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The Worm That Turned




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AS THOUSANDS DIED - Contributing Editor- June, 2004

The metaphorical worm in this article has taken a momentary turn in a desperate attempt to revive a policy drowning its own illegitimacy.


How clever of the Bush team to turn defeat into victory.  In little more than a year, their illegal invasion of Iraq collapsed around them even as their dreams of global domination withered. This month, faced with chaos and failure, George W Bush was forced to plead for a lifeline from those whose advice he had summarily shunned and dismissed on his road to war. And yet, this humiliating appeal and compromise before the United Nations has been hailed by much of the media as a successful strategy for creating a sovereign and democratic Iraq. Try telling that to the thousands of people who died.

Imagine what might have been.  Imagine that the President and his neocon advisors had not been obsessed with invading Iraq.  Imagine that the United Nations had been allowed to continue its inspections and that Saddam Hussein’s brutality had been contained and monitored. Imagine that 200 billion taxpayer dollars had been invested in the real war on terror and that the rest of the world, including the wary Moslem nations, had witnessed, with respect and admiration, that Right makes Might.  And imagine that thousands of people did not have to die.


For the record, here are the numbers as we near the middle of June, 2004 Iraqi civilian casualties, of course, are lowball estimates because the Iraqi Ministry of Health was prohibited from counting or revealing civilian deaths by its American liberators.  And, of course, deaths continue non stop as I write. But let’s keep in mind the terrible human toll of the Bush/PNAC folly in Iraq as we approach the well hyped turnover of authority to the US (not UN) appointees at the top of the new interim government.

As of 10-June-2004:

Iraqi civilian deaths

Reported minimum - 9356
Reported maximum - 11232

Reported wounded: 20,000+

American military deaths

American deaths - 833
Coalition deaths - 116

There have been at least 5,013 U.S. troops wounded in action

Coalition contractor deaths

Contractor deaths – 89


The big lie continues that the invasion and occupation of Iraq has been a surgically clean operation. The mounting deaths of American troops, usually meted out in small numbers, are characterized as America’s sacrifice in the war against terror.  Civilian casualties have been sanitized into non existence, and continue to mount.  Yet the war against an unnamed, unidentifiable enemy is scheduled to end dramatically on June 30th.  With much fanfare, the new interim appointees will assume office and the military occupation will suddenly come to an end.  The world is being asked to believe that, with the stroke of a pen, the US will remain in Iraq at the pleasure of the Iraqis. Just ask the thousands who died if they believe that for a minute.

The second appeal for much needed help by Bush administration took place this week at the G-8 meeting. Surprise, surprise, - in the end, the leaders of world’s major nations gave George Bush a resounding NO: No troops, No funds, No NATO involvement, No reduction of Iraq debts. No, No. No. No, you broke it, you fix it. And that means the quagmire continues and that more people will die. It means that most leaders will not defy the sentiments of their own people who largely distrust, dislike, and disrespect George W. Bush.  They will not pick up the pitiful debris left by this president in a war waged with pretense and distortion. They will not forget the months of deception and the unmitigated arrogance that led to this debacle.  And they will not readily add their names to the list of the thousands who died.


The US cannot go it alone. No matter what George Bush claims, neither can the Iraqis. They cannot retrieve their own country from the turmoil that has been foisted upon them, So, where do we go from here? The endgame appears as ominous as the opening play, and the international community does not want to play in this dangerous game.  There is only one move that provides any hope at all, and that involves regaining all we have lost as a nation in the past three years: our leadership, our sense of responsibility, and our honor.  This cannot be done so long as George W. Bush is in office.  It simply cannot. If we are to have any chance at all to redeem the errors of this administration, the presidency has to pass to the hands of a new leadership. If not, there will be no change, and no progress, and no peace.  There will, however, be thousands more who die.

The metaphorical worm in this article has taken a momentary turn in a desperate attempt to revive a policy drowning its own illegitimacy. Let’s not forget that in real life, some worms regenerate, even when beheaded.  The Bush campaign, which is in a serious slump, will put up a vigorous fight for renewal. It is our hope at TvNewsLies that the voting public remembers where we are and how we got there. We hope they remember that the US has lost its influence, its credibility and its way. In the end, we hope they realize that only new leadership in the White House can work with the global community to deal with terror and to salvage what has become of Iraq. Only a new voice will be heard, and only a new attitude will be respected. And only a new president can hold out any hope that no more thousands will die.

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