Do As We Say, Not As We Do

by James Glaser
November 20, 2003

President Bush is in England telling that country, "The tradition of free speech exercised with enthusiasm is alive and well in London. We have that at home too. They now have that right in Baghdad as well."

From the American Prospect, 10/1/03 "As criticism of his authority appeared in Iraqi media, occupying authority chief L. Paul Bremer III placed controls on Iraqi Media Network content and clamped down on the independent media of Iraq, closing down some Iraqi-run newspapers and radio and television stations."

When asked by a reporter why he was handcuffing and taping an Iraqi man's mouth shut, an American officer replied that he had voiced opposition to the American occupation.

President Bush has completely forgot about Weapons of Mass Destruction, "mushroom shaped clouds" over American cities, and imminent threats. All of those reasons for attacking Iraq are now forgotten and "Liberty and Democracy" have taken their place.

Yes it is true that President Bush and his administration have picked the people that are in the Iraqi Governing Council and yes it is also true that some of these people are convicted felons and still others have not lived in Iraq for over thirty five years, but George never did say how much liberty and democracy we were bringing.

Today it was reported that our troops are razing the homes of suspected Iraqi insurgents. So much for the rule of law and due process. I hope that our intelligence on these suspected insurgents is better than our intelligence about Iraq before we attacked.

Liberty is a pretty flexible concept for George Bush. During our first year in the War on Terror or if you prefer, in our first year in the War on Afghanistan, President Bush had us set up a temporary detention center in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The rest of the world calls this facility either a Prison Camp or a Torture Camp. Either way the 660 men held there ( there are international reports that three of the prisoners are children) are in cages, they have absolutely no rights, they have seen no judge, they have had no charges filed against them, and they have no idea of how long they will be there.

These prisoners have no contact with their families and we don't even know if their families know that they are there or if they are alive..

This from Richard Bourke, a Louisiana lawyer representing two of the prisoners that are Australian citizens. "You hear comments from the camp commander about how they are constantly improving their interrogation techniques. They are just experimenting in areas that interest them."

Right now George Bush is telling the world that everything we are doing is on the up and up. All we want to do is help other people and that we just want the oppressed people around the globe to have liberty and freedom like we do in America.

At the same time George is saying all of this, there are terrorist recruiters and people fighting despots all over this world that are exposing to the world what we are really doing. The people right here in America are the ones kept in the dark about what our government does.

From that prison camp in Cuba to the School of the Americas where we teach South American troops how to subvert freedom in their countries, to the Air Base in Afghanistan where we have tortured prisoners to death, and on to Iraq where we are using the Israeli tactic of destroying homes of suspects, those that hate America are spreading the word of what we really do.

These things are not what my country should be doing. We had a chance to show the world how great our country was in Iraq, but we are now coming off like Nazis. We kick down peoples doors in the middle of the night and take people away. We can't speak the language, so those left in the house have no idea of what is going on.

This is the same thing Saddam Hussein did for the last thirty years, so the loved ones at home must assume their husband or father will be killed. The Iraqi people have suffered for decades. We know this, but still we treat them with iron fists. We have started major combat again and are dropping two thousand pound bombs on civilian areas.

George Bush is in London talking about Liberty and Freedom. He thinks that the world is buying his story because hand picked audiences clap for his words. In America, George avoids dead American Soldiers and Marines like the plague, in England he is meeting with some of the parents of British soldiers that have died, but only the ones with the "right" attitude about their son's death.

The rest of the world is watching everything we do, after all we are the Super Power. They are also watching the Iraqi resistance and our reputation is going down hill. Iraq is teaching the rest of the world what they will have to do when attacked by America. They now know we are not invincible and all of our space age weapons cannot stop people that are willing to die to get true freedom from the United States.

George Bush still does not understand that we can not make people free. We can not impose liberty on a nation. The people of Iraq must build their own nation. Before our occupation they might have chosen our form of government as a model for theirs. I don't think they will now.

BACK to the Politics Columns.