Blog Mauro Santayana
Again, the United States concludes a war without winning it, while failing to impose its will on those who were attacked. U.S. troops are not leaving Iraq as they left Saigon on April 30, 1975, driven out by troops of Hanoi and the Vietcong. This time, they first destroyed and devastated Iraq, during a decade of constant bombings.
The despotism of Saddam didn't bother the United States before, when it coincided with the interests of Washington. So much so, that the Americans pushed for a war against Iran, and offered military and diplomatic support. However, their goal was to weaken the two countries.
At the time - making a basic political mistake - Saddam intended to restore the historical borders of Iraq, to invade Kuwait. Washington, with the first Bush, found this to be a pretext for the aggression and air attack on Baghdad, creating the so-called exclusion zone, in which aerial bombardment was indiscriminate. An economic blockade was imposed.
There were tens of thousands of deaths during the ten years of air strikes leading up to the invasion. Among the survivors of the attack, there were thousands of children afflicted with leukemia due to radiation from depleted uranium ammunition.
Thus, while invading the country on the ground, the Americans found a weak army, devastated territory and a government on the defensive diplomatically. The pretext, the claim that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, was exposed and destroyed by the facts.
Yesterday, President Obama said that Iraq is today "independent, free and sovereign, much better than it was with Saddam." Saddam, as international observers know, was much less obscurantist than the princes of Saudi Arabia.
His people lived relatively well, their women were not treated with disrespect and were able to attend the university. Some occupied important positions in government, academia and research laboratories. There was religious tolerance, despite the divergence between the Sunnis and secular Shiites, he was able to manage to secure internal peace.
The Deputy Prime Minister, Tariq Aziz, was a Chaldean Catholic in a country of Islamic culture, yes, but perhaps the most open of all of them to other cultures and customs. The country was in full economic development, with major infrastructure works, and maintained excellent relations with Brazil, through the oil-for technology and engineering services, when the bombing began.
After that, in the last nine years, the U.S. occupation killed more than 100,000 civilians, 20,000 Iraqi soldiers and 4,800 invaders, of which 4,500 were Yankees. Thousands and thousands of Iraqi citizens were injured, as well as invading soldiers, most of them mutilated. The cities were devastated - but the oil wells were divided between the companies of the countries that participated in the invading military coalition.
Today no one knows the real reasons for the war, both against Iraq, Afghanistan and the need for that supply of oil and gas of the Middle East and Caspian Valley to the United States and Western Europe. Hence, the preemptive war without limits as the second Bush stated. He said he was called by God in order to go to Iraq to kill Saddam Hussein.
Not only are there dead from aggression against Iraq. The Americans leave the country without sufficient electric energy, no drinking water, with 15% unemployment and 85% of those who work are working in government service.
The whole history of the United States - along with the great merits of its people - was built on the desire for conquest and death. Since the occupation of New England, not only the Indians knew this expansionist fury: in the war against Mexico, the country lost half of its native territory, which corresponds to almost one-third of the current North American space in the continent.
One of the disgraces of the American victory was the breaking of the Missouri Compromise, with the expansion of slavery to new territories. It would be - a little over ten years later - one of the major causes of internal conflict between North and South, the war of secession. Lincoln, who fought it, had been in 1847, one of the few to oppose the conflict with Mexico.
Since then, U.S. imperialist lust has known no bounds. Their ruling elites and their governments, except for a few lucid men, moved convinced that it was up to Washington to dominate the world. They still move in this fanatical determination.
Now, they are leaving Iraq and also announce that they will leave Afghanistan next year. But at the same time, within the Bush doctrine of war without end, they are prepared for a new genocidal aggression against Iran
The United States never experienced the presence of foreign invaders. Their war of independence was against British troops, who were not invading, but yes occupants of the metropolis in the colony.
The few incursions on the Mexican border, so fragile, do not count. But there is a growing force, that they cannot defeat: that of the very American people, tired of supporting the internal imperialism of their bankers and of their few billionaire families who feed on inequality.
The people, more than anything, feel exhausted from the blood tribute that each generation is obligated to offer. There is no glory in wars against defenseless people, and almost always peaceful, in the name of this or that, but always caused by the interests of the looters and plunderers of the wealth of others.
The situation took new direction, from the year 1980, as noted in an article published yesterday by El Pais, the Catalan philosopher and biologist Federico Mayor Zaragoza, former education minister in his country. For 12 years, he was the Director-General of UNESCO. The alliance of interests between Reagan and Margaret Thatcher meant the capitulation of the state in the market, and began the era of real terror, with 4 billion dollars spent each day for armaments and other military expenditures, while every day 60,000 people died of hunger in the world.
Mayor recalls the leading elites of the new creed, which Furtado called "market fundamentalism": the sad erosion of the UN and its replacement by plutocratic groups, such as the Group of 7, then 8 and now under the pressure of the emerging ones, of the 20. And in the homeland of the new faith in "market reasons," the United States, there are now 20 million unemployed, 40 million new poor and 50 million people without any health insurance.
Europe, besieged and bewildered with the failure of its political institutions, is trapped in the euro, which has no way to compete with the dollar or the yuan, the yuan and the dollar because they are issued in accordance with the needs of the United States and China. It managed to escape to England, which maintains its own currency.
The people of the United States do not expect a reaction and are prepared to maintain their terror in the world through the worldwide reach of their electronic weapons, including unmanned aircraft. Their destiny, if it occurs, will be that of the lone gunman, who delights in murdering the innocent from a distance, until someone manages, with the same method, to bring them down. And there is no shortage of those who are preparing for it.
Translation from the Portuguese version by: