MORE THOUGHTS ON THE SUBJECT OF
WAR AND PEACE
In the last article I observed that today diverse opinions abound around the reasons and motives about why over forty nations, led by The United States of America, but including the strong efforts of England, Spain and Australia and others....why these nations are in Iraq.
I think there is more than one reason to be talked about. I'll do that at another time. But as I examine the whole range of activities that have led up to this warring situation in Iraq over the past thirty years, there is one overwhelming fact that stands out. Over that period of time a great many of the Iraqi people have been brutalized and held hostage to a dictatorial and vicious regime headed by an egomaniac. That is reason enough for the coalition forces to be in Iraq. Much else we must put into the Hands of God to bring Divine Order and Divine Justice where it is needed in Iraq and indeed, all over the planet.
As I have watched and listened to the media spin and current political diatribe of those who call themselves 'liberals' against the current Administration in Washington and to this military action....as I consider the source of much diverse misinformation... I have become more and more interested in information coming from people whose words and thoughts ring with Truth.
Thus to lend some balance to what I consider to be the deliberate negative smearing of efforts by Freedom loving people all many nations, I am sharing information and opinions of some of the world's perceptive and wise men and women speaking on the subject of the current Gulf War situation and especially as their words speak to our need to understand what is going on in the name of Peace.
Again, opinions I present make sense to me within my understanding at the
present time. Any final comments are placed at the end of this page.
Read now the words of Ken Joseph, Jr.
Human Events...the week of April 7, 2003
PROTESTER DISCOVERS TRUTH IN IRAQ
Amman Jordan...Ken Joseph writes ....I was wrong. I had opposed the war on Iraq in my radio program, on television and in my regular columns....and I participated in demonstrations against it in Japan. But a visit to relatives in Baghdad radically changed my mind
I am an Assyrian Christian, born and raised in Japan, where my father had moved after World War II to help rebuild the country. He was Protestant minister and so am I.
As an Assyrian I was told the story of our people from a young age....how my grandparents had escaped the great Assyrian Holocaust in 1917, settling finally in Chicago. There are some 6 million Assyrians now, about 2.5 million in Iraq and the rest scattered across the world. Without a country and rights, even in our native land, it has been the prayer of generations that the Assyrian Nation will one day be restored.
A few weeks ago, I traveled to Iraq with supplies for our church and family. This was my first visit ever to the land of my forefathers. The first order of business was to attend church. During a simple meal for peace activists, after the service an older man sounded me out carefully.
Finally he felt free to talk: "There is something you should know....we didn't want to be here tonight. When the priest asked us to gather for a Peace Service, we said we didn't want to come because we don't want peace. We want the war to come".
"What in the world are you talking about?" I blurted
Thus began a strange odyssey that shattered my convictions. At the same time, it gave me hope for my people and in fact, hope for the world.
Because of my invitation as a 'religious person' and family connections, I was spared the government snoops who ordinarily tail foreigners 24 hours a day. This allowed me to see and hear amazing things as I stayed in the homes of several relatives. The head of our tribe urged me not to remain with my people during its time of trial but instead to out and tell the world about the nightmare ordinary Iraqis are going through.
I was to tell the world about the terror on the faces of my family when a stranger knocked at the door.
"Look at our lives!" they said. "We live like animals....no food....no car....no telephone...no job....and most of all, no hope".
That's why they wanted this war.
"You can not imagine what it is to live like this for 20, 30 years. We have to keep up our routine lest we would lose our minds."
But I realized in every household that someone had already lost his or her mind; In other societies such a person would be in a mental hospital. I also realized that there wasn't a household that did not mourn at least one family member who had become a victim of this police state.
I wept with relatives whose son just screamed all day long. I cried with a relative who had lost his wife. Yet another left home every day for a 'job' where he had nothing to do. Still another had lost a son to war and a husband to alcoholism.
As I observed the slow death of a people without hope, Saddam Hussein seemed omnipresent.
