Letters from our readers
23 July 2003
Below we post a selection of recent letters to the World Socialist Web Site.
I have deeply appreciated Julie Hyland’s brilliant analysis of the policies and insights of the Blair regime currently ruling Britain [“The Iraq war and the Blair government”]. The article illustrates the pretexts based upon lies, plagiarism and forgery, which the British ruling clique led by Mr. Blair had put forward in order to plunder the vast oil resources of another sovereign nation. In an earlier article [“Britain: Foreign secretary admits oil central to war vs. Iraq”] Ms. Hyland had exposed in detail the real motive behind the war being the seizure of the Iraqi oil in the interests of the British energy companies, who should not be left in the cold in the future. By doing so, Mr. Blair did not have any problems in defying international law and world opinion.
While there have been British casualties in the Iraqi occupation, this is nothing compared to the murder of thousands of innocent Iraqis, who had nothing to do with the Saddam regime, installed and not too long ago adored by the Anglo-US ruling clique...
Ms. Hyland has outlined the impotency of the British liberal bourgeoisie in failing to stand up to the Bush-Blair war machine greased with greed and lies. Even last March, the British newspaper Independent had lauded Mr. Blair as a leader of the nation in times of crisis.
Mr. Blair, born in Scotland (UK) on 6 May 1953 as Anthony Charles Lynton Blair, had a meteoric rise in politics. Although educated at Oxford in law, he does not have the education and understanding in matters related to the history of British colonialism and the liberation struggles of the colonized masses of the world, whose fight for freedom had forced the British ruling clique to retreat from the colonies. Ironically, Mr. Blair has helped to revive the passions of freedom among the oppressed masses of the world, who have become vigilant to keep up their freedom, making Mr. Blair along with his shoulder mate Mr. Bush the two most hated men of the world...
18 July 2003* * *
In your piece about the American media’s reluctance to ask the important questions about the lies justifying war, you correctly identify real questions which will never be answered by the corrupt oligarchy that has the gall to claim it is exporting democracy.
In Britain we face a similar situation where a man has died because of a government/media frenzy over whether Campbell inserted the infamous 45-minute claim into the September dossier. This will never be proved either way, but few politicians or commentators are asking the real question. Whether the government itself inserted the 45-minute claim or not is almost irrelevant. It clearly wasn’t true, and like tanks at Heathrow airport, it was an attempt to frighten people into support for war. Either the government was unbelievably incompetent and believed poor intelligence, in which case Blair should resign, or else it was deceitful and the same applies. The real question is how the government can continue, having taken the country into an illegal and immoral war merely to be “shoulder to shoulder” with the greatest threat to world peace?
The full ludicrousness of Blair’s position was revealed by his idiotic ravings in front of Congress, in which he himself admitted that terrorists had few weapons and claimed that Bush was protecting liberty and democracy. When he talked of his sense of “mission” I realized that his fanaticism should be confined to a secure medical ward.
19 July 2003* * *
I have never been under any illusion about the blitzkrieg visited upon Iraq under the doctrine of “Shock and Awe.” To anyone cognizant of the history of US imperialism, there could be no doubt that the invasion was intended and perceived as merely the opening salvo in the struggle to impose American dominion over the entire globe. The “cakewalk” into Baghdad itself took me by surprise—I had expected to see the prolonged urban warfare predicted by critics of the invasion—but there has been no doubt in my mind that the Bush administration set in motion a “never-ending war” in consequence of the attacks on the Twin Towers—a war defined by the jingoistic phrase-mongering of the American media right from the first moments of its reportage on what was, in the face of historic tragedies such as the 12 million exterminated by Hitler, a relatively unremarkable tragedy. The 3,000 killed in New York pales in significance with the 120,000 civilians, mostly women and children, tortured to death in the CIA-run camps established in Vietnam under the code name “Operation Phoenix” or the untold thousands tortured to death in South America under the code name “Operation Condor” under the auspices of the CIA.
For a full three days, I was consumed with rage at the self-righteousness of the American media in its overblown victimology. For the American Empire to portray itself as a “victim” was for me the height of obscenity. I was nauseated. But until I read your article, I assumed that the invasion of Afghanistan was merely a case of misplaced vengeance, and the invasion of Iraq merely the opening gambit of a new round of imperialist opportunism. I had thought that the suggestion that the American ruling class had planned the attacks was just another nut bar conspiracy theory.
Quite obviously, the New Romans have understood for some time that it would be necessary at some point in the near future to take on the only economic rival worthy of the name—Europe. Your insightful article on the reaction of the European Union to Berlusconi’s unbridled fascism shows quite clearly that Europe offers no serious threat whatsoever to the American-led global fascism.
The onrush of current events proceeds at a dizzying rate: the current split in the American ruling class has occurred after only a few short months of war. The split engendered by the Vietnam conflict took years to develop.
We truly live in interesting times!
20 July 2003* * *
Symonds’ nice article makes the point that William Perry of the Clinton administration cannot “for the life of me” see the logic in the Bush program for DPRK (North Korea). The former secretary of defense sees in these plans no way out for the DPRK but war. Well, since Mr. Perry is not a Marxist it is indeed quite likely that he does not see this logic.
Iraq shows us, as nothing else could, the delusional thinking (if you can call it that) of the Bush administration. It shows up weaknesses in the services, especially in Army manpower. At the same time it shows us the absolute need of the whole corporate state to appropriate resources and markets by force. But the regime’s fantasyland planners like Wolfowitz, Rumsfeld and Cheney have failed to deliver Iraq’s resources cheaply enough for the rest of the establishment. So with so many now aware (and thank you, you have done your duty) in the public of these processes and problems, if the regime is to survive, something new is required.
Only under a command state can what is left of the national economy be fully deployed. Only a police state can silence voices of criticism and hope to end the risk of personal accountability before the laws which these hopeless fools have outraged. Only the militarized state can reinstate the draft to build up the Army to the size required.
By blockading North Korea, the Bushies can precipitate a war that will probably involve a few rocket attacks on Pacific Coast cities. Maybe even with one or two small nukes. What the hell, there are too many gays and liberals and other deviants out there anyway. And just maybe, with luck, the whole thing can be contained in Northeast Asia. To their way of thinking, anyway, “containable” damage. But this should give the Neocon Fascists the push needed to get a leg over the saddle and ride the tiger a little while longer; to finally establish their born-again version of what Mussolini, in his politer moments, called the corporate state.
Even Count Ciano, Mussolini’s son-in-law and foreign minister, confiding to his diary of his master’s war plans, could say: “E un errore!” Boy, it sure was.
19 July 2003* * *
I think the repeal of this law is a disgrace. I think the Bush administration is not only a disgrace but truly scary. I hate to admit it, but I voted to put Bush into office and I will be voting to take him out!
19 July 2003* * *
I want to thank Mr. Unwin for this film, although I will probably never see it. I live in northwest Montana, and these things rarely extend to this part of the empire. But I find the topic so compelling, and meaningful to myself, at the start of a new century. So much of the chaos and troubled times that we deal with are a result, directly or indirectly, of the games empires played in the Great War. And governments are still working hard to alienate populations from each other, to affect their political ends. It seems to be the sole, consistent goal of ours.
17 July 2003* * *
Hi, Harvey, from Formosa!
Just writing to tell you how much I appreciated your 1914 Christmas truce piece. For years I’ve been interested in this matter, but as you stated it seems to have been discouraged or covered up.
17 July 2003* * *
Dear David Adelaide,
Thank you for making me aware of and appreciate the work of an artist with whom I was not previously familiar. Your review balanced assessments of the artwork with its social and political context in a powerful and informative way. I also liked the inclusion of other viewers’ responses from the exhibition notebook, as they demonstrate the art’s continued impact in our own times. It certainly resonates with an intensity lacking in much of the contemporary art about war, perhaps because it is not just about war, but poverty and class struggle as well.
I will look for opportunities to see Kathe Kollwitz’s work.
19 July 2003* * *
I’ve only been reading your news for a few months but I think it is great. I love the way you write and the depth of your knowledge. I like how you enclose related history or background on the subject for perspective. This is wonderful information you provide. But most of all you care about the truth in the world and the people in it.
Thank you and may your fine words and reporting make this world a better place for all.
I’m sure they will.
20 July 2003