Thursday, March 16, 2006

Code of the warrior

As we edge into the fourth year of our eternal war, the lies have grown so thick and the denial so entrenched that foreign policy debates are conducted nearly entirely in code. Witness this gem from today's New York Times.

Even as it presents an updated national security strategy, the Bush administration is facing fresh doubts from some Republicans who say its emphasis on promoting democracy around the world has come at the expense of protecting other American interests.

The second thoughts signify a striking change in mood over one of President Bush's cherished tenets, pitting Republicans who call themselves realists against the neoconservatives who saw the invasion of Iraq as a catalyst for change and who remain the most vigorous advocates of a muscular American campaign to foster democratic movements.

It is hard not to just laugh. First of all, how are we still expected to take Bush's rhetoric about democracy seriously? Cherished tenets, please. What the king of torture wants is obedient client states, preferably with some veneer of legitimacy, but if not, oh well. How is that project to democratize Saudi Arabia going? Kazakhstan? Pakistan? Iraq? Palestine? Oops, better change the subject.

And avoid the word oil. Yes, never once mention oil. Bad manners.

This phrase must have taken quite a bit of editing to come up with: "vigorous advocates of a muscular American campaign to foster democratic movements." WTF? They must have hired some professional fluffers.

--that's the ticket, avoids all the mass death, torture and devastation stuff, all the messy corpses, without giving up the essential feel of manliness. Campaign--mm yes, sounds almost like an election! Better than war, better than crusade, yes best not to mention crusade. Foster--nice and caring, just like mother! And democratic movements--well if we couldn't find them, we could create them, or manufacture something and staff it with our clients, err genuine popular leaders, like the nice Mr. Chalabi. No need to mention empire or oil or weapons of mass destuction.

The Times article goes on to quote the first sentence of W's equally delusional national security strategy paper, issued yesterday.
"It is the policy of the United States to seek and support democratic movements and institutions in every nation and culture, with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world." The 49-page document calls this task "the work of generations."
Ending tyranny in our world! And we have just the right tools right here in Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, Bagram ...


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