Deprecated: Function get_magic_quotes_gpc() is deprecated in /home/customer/www/ufppc.org/public_html/libraries/fof30/Input/Input.php on line 99
United for Peace of Pierce County - UFPPC statement: On the end of the US combat mission in Iraq
Print

UNITED FOR PEACE OF PIERCE COUNTY

"We nonviolently oppose the reliance on unilateral military actions rather than cooperative diplomacy."

ON THE END OF THE U.S. COMBAT MISSION IN IRAQ

September 2, 2010

A few hours after the U.S. invasion began, United for Peace of Pierce County denounced "the catastrophe of the Iraq war.  For this war is a catastrophe.  It is a disaster regardless of the military outcome.  It is a disaster for the nation, and a disaster for the world. Our nation has, for the first time in its history, consciously embraced an aggressive pre-emptive war against a country that posed no imminent threat.  And, despite overwhelming opposition, the world community has been unable to prevent it.  Whatever the president and the president's advisors may say, this was an unnecessary war, misusing our troops and trouncing their high ideals."

This week, seven and one half years later, President Barack Obama declared that Operation Iraqi Freedom was over and "the American combat mission in Iraq has ended."  We've heard and read a lot of revisionist accounts of the war, but we haven't seen any that recognize the overwhelming opposition to the war on the part of the world community.  For there the world community did oppose the war and has not forgotten its opposition.

Now the president tells us that it's time to "turn the page."  We think not.  For what we are witnessing is not the end of a war but  a transition to a privatized phase of occupation. The National (Abu Dhabi) reported the day after the president's announcement that the Iraqi resistance believes that "Nothing has changed at all" and said that George Washington would approve of their continued fight against a foreign invader.  A Baath party official said:  "'[T]hey can say combat is over but there has been no ceasefire from the resistance and there will be no ceasefire while there is even a single American soldier in Iraq' . . . He said that U.S. claims to have ceased offensive military operations were a 'lie,' pointing to the continued role of U.S. Special Forces units and intelligence assets.  U.S. soldiers also continue to patrol the so called trigger-line territories—areas disputed between Iraqi Kurds and Arabs. 'I think 50,000 soldiers is a lot of men to have left behind if you are saying you have completed a withdrawal,' the official said.  'Fifty thousand is an occupation force, it might just be a new style of occupation.'"

American mainstream media seemed disinclined to probe the president's definition of "combat."  The last time we looked it up, "combat" meant "armed fighting; battle" or "any struggle or conflict; strife."  With about 50,000 U.S. troops still in Iraq and the numbers of U.S.-paid mercenaries on the increase, the declaration that "combat" is over is merely a neo-Orwellian "information operation" of the U.S. national security state.  As Konrad Becker has written:  "Information is increasingly indistinguishable from propaganda, defined as 'the manipulation of symbols as a means of influencing attitudes.'  Whoever controls the metaphors controls thought."  But millions of Americans are not deceived.

On Aug. 27, in what we can call the run-up to the announcement of the end of the combat mission in Iraq, USA Today played the role of Ministry of Truth, informing readers that the war has brought many benefits to Iraq, though it is probably "too soon to tell" for sure whether it was all "worth it."  Accompanying a tendentious analysis was a four-paragraph summary of how the Iraq war came about that was stunning in its revisionism.  USA Today is owned by the Gannett Company, whose chairman, Allen Neuharth, once told a group of Wall Street investors that "No Gannett newspaper has any direct competition."  It seems we are on the road to Orwell's Oceania—or are we there already?

It's a good time not to turn the page but rather to repeat words UFPPC adopted seven and a half years ago:  "How can we, as Americans, reclaim the ideals of this nation?  We are not sure of the answer, but we refuse to give them up.  At this dark hour in the history of the United States of America, we remain united for peace in Pierce County."

 

UNITED FOR PEACE OF PIERCE COUNTY

"We nonviolently oppose the reliance on unilateral military actions rather than cooperative diplomacy."