Monday, July 10, 2006

Two Stories Tell the Tale

Two Stories Tell the Tale
By William Rivers Pitt
t r u t h o u t | Perspective

Thursday 06 July 2006

Iraq is a part of the war on terror. Iraq is a central front on that war.
- George W. Bush, statement from Baghdad, 6/13/06
Two different stories boiled over in the last few days, each of which tells us too many sorry things about where we are as a nation. North Korea flopped several missiles into the Sea of Japan, including one that could reportedly reach the West Coast of the United States, and a discharged American soldier has been accused of raping an Iraqi teenager and shooting her and three members of her family.

The missiles in North Korea are of fundamental importance to both American national security, and the security of the Pacific region. In an irony of global proportions, the rogue government of North Korea declared to the United States and the world that it possessed nuclear weapons on April 24, 2003. This was, of course, a little more than a month after the Bush administration initiated the invasion and occupation of Iraq.

Three years later, we are still mired in the bloodbath of Iraq, having found no weapons of mass destruction and having failed to establish anything even remotely resembling a democracy. A nation that was no threat to US security was smashed to flinders, and has since bloomed into a real and growing national security threat.

The influential journal Foreign Affairs recently polled 100 leading foreign policy experts on the efficacy of the so-called "War on Terror," and 86 of them declared the thing to be a comprehensive failure. We are far less safe now, they reported, thanks largely to what we have done in Iraq. "When you strip away the politics, the experts, almost to a person, are very worried about the administration," said Joe Cirincione, vice-president of the Center for American Progress. "They think none of our front-line institutions is doing a good job and that Iraq has made the terror situation much worse."....