Historical viewpoints

  1. From a historical viewpoint:

    Europe Seems to Hear Echoes of Empires Past

    The Roots of War
    by Barbara Ehrenreich

    Only three types of creatures engage in warfare--humans, chimpanzees, and ants. Among humans, warfare is so ubiquitous and historically commonplace that we are often tempted to attribute it to some innate predisposition for slaughter--a gene, perhaps, manifested as a murderous hormone. The earliest archeological evidence of war is from 12,000 years ago, well before such innovations as capitalism and cities and at the very beginning of settled, agricultural life. Sweeping through recorded history, you can find a predilection for warfare among hunter-gatherers, herding and farming peoples, industrial and even post-industrial societies, democracies, and dictatorships.
    Last edit by pickledpepperRN on Apr 18, '03
  2. 2 Comments

  3. by   pickledpepperRN

    Iraq war
    Planned for years
    AS THE carnage of the Iraq war fades, and TV commentators cease applauding the
    conflict, thoughtful Americans might see that the war had little to do with terrorism --
    it was carefully planned by George W. Bush's "neoconservative" clique long before
    the 9/11 tragedy.

    "We have been dragged into this war by a president surrounded by super-hawks,
    who intended from the beginning to attack," Sen. Robert C. Byrd, D-W.Va., declared.

    Back in 2000, before Bush gained the presidency, his Republican mentors in the
    Project for the New American Century outlined a master plan to use America's
    colossal military power to enforce U.S. "interests" around the planet. Part of the plan
    included removing Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, a mortal enemy of Bush's father.

    After Bush II was in the White House, and the PNAC leaders were given top federal
    posts, the 9/11 attack provided a reason for waging U.S. military campaigns. The
    first assault, against Afghanistan, was fully justified, because that nation's fanatical
    Taliban rulers harbored the al-Qaida terrorist network responsible for the suicide
    strike on America.

    Then Bush issued a new defense policy, saying he had a right to unleash
    "pre-emptive" wars against any nation suspected of posing danger to America.

    Starting last fall, Bush made dozens of claims that Iraq possessed horror weapons
    and was in league with al-Qaida. These dubious accusations were pretexts for a
    war already planned. Although he repeatedly said during the winter that he had
    "made no decision" about invading Iraq, it wasn't true. More than a year ago, Bush
    crudely told senators in the White House: "F-- Saddam. We're taking him out."

    Obviously, his attack on Iraq had been envisioned for years-but Americans never
    were told what was coming. Only perceptive observers could see that Bush
    deliberately was starting a war. U.S. diplomat John Brady Kiesling resigned from the
    State Department Feb. 27 with a bitter letter saying:

    "We have not seen such systematic distortion of intelligence, such systematic
    manipulation of American opinion, since the war in Vietnam. We spread
    disproportionate terror and confusion in the public mind, arbitrarily linking the
    unrelated problems of terrorism and Iraq ... The policies we are now asked to
    advance are incompatible not only with American values but also with American
    interests. When our friends are afraid of us rather than afraid for us, it is time to

    In the March 18 Washington Post, columnist David Broder wrote:

    "Looking back, the major landmarks of the past year appear to have been carefully
    designed to leave no alternative but war with Iraq."

    The current Washington Monthly, the national journal created by Charleston native
    Charlie Peters, says the Bush "neocon" clique secretly plans to remove many other
    Mideast regimes and install White House-approved governments. In a cover story
    titled "Practice to Deceive," the magazine says:

    "The great majority of the American people have no concept of what kind of conflict
    the president is leading them into. The White House has presented this as a war to
    depose Saddam Hussein in order to keep him from acquiring weapons of mass
    destruction-a goal that the majority of Americans support. But the White House
    really has in mind an enterprise of such a scale, cost and scope that would be
    almost impossible to sell to the American public. The White House knows that. So it
    hasn't even tried. Instead, it's focused on getting us into Iraq with the hope of setting
    off a sequence of events that will draw us inexorably toward the agenda they have in

    The hidden plan, the magazine says, is to install an elected democracy in Iraq, then
    spread this transition-by military force, if necessary-to all neighboring Arab
    countries. But the strategy could go haywire, it says, because enraged Muslims in
    those nations might elect fanatical regimes.

    "Citizens of these countries generally hate the United States, and show strong
    sympathy for Islamic radicals. If free elections were held in Saudi Arabia today,
    Osama bin Laden would probably win more votes than Crown Prince Abdullah."

    Disturbingly, Americans aren't being told of the traumatic course charted by the
    White House-or the motives impelling the president. ConsortiumNews founder
    Robert Parry observed:

    "Bush apparently sees his mission in messianic terms, believing that he is the
    instrument of God as he strikes at Saddam Hussein and other U.S. adversaries. In
    a profile of Bush at war, USA Today cited Commerce Secretary Don Evans, one of
    Bush's closest friends, describing Bush's belief that he was called on by God to do
    what he's doing."

    Incredible. Bush never told Americans that he had been planning the Iraq war for
    years-and he didn't reveal his innermost reasons for craving it. If his Mideast
    strategy proceeds as The Washington Monthly forecasts, ominous times lie ahead
  4. by   pickledpepperRN
    Historical editorial that starts with errors by the Carter administration regarding the Taliban. Hind sight is 20/20

    Reports that since 1963 under Presidents of both parties SH was helped by the US>