Tuesday, October 02, 2007
Ray McGovern: Bush, Oil – and Moral Bankruptcy
by Ray McGovern September 28, 2007
It is an exceedingly dangerous time. Vice President Dick Cheney and his hard-core "neoconservative" protégés in the administration and Congress are pushing harder and harder for President George W. Bush, isolated from reality, to honor the promise he made to Israel to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon.
On Sept. 23, former national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski warned pointedly:
"If we escalate tensions, if we succumb to hysteria, if we start making threats, we are likely to stampede ourselves into a war [with Iran], which most reasonable people agree would be a disaster for us...I think the administration, the president and the vice president particularly, are trying to hype the atmosphere, and that is reminiscent of what preceded the war in Iraq."
So why the pressure for a wider war in which any victory will be Pyrrhic – for Israel and for the U.S.? The short answer is arrogant stupidity; the longer answer – what the Chinese used to call "great power chauvinism" – and oil.
The truth can slip out when erstwhile functionaries write their memoirs (the dense pages of George Tenet's tome being the exception). Kudos to the still functioning reportorial side of the Washington Post, which on Sept. 15, was the first to ferret out the gem in former Fed chairman, Alan Greenspan's book that the Iraq war was "largely about oil."
But that's okay, said the Post's editorial side (which has done yeoman service as the White House's Pravda) the very next day. Dominating the op-ed page was a turgid piece by Henry Kissinger, serving chiefly as a reminder that there is an excellent case to be made for retiring when one reaches the age of statutory senility.
Dr. Kissinger described as a "truism" the notion that "the industrial nations cannot accept radical forces dominating a region on which their economies depend." (Curious. That same truism was considered a bad thing, when an integral part of the "Brezhnev Doctrine" applied to Eastern Europe.) What is important here is that Kissinger was speaking of Iran, which – in a classic example of pot calling kettle black – he accuses of "seeking regional hegemony."
What's going on here seems to be a concerted effort to get us accustomed to the prospect of a long, and possibly expanded war? Don't you remember? Those terrorists, or Iraqis, or Iranians, or jihadists...whoever...are trying to destroy our way of life. The White House spin machine is determined to justify the war in ways they think will draw popular support from folks like the well heeled man who asked me querulously before a large audience, "Don't you agree that several GIs killed each week is a small price to pay for the oil we need?"
The rest of the story