Letters on the Iraq war

10 May 2003

Below we post a selection of recent letters to the World Socialist Web Site.

The WSWS has exposed the lies of the US administration very effectively and explained the sociological reasons behind them. One of the UK’s lies was that the war was necessary because Saddam killed “his own people,” when that should be the job of the US and the UK. Killing your “own people” was interpreted nationalistically as being more heinous than killing other people, regardless of the identical suffering of victims’ families. It then emerged from a police report that the British state had been collaborating with loyalist terrorists to kill its “own people” not many years before, and not in the circumstances of an armed insurrection that threatened the state seriously.

Has any government, be it monarchy, republic, avowedly socialist or straightforward capitalist, not lied to its people?

Surely it is the extent and magnitude of the deceit that marks out the Bush administration, rather than deceit itself. Everyone has double standards, but those of a superpower are more obvious. The question is how can we avoid being lied to in the future, given that power corrupts? The only answer seems to be the widest dispersal possible of power and wealth. To achieve this the left must be non-sectarian, patient and as democratic as possible. Therefore I am grateful to the WSWS for the uniquely valuable service it is providing.

JL.

7 May 2003

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On “Militarist speech on the carrier Lincoln: Bush promises unending war in Iraq and internationally

Dear Mr. Vann:

I didn’t even have the stomach to watch the speech for many of the reasons you listed. Your article was well documented and thoughtfully written. I only wish such intelligence was given a more prominent platform in mainstream American journalism.

Thank you for the truth.

SJ

2 May 2003

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Dear Bill,

I, too, found it nearly unbelievable, even though it was right before my eyes, to watch Bush in his flight suit, strutting on the deck of the Abraham Lincoln in some perverse twist out of Saturday Night Fever and Top Gun and then proceeding to lie and lie and lie some more.

“What is he talking about?” indeed. I actually spoke that question aloud while sitting at home alone watching. The future for this country is dire; all the more so because the government and the media feel perfectly comfortable churning out this sewage, whether they think the public is buying it or not. The level of contempt they have for anyone but their own elite band of criminals is staggering. When are the people going to wake up?

CZ

San Francisco

2 May 2003

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Thanks, Mr. Vann. But what I really want to know is how much (tax money) GWB’s Top Gun photo op cost. How much per hour of flight time for Air Force One, Washington to San Diego to Texas and back? How much per hour for the Navy jet? How much per hour for their respective crews? How much for all the staff time employed by the administration, the Navy, the San Diego harbormaster’s office? And—not incidentally, since the European papers reported, as ours did not, that GWB’s recent 28-hour trip to Belfast required 80 on-board support staff and his private chef—was his chef pre-boarded on the Lincoln?

Very important, the latter, if as some of my friends assert, the reason GWB does not dine at GOP or other public functions is that he is a dry drunk.

But the money, not the man, is my main interest.

PG

Dallas

2 May 2003

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You must be realistic. Your president does not want to be a one-timer like his father. It’s unlikely that the American economy will help him in 2004. It will probably hurt his reelection. Therefore only war and military action can effect the support that he will need. It will be catastrophic for the Syrians and no doubt others, but they (and you) should consider the great benefit to the president.

DS

3 May 2003

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The most dangerous weapon is not a chemical weapon or nuclear weapon any more but a leader such as Mr. George Bush who does not want us to have a different opinion. He uses the media, army and everything else to silence us. I can feel it and everyone else does. Look how people are suffering in many countries that have different views than the US. We spend billions but only give a penny for poor people who only want to eat for a day. Think of them, Mr. President.

S

3 May 2003

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Dear Editor:

The US military aggression in Iraq, with its unsavory economically-motivated overtones, exposed our American ideals to the basest of legal and ethical attack. Such rational criticism is one undeniable, thus far, seemingly ignored, aspect of not providing irrefutable proof of Iraq’s alleged WMD threat to American citizens.

I am one patriot who is incensed by our government’s imprudence when it neglects to address this inherent and very real “cost” of causing valued American ideals to be so easily disparaged by so many.

Sincerely,

RC

New York, New York

1 May 2003

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I found the last paragraph of your article [“Why won’t Washington allow the UN weapons inspectors into Iraq?”) of vital interest; for, if indeed, no WMDs are to ever be found in Iraq (none have ever been used against us, not even in the 1991 Persian Gulf War), then it doubles the impact of the crime that Iraqis were starved to death, since 1991, because of this completely false assumption. This message needs to get out to the public! Was an entire people cruelly oppressed by 12 years of sanctions, when no crime was even committed? Apparently, yes. We all should be very ashamed. Thank you for the excellent article.

PM

1 May 2003

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On “Looting of nuclear sites poses deadly threat in Iraq

Hi:

Just a quick response... Thanks for the report. I find what is happening there is just absolutely appalling. This is going to affect generations to come. However the point I wish to make, it is just not credible to believe that the US intelligence agencies weren’t aware. I think it was allowed to happen on purpose because it has three “benefits” for the US.

