Capt. Eric H. May
The very term "global war" is a mere euphemism for World War III. We are caught up in it now, a vast struggle with no end in sight. The 2008 United States presidential election won’t change things, since it will simply pit a Republican who truly promises a war without end against a Democrat who falsely promises to end the war. It will be a meaningless coin toss: heads, war wins; tails, peace loses.
Many intellectuals, both those far to the right and far to the left, agree about this much. They also agree about the beginning date for the ongoing world war: September 11, 2001.
From a right-wing perspective, 9/11 is the day Al Qaeda terrorists carried out a new Pearl Harbor attack against us. A righteous sense of national unity ushered in a "post-9/11 reality," and introduced words and concepts now familiar to all of us. We were protecting our "Homeland" by creating a "Patriot Act" and a "Department of Homeland Security." We were conducting a "Global War on Terror" against an "Axis of Evil" led by "Islamofascists," before they could carry out an even more devastating attack against us. The UK and Israel were our best friends in the "Generational War" that had been thrust upon us.
The left wing believes that 9/11 was the day when an imperial US establishment carried out a "false flag" attack against us, then blamed it on Middle Eastern Muslims. They believe that all the institutions, idioms and ideas born after 9/11 were conceived long before 9/11, and were simply the means whereby a US-based Anglo-Judeo junta could carry out World War III to seize control of the world's dwindling oil supplies and impose a final solution to the Israeli-Arab conflict. They believe that if there is another 9/11-style attack, it will be carried out by the same imperial establishment that carried out 9/11, and may well bring about martial law, the draft and nuclear war.
Whether World War III was something the Middle East forced upon us, or something we forced upon the Middle East, we are in the middle of it now. Geostrategists have aptly named it "The Quicksand War," because the more we struggle in it, the deeper we sink into it. Six years after Bush and his Neocons claimed that they had won the war in Afghanistan, we are still fighting there. Five years after they claimed to have won the war in Iraq, we are still fighting there, too. At present, they claim that they have no intention of beginning a war in Iran, even though they regularly remind us that Iran is an original member of the Axis of Evil and an inveterate enemy of Israel.
Before the invasion of Iraq -- while Bush and the Neocons claimed that they were looking for a diplomatic solution to avert the war -- Washington insiders from the government and media whispered among themselves that the road to Jerusalem led through Baghdad. This meant that success in Iraq would solve the problems of Israel, and it proved that insiders who whispered that the war was all about oil and Israel were correct. Needless to say, those insiders didn't trouble the American people with their knowledge of the ulterior motives behind the war, nor did they let on that all the posturing and debating about the pending war was a sham.
Given the willingness of our leaders to trick the American people into a war with Iraq five years ago, is there any good reason to believe that they are now being honest about wanting to keep the American people out of a war with Iran? Have they decided that the only way to win the failing war is to enlarge it? Have they dusted off the propaganda plan entitled Starting a War with Iraq and changed it, by a single letter, to Starting a War with Iran?
Many insiders believe that the Bush administration has already promised Israel and the Jewish lobby a war with Iran before it leaves office in January, 2009. That may be so, and there are strong indicators that this spring may have been chosen to begin the war. My purpose in enumerating them is not to predict an attack on Iran this spring, but only to examine them the possibility of such an attack.
Iraq is deteriorating. General Petraeus will perform for Congress next week, doing another Pinocchio imitation as he pretends that he is not a puppet -- or is, at any rate, a puppet without strings attached. It will be a tough act to pull off, though, as Bush's favorite general will have to explain just why it is that, after we have maxed out our military to conduct a surge, the three biggest cities in Iraq are in turmoil. Mosul, Baghdad and Basra are all exploding -- as is the US "Green Zone," which has come under heavy fire in the last week. It will be even more interesting if anyone has the gumption to ask him how he can call the surge a success when the Turks are attacking the Kurds in northern Iraq and the Iranian president is welcomed like a savior in the streets of Baghdad. Petraeus may be tipping Bush's hand by saying that Iran is to blame for the crisis in Iraq.
Israel is mobilizing. The Jewish state will conduct the largest domestic defense exercises in its history beginning April 6 and lasting all week. Defense exercises can be indicators of offensive intentions, and an attack on Iran may well be in the works. It's far-fetched to suppose that the Israelis are worried about an unprovoked Iranian attack against them, since Israel is one of the world's most potent military powers. It has plenty of state-of-the-art US equipment and a nuclear arsenal of around 200 warheads (another little bit of reality kept from the American people by its leaders).
The hawks are flying. Earlier this month, Dick Cheney flew to the Middle East to visit Iraq, and then confer with amiable Persian Gulf oil monarchs before reporting to Israel. The last time Cheney made the rounds with these Arabian petro princes was just before the invasion of Iraq. Ominously, the day after his visit to Saudi Arabia, that country's controlled media reported that its government was making plans to react to nuclear fallout blowing its way from Iran.
John McCain flew to Iraq for long enough to conflate Iran with Al Qaeda. He repeated the conflation in Israel. McCain apologists suggest a string of senior moments, but his comments suggest that Iran is a target. McCain is an Israeli favorite because he is the son of Admiral John McCain, the officer in charge of the Navy cover-up of the 1967 Israeli attack on the USS liberty. Israeli airplanes and patrol boats strafed and torpedoed the Liberty to sink it and kill all survivors. It was a classic false flag operation, assisted by the Johnson administration, intended to be blamed on Egypt to bring us into the 1967 Middle Eastern war. The Israelis may be counting on the old saying "like father like son."
Jewish Joseph Lieberman chaperoned the fuzzy-brained McCain, and whispered guidance into his ear from time to time. Lieberman was a key senator in starting a war with Iraq, and he has thrown his weight behind those who want to start a war with Iran. The 2000 Democratic vice presidential candidate enjoys media Teflon treatment for his Neocon-ism, but much of the Internet alternative media considers him an Israel-firster.
Sense has been sacked. Bush forced Admiral "Fox" Fallon, the CENTCOM commander, from command on March 11. Fallon was laudable for two strong opinions. The first was that Petraeus, his subordinate, was an odious Bush League sycophant, "an ass-kissing little chicken shit," to be specific. The second was that a war with Iran was a bad idea, and that the people who are pushing for it were not considering the national interest -- or at any rate not the US national interest.
These are troubling signs in troubled times. With April Fools' Day just around the corner clever people should remind themselves that history -- including current history -- has always been full of the same stale jokes. The setups are the same, but no one remembers; and the punchlines are predictable, but no one sees them coming.
Three generations ago an actor on the world stage explained it all to perfection:
“Naturally the common people don't want war; neither in Russia, nor in England, nor in America, nor in Germany. That is understood. But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.” -- Reichsmarschall Hermann Goering
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Captain Eric H. May is a former Army military intelligence and public affairs officer, as well as a former NBC editorial writer. His essays have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Houston Chronicle and Military Intelligence Magazine. For his most recent articles and upcoming interviews, refer to his home site at:
and also at his America First Books author archive site at:
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