It Wasn’t About the Oil (Chapter Umpteen…)

The United Nations agency charged with oversight of nuclear proliferation is expressing “concern” over the “disappearance” of various pieces of nuclear-program related equipment and “some material” from Iraqi facilities. The disappearance and/or los of accountability of Iraqi nuclear materials all took place after the American led war of aggression against the Iraqi people. Among the highlights: even after we secured control of Iraq, we refused to allow UN monitors in to the facilities they previously oversaw (until this day, I believe).
Do you have that? Depressingly, John Kerry seems more concerned with covering his own ass in having voted for the war of aggression than in pointing out this minor point: the President sold us (at least a slim majority of us anyway– certainly more people than voted for him) on the necessity of pre-empting Saddam Hussein from developing and/or deploying nasty shit WMDs (read “nuclear weapons”– pronounced correctly). Sure, Saddam, Qusay and Uday were baaaadddad… no, wait: eeee-villlll…. but, like, Republicans just don’t DO humanitarian. No, no: this was billed as a “defensive” war, to prevent (or at least greatly reduce the odds) of an Iraqi rogue state leaking its nuclear shit to OBL or Hamas or some other motherfuckers likely to try to use it on us without a return address.
Fast forward to now. Forget that in August, 2002 (check a post I put up on the 9th of that month, for example) I told you that the Bush Administration ASSUMED SADDAM HAD NOTHING– because otherwise it could not have afforded to screw around and dither so it could play games with the mid-term Congressional elections, but, as with Afghanistan, would have had to act immediately. No, forget that. Remember that while we invaded Iraq, and rolled into Baghdad, and were encouraging that lawlessness that former Proconsul Bermer tells us was such a problem, we deployed troops to guard ONE– and ONLY ONE– ministry.
O.K., let’s try to guess which one. How about…. the Makhbarat Secret Police, so we could, hopefully, unearth Saddam’s deepest, darkest secrets– perhaps leading us to those WMDs he was supposedly hiding? You’re freezing, there. Perhaps the ministry of defense or armaments? No… still cold. A scientific ministry… or maybe foreign affairs, as you just never know with Saddam? Medicine or agriculture? No– icy cold. No, we didn’t go for any ministry or facility even arguably related to alleged WMDs, nor for any site previously monitored by the IAEA as potentially a nuclear facility. No. And no again.
If you guessed “the Oil Ministry”, you are so hot, that we may need to bring the late Red Adair back to life to put you out. (Yes, yes– we forgot to guard the museum too– or hospitals– or pretty much anything besides the oil and ourselves– but at least if we had ALSO guarded the nuclear/chem/bio-hazard sites, these oversights would have been somewhat less alarming and indicative of Bush Administration criminal intent– as opposed to simply criminal negligence. Btw, given the degree of sabotage in oil fields and pipelines, its not that we did all that good a job of even guarding the oil.)
You see, we were SOLD this war as about national defense: “September 11th changed everything, can’t afford to have states that harbor terrorists, we can’t trust the word of a mad man, yada yada yada.” But once we got our boots on the ground (and so far, managed to burn between one and two hundred billion dollars, kill nearly 1,100 Americans, maim over 5,000 more, and probably kiill 10-20 thousand Iraqis, maiming tens of thousands more, and made Iraq the new vacuum state/choice of terrorists that Afghanistan once was), we placed those boots… in front of the oil ministry.
Bush can’t win this one, folks… Our right wing friends can say what they might, but there is no excuse for this. If there weren’t enough troops to guard WMD facilities, then the invasion had to be put off long enough to GET enough troops for this. Period. This is the worst possible outcome: a war to control nuclear materials has, if the UN is to believed, quite possibly helped GET NUCLEAR MATERIALS AND EQUIPMENT INTO THE HANDS OF TERRORISTS.
Of course, if I was right back in 2002, and the Bush Administration KNEW THE WHOLE TIME THAT SADDAM HAD NOTHIN’, and this was a cynical exercise about… something else… (domestic politics, showing up Poppy, sticking over a dozen bases on Iraqi soil so we can draw down our presence in Saudi, preventing Saddam Hussein from challenging Saudi oil hegemony…)… THEN, at least it made some sense, and we can sleep a little easier. Of course, that means we have a choice: “Dubya, Dick and Don’s Excellent Iraq Adventure” shows that they are criminally negligent… or else, they are just criminals.
The problem is that there’s no third alternative.