It is impossible to keep up with all the Bush
regime's lies. There are simply too many. Among the recent crop, one of the
biggest is that the "surge" is working.
Launched last year, the "surge" was the extra 20,000-30,000 U.S. troops sent
to Iraq. These few extra troops, Americans were told, would finally supply the
necessary forces to pacify Iraq.
This claim never made any sense. The extra troops didn't raise the total number
of U.S. soldiers to more than one-third the number every expert has
said is necessary in order to successfully occupy Iraq.
The real purpose of the "surge" was to hide another deception. The Bush
regime is paying Sunni insurgents $800,000 a day not to attack U.S. forces.
That's right, 80,000 members of an "Awakening group," the "Sons of Iraq," a
newly formed "U.S.-allied security force" consisting of Sunni insurgents, are
being paid $10 a day each not to attack U.S. troops. Allegedly, the Sons of
Iraq are now at work fighting al-Qaeda.
This is a much cheaper way to fight a war. We can only wonder why Bush didn't
figure it out sooner.
The "surge" was also timed to take account of the near completion of neighborhood
cleansing. Most of the violence in Iraq during the past five years has resulted
from Sunnis and Shi'ites driving each other out of mixed neighborhoods. Had
the two groups been capable of uniting against the U.S. troops, the U.S. would
have been driven out of Iraq long ago. Instead, the Iraqis slaughtered each
other and fought the Americans in their spare time.
In other words, the "surge" has had nothing to do with any decline in violence.
With the Sunni insurgents now on Uncle Sam's payroll, with neighborhoods segregated,
and with Sadr's militia standing down, it is unclear who is still responsible
for ongoing violence other than U.S. troops themselves. Somebody must still
be fighting, however, because the U.S. is still conducting air strikes and is
still unable to tell friend from foe.
On Feb. 16, the Los Angeles Times reported that a U.S. air strike managed
to kill nine Iraqi civilians and three Sons of Iraq.
Sunnis are abandoning their posts in protest, demanding an end to "errant"
U.S. air strikes. Obviously, the Sunnis see an opportunity to increase their
daily pay for not attacking Americans. Soon they will have consultants advising
them how much they can demand in bribes before it pays the Americans to begin
fighting the war under the old terms. If Sunnis are smart, they will split the
gains. Currently, the Sunnis are getting shafted. They are only collecting $800,000
of the $275,000,000
it costs the U.S. to fight the war for one day. That's only about three-tenths
of one percent, too much of a one-sided deal for the Americans.
If the Sunnis negotiate their cut to between one-quarter and one-half of the
daily cost to the U.S. of the war, the Sunnis won’t need to share in the oil
revenues, thus helping the three factions to get back together as a country.
Even 20 percent of the daily cost of the war would be a good deal for the Sunnis.
A long-term contract in this range would be expensive for Uncle Sam, but a great
deal cheaper than John McCain’s commitment to a 100-year Iraqi war.
If Bush's war turns out to be as big a boon for the Sunnis as it has for Tony
Blair, we might have a modern-day version of The
Mouse That Roared – a movie about an impoverished country that attacked
the U.S. in order to be defeated and receive foreign aid – only this time the
money comes as a payoff for not fighting the occupiers.
As the world now knows, Blair's "dodgy dossier" about the threat allegedly
posed by Iraq was a contrivance that allowed Blair to put British troops at
the service of Bush's aggression in the Middle East. Now that Blair is out of
his prime minister job, he has been rewarded with millions of dollars in sinecures
from financial firms such as JP Morgan and millions more in speaking engagements.
As part of the payoff, the Bush Republicans have even put Mrs. Blair on the
lucrative lecture circuit.
Ask yourself, do you really think Blair knows enough high finance to be of
any value as an adviser to JP Morgan, or enough about climate change to advise
Zurich Financial on the subject? Do you really believe that after hearing all
the vacuous speeches Blair has delivered in those many years in office anyone
now wants to pay him huge fees to hear him give a speech? Even when it was free,
people were sick of it.
Blair is simply collecting his payoff for selling out his country and sending
British troops to die for American hegemony.
The Sunnis seem inclined to do the same thing if Bush will pay them enough.
Is the next phase of the Iraq war going to be a U.S.-Sunni alliance against