run security firm, such a terrible crime, while scorching tens of thousands with B52 firestorms is just a war? Why is bombing Palestinians and Afghan villages, mosques and schools restoring civil order, but bombing a bus or a cafe is barbaric? Why, when asked about the human cost of Vietnam, Americans tend to count only the 50,000 American casualties and forget the millions of murdered Vietnamese?
I won’t ask a soldier’s mother to cry for the thousands he killed before being killed. But she should be blaming those who sent him. That’s what the American rebels told the British occupiers’ moms. The Redcoats, on the other hand, said exactly what US propaganda says today: In war, civilians suffer; we are legitimate, the rebels are not; we have a license to kill, they don’t; we are not responsible for civilian casualties, they are.
For freedom fighters, this was plain nonsense; they were liberators. So was the French resistance against Nazi Germany. Palestinians, Afghans and Iraqis, as the Vietnamese before them, aren’t any different.
Finally, for those who cry foul for war brutality and claim civility, please check your photo albums — historical photos like that of Hiroshima, Korea and Vietnam, and contemporary as the picture of bombed-to-death, burned-to-bones elderly and crippled Sheikh Yassin, by US weapons with American approval and support.
It was an American hero, Gen. William Sherman, who, in justifying the burning of the South and the killing of millions of innocent civilians and Indians, explained: War is Hell. “Nuclear” Truman said: Amen. “Shock and Awe” Bush agreed. It is about time the inventors test what their invention is like.
I only hope that our good, decent and innocent American friends won’t be caught in the crossfire.

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