Having just read the text of Bush’s veto statement, I thought it might be worth a quick step-by-step deconstruction, for the benefit of any polar bears on a random island somewhere that may not have given it the once-through.
“Tonight”, says The Bush, in reassuring tones, “I will explain the reasons for this veto” and effectively, his desire to override Congress. Then, of course, he goes on, heaping one inanity on another.
“It makes no sense to tell the enemy when you plan to start withdrawing” he says. Claiming that all the terrorists would then have to do is mark a day on their calendar when it would be safe to take over the major front (as he calls it and will continue to call it throughout his statement) on the ‘war on terror’.
Personally, and this is no great revelation, I think the US has absolutely no business being in Iraq in the first place. Having said that, what The Bush is trying to hide is that his statement implicitly acknowledges that the US cannot secure this invasion (I’d say ‘win this war’, but who are we kidding?). His fear of setting a deadline implicitly exposes his certainty that the US is simply in over its head, and that the chances of securing the invasion of a country thousands of miles away from mainland Amerika are simply not that good. The deadline, as argued by the so-called democrats – intends no such thing – it is simply seeking an overt commitment to the premise of the whole ill-founded enterprise and to the notion that it is possible to build a strong enough Iraq security apparatus to leave behind a secure Iraq. Of course, what most of Amerika still hasn’t quite stomached is the notion that there will be a ‘war’ as long as there are Amerikan soldiers in a country which is not their own. This is not, and has never been a war against insurgents (whatever you may believe those to be…) it has been a war for Iraq, and therefore – against Iraqis.
Bush then goes on to say that the democrats in Congress know that they cannot summon enough votes to override his unfortunate veto, and he once again waves the patriotic flag about and equates cutting off funding to his invasion to a withdrawal of support for the soldiers of Amerika who have been sent to Iraq. Certainly, I feel sorry for some of them, who like Timothy McVeigh did during the invasion of Bush the First, find themselves riddled with conflicting moral demands, and on the decidedly immoral side of what the future will see as a sequence of orchestrated crimes against humanity, but for those soldiers who delight in the tortures of Abu Ghraib, who sing racist songs about the ‘sand-niggers’ they rejoice in ‘taking down’, that is another story altogether. I am, unfortunately reminded of Golda Meir saying that “We will never forgive them (she refers to the Palestinians) for turning our sons into killers.”
Bush then claims that General Petraeus should be given time. Petraeus, The Bush reminds us, was confirmed in January, and has a plan. What The Bush fails to mention is that month after month, and I include the period since January, the death tolls in Iraq has risen. I am no longer surprised when month after month, I catch the now all-too-familiar headline “Deadliest Month In Iraq Yet!” I have seen it repeatedly since the start of the invasion, and have no reason whatsoever to believe that this will change anytime soon. Invasions look that way, smell that way, and act that way. Death tolls rise, and continue to rise, until the invading force finally calls it a day, cuts its losses, and heads back home to lick its wounds. That’s how invasions work, had this truly been a liberation, as it was sold to you, the Amerikan Konsumer, things would have looked much, much, different.
He then goes on to deliberately misrepresent the aims of Al-Qaida and ignores completely the basis of their current presence in Iraq. Bush operates in a counterclockwise world, it seems. The fact is that one of Bush’s pretexts was that Saddam Hussein and Al-Qaida were collaborators, we know that nothing could be further from the truth. We know that Saddam and Al-Qaida had been grave enemies. Any application of logic would reveal that, and yet – The Bush insisted – they are buddies and pals. It just wasn’t so. The fact is that Al-Qaida was powerless in Iraq until The Bush & The Cheney turned that country into the hellhole that it now is. When Bush says that the aim of Al-Qaida is to subvert Amerikan efforts and reignite the sectarian violence in Baghdad, he is being disingenuous, he knows damn well that the aim of Al-Qaida in Iraq, as it is elsewhere is to make Amerikans go home. It’s that simple, and is hardly a mystery. That particular goal has been stated countless times, and it has not changed throughout the history of Al-Qaida’s existence. Chomsky has previously stated that, if anything, Bin laden has been consistent, and regardless of what you may otherwise think about him, that much has been true.
Time for a Bushism, perhaps…
Bush then more or less threatens that if his war-funding bill isn’t passed, he will simply withdraw the funds from some other programs. If it does not seem like a threat to you – perhaps you should take another look at this:
“The need to act is urgent.” He says, “Without a war-funding bill, the military has to take money from some other account or training program so the troops in combat have what they need.”
What The Bush is saying is simply this, that he will take the money anyway.