There were his statues; posters showed him with his hand outstretch or firing his rifle or wearing an Arab headdress.
Everything will be all right when the war is over,." people told me. "No matter how bad it is, we will not all die. Twelve years ago, it went almost all the way, but failed. We cannot wait anymore. We want the war and we want it now."
When I told members of my family that some sort of compromise with Iraq was being worked out at the United Nations, they reacted not with joy but anger: "Only war will get us out of our present condition".
This reminded me of the stories I heard from older Japanese who had welcomed the sight of American B-29 bombers in the skies over their country as a sign that the war was coming to an end. True these planes brought destruction....but also hope.
I felt terrible about having demonstrated against the war without bothering to ask what the Iraqis wanted. Tears streamed down my face as I lay in my bed in a tiny Baghdad house crowded in with ten other people of my own flesh and blood, all exhausted, all without hope.
I thought, "How dare I claim to speak for people I had not even asked what they wanted?"
Then I began a strange journey to let the world know of the true situation in Iraq, just as my tribe had begged me to. With great risk to myself and those who had told their stories and allowed my camera into their homes, I video-taped their plight.
But would I get that tape out of the country.
To make sure I was not simply getting the feelings of the oppressed Assyrian minority, I spoke to dozens of other people, all terrified. Over and over, they told me; "We would be killed for speaking like this."
Yet they did speak, though only in private homes or when other Iraqis had assured them that no government minder was watching over me.
I spoke with a former army member, with someone working for the police, with taxi drivers, store owners, mothers and government officials.
All had the same message; "Please bring on the war. We may lose our lives, but for our children's sake, please, please end our misery."
On my last day in Baghdad, I saw soldiers putting up sandbags. By their body language, these men made it clear that they dared not speak but hated their work. they were unmistakably on the side of the common people.
I wondered how my relatives felt about the United States and Britain. Their feelings were mixed. They have no love for the allies....but they trust them. "We are not afraid of the American bombing. They will bomb carefully and purposely and not target the people," I was told. "What we are afraid of is Saddam and what the Baath Party will do when the war begins."
The final call for help came at the most unexpected place....the border, where crying members of my family sent me off.
My taxi driver looked on anxiously as a border guard patted me down. He found my videotapes and I thought, "It's all over".
For once I experienced what my relatives were going through 365 days a year....sheer terror. Quietly, the officer laid the tapes on a desk, one by one. Then he looked at me....was it with sadness or with anger? Who knows?
He clinically shook his head and without a word handed all the tapes back to me. He didn't have to say anything. He spoke the only language left to these imprisoned Iraqis....the silent language of human kindness.
"Please take these tapes and show them to the world," was his silent message. "Please help us...
April 2003....My sense is that the TV pictures being broadcast around the world tell the story of an Iraqi people grateful to be liberated....oh, not all of them, of course, for some of the Iraqis were the abusers....they are certainly not happy to see the Coalition Forces there....for their day has ended.
Read what Oliver North wrote on the subject:
"While we are proud to be liberating another people from tyranny, it is still difficult for us, as Americans, to appreciate the relief and exhilaration of the Iraqi people who have suffered under this brutal regime for so long.
Imagine living every day in fear of imprisonment, torture, rape and execution. These people were unable to speak, write or travel freely and lived with the constant fear that the secret police might....for little or no reason....snatch them up in the middle of the night. Those who met such a fate were either executed or thrown in squalid prison cells for months only to be tortured by having their feet beaten, hooked up to battery cables, deprived of food and water and if sleep was permitted, it was only in their own waste.
Imagine having your children taken from you or your daughter summoned to one of Saddam's son's palaces only to have her innocence violently stolen. Under Saddam too many Iraqis suffered the indignity of having their children imprisoned or being forced to watch their wives being raped.
Imagine living under such condition one day....and the next day being liberated from it!"
