Random Thoughts on the war.

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It was with great hope we elected Obama because he represented himself as change. Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and the totality of our media perpetuated a known lie that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and the total security of the United States is at stake.

We launched overall war on Iraq killing more than 200,000 civilians. The human devastation that invasion included is still being calculated. We will not ignore the fact that many good patriotic Americans were killed, wounded or had their minds scrambled forever.

When Bush gave an award to a hero soldier’s mother he said; “Your son died for a noble cause.” The mother said; “Mr. President, what noble cause?”

When our “President for Change” came into office there was not even a word about those who committed a crime using lies to launch the war on Iraq. Hundreds of thousands of Americans were in the streets chanting “NO BLOOD FOR OIL”.

If there is no accountability, if the perpetrators face no consequences when a crime is committed, there can be no justice.

Obama, elected for change, never said from what let alone to what.

Nobody even asks about our recent history of military failures. At most, it’s explained by “carelessness” in the region. Even questions about this “carelessness” have not been addressed by either political party.

All politicians, Democrats AND Republicans say, “We need more respect for American power.”

No question the western world is at war with radical Muslim groups. They know the story of Iraq – every jihadist we killed it inspired two more to join – and they want us to repeat this mistake in Syria and Paris.

Our military leaders also know the other lesson from Iraq – that any gains in the fight against extremism cannot hold without local ownership and leadership in the fight. We pushed back at Al-Qaeda in Iraq during the surge, but it fell apart the minute our troops and money left. As retired Army General Martin Dempsey said, “Pushing back ISIL with American troops without accompanying political success is like painting over rust.”

Hillary Clinton is calling for a “new phase” in the fight that includes stepped up air and drone strikes. Clinton’s approach is more hawkish, certainly more so than closest competitor Bernie Sanders. The closest that Bernie Sanders can get to the question, “war is not the answer”, is to say; “We need to develop a political movement which, once again, is prepared to take on and defeat a ruling class whose greed is destroying our nation,” he said. “The billionaire class must be told loudly and clearly that they cannot have it all.”

Men, women, children, people of all colors and ideology lose in war. A small international group must control the Earth’s resources and feed a bottom line economic system which is enriched by building more weapons of destruction.

The Pope answers some of the question when he says: “Why are deadly weapons being sold to those who plan to inflict untold suffering on individuals and society? Sadly, the answer, as we all know, is simply for money: money that is drenched in blood, often innocent blood.”

The people of the world want peace.

On this subject, President Kennedy in one of the last speeches that he gave said:

“I have, therefore, chosen this time and place to discuss a topic on which ignorance too often abounds and the truth too rarely perceived — and that is the most important topic on earth: peace.

What kind of peace do I mean and what kind of a peace do we seek? Not a Pax Americana enforced on the world by American weapons of war, not the peace of the grave or the security of the slave. I am talking about genuine peace — the kind of peace that makes life on earth worth living — and the kind that enables men and nations to grow and to hope and build a better life for their children — not merely peace for Americans but peace for all men and women — not merely peace in our time but peace in all time.”

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5 Comments

  1. Thank you, Haskell. This is short but succinct.
    Unions united could change things.
    It’s why we are building LABOR TV.
    Bill Floyd

  2. Thank you Haskell and I strongly agree with everything you had to say. It would be a wonderful world for our kids if there was peace instead of hatred and greed. There is a reason for radical behavior and we need to reject discrimination and learn how to accept other cultures , their values and leave them alone.
    Love Tonya

  3. So profound and so true. Thank you Haskell for keeping us on our toes, reminding us to never stop asking questions or to settle. RIP

  4. It’s only upon hearing of the accomplished Mr. Wexler’s passing, a man whom as a photographer and artist I have admired and learned from through his work ever since my discovery of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest (still, along with A Woman Under The Influence, one of my two all-time personal favorite films), that I explore these posts with a sense of regret today. It turns out that we shared a concern for this nation and it’s actions abroad, general foreign policy and media manipulation of the representation of both as well as the apartment lack of change represented by regime change. I would surely have learned and will learn from his thoughts that will hopefully remain here. To his family I wish peace and blessings in this time and thank you for what I have no doubt will be the diligent maintenance of his considerable and influential legacy.

  5. These last words are so beautiful. He will be remembered for all he did and said.

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