Last Friday, the price of light sweet crude oil on
the New York Mercantile Exchange for August delivery closed 16 cents short of
$60/barrel the highest
price ever and an ironic outcome for the millions of Americans who believe
that cheap oil was the reason for Bush's invasion of Iraq.
Equally shocking to Americans was the announcement that China has outbid U.S.
oil giant Chevron for the American oil company Unocal.
Polls showing that a majority of Europeans
have a higher opinion of China than of the U.S. were another blow to the
pumped-up self-esteem of Americans, deluded as they are by Bush administration
hubris and claims of American "exceptionalism."
The decline in economic and diplomatic standing that Americans have suffered
under Bush is exceptional. How much longer will Americans support the incompetent
Bush administration that is driving them and their country's reputation
into the ground?
The world press sees Bush as an arrogant hypocrite who justifies his invasion
of Iraq in the name of democracy, while protecting Uzbek's murderous dictator
Islam Karimov, described by Craig Murray, former UK ambassador to Uzbekistan
as "very much George Bush's man in Central Asia." On May 13,
Karimov had 500 protesters shot down in the streets of Andijan and 200 massacred
in Pakhtabad. Still more civilians were massacred by Karimov while attempting
to flee into neighboring Kyrgyzstan.
It was the Bush administration that blocked a call by NATO for an international
investigation of the Uzbek massacre. According to news reports, Karimov has
agreed, for a suitable payment from U.S. taxpayers, for Bush to attack Iran
from bases in Uzbekistan. Uzbekistan also serves as one of the Bush administration's
offshore torture centers to which suspected terrorists are sent.
Deceived American patriots dismiss such reports as left-wing fabrications.
However, human rights groups have documented these abuses. Moreover, on June
24 an Italian
judge ordered the arrests of 13 CIA agents who kidnapped a Muslim in Italy
and secreted him to Egypt, another offshore U.S. torture center. The 13 CIA
agents managed to stick the U.S. taxpayers with a $144,984 hotel bill in the
It would be interesting to have a comparison of the hourly Uzbek and Egyptian
torture rates. U.S. taxpayers have a right to know how many of their hard-earned
tax dollars, given up on pain of prison sentences, are flowing to offshore torture
During his June 25 Saturday radio message to Americans, Bush gave an upbeat
report on victory in Iraq and said: "Americans can be proud of all that
we and our coalition partners [he means his poodle, Tony Blair, but likes the
plural sound] have accomplished in Iraq."
Gentle reader, are you proud that American troops are torturing Iraqis? Are
you proud that tens of thousands of Iraqi women and children have been killed
and maimed with their deaths and terrible wounds dismissed as "collateral
damage"? Are you proud that you elected and reelected a president who lied
you into an illegal war that has killed 1,755 American troops, maimed thousands
more, and destroyed your country's reputation?
If you are proud of this, what kind of person are you?
While Bush schmoozed trusting Americans over the air waves on June 25, Brian
Brady of The Scotsman (June 26) reported that Bush warned UK PM Tony
Blair earlier this month "that
war-torn Iraq remains on the brink of disaster."
Moreover, the situation in Afghanistan is deteriorating. The British, who are
even shorter on troops than the U.S., cannot maintain their troop strength in
Iraq and also contribute forces to stem the resurgence of the Taliban in Afghanistan.
The U.S. and Britain, it seems, are trapped in two quagmires.
Vice President Cheney claims, erroneously, that the Iraqi insurgency is in
its "last throes." But it appears that it is the U.S. that is on its
last legs. Lt. Gen. James R. Helmly has warned that the Army Reserve is "rapidly
degenerating into a broken force." Everyone except the deceived American
people knows that the U.S. lacks the combat troops to continue the war it is
losing in Iraq.
As Zbigniew Brzezinski, a hawkish U.S. national security adviser during the
Cold War conflict with the Soviet Union, said in response to Bush's Saturday
radio address: "Patriotism and love of country do not demand endless sacrifice
on the part of our troops in a war justified by slogans."