The war that we saw on TV during the past month was a "good war." No wonder that a majority of us feel the war would be justified even if no weapons of mass destruction were to be found in Iraq. A future terrorist attack on the US has been prevented, with minimum loss of life.
Our bravest sons and daughters in uniform put their lives at risk to liberate the 24 million people of Iraq from the stranglehold of an evil regime. They used high-tech weapons to kill the bad guys professionally and cleanly. Iraqis cheered, as a US tank recovery vehicle pulled down an oversized bronze statute of Saddam Hussein in central Baghdad.
The war resembled a made-for-TV movie with a PG-13 rating. There were battle scenes, but no blood or gore. Buildings were demolished with precision bombs, and there were no human remains. This "beautiful" war was very different from the ugly war that the rest of the world saw.
More than 10,000 Iraqi soldiers were killed in less than a month. This compares with 26,000 Soviets killed in Afghanistan in ten years or 58,000 Americans killed in Vietnam over 14 years. At least thirty thousand Iraqi soldiers were injured. Each of these human beings was someone's son or brother or husband, and was fighting to defend his country. The number of Iraqis with war casualties in their families or friends must number close to a million. Their grief will linger on long after the Marines have come home. At least two thousand Iraqi civilians were killed and countless more injured. Some of the survivors lost arms or legs or both. Others had burns over their entire body. Some will never see again while others will never hear again. Many will die in the months to come.
American viewers were spared the carnage of war. On April 8, a single hospital in Baghdad treated at least 200 civilians and a surgeon performed 12 operations in the afternoon, including two amputations. Hospitals struggled with shortages of equipment and performing operations without anesthesia. The caretakers ran out off coffins and had to reuse them for multiple victims.
More than a dozen civilians in the residential district of Mansur were killed as a B-1B bomber dropped four JDAM bombs from 30,000 feet above a cloudy sky. The Saa Restaurant, which Saddam Hussein had visited a day earlier, was gutted. The blast shattered windows of virtually every store lining the nearby boulevard. As recovery efforts got underway, a man found the mauled torso of a twenty-year-old woman in the rubble. Moments later, he found what was left of her head, her brown hair matted with blood. Sitting in a chair down the road, her mother cried uncontrollably into her hands, and then vomited.
Another man found his six-year old nephew buried in the rubble. Wrapping the body in a blanket, he wailed, "Is he a military leader?" His eyes red, he went back to work. Six other nieces and nephews were still under the rubble.
In the Arab world, these images were broadcast live. Week after week, Arabs saw scores of badly wounded and mutilated Iraqi civilians being rushed to ill-equipped and already-crammed hospitals. While American viewers were shown beautiful images of fighter aircraft taking off from aircraft carriers, Arab viewers were shown the ugliness of death caused by the bombs dropped from these fighters.
A journalist in Lebanon said U.S. forces had conducted a TV war to impose their military supremacy. Another said, "With the push of a bottom the Americans sent a cruise missile into a residential area killing one hundred people. Is this civilized? How can someone have a clear conscience about that?"
This war was hardly a good war. It has alienated us from much of Europe and global public opinion. It may have caused irreparable harm to the image of the US in the Arab and Muslim world, which feels humiliated and oppressed by our arrogance. As the war began, Egyptian President Mubarak feared that it would create a hundred bin Ladens.
It is a tragedy that the American people were never shown the real pictures of this war. Given their sense of justice and fair play, they would have stopped supporting it. Buoyed by their success, the neo-conservatives in the Bush administration have now placed Syria in their cross hairs. If they get to have their way, the Middle East would soon be converted into a Jurassic Park.
"Compared with the BBC's studied neutrality, Fox (broadcasting globally its original stateside programming, complete with Brit Hume, Mort Kondracke et al.) comes across as a kind of Gong Show of propaganda. The result is a myopic vision of war that proves alternatively nerve-racking, boring or uplifting, but in the aggregate effectively sanitizes events and numbs the audience. Watching Fox, Serbs see a striking similarity to something in their own recent past: "Why, it's just like TV here under Milosevic!" The Nation 4/11/2003, The US vs. the UK, by Russ Baker.
"American journalists are acting no differently from journalists in repressive societies when they cower before the vehement beliefs of the ruling elite. Fear of being labeled unpatriotic forces US reporters to toe the line, the same way it happens in, say, Nepal, India, Pakistan, Kenya, Thailand...or Iraq. " The Nation, 4/11/2003The Hour of Media Shame by Kanak Mani Dixit.
The role of WMD for Iraq war was same as the Gulf of Tonkin resolution for Vietnam War-to dupe the American public. The war of liberation of Iraq would not have been waged, if Iraq were world's second largest producer of, oh say corn, instead of oil, and the neocons had not shrewdly used the revolving door between Bush and Ariel Sharon governments. Yes, this war liberated hundreds of oil wells, secured the oil ministry, but allowed the looting of world's best museum. And what about those dreaded, hidden WMDs that Hans Blix's inept inspectors could not find? Well, may be Saddam's dog ate them. And the "embedded media" happily beats the war drums on behalf of its bedfellow.
I never said that Middle Eastern countries have no problems. They do have problems however they are certainly not created by Islam rather by the inabilities of some people including some rulers.
And believe me, even though it is not unlimited there is much more tolerance of minorities in most of the ME than you think,it is just that you have been blinded by your media. And you talk about free speech, I know of cases in which Muslim leaders have been arrested just because they were preaching about certain aspects of Islam. And do not even talk about women, the west have made an average woman no more than a sexual object who are used to please men. The worth of an average woman in west is determined exclusively by the way they look and not by their character.
What i am trying to say is that you and the west should mind its own problems. And waht??? Are you trying to deny the discrimination against Asians in WWII or the brutal discrimination against blacks carried out until the late 90s.
Do you deny the Holocaust and the discrimination of Jews by the rest of the West, which by the way they are trying to make up for by supporting Israel. And now it is obvious that the West is discriminaitng against the Muslims.
And once again understand Islam first.no one or nothing can defend itself without speaking for itself. And THE QURAN IS ISLAM. And the powerful expression that the Quarn has is only due to its authenticity. No lie can have such a powerful impression. And all open minded people understand this reality.
And believe me most narrow minded westerners i talk to run away when they realise that i am exposing their truth, just like you intend to not respond anymore.
"We were prohibited from visiting these shrines for a long time by the Baath Party and their agents," Abed Ali Ghilani told Associated Press Television News in Karbala. "This year, we thank God for ridding us of the dictator Saddam Hussein and for letting us visit these shrines."
[As Salaamu Alaikum.]
I did not claim that you praised Saddam Hussein that was a reference to the original
article. My point was that Muslims are unwilling to condemn even the most heinous of
their leaders. I hardly call "not doing good" an accurate description of the ruthless
repression that he imposed upon his people, nor much of a criticism. Did you read or
understand anything I said? I criticized the US government and Israel and spoke of
collective responsibility for the failures in the Middle East.
Your remark about Ritter is nonsense. He was given plenty of opportunities to express his
ill informed views. I heard him myself in person and many others on all sides as well. And
that is free speech, something that is virtually nonexistent in Muslim countries.
The West is far more tolerant than the Middle East of other people. I live among blacks and with
an Asian woman and I can assure you she doesn't agree with your assessment of the condition of
Asians who are flourishing here. Most of the countries in Middle East have no serious or
substantive democratic institutions, little or no free speech, discriminate against their religious
minorities to the point of not allowing them to build churches, and oppress women with practices
of polygamy, occupational discrimination, and civil law which does grant them equality. Your
ignorance of the United States and the West seemingly knows no depths and is only matched by your inability to acknowledge the problems of Islamic countries.
The quotations I used were quite appropriate for the context and much more useful than quoting
the Koran to defend the Koran. I invoked them for their eloquence and not as appeals to their
authority and any educated person knows the difference. I can assure you that an Oxford prof is much smarter than you. Your dogmatism and ignorance is appalling and I do not intend to waste any more time in responding.
Do Arab networks show their Arab audiences the carnage, the horribly mangled bodies of innocent children that die in Israel from Palestinean terrorist attacks? Would the Arab world condemn Palestinean violence if they were shown the horrible ugliness of what a carbomb has done? Did Al Jazeer show Palestineans celebrating in the streets when the World Trade Towers were hit, killing 3000 people (who by the way were also fathers, mothers, breadwinners, etc.)
The answer to your question is that no, this was not a good war. There is no such thing. Was is justified war? Perhaps again there is no such thing.
There is a saying in the United States that the pot shouldn't call the kettle black. I have little faith that the Arab media is any more honest or truthful, or is interested in presenting an unbiased and accurate depiction of war than the western media. And I will venture to say that the U.S. media was far more critical of the US war strategy and conduct than any Arab network would be of an Arab government's conduct of war. And I disagree that the U.S. media spared U.S. audiences of images or discussions of civilian suffering resulting from coalition military activities.
I wonder if Arab media informed of policies of the Iraqi government that deliberately put civilians in harms way, to the horror of their children and families who did not wish to be used as pawns in such a way. There is ample evidence of Arab leaders' disregard for human dignity. Nor am I convinced that Saadam's army would be any more careful to try and avoid civilian casualties. In fact, I believe quite the contrary -- that Sadaam's strategy would be to maximize civilian suffering.
I do not hate Arabs or want war with Islam. I fear that we may be entering a cycle of violence where we simply seek revenge for last week's atrocity.
these are signs of The Day Of Judgement
Think about the people on the streets of Baghdad, how can they see themselves being liberated when the liberator is throwing bombs on your house and killing your loved one's in the process. Howcome Delta Force special operations are not used to go and just take out Saddam if that's the goal, why does the whole landscaping of Baghdad have to be changed, and countless civilian casualties have to be sustained to achieve the end goal. We saw this happen in Afghanistan and it is happening now in Iraq, the US still don't have there man OBL and they still don't have Saddam. Seems like to the US government there is no cost associated with a non-US human life, it's just a numbers game and that's what scares me.
PS It isnt a shame that Syria is being pushed arround, American is the largest economic and military power in the world, stand up to it and as Iraqi found their are consqequences. But there is a reason america is on top, it is the longest standing Dempocracy in the world the most diverse group of people who are different in everypossible way. We have Musslims, chinese, europeans and africans. Iraqis in America support the war much more than many US citizens do, does that tell you something. If Iraqi people know America is better than home, which they so desperetly want to they created an entire unit of Iraqi exnationals that they want America to attack their 'leader' that says something about his brand of leadership.
Let us also hope that far a good PEACE.
The cost of war has always been high, the civilians of Iraq have paid dearly. As a USA citizen I believe that cost will be repaid in a free Iraqi population that prospers in their eventual self determination of economy, education, religion and self respect. As many Americans believe, success is borne out of how one makes the best out of what one is faced with that really matters. The Iraqis will take charge of a new reality and build for themselves a homeland that they will be proud of.
I thought this war was a mistake before the bombing began. I thought the Arab world would not tolerate a democratic Iraq. Today I am beginning to think that yes, infact, the Arab world will. That along with patience from the Iraqis will be enough. Once the Arab street sees that the freedom of self governance is good for the Arab in the street the Middle East will once again rise to the position of respect it's history is due.
agreed that this war failed the test of being a Just War. Even so, was it worthwhile? If great good was accomplished, at minimal cost, one might conclude the greater end was justified by the means. But as the author points out, the cost was NOT minimal. Viewers of American TV may believe that it was minimal, but the rest of the world is better educated, and after seeing world TV, cannot conclude that we are the sweet gentle liberators American TV says we are.
If, after this brutal war, we are even more hated, and if thinking Americans want to know "Why!?", they should read such articles.
Satellite tv means that a viewer in the UK can easily flick between BBC, CNN, SKY, Fox, Abu Dhabi TV, Al Jazeera, ITN, Euronews, CNBC...to name but a few.
Whilst the BBC would challenge assumptions, ask questions from the Iraqi point of view and at least attempt to add some balance, the US networks seem to be extensions of the Bush propoganda machine, toeing the line and asking the 'right' questions.
This war was never about helping those who are unable to help themselves. It was not about weapons of mass destruction. It was not about helping Muslims. It was not about deposing an evil dictator. It was not about democracy and 'freeing the Iraqi people'.
It was about what most wars are fought over - resources and their control.
As late as last year, the West was selling chemical weapons to Syria and Libya..to name but a few countries. The 'chemical weapons of mass destruction' argurment being levelled against Syria is nothing to do with chemical weapons but a leverage to get Syria to surrender any member of the Iraqi regime it may be habouring.
It is a shame that the leadership of these countries is so inept as to allow themselves to be manouvered into political corners by the Western governments and their hypocritical policies.
There really are two sides to a coin and the view on these pages is that America is evil and should be destroyed. Everything America does is evil and all Americans should take a gun to the mouth and blow our heads off.
Well, that's not going to happen. So you cave dwellers and bottom feeders should try and improve your own lot in life and quit blaming the USA for all of your ills.
The governments really should sell JDAMS to the local 7-11's in the Middle East and watch the morons bomb each other off the planet.
You should be more concerned with what the arab world gets to see and if they get a balanced and factual view of any given issue. This continual cry of unfairness or injustice from the arab world just doesn't get it anymore, because for the first time American's really have had their eyes opened by the likes of the UN, arab countries, and the blatantly bias arab media.
We don't believe you anymore, so you better get off your high horse and join the human race like the rest of us.
....It is very sad, war is ugly....
Let us put the blame where it should be placed...........Let us be responsible for our own actions......................
...It is sad that those in the Arab World have not seen the atrocities that have occured in Iraq over the last quarter of a century.......It is not hard to believe that most in the Arab World do not believe that they occured..........
.............It is also hard to believe that some do not believe that Hitler committed the crimes that he committed as well..............
You can't say that 10,000 Iraqi soldiers were killed without giving a reference. It's too important for a casual statment. I am studying this all the time and I didn't know how many Iraqi's were killed. So most people just casually reading the news won't know either. It doesn't matter if it's 10,000 or 9,000, personally, if there is uncertainty I always take the low number. It has the same effect, but when people check to see if you are exaggerating they find you are estimating low - then your credibility increases, the most important thing. Give us some references and republish your article, you will make an important point and journalists all over the world will be able to use it!
I am only criticizing you because you are making an important point that needs to be made, but it needs a reference to have the effect you want.
Did you bother to read a newspaper, a journal of opinion, a newsmagazine, listen to National Public Radio, or any television? There was plenty of exposure of the brutality of war in this media for anyone who made the slightest effort to open their eyes.
My local newspaper, the Atlanta Journal Constitution featured the same pictures of Iraqi civilian causalities that appeared elsewhere in the world, on the front page and the inside pages as well. I heard and read countless interviews regarding the horrors of this war, which I also opposed.
Opposing a war doesn't mean that one has to agree with everything others who oppose it write or say. There is a considerable dose of ideological blindness on the left, just as there is on the right. And the blindness is near total among those in the Islamic world, who seem to believe that condemnation of all things Western is required of their religion, with the counterpart obligation to ignore every harm done by anyone in the Middle East.
The description of the American television media coverage of the war in this article is wholly inaccurate,and typical of the utterly one sided bias that appears in every single article on this website. There is no documentation whatsoever provided for these claims, and let me ask who in the American media or any position of responsibility called this war "beautiful." I read, saw, and heard plenty of accounts of the civilian causalities, including much of what was reported in the Middle East in the American media and with much more concern with accuracy than anything I read here.
As is typical of the Islamic world, you seldom mention the brutality and legacy of Saddam who used violence against his own people as his modus operandi. Torture, including rape, beating, and electrocution were routinely applied to virtually anyone jailed in Iraq. His military aggression cost the lives of at least one million Iraqi and Iranians, thousands of Kurds, and Kuwaitis. But you would rather focus all of your condemnation on the West or the Jews. A double standard? Absolutely.
This website and every article posted here, without exception, constitute nothing more than anti-Western propaganda. Your writers show no regard for evidence, the truth, or the consequences of distorting reality to fit your ideology. The Soviet Union circa 1934 under Stalin expressed as much variety of opinion and concern for the truth as you do. You should be thoroughly ashamed of yourselves for your disservice to the truth and to your readers who you so mislead.
In my opinion they are choosen not to do so simply because the americans love wars as their each and every president of the USA did so for other eco.and political reasons.
For the americans,wars are always a good source of income to their economy,therefore,considerations about other people's sufferings is less important to watch or even take any notice of it on a large scale as we saw in Europe,the Middle East and the rest of the free world.
the first from article by:Stephen Gowans, Poets for Peace."When a child screams in Baghdad,
will anybody hear?"
"We" are Winners?
Flipping through TV channels I stumbled across an interview with a man, an American, who had written a defense of US foreign policy. "They say we're stupid, we're short-sighted, we're bumblers," he complained, bitter about the way Washington is regarded outside of America and 10 Downing Street. "Well, if we're so stupid, so short-sighted, so bumbling, why is it that we keep winning?" This summed up the two defining characteristics of American foreign policy. First, the idea that America's relations with other countries is a collective enterprise in which all Americans participate ("we" keep winning) rather than one planned by a tiny minority for the benefit of the same tiny minority. And two, the idea that foreign policy is a game (of conquest and control) whose object is to win.
The second quote is by the Great Muslim Scholar-Ibn Tymeeyyah:
"Civilization is rooted in justice, and the consequences of oppression are devastating. Therefore, it is said that Allah aids the just state even it is non-Muslim, yet withholds His help from the oppressive state even it is Muslim."
This horrific act should not be kept silent to protect the United States. This war is bad for the entire world, and we are all going to pay the price in one way or another.
This horrific attack of the Americans is so unjustified. Whatever the motive was, the USA should have listened to the UN. But they had to carry out their (US) plan, which was probably in the works for years. They cannot and will not allow a Muslim country advance. So Saddam was a dictator, he imprisoned people--don't tell me that the US doesn't have people in jails that the charges are unjustified. Look whose calling the kettle black as the saying goes. Besides why didn't this kind of thing bother the US when Saddam was their puppet? What bigots and hypocrites they are those good old Yankees.
What hold does the American government have on the world that they can get them to do whatever they want done? Look what happened in Iran, Kuwait, Afghanistan, Iraq and now maybe Syria and many other countries that the US has touched. Who gave them the right to control other lands and peoples and what happens to innocent until proven guilty. All human beings have the right to live life.
Why do we know the truth but only say it to few who probably would already know it?
why don't we make a greater effort on bringing what we know to the American public?
This is a nice truthful daring article but it happens to sound more like a 'monologue' than to a dialogue that could be widely heard..