The War Fête
by Karen De Coster
by Karen De Coster
My first thought in regards to Saddam Hussein's capture was contemplating how the rabid war supporters were going to use it as the quintessential "see I told you" toward all those who oppose this war. Without a doubt, apprehending Saddam has now become the latest, greatest justification not only for the Iraq war, but for the extension of the war in the Mideast, and the spread of US Empire in total. Since the despot has been detained, forget all of the other, past grounds for this invasion that ultimately failed the endurance test. The cabal-in-charge has wiped them all away, bit by bit, as much as it needed to in order to inspire and engender pro-war views, reaffirm its mission, and maintain support for its warmonger-in-chief.
Immediately upon hearing the news frenzy, I decided to wander over to a few of the war hawk websites, and just as I expected, I found unmitigated glee. The glee, however, is not for the capture of Saddam as much as it is a sigh of relief for themselves, and an affirmation of their unconditional support for this war, in spite of all the recent lies, failings, and chaos that have surfaced in Iraq. Knowing that Saddam is in chains has somehow, in their minds, brought meaning to their words and legitimacy to their cause.
For instance, Andrew Sullivan quotes anti-war folks ad nauseum. To him, the omnipotent State — that he finds so endearing — now has all the necessary justification for its multi-billion dollar campaign for "democracy." The National Review's David Frum, in his usual, bizarre link between God and the Mighty Secular State, claims that God wants Bush for four more years. I do not kid about such things. Perhaps Mr. Frum believes Bush visited Mount Sinai and came down with a stone tablet that contained the Ten Commandments for War, starting with "Thou shalt kill under false premises."
It was all so predictable. Any and all doubt has been erased in the minds of the war hawks. The US military caught Saddam, so therefore, all anti-war sentiment can be proven absurd and/or irrelevant. The war can no longer be analyzed for its improprieties and falsehoods, let alone denounced. They were right and we were wrong. Of course, that's a simplistic and flawed case from the war hawks, as we know the reasons for war have never been sound, and surely not when those raison d'êtres changed more rapidly and more often than winter weather in Michigan.
However, the mainstream will use the capture drama to promote an all-encompassing victory. The capture and all its glories, in turn, will fuel Bush's re-election campaign, and it will provide fodder for further US hegemony and Mideast domination under the guise of a US pro-democracy sweep. The post-capture, blissful brouhaha that we are witnessing will become the launching ramp for yet another stream of half-truths from the all-powerful Propaganda Ministers within the administration, including their lapdogs in the media. Onward they will march to the next conquest, be it Syria, Iran, or otherwise, and some recycling of the tried-and-true propaganda material will be essential to keep the masses compliant and in support of those endeavors.
One of the perennial neoconservative lapdogs in Europe, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, announced upon the capture of Saddam, "We have found the weapon of mass destruction." Rhetorical as it seems, the WMD lip service has thus been broadened to include any and all apparent threats from within Iraq, as long as it meets the standard of believability.
So another totalitarian bastard-of-a-tyrant was pulled from a hole and will be stuck in a threadbare, dank apartment, and that we can applaud. But what about the tyrants — here at home — that have decapitated American liberty by convincing a populace that we needed to usurp an entire nation that had not ever posed a single threat to our American homeland? Indeed, the fact that this is an aggressive and unjust war remains. The imprisonment of a single tyrant does not change that reality. I suspect those tyrants I speak of, here at home, will go on with nary a bother, and in fact will take the opportunity presented to promote yet more of the same. "Homeland Security" indeed.
In his televised statement in regards to Saddam's capture, Bush warned us:
I also have a message for all Americans. The capture of Saddam Hussein does not mean the end of violence in Iraq. We still face terrorists who would rather go on killing the innocent than accept the rise of liberty in the heart of the Middle East. Such men area direct threat to the American people, and they will be defeated.
We've come to this moment through patience and resolve and focused action. And that is our strategy moving forward. The war on terror is a different kind of war, waged capture by capture, cell by cell, and victory by victory. Our security is assured by our perseverance and by our sure belief in the success of liberty. And the United States of America will not relent until this war is won.
This latest rhetorical puff can be interpreted as a call for a step-up in the war against the selected dictators of the world, the war on terror, and hence a war on the liberties of all Americans. Hold on to your hats; an additional four years of neoconservative world domination is coming to a theatre near you.
December 16, 2003
Karen De Coster, CPA, [send her mail] is a libertarian freelance writer, graduate student in Austrian Economics, and a business professional from Michigan. Her first book is still in the works. See her Mises Institute archive for more online articles, and check out her website
Copyright © 2003 Karen De Coster