The Bush Regime has quagmired America into a sixth year of
war in Afghanistan and Iraq with no end in sight. The cost of these wars of
aggression is horrendous. Official US combat casualties stand at 4,538 dead.
Officially, 29,780 US troops have been wounded in Iraq. Experts have argued
that these numbers are understatements. Regardless, these numbers are only the
tip of the iceberg.
On April 17, 2008, AP News reported that a new study
released by the RAND Corporation concludes that �some 300,000 U.S. troops are
suffering from major depression or post traumatic stress from serving in the
wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and 320,000 received brain injuries.�
On April 23, 2008, Online Journal reported
that an internal email from Gen. Michael J. Kussman, undersecretary for health
at the Veterans Administration, to Ira Katz, head of mental health at the VA,
confirms a McClatchy
Newspaper report that 126 veterans per week commit suicide. To the
extent that the suicides are attributable to the war, more than 500 deaths
should be added to the reported combat fatalities each month.
Turning to Iraqi deaths, expert studies support as many as
1.2 million dead Iraqis, almost entirely civilians. Another 2 million Iraqis
have fled their country, and there are 2 million displaced Iraqis within Iraq.
Afghan casualties are unknown.
Both Afghanistan and Iraq have suffered unconscionable
civilian deaths and damage to housing, infrastructure and environment. Iraq is
afflicted with depleted uranium and open sewers.
Then there are the economic costs to the US. Nobel economist
Joseph Stiglitz estimates the full cost of the invasion and attempted
occupation of Iraq to be between $3 trillion and $5 trillion. The dollar price
of oil and gasoline have tripled, and the dollar has lost value against other
currencies, declining dramatically even against the lowly Thai baht. Before
Bush launched his wars of aggression, one US dollar was worth 45 baht. Today
the dollar is only worth 30 baht.
The US cannot afford these costs. Prior to his resignation
last month, US Comptroller General David Walker reported
that the accumulated unfunded liabilities of the US government total 53
trillion dollars. The US government cannot cover these liabilities. The Bush
Regime even has to borrow the money from foreigners to pay for its wars in Iraq
and Afghanistan. There is no more certain way to bankrupt the country and
dethrone the dollar as the world reserve currency.
The moral costs are perhaps the highest. All of the deaths,
injuries, and economic costs to the US and its victims are due entirely to lies
told by the president and vice president of the US, by the secretary of
defense, the national security advisor, the secretary of state, and, of course,
by the media, including the �liberal� New York Times. All of these lies
were uttered in behalf of an undeclared agenda. �Our� government has still not
told �we the people� the real reasons �our� government invaded Afghanistan and
Instead, the American sheeple have accepted a succession of
transparent lies: weapons of mass destruction, al Qaeda connections and
complicity in the 9/11 attack, overthrowing a dictator and �bringing democracy�
The great moral American people would rather believe
government lies than to acknowledge the government�s crimes and to hold the
There are many effective ways in which a moral people could
protest. Consider investors, for example. Clearly Halliburton and military
suppliers are cleaning up. Investors flock to the stocks in order to
participate in the rise in value from booming profits. But what would a moral
people do? Wouldn�t they boycott the stocks of the companies that are profiting
from the Bush Regime�s war crimes?
If the US invaded Iraq for any of the succession of reasons
the Bush Regime has given, why would the US have spent $750 million on a
fortress �embassy� with anti-missile systems and its own electricity and water
systems spread over 104 acres? No one has ever seen or heard of such an embassy
before. Clearly, this �embassy� is constructed as the headquarters of an
occupying colonial ruler.
The fact is that Bush invaded Iraq with the intent of
turning Iraq into an American colony. The so-called government of al-Maliki is
not a government. Maliki is the well-paid front man for US colonial rule.
Maliki�s government does not exist outside the protected Green Zone, the
headquarters of the American occupation.
If colonial rule were not the intent, the US would not be
going out of its way to force al Sadr�s 60,000 man militia into a fight. Sadr
is a Shi�ite who is a real Iraqi leader, perhaps the only Iraqi who could end
the sectarian conflict and restore some unity to Iraq. As such he is regarded
by the Bush Regime as a danger to the American puppet Maliki. Unless the US is
able to purchase or rig the upcoming Iraqi election, Sadr is likely to emerge
as the dominant figure. This would be a highly unfavorable development for the
Bush Regime�s hopes of establishing its colonial rule behind the facade of a
Maliki fake democracy. Rather than work with Sadr in order to extract
themselves from a quagmire, the Americans will be doing everything possible to
Why does the Bush Regime want to rule Iraq? Some speculate
that it is a matter of �peak oil.� Oil supplies are said to be declining even
as demand for oil multiplies from developing countries such as China. According
to this argument, the US decided to seize Iraq to insure its own oil supply.
This explanation is problematic. Most US oil comes from
Canada, Mexico, and Venezuela. The best way for the US to insure its oil
supplies would be to protect the dollar�s role as the world reserve currency.
Moreover, $3-5 trillion would have purchased a tremendous amount of oil. Prior
to the US invasions, the US oil import bill was running less than $100 billion
per year. Even in 2006 total US imports from OPEC countries was $145 billion,
and the US trade deficit with OPEC totaled $106 billion. Three trillion dollars
could have paid for US oil imports for 30 years; 5 trillion dollars could pay
the US oil bill for a half century had the Bush Regime preserved a sound
The more likely explanation for the US invasion of Iraq is
Bush Regime�s commitment to the defense of Israeli territorial expansion. There
is no such thing as a neoconservative who is not allied with Israel. Israel
hopes to steal all of the West Bank and southern Lebanon for its territorial
expansion. An American colonial regime in Iraq not only buttresses Israel from
attack, but also can pressure Syria and Iran from giving support to the
Palestinians and Lebanese. The Iraqi war is a war for Israeli territorial
expansion. Americans are dying and bleeding to death financially for Israel.
Bush�s �war on terror� is a hoax that serves to cover US intervention in the
Middle East in behalf of �greater Israel.�
Craig Roberts [email him] was
Assistant Secretary of the Treasury during President Reagan�s first term. He
was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal. He has held numerous academic
appointments, including the William E. Simon Chair, Center for Strategic
and International Studies, Georgetown University, and Senior Research Fellow,
Hoover Institution, Stanford University. He was awarded the Legion of Honor by
French President Francois Mitterrand. He is the author of Supply-Side
Revolution : An Insider's Account of Policymaking in Washington; Alienation
and the Soviet Economy and Meltdown:
Inside the Soviet Economy, and is the co-author with Lawrence M. Stratton
Tyranny of Good Intentions : How Prosecutors and Bureaucrats Are Trampling the
Constitution in the Name of Justice. Click here for Peter
Brimelow�s Forbes Magazine interview with Roberts about the recent epidemic of