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War on terrorism

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The phrase war on terrorism is used to justify a wide variety of actions in many countries. In Israel it is used to justify bombing apartment buildings in Gaza. In Russia it has been used to justify oppressive measures in Chechnya. In Canada it has been used to justify oppressive search measures contrary to privacy laws. In the United States it specifically refers to the perpetual, global War on terrorism seemingly invented by US Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz as a rhetorical device to justify the (eventual) 2003 invasion of Iraq by The Coalition, another fictional construct.

This perpetual war has been promulgated by U.S. President George W. Bush as a reaction to the events of September 11, 2001, which incorporates or replaces the long-standing permanent failure of the "war on drugs" which, likewise, has many meanings in different countries.

"The Pentagon has assigned the task of tracking down and eliminating Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein and other high-profile targets to Army Lt. Gen. William G. "Jerry" Boykin who sees the war on terrorism as a clash between Judeo-Christian values and Satan."[1]

The abbreviation War on terror was also used by President Bush, leading some to observe that it is impossible to carry out what is defined as "war" against an abstract noun. When various members of Monty Python began to make fun of this term and point out its implications in pieces published in prominent UK newspapers, the term disappeared from official coverage. Also, seemingly, it has the unfortunate resonance of sounding like a "war on Terra", that is, on Earth itself. In sympathy with this, some ecotage promoters began to call themselves terrists, in part to make fun of Bush's Texas accent, in which this term is indistinguishable from "terrorist".

This does not, however, modify the fundamental insensibility of it, nor serve to hold allies together. While Canada and Germany were full participants in the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan, for instance, they were steadfast opponents of invading Iraq - Canadian naval forces even refused to cooperate with US forces when the former, stationed in the Gulf, were asked to interdict Iraqi traffic during the war. Canada did not join "The Coalition," whatever that is, nor did it interpret the war on terrorism as having anything to do with an attack on Iraq - nor for that matter Syria or Iran.

In another view [2] "Reviewing the background to US sponsored Argentinian and Israeli terrorism reveals how the fictional "war on terror" is just another pretext for the pillage of Latin America by the US government and its favoured multinational corporations."

Consistent with the duplicitous nature of the Junior Bush Regime, a United Nations commissioned study, the Arab Human Development Report 2003 finds that the "war on terrorism" has actually pushed radical political groups to seek change by violence. [3] The "war on terrorism" is actually creating terrorism, not reducing it.

"With the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the U.S. lost the pretext of 'communism' for its intervention in Latin America and the Caribbean - other than Cuba - and it quickly assumed the 'war on drugs' as an excuse for military presence. And after 9/11, the pretext for intervention became the 'war on terrorism', notes long-time independent researcher and Latin America expert GeorgeAnn Potter, a professor at the Catholic University of Bolivia. [4]


See War on Terrorism in the Wikipedia.


OAKLAND, CA - August 26, 2003 - What do the "war on terrorism" and "free trade" have in common? According to a new report by Food First/Institute for Food and Development Policy, they are the two formidable pillars of U.S. foreign policy, custom-fit to help privatize the world's resources for its corporations and a matter of growing concern with the upcoming World Trade Organization (WTO) Ministerial in Cancun, Mexico.[5],[6]

Also see Food First article The War On Terrorism, Labor And Democratic Rights published June 29, 2002.


Other Related SourceWatch Resources

External Links

An internet search specific to "war on terrorism" will result in an endless listing of sources, opinions, and articles, some of which are listed below.

U.S. Government-Related Links

General Links

Humanitarian War], spectrezine.org, no date: "Although the 'fight against evil' has found a new theatre in Iraq, it does not seem likely that the situation in Bosnia, Serbia, Kosovo or Afghanistan will substantially improve. The negative consequences of these 'rightful wars' threaten to become bigger than the positive effects that provided the pretext for action in the first place. ... They tend to form a fruitful base for extremism and terrorism. In the meanwhile the war industry may become the only economic sector that can keep showing positive growth figures."

Headlines

  • 2 May 2002: "Poking the hornets' nest is ill-advised" by Ivan Eland, USA Today. Re "provoking terrorist groups."
  • 17 March 2003: "Endgame", a Buzzflash Editorial: "It's the endgame of a mad, politically calculated war."
  • 26 August 2003: "Bush, Speaking to Veterans, Says Iraq May Not Be Last Strike" by David Stout, The New York Times: "President Bush defended his policy on Iraq today, declaring that the United States had struck a blow against terrorism in overthrowing the government of Saddam Hussein. And Mr. Bush said the United States might carry out other pre-emptive strikes."
  • 28 August 2003: "US troops quit Saudi Arabia" filed by John R. Bradley in Jeddah, news.telegraph.co.uk: "America no longer needs Saudi Arabia militarily and oil from Iraq and the Caspian Sea will eventually reduce Saudi influence in Opec. Some in the Bush administration want more co-operation from the House of Saud in the war on terrorism.... The FBI and the US Internal Revenue Service are going to Saudi Arabia to start a joint US-Saudi effort to trace terrorist financing there."
  • 28 August 2003: "Iraq set to swallow up countless billions as costs soar, US admits" by Suzanne Goldenberg in Washington and Jamie Wilson in Baghdad, The Guardian .
  • 28 Sep 2003: Feds Use Terror Law in Unrelated Cases, Atlanta Journal-Constitution
  • 20 October 2003: "The 'war on terror' is being used as an excuse to further US energy interests in the Caspian", by Lutz Kleveman, The Guardian
  • 21 November 2003: "Bush Says Turkey New Front in 'War on Terror'" by Brian Williams, Reuters.
  • 2 December 2003: "It's the Incompetence, Stupid!", Buzzflash editorial.
  • 7 December 2003: "From Tommy R. Franks, a doomsday scenario" by Robyn E. Blumner, St. Petersberg Times.
  • 10 December 2003: "Professors publish report on terrorism" by Laura Vilim, The Observer (Notre Dame).
  • 15 December 2003: "Dissent in the Bunker. Newt Gingrich, a quiet Rumsfeld confidant, thinks the U.S. went 'off a cliff' in Iraq" by John Barry and Evan Thomas, Newsweek.