We need to start asking a lot of questions of our government and soon. If the President and his people live in a “fact free” bubble, the American public need not willingly join them there. We should ask our elected officials why we are told that a day will come when we’ll leave Iraq and that we would leave now if asked by an Iraqi government to do so. If that were true why would we be building bases all over that country and spending $1.5 billion to build an enormous embassy there. At some point, logic has to enter into considerations of what the U. S. is doing in Iraq and elsewhere in the Middle East.
And what are we planning with respect to Iran? We keep hearing whispers and sometimes louder indications that we are preparing military action there. Is that really in our or anyone’s best interests? How would we pay for such action in terms of dollars and human sacrifice? Have we learned nothing from our incursion into Iraq? Never mind that we are constantly bombarded with bromides about how we have brought Iraqis freedom and deposed a despotic leader. We have also visited upon that country great devastation of its infrastructure, large numbers of civilian deaths and a dysfunctional utility grid. And, the Iraqi oil that was supposed to finance our invasion and occupation has not materialized, necessitating enormous expenditures of tax and borrowed dollars to the detriment of much-needed programs here in the United States.
Is it so astonishing after all that Iran would try to establish a nuclear capability of some kind whether for peaceful use now or militarily in the future? After all, it is surrounded by countries that have nuclear weapons – Pakistan, India, Israel and now of course the U.S right on its border in Iraq. Without suggesting that Iran is a pal it should at least be understandable why it would want to have some kind of power to thwart invasion by outsiders. Apparently the U. S. doesn’t invade countries that already have nuclear weapons. And it seems to be the case that when we invade we do a lot of other things besides just freeing the people, such as privatizing the oil industry in Iraq so that multi-national corporations can leave their footprint there as quickly as possible. In the end, with or without military occupation, outside influences begin to control the economy and the population in more subtle ways.
Some of those ways are exemplified by laws Paul Bremer enacted during his tenure in Iraq some of which include control of Iraq’s central bank, and rules governing trade unions and even agriculture. In the latter case, Order 81 mandates controls affecting “Patent, Industrial Design, Undisclosed Information, Integrated Circuits and Plant Variety.” In this way farmers are not allowed to harvest seeds from their plantings nor are they permitted to “experiment and breed” seeds for future crop yields. Technical details in this Order make it a violation for Iraq to harvest or modify seeds because the “rights” to them resides with multi-nationals like Monsanto. Iraqis are now required to pay for the use of plant products they have grown and used for centuries. The Swiss Journal, “Current Concerns”, puts it this way. “Seed corn is not like an invention of a new computer or a turbine generator. The marketization or commoditization of seeds, is an ominous trend…Iraq has now lost the very basis of feeding its own population. It in effect is a form of neo-colonial control…” (link to article)
What have we done, and what are we doing? We certainly have a right to know what is being done in our name. It isn’t all as simple as the sound a liberty bell ringing ‘round the world.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *