Why Invading Iraq Was Right - Revisiting Sadaam's 1979 Purge - Video

Iraq: Do it Again

written by Vincent Lanci for Marketslant.

Based on the successful re-taking of Mosul this week, it felt right to look again at our original invasion of Iraq under GWB.  Certainly it felt right because my own liberal friends had become increasingly hardened in their own opinions. One  can just look at the shouting down of others opinions by symbols on the left, the progressive idealists who mastered rational discourse to protect people's  rights years ago.

While the prose I write is no doubt filled with imperfections, it is the information I've learned that while the public was lied to or improperly "sold" on our reasons  for going in (WMD), we were right to go in. And as I learn, I amend. 

Despite all the obvious conflicts of interest, corporate benefits, the US's seeding of these wrongs  and my own disdain for Neo cons. We were right to go in. And we are wrong to lose our moral compass now after we learned that our Gov't sold  us  on invasion under false pretenses. Our Government's propaganda posting press thinks us dumb. That was the logical  backfiring of a system that has been trying to place us in a holding funnel for years with lowest common denominator rhetoric . But we were right to go in, even if our government couldn't explain why. 

Here is a reason they could have told us. Iraq had fulfilled all 4 requirements to be considered a failed state.

There are four ways a country can lose its sovereignty according to international law

  1. Irresponsible development of nuclear weapons Violating the non-proliferation act in letter or spirit.
  2. Invading and aggression against other sovereign nations Iran, Kuwait.
  3. Genocide: Kurds
  4. Playing hosts to terrorists etc. it was a retirement village for terrorists.

But we were to dumb to understand that apparently. They trotted out Colin Powell to lie to us instead.  

And the UN and international law failed us yet again. Like many legal systems that become encumbered with need to perpetuate their own existence, their rules and  laws proved toothless and unenforceable. They didn't enforce their own  rules. So we went in using false pretense and great salesmanship. 

And while history may never hold W in high regard; while the propaganda machine undermined their own cause by thinking the public was too dumb to handle any reason other than a 3 letter acronym for going in; we were right to do so on purely humanitarian reasons.

But this is not revisionist, and certainly not apologetic for our government's horrible abuse of power and its blatant manipulation of the public it holds in such low regard. But invading Iraq was justified. And while it may be bigger than me to understand truly if  I am right. Seeing a video last night changed  me. It was  the right thing to do. And while there are many other regimes that we did nothing about, that doesn't make doing nothing in  Iraq right.

I hold it is bigger than us and cite how the  world is going now. We did not create this situation.  You do not ask if a man who walks into  a school  and kills a dozen kids is justified in doing so because some wrong was done to him. Why would you do  that here? Question your own culpability in enabling it yes. but stop there as  I did. Yes, The West incited the foment of the ME. But that does not justify what is going on now. 

I saw the original broadcast of Saddam's overthrow of the Iraqi Republic complete with subtitles last night un-narrated . It unnerved me greatly in a way I had not felt since bearing witness on 9/11 to man's inhumanity to man. That is not to equate the 2 remotely.  

On September 13th 2001, after not sleeping and  trading for 24 hours straight to liquidate risk in my small firm Berard Capital's 15 traders, I collapsed in extreme pain. The event was over, the responsibilities to my employees portfolios ( and a friend or 2 who needed  liquidity on margin calls) were gone, and I was struck in the gut by an emotional bomb. I was next inexplicably in a bathtub vomiting uncontrollably in what I could only conclude was a psychic exorcism of the evil I had witnessed and could not process. 

This was also more confirmation to me of the collective soul Jung speaks of, the thread that ties us all together. That even with my own poor antennae to the ether that ties us together, the experience was so powerful and incomprehensible my body revolted  at it. G-d by another name. 

No, the video of Saddam was nowhere near that experience, but perhaps because i have a new sensitivity to that feeling, it did register  as something as close to an unprocessable event that one can witness. 

And then I found Christopher Hitchens' discussion on it. This is a man who is I disagree with on a great many things; but here, I found my own thoughts made into words by  another man  on this surreal moment.

From the Youtube Poster

Archival footage married with part of a Christopher Hitchens speech, showing Saddam Hussein's final purge of the Iraqi Baath Party leadership. You'll notice a couple of small details are different than Hitchens remembers. The audience is larger, and the confessor does not come in wearing chains (metaphorically, perhaps, but not literally.) We don't know exactly how many hundreds of party members were killed in this purge in the whole of Iraq, but of the 68 taken out of this room on July 22, 1979, at least 22 were executed (by their fellow party members). Sadly, the bloodbath for Iraqis and the region was only just beginning.

Hussein's Tactics would make Stalin Jealous:

"Bad guy" was a phrase bush used to describe Hussein. That is insulting. And I've seen video tape, perhaps the only one made in the 20th century  of a coup... of his own cementing of power by getting a tortured parliamentary member to name names and then getting those unnamed senators  to kill the accused ones. It is chilling. 

Islam is not the issue per se. There will always be ignorant people,disenfranchised people, and  poor people that I acknowledge are in part a product of western imperialism. 40 years ago, the extreme right of Islam was nowhere near as influential as it is now. It is getting hard to separate the 2 now. And that is the Fascism we are looking at now.

 

Islam: Theocratic Fascism is Fascism: 

Salafism/ Wahhabism is to my growing understanding, not just the religious right of Islam, it is a political system wrapped in the flag of Allah. 

[VIDEO] An Islamic Salafi Classroom in the UK

Scaling Dictatorial Dogma:

It is a decentralized dictatorial mentality that succeeds previous dictatorships lead by individual dictators in the past. The issue is those who Co-opt religion, which gives a captive (religiously and likely socioeconomically) united community in which any would-be dictator can step in and infect it.

It is the next logical evolution of evil in a world that is increasingly decentralized. Technology, war, networks all do this. And the encoding of Salafism rules is to dictatorial rule what taking a businessman's  intellectual capital and writing a software program with it does. It scales it and obviates tehneed for a central dictator. The dogma is the dictator

What Hussein was, the Salafi and Wahhabi  are now. Political opportunists hiding behind the veil of religion. But the dictator is now the ideology itself hiding in the religion , not embodied in a personality cult of one. 

It is scaling the idea outside the single dictator, without whose presence a dictatorship usually falls. 

Like the business that gets a higher multiple for leveraging the intellectual capital of its owner into a systematized software program, Salafist dogma is the dictator made scalable , decentralized, and globally positioned to capitalize on the network effect (another business tenet).

A tyranny of ideas. And it is a war worth fighting I am starting to feel. 

Israel?

In Israel, the influence of the extreme orthodox is growing on a secular government. Israel has a national religion, but all are free to worship how they want. It is not a theocracy. And it is a modern miracle to me. I wish it to stay that way. i've been there, and wearing a kippoh found many reasonable muslims just wanting to live. I suspect they are shrinking in number as Salafism expands

 

Opposing Forces Are Waking Up: 

Sadly, the rise of extremist Islam makes it that much easier for extremists of other religions to rise in opposition,  whether Christianity, Judaism, or Hinduism. Any good physicist will tell you about actions begetting reactions.

That is not good a good development, but is not unnatural. And this may be beyond what we deem is good and evil. I've found to be necessary in event of crisis to at least acknowledge that much.  Even Ghandi would probably pick up a stick if Hitler  visited and the British navy were not there to enable his passive protests. Channeling  this growing opposing force properly towards the real target of those who are incentivized to kill or convert us is the key. Psychic energy and emotion can easily be coopted towards the wrong target by idiots with agendas. Ultimately, maybe a global  self-clearing event is  in order. As George Carlin  said to ecologists: Earth will be fine, it's the humans who should be  worrying

Bullies, Whether Fascist Islamics or the Multiculturalists who enable them are Dictators

The Husseins of the world, the western incumbents wed to relativism and evangelical multiculturalism that shout down new ideas (previously the movement that was progressive discourse) , the leaders of Salafism and their use of a tolerant west to spread intolerance. And others. 

Compelling someone to do as you say is totalitarianism. And it must be met with equal or greater force to stop it. And that force must be  controlled  by sane minds outside of the fray who can put that necessary force in check when it is done. 

If you've taken the time to read this far. Thank you. 

VBL

vlanci@echobay.com

Comments

El Vaquero Pinto Currency Wed, 07/12/2017 - 19:50 Permalink

The author is applying secular Western values to the region.  This is a huge mistake, and it was the mistake we made in 2003.  The people over there are often tribal, often illiterate, and quite often the opposite of secular.  They also have a penchant for marrying their first cousins, which leads to a plethora of genetic problems that include an increased likelihood for antisocial behavior.  Basically, if you want a somewhat stable, somewhat secular state, you need a government that is somewhat dictatorial in its nature.  Our first mistake was ousting Saddam in 2003.  Our second mistake was not leveling the entire goddamned region once we had.  

In reply to by Pinto Currency

ultraticum Wed, 07/12/2017 - 14:36 Permalink

And how, exaxtly, was my life, liberty, or property at risk to justify this?  Or yours or anybody else in North America for that matter? Our property was conficated at gunpoint to prosecute this stupid war in a long string of losing wars.

Libertarian777 Wed, 07/12/2017 - 14:55 Permalink

What What a load of drivel. Note how the author purports to hate neocons, yet uses the same arguments as they do. Genocide, purging. Dictators,  islamists.1. Saddam was not an islamist. He saw islamists as a threat. Much like ghadaffi.2. More Iraqis died from sanctions, destruction of the sewage, electrical and water lines than kurds were massacred 3. We armed him4. We armed Iran5. Is Iraq in a better state now with the destruction of its cities and many historical sites, or was it better under saddam? The author also left out "we should invade Syria for these same reasons", but "I am not a neocon".

Shemp 4 Victory Wed, 07/12/2017 - 16:29 Permalink

This article is just another manifestation of the US citizen eternal nature. They are duplicitous and can't advance their best interests into light. It always has to be something that will help or provide a benefit to humanity. When of course, they advance only their selfish interests.The author ignored a capital point in the US world order: nations that are weak are not acknowledged as sovereign. They are to be farmed or extorted, as per long standing US policy.The US citizen author cannot help himself. He has to masquerade cruelty as compassion, just like US citizens are used to masquerading coercion for freedom, propaganda and fantasy for truth, and injustice for justice. American way.The part about bullies made me laugh. Americans are bullies at heart, and bullies never factor into the equation their own acts of aggression. When retaliation comes, bullies always picture themselves as victims. Works out well considering the American fondness for victimhood.This guy wants to help his own professed cause? Quite simple. He can start by acting on himself and stop producing articles to promote fantasy. Yeah, yeah, this is how he makes a living so he won't do that. For propagandists, propaganda is always in the other's mouth.

UncleChopChop Shemp 4 Victory Wed, 07/12/2017 - 20:24 Permalink

logged in just to send in some upvotes... i must say, it IS very encouraging to see such strong awareness and calling-out of the bullshit that is this article.if the author is in earnest in his beliefs, I hope that for his sake he can keep from getting defensive and dismissive of the arguments put forward and instead can see that he is very off base and should consider re-examining his perspectives on a very very fundamental level. i too 'wore a flag pin' on my lapel after 9/11... let's remember that we all went through (and go through) phases of sleepwalking to propaganda... try and be kind to those who are struggling to awaken. it -might- have taken balls to publish this (and i doubt it's fun for the author to receive the responses he's getting here, accurate though they may be). 

In reply to by Shemp 4 Victory

el buitre yellowsub Wed, 07/12/2017 - 20:36 Permalink

Not completely true.  He asked April Glaspie very politely if he might attack Kawait for slant drilling his oil reserves.  April check with foggy bottom and replied, "We ain't got no dog in this fight."  He was set up.  But his great sin was selling oil in Euros.  Wonder if T. Rex has consider that tactic with Putin for the RMB / Ruble  petro trade :-)

In reply to by yellowsub

roisaber (not verified) Wed, 07/12/2017 - 17:47 Permalink

Saddam did nothing wrong. He kept all the snakes contained in his own backyard, which is more than Uncle Sam ever accomplished.

Bubbette Wed, 07/12/2017 - 18:43 Permalink

Invading Iraq was almost as stupid as President Carter not supporting the Shah and installing the Prince on the Throne of Iran. That is what started the destabilization of the Middle East. Then Sadaam (who was holding the crazies in Iran in check) was knocked over by Bush.  That allowed Iran and the crazy Shias to invade the Middle East.  Then in Libiya we killed Kadafi and have another pile of crap.Next we will kill Assad in Syria and let the crazies have full access to Israel.It is obvious we have no clue what to do in the Middle East and need to pull out and let them kill each other and restore brutal regimes which are needed to control the crazies there.The British learned why not to invade Iraq in the 1930's.  Too bad there was no one in the Bush Administration familiar with this history.If you want to help in the Middle East restore Kurdistan from land taken from Turkey, Iraq and Iran.  They would stablize the region and kick some monumental arse.

Shemp 4 Victory Bubbette Wed, 07/12/2017 - 21:25 Permalink

 

Invading Iraq was almost as stupid as President Carter not supporting the Shah and installing the Prince on the Throne of Iran.

This guy apparently learned history from an American TV screen. America installed the dictator Shah Reza Pahlavi in 1953. Demonstrations against the Shah had been going on for over a year before the January 1979 Iranian Revolution. The Shah fled in January, and in an April referendum, the country voted to become an Islamic republic. In October, the Shah entered the US for cancer treatment. Having already been the victims of a CIA-orchestrated coup, many Iranians feared that it was about to happen again. This is what prompted the November takeover of the US embassy.

That is what started the destabilization of the Middle East.

US paranoia and fear of Big Poppa Commie is what started the destabilization of the Middle East during the Truman administration. The rise of Islamic terrorism was the doing of Carter's psychotically Russophobic national securtiy advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski. He's the one who came up with the idea of stirring up trouble in Afghanistan until the Kabul government was forced to seek help from the Soviet Union. This was the origin of the Freedom Fighters® who became known as Al Qaeda.Carter's biggest mistake was not choking Brzezinski to death when he had the chance.

Then Sadaam (who was holding the crazies in Iran in check) was knocked over by Bush.

US citizens are funny sometimes. With money and weapons and chemicals they support Saddam Hussein's brutal invasion of Iran, and this is known as "holding the crazies in check". Difficult to top such wry American humor.

That allowed Iran and the crazy Shias to invade the Middle East.

I must have missed this somehow. Was Putin involved?

Next we will kill Assad in Syria

In America, that is known as diplomacy.

and let the crazies have full access to Israel.

This predictive skill involving events from 70 years ago is impeccable.As an American, the remainder of the comment is so stunningly embarrassing that I simply don't know how to respond.

In reply to by Bubbette

frank further Wed, 07/12/2017 - 18:41 Permalink

This dickhead is defending the most stupid, egregious, far-reaching, pig-headed decision ever made, and but for Obama, by the worst president ever to soil our country?  Off the writer!

Westcoastliberal Wed, 07/12/2017 - 18:40 Permalink

This guy is fucking nuts! Tyler WTF! Are you trying to stir the pot or what?  Lying about WMD wasn't all the fedgov did, they also lied about the cost.  Didn't Feith tell us it would take 3 weeks and could be paid from Iraq oil revenue? What the toll so far, $3-$4 TRILLION dollars?

redmudhooch Wed, 07/12/2017 - 18:52 Permalink

Wow, this writer must have just got a big check from Dick Cheney.I love America, but the 4 reasons you give for invading Iraq, we (America) has done all 4 of these multiple times, not too long ago.Doh!

  1. Irresponsible development of nuclear weapons Violating the non-proliferation act in letter or spirit.
  2. Invading and aggression against other sovereign nations Iran, Kuwait.
  3. Genocide: Kurds
  4. Playing hosts to terrorists etc. it was a retirement village for terrorists.
Vince Lanci Hail Spode Thu, 07/13/2017 - 12:45 Permalink

Nope, see comment above. As to your wish: Email me. Happy to meet in a boxing ring and give you a shot after summer is out. Beating me wont change my mind. But it will change your own conceit that you can influence anyone by beating them. Perhaps you do  not wish  to change my mind. In that case if this kind of therapy works for your absurd affliction, then lets do it.Violence doesnt work when a person believes what he says and defends his right to say it. Not totally ignorant oftheirony of that as it refers to US  policy.

In reply to by Hail Spode

Doan Wed, 07/12/2017 - 19:02 Permalink

The nightmare that is Iraq now, with the Yazidis and others in constant fear of being kidnapped and made into sex slaves or headchopping victims by Daesh... can't possibly be better than Hussein's regime, asshole that he was.Oil, banking, and Israeli interests also not even mentioned. To frame the justification of these things from a moral standpoint is always way off base when profit flows and power struggles are what shape things.

Reaper Wed, 07/12/2017 - 19:03 Permalink

The argument of a neo-con apologist. Saddam is evil. We are good. 268,000 dead in Iraq is a greater good than leaving Saddam in power. https://www.iraqbodycount.org/

Political do-gooders, like doctors, ought follow the Hippocratic oath, "Practice two things in your dealings with disease: either help or do not harm the patient" The US did not help; it harmed the Iraqi people.