1. As the population is made very ill and their “genes” are damaged, the US obviously thinks it will tie down the Iraqis and reduce resistance—i.e., they will be too sick to fight.

2. It serves as a lesson to other countries. They shouldn’t mess around with nuclear stuff, because “we” will contaminate your country and people.

3. It is basically a racist genocidal attack on Arab peoples. They want to genetically damage and kill these people. How long before all this contamination and the rest from all the DU [depleted uranium] spreads further throughout the region?

Indeed, how do we know the US is now not actively through covert means spreading radioactive dust throughout the region? Nature and the elements will do the job anyhow.

Lastly, US soldiers and technicians who will be working on the oil infrastructure are just as expendable as the Arabs, in this US administration’s eyes.

Reports such as this give one very little hope. What else awaits us from such people as Bush, et al?

Regards,

TS

9 May 2003

P.S. You have some great and very informative articles on your site. Thanks again.

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On “US invasion produces human catastrophe in Iraq

Dear Mr. Isaacs,

You forgot to mention that depleted uranium causes women to have crippled and handicapped children, lots of cases after Gulf War I. The same happened in Vietnam, so many children crippled and not able to become grownups who can care for themselves; the same after Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the women have to carry the burden of crippled children and all the suffering. There is practically no research on this, there are no lists for these cases, the women and children do not get pensions or some sort of help, these women and children are not officially recognized as war damages. It is an absolute crime to use weapons of such nature.

I hope you will write something about it, something to make people wake up and become aware.

Greetings,

UB

Frankfurt

5 May 2003

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Sir:

What disgusts me is the Americans in Afghanistan used yellow “food drops and bomblets” until the outrage forced them to change the color. And in Iraq? The Americans used yellow again for cluster bombs and food. This is the deliberate targeting of children and civilians by cluster bombs... “Trick or treat” as it goes with the psychopath Bush... “Trick or treat with a smirk.”

RP

British Columbia

5 May 2003

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On “ABC News Primetime interview: Country music group holds its own against right-wing attack

Hello. I came across you by reading the opinions of people on AOL re: Natalie Maines’ comment about George Bush. Thank you. You are food for my soul. I have been feeling so frustrated by this war ... and the current administration ... and I read on your site ... about how this war is dividing friends and families. That is true. However, I cannot even pretend to agree with any of the aggression and lies. After emailing a very honest piece from your site, most of my relatives don’t even speak to me anymore. In fact, the only relatives that do speak to me are the ones I did not send the email to. Our family reunion has been cancelled for this summer. Mission accomplished. Everything about this war situation is ugly. For me to not protest these actions of aggression would cause my very soul to shrivel up. I feel nauseous. I am so very sad, there are no words. Please include on your site any information that might be helpful to the average kind, loving American human being ... that might help us to end this madness. What can we do? If this isn’t lunacy, I have no idea what is. God bless America. And thanks for helping to enlighten and educate people. I am forever indebted.

PL

3 May 2003

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Dear Ms. Randall,

You did well to write about Diane Sawyer and her quote of the “70 percent approval” rating. She has become a propaganda dispenser! Sad.

Polls are rigged to favor certain results. I participated in polls until I noticed repeat calls for my opinion on a given issue. Whenever I change my opinion, phone calls on the issue stop.

I, and everyone I know, wholeheartedly support our coalition’s troops—be they sailors, soldiers, pilots, air force or marines—every one. None of us have been polled about our support for the president.

Yesterday our local paper, the Attleboro Sun, featured a photo of our commander-in-chief on the carrier. The photographer had focused the shot precisely so a small curved portion on the ship formed a halo over the president’s head. I looked at the stack of newspapers near the market’s checkout and said: “Looks like he has a halo.” Others responded: “Oh ... yeah!” One loud response was: “He needs one!”

Thank you and keep up the good work!

AK

Attleboro, Massachusetts

3 May 2003

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Good damn article on Dixie Chicks. You provided the only in-depth analysis on the Sawyer hatchet job or attempt to exaggerate the DC backlash. Sawyer is a reprehensible stenographer for the right wing and she needs to be exposed as such.

Fred

1 May 2003

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To the editor:

Before, during and since the invasion of Iraq the Bush administration has used the terms preventive and preemptive interchangeably to describe the war, thus implying that the terms are morally and legally equivalent. However, they are not.

Preventive war is carried out when an attack is launched against a nation or force that might, sometime in the future, present a threat to the attacking nation. Eisenhower said that preventive war was an invention of Hitler. The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor is another example of preventive war and it has been universally condemned as illegal and immoral.

Preemptive war occurs when another force that is poised and ready to attack imminently is attacked first. Preemptive attacks are generally regarded as justified in self-defense.

It is important to describe the attack on Iraq as preventive so that its immorality and illegality are highlighted.

PS

Maryland

5 May 2003

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