Bush Doctrine has us at the edge of sanity, tragedy, and hell

Tuesday, February 28, 2006 at 05:30 PM

If you read today's headlines about Iraq, it's hard to even think the name George Bush without a rush of fury. Now that the curfews are lifted, the reports keep coming, each upping the estimate of the dead for this day, Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2006: 30 dead, 37 dead, 41 dead, 46 dead, 56 dead, 66 dead, 68 dead, 75 dead.  Bombings, shootings, artillery fire.

We sit now with the first clear, undeniable view of the road down which we have been speeding since George Bush adopted his doctrine (adapted from the Project for a New American Century [PNAC]) that preemptive military action on the part of the United States was the only way to protect ourselves and the rest of the world from the evildoers of the month.

How bad are things right now?  Read these news report excerpts (they're roughly in chronological order):

"The greatest fear of leaders throughout the Middle East is that an unrestrained civil war, if it ever comes to that, would not only give birth to warring Sunni, Shiite and Kurdish enclaves inside Iraq, but that the violence could also spread unpredictably through the region."

US national intelligence Director John Negroponte tells a senate committee that he believes civil war has been averted in Iraq for now because "They realise they don't want to fall down that precipice."

George Bush dodges a question about what Washington would do if civil war broke out in Iraq by telling ABC News, "I don`t buy your premise that there`s going to be a civil war."

George Bush tells the American Legion annual conference that as Iraq "experiences new hope and progress, we will see the power of freedom to change our world, and a terrible threat will be removed from the lives of our children and grandchildren.

The AP issues a wire story captioned "Civil War Looms With 68 Killed in Baghdad."

Conflicting reports issue on how many Iraqis died during the sectarian violence of the last few days, with the U.S. and Iraqi governments pushing the figure of 379, but other reports indicating 1,000 or more, as high as 1,300.

Thousands of American military dead, many more thousands wounded and crippled.  Many more thousands of Iraqis already dead, more dying every day. America's reputation in the Middle East in tatters on the back of torture and inability to keep Iraqis secure from each other.   Neighboring countries really starting to sweat as they watch the deteriorating conditions.  American soldiers stuck there probably sweating a lot more than that.  Absolute uncertainty if the full civil war does break out, as to the results for both Iraq and the Middle East as a whole.


Because our fearless leaders saw 9-11 as an opportunity to establish the US as the dominant power, keeping peace and spreading our idea of Democracy, comprised largely of a devotion to free markets, as the PNAC had been badgering them to do?

Because our fearless leaders were so lacking in foresight, understanding, and caution that they leaped right into Iraq against the better judgment of most of the people who had any clue what that kind of war might be like?

Because they were so determined to start a war in the Middle East--anywhere in the Middle East--as part of their global strategy that they cooked up a public hysteria about the incredible and imminent threat posed to our country by a country of 27 million people, half a world away, that had already been crippled by two wars and sanctions, all while fostering the illusion that this country had somehow had its hand in our own tragedy?

Because, having decided to start this war, they refused to listen to anyone with experience who cautioned about the war's difficulty and the need to employ many times more troops than were ever dedicated to the task?

Because we foolishly adopted a policy of interrogation and detainment that strikes most of the rest of the world as torture or the next worst thing, and which sent a far stronger message to the Iraqis than all our canned talk about spreading democracy?

Maybe the world can get lucky and there will not be an Iraqi civil war.  If the civil war does develop, maybe we'll get lucky and it won't spread to the entire area, producing human and economic disaster.  But it doesn't matter how this turns out. Our fearless leaders have been shown for what they are, victims of the two ants:  arrogant and ignorant.

And I have zero confidence that this crew can turn things around, since propaganda and photo-ops appear to be the only weapons they've mastered.  It will not help for Bush to make another secret trip to Iraq to be photographed with plastic food on his tray in the mess hall.  It will not help to plant more "good news" stories in the Iraqi press.  It will not help to have the right wing attack dogs undertake another smear of "liberal America-haters."  It will not help to have Coulter or Limbaugh deliver yet another insult to liberals and sanity.

These lunatics have opened the door to Hell, and there's not much we can do now except to wait and see what walks through it.