We get this information from Najim Abdullah Abid Al-Jubouri, mayor of Tall Afar in the Iraqi province of Nineveh (Tall Afar was the main base of operations for the terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi)
"Our schools, governmental services, businesses and offices were closed. Our streets were silent, and no one dared to walk them. Our people were barricaded in their homes out of fear; death awaited them around every corner. Terrorists occupied and controlled the only hospital in the city. Their savagery reached such a level that they stuffed the corpses of children with explosives and tossed them into the streets in order to kill grieving parents attempting to retrieve the bodies of their young. This was the situation of our city until God prepared and delivered...the courageous soldiers of the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, who liberated this city, ridding it of al-Zarqawi's followers after harsh fighting, killing many terrorists and forcing the remaining butchers to flee the city like rats to the surrounding areas, where the bravery of other 3rd ACR soldiers in Sinjar, Rabiah, Zumar and Avgani finally destroyed them.
To the courageous men and women of the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, who have changed the city of Tall Afar from a ghost town, in which terrorists spread death and destruction, to a secure city flourishing with life, to the lion-hearts who liberated our city from the grasp of terrorists who were beheading men, women and children in the streets for many months, to those who spread smiles on the faces of our children and gave us restored hope, through their personal sacrifice and brave fighting, and gave new life to the city after hopelessness darkened our days and stole our confidence in our ability to reestablish our city... God bless this brave Regiment; God bless the families who dedicated these brave men and women. From the bottom of our hearts we thank the families. They have given us something we will never forget...
Let America, their families and the world be proud of their sacrifice for humanity and life."
Last Friday, the Bush administration released its second National Security Strategy, an outline of U.S. national interests and what we will do to secure them. The NSS serves as the primary guidance for the conduct of all U.S. government agencies in regard to those interests.
Topping the list of critical national interests is the protection of our homeland from terrorist attack, and a reiteration of the Bush Doctrine of Pre-emption, making clear that the U.S. "will, if necessary, act pre-emptively in exercising our inherent right of self-defense."
Also of note within the 2006 NSS is the following bold assertion: "The advance of freedom and human dignity through democracy is the long-term solution to the transnational terrorism of today."
That brings us to the third anniversary of the launch of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
That brings us to the third anniversary of the launch of Operation Iraqi Freedom, the primary front in the Long War against Islamic terrorists.
IF, like Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, is much more than a bid to keep conflicts with terrorists on their turf. It is a determined effort to establish a functional democracy in the heart of a region critical to U.S. interests—a region ruled by secular and theocratic tyrants who have become state sponsors of the Islamic terror alliance, which declared war on the U.S. and our Allies.
The first round fired against the U.S. homeland in this war was not 11 September 2001.
No sooner had we relaxed our national defense posture as Cold War tensions between the U.S. and Soviet Bloc adversaries subsided than our homeland was attacked by a second-tier adversary, radical Islamists.
On 26 February 1993, a terrorist cell headed by al-Qa'ida operative Ramzi Ahmed Yousef (who entered the U.S. on an Iraqi passport) bombed Tower One of the World Trade Center in an effort to topple it into Tower Two and murder up to 30,000 occupants of those buildings. Fortunately, due to Ramzi's lack of engineering knowledge about where to park the truck bomb, Tower One withstood the blast.
In 1995, after Ramzi's capture, he was being flown to New York for prosecution. As the transport helicopter passed the WTC towers, an FBI agent removed Ramzi's mask so he could see that the towers were still standing. Ramzi commented gravely, "We are not done yet." Indeed, Ramzi's computer, seized in the Philippines before his arrest in Pakistan, detailed a plan to hijack commercial aircraft and use them as flying bombs against U.S. targets—which his cadre succeeded in doing on 9/11.
or eight long years after the first WTC bombing, the Clinton administration refused to take the domestic terrorist threat seriously enough to make deterrence a priority. Eight months into George Bush's first term, it became resoundingly clear that a small terrorist cell armed with nothing more than box cutters could, in a matter of minutes, kill thousands of Americans and cause in excess of $250 billion in damages to the U.S. economy.
The 9/11 attack demonstrated that not only are there Islamist factions intent on the wholesale slaughter of Americans on U.S. soil, but that those factions won't hesitate to use the most destructive means at hand. In other words, they will certainly detonate nuclear or radiological devices in U.S. urban centers, given the accessibility to such weapons and an operational capability to deploy them.
President Bush's 2002 NSS recognized this threat, and his 2006 NSS reaffirmed that the best method to deter asymmetric nuclear attacks is to pre-empt them through short-term tactical operations combined with long-term strategic operations. The short-term operations consist of military interdictions in Iraq, Afghanistan and around the world, to kill terrorists and disrupt their operations. The long-term operations consist of both military and civil actions designed to democratize the Middle East's political and economic culture so that it no longer serves as a breeding ground for our terrorist adversaries.
learly, then, while the tactical and strategic operations in Iraq come at great cost, they are absolutely necessary. Indeed, they are the best, if not only, method for preventing an asymmetric nuclear attack on our homeland. However, some national-security analysts now consider such an attack "inevitable" because deterrence operations are a decade late.
Despite enormous progress in our tactical and strategic operations to seed democracy in a region that has known only tyranny for its entire history, the Democrats and their Leftmedia have politicized these operations for one stupefyingly inane purpose: To undermine support for the Bush administration, and thus, Republicans in the upcoming midterm elections.
This week, the Democrat National Committee released its anti-OIF talking points, the now-familiar pack of lies they've been disseminating for three years. In addition, they encouraged their nationwide cadre of peacenik Sheehanites to propagate these lies in letters to local media outlets.
To suggest that such political folly is dangerous would be to understate the matter. To suggest that it is nothing short of treason is more accurate, and those media outlets who would willfully propagate such partisan rubbish are equally culpable. Idiocy of this sort undermines not only the safety of American military personnel abroad, but also that of our civilians here at home.
James Phillips, Research Fellow in Middle Eastern Studies at the Heritage Foundation, has summarily dismantled the politically-motivated criticism of OIF. His detailed analysis, "The Myths About Iraq" is not only a well-researched treatise, it is required reading for anyone interested in the truth about OIF. (Philips's report does not include just-declassified evidence from Director of National Intelligence John Negroponte establishing additional links between Iraq and al-Qa'ida prior to 9/11.)
t is not only critical that we know the truth about OIF, but essential that we also know "the enemy." Unlike enemies past, this one is not defined by geographic borders, but by ideology alone. Consequently, the Bush administration, in its effort to avoid casting all Muslims in the al-Qa'ida mold, has not clearly defined the enemy in terms that most Americans can grasp.
Perhaps the best way to encapsulate this enemy is to label it "Jihadistan," a borderless "nation" of Islamic Jihadis (holly warriors), constituting al-Qa'ida and other Islamic terrorist groups around the world. A borderless nation? Indeed. The "Islamic World" of the Quran recognizes no political borders. Though orthodox Muslims (those who subscribe to the teachings of the "pre-Medina" Quran) do not support acts of terrorism or mass murder, some radical sects within Islam subscribe to the "post-Mecca" (revisionist) Quran. It is this latter group of death-worshipping sects that calls for jihad (holy war) against all "the enemies of Allah" (all non-Muslims).
These Jihadis are characterized by the toxic Wahhabism of al-Qa'ida's Osama bin Laden and his heretical ilk—those who would remake the Muslim world in their own image of twisted hate and deathly obsession. In the words of bin Laden himself: "We love death. The U.S. loves life. That is the big difference between us." Al-Qa'ida seeks to disable the U.S. economy using any means at their disposal and thus undermine our political, military and cultural support for liberty around the world. Bin Laden's plan, "American Hiroshima," outlines an attack on the U.S. with multiple nukes. (Here we might suggest that a Doctrine of Indiscriminate and Exponential Retribution would encourage all good Muslims to seek out and destroy the al-Qa'ida in their midst.)
Perhaps fewer than five percent of all Muslims subscribe to the Islamist notion that non-adherents are infidels. To put this in perspective, though, if just one percent of Muslims worldwide have joined the brotherhood of Jihadistan, then there are ten times more Jihadis than uniformed American combat personnel in our combined military service branches.
To be sure, Jihadistan is a formidable enemy, but it is not insuperable. Success in Iraq is our most critical strategic objective if we are to contain and defeat Jihadistan. Once again, as noted by the current NSS, "The advance of freedom and human dignity through democracy is the long-term solution to the transnational terrorism of today."
Iraq won't be lost on the ground. Of its 26 million citizens, 80 percent are pro-democracy Shi'a Muslims or Kurds, and only a small fraction of the remaining 20 percent of Sunnis are aiding the insurgency. As we've said before, the President's supplemental National Strategy For Victory In Iraq articulates a winning strategy.
On the 19 March anniversary of OIF, President Bush highlighted successful operations in the northern Iraqi town of Tal Afar, al-Qa'ida's strongest outpost.
Here, then, is an excerpt from a letter written by the mayor of Tal Afar, Najim Abdullah al-Jubouri, to Gen. George Casey, Commander of U.S. Forces in Iraq, in January: "Our city was overrun by heartless terrorists, Zarqawi and his followers, who unloaded their bloodthirsty and voracious action of evil on this city for several months by indiscriminately killing men, women and children. Tal Afar was a human slaughterhouse. Simple services were not possible, causing the people to suffer, till the day you dispatched your troops, who were our lion-hearted saviors. Your troops came to rescue Tal Afar led by our heroes, whom Tal Afar will never forget. After the major operation, your wonderful soldiers started nursing the wounds of this city by rebuilding the damaged lives and buildings with great compassion and speed. These soldiers have done more than their original mission required of them... God bless this brave [3rd Armored Cavalry] Regiment; God bless the families who dedicated these brave men and women. From the bottom of our hearts we thank the families. They have given us something we will never forget... Let America, their families and the world be proud of their sacrifice for humanity and life."
"After the fall of Saddam Hussein, the terrorists made Iraq the central front in the war on terror. More fighting and sacrifice will be required to achieve this victory, and for some, the temptation to retreat and abandon our commitments is strong. Yet there is no peace, there's no honor, and there's no security in retreat. So America will not abandon Iraq to the terrorists who want to attack us again. We will finish the mission. By defeating the terrorists in Iraq, we will bring greater security to our own country. And when victory is achieved, our troops will return home with the honor they have earned." —President George W. Bush
"Violent extremists plan and design their headline-grabbing attacks using every means of communication to intimidate and break the collective will of free people. [The most crucial battles in OIF are being fought in] newsrooms in places like New York and London and Cairo." —Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld
Dick Cheney . It was learned on 9/11 that in fact what's going on 10,000 miles away in a place like Afghanistan has a direct impact on the United States when we lost 3,000 people. We know now that the biggest threat of all that we face is not just another 9/11 but a 9/11 where the terrorists have a nuclear weapon."
It is high time the world stood up united and protected its own against
tyranny and injustice wherever it exists.
Such was the original mandate of the United Nations.
But whether only some stand up to do it....
whether the job falls to just a few to do it, it should be understood by all
that tyranny and injustice are on their way out all over the Planet.
Today, people are being given the opportunity to choose which life style
they prefer. Eventually their own lives will rise and fall on that choice
and on their willingness to stand behind that decision.
The Energy of God Freedom and Peace is taking Command of the Planet
and all humanness will be resolved under that Banner.
We should never doubt that 'Ascended Godness' and
Christed Goodness is now directing the affairs of this Planet.
We must not be fooled by any other appearances.
The future of Freedom for all depends on whom we believe,
on where we put our attention and in what
and Whom we place our Trust and Faith.
Lois J Crawford