I know this is from a few weeks ago (I’ve been busy. Get stuffed), but it’s been revealed that Rumsfeld or his team included bible verses as quotes in Defense Department briefings. Looking them over, they’re presented mainly as a design element alongside lots of pretty pictures, since our former President was a boob and a functioning illiterate. But it is indeed significant that Rummy included such quotes. He knew his audience, and he knew that that audience would respond favorably to seeing such quotes among his briefings on what our military is doing in the Middle East.
Together, they present an image of American soldiers praying to god, our awesome weaponry in action, and women and children thankful for their liberators. Good works. Holy works, even.
…and exactly what the Arab world thinks we are doing there: Bringing Christian values to the heathen. At gunpoint if necessary. Looking at these images from previously classified memos, I’d say that’s exactly how the Bush administration thought to prosecute this war. Calling this windfall for Defense Contractors and Haliburton and Bechtel shareholders a “War On Terror” also serves to keep the various riff-raff (Muslims, non-(white) Americans, liberals) at bay. “You want another 9/11? Take off your clothes and step through the scanner.”
The near-religion that’s built up around the military in this country since World War II is also put to use here. “It’s un-American to complain about the military, our boys fighting and dying for your freedoms.” Is it? Re-read the First Amendment and get back to me on that.
As an aside, I am not sure which blind subservience to an obsolete ideal galls me more.
So to recap, Rumsfeld cynically fed into the delusions of an overly religious buffoon and is responsible for the deaths of over 4,000 young American men and women and an untold number of Iraqi civilians.
By feeding into this apocalyptic end-times Christian batshit delusion that’s kept us hanging around in the Middle East for so long, not to mention our crack-head obsession with oil and the need to funnel dollars into Israel because of some passage in a book long since discredited as revelation of future times by every educated Biblical scholar of the last century (quite a run-on, big finish coming up), and by producing hard evidence that our President and his administration believed this to be a Christian crusade as the entire Arab world rightly suspected, thus endangering the lives of every American soldier and civilian over there, Donald Rumsfeld is guilty of treason.
Phew! Quite an eyeful, no? I mean every word of it though.
Okay, reading over Article 3 of the Constitution it might be a stretch to fit these actions into something we’re Constitutionally obligated to kill over, but it’s easy to argue that by presenting the Iraq war as being religious in nature (easily implied by the pictures and quotes, the link is a few paragraphs up if you need to see them again), we give every Islamic fundamentalist nutjob a reason to strap on a bomb and kill our kids over there. Before these documents came out they had a kooky supposition. Now they have a strong argument. And my argument (sorta) has the aid and comfort to an enemy needed by Article 3.
By extension, George W. Bush and Dick Cheney are also guilty of treason. The bitch of it is, none of these assholes will meet their just punishment for what they have done to undermine the freedom and security this country once enjoyed, and for the lives they’ve so callously and cynically fed to our military blood cult for their own financial gain and religious satisfaction.
I am going to finish this with another thought. We are some 65 years out from D-Day, the largest invasion of Europe ever launched. The boys who fought and died at Normandy that morning had some arguably tangible reasons to fight, whether it was a belief in Democracy, hatred of the Nazis or just that they would be shot or imprisoned if they didn’t go.
World War II forms the nexus of the religious fervor we still have for our military. Before that war, being in the military was something you did, and was not looked upon well by all strata of society in America. For some people in society it was conidered a definite step down. After World War II, being in the military was a singular honor (rightly so by the way, given the Marines’ history), but it was an honor in the way that I’d guess the priesthood would have been five or six centuries ago. Not only was it good for the family name, it was potentially lucrative depending on your social standing.
The filial love the Baby-boomers have for the actions of their fathers has allowed World War II to hold its singular place in the American psyche longer than the First World War did. WWII was also much larger in scope and much more dramatic, but that war changed America more than any other event. We’d aligned ourselves with the concept that capitalism and democracy went hand-in-hand (they most certainly do not, by the way), and used that attractive idea to wend our way into the hearts and minds of the world. Hollywood helped that a lot too. We promoted something called the “American way of life” to the rest of the world, but made sure their attempts at that way of life matched our interests.
What that entailed, and how destructive that was to the ways of life for other smaller countries was never told to us when it happened. If it was, it was relegated to fringe elements, to people who’d come to this country with tales from abroad told on college campuses. I recommend a book by John Perkins called Confessions of an Economic Hitman. That book opened my eyes about what we did abroad throughout the post-war era, and still do to this day. It also brings a lot of light to the real reason we’re in Iraq. The religion angle was just something to keep President Dummy interested in staying. Perkins has another book called The Secret History of the American Empire that is a lot more personal and shameful if you are an American–a person–with conscience.
I am proud to be an American, proud of our secular heritage (yes it is, read your history) and grateful to those who volunteered to serve, or who were volunteered to serve. I despise the waste of that service by those who would use it for personal profit or religious satisfaction. That waste is an insult to those men and women and their memories, as well as a continuing insult to the kids who put on the uniform for whatever reasons they do.