AUSTRALIANS AT WAR

AUSTRALIANS AT WAR
Now available. $20-00 including postage in Australia. Click on image above for details..... TELLING THE HISTORY OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY AS IT REALLY WAS.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

DID AUSTRALIAN P.M. JOHN HOWARD JOIN WITH BUSH AND BLAIR IN AGREEING TO WAR EVEN WITHOUT U.N. RESOLUTION 1441?

New evidence has emerged which shows that British Prime Minister Tony Blair and President George W. Bush agreed to take military action against Iraq even if UN Security Council Resolution 1441 was vetoed.

In the following narrative the dates are important.

A letter dated 17 October 2002 from Matthew Rycroft, Tony Blair’s private secretary, to Mark Sedwill, private secretary to then British Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw, shows that Blair and Bush had agreed that they would take action against Iraq without a resolution if it were found that Saddam Hussein was in clear breach of the earlier resolutions.

As we now know, there was no further separate UN endorsement for military action but the allies decided to go to war anyway once it became clear that France and Russia were going to veto any further UN Security Council Resolution that specifically permitted military action. The leaders of the Coalition of the Willing eventually argued that Resolution 1441 gave them the right to invade and disarm Iraq and that no further resolution was required.

The letter is extremely significant because it shows that, by at least mid-October 2002, both leaders had already made the decision to invade Iraq even if UNSC Resolution 1441 had been vetoed. As it happened, UNSC Resolution 1441 went through unanimously on the 8 November 2002.

So where does the then Australian Prime Minister, John Howard, fit into all this?

Howard, of course, was a close ally of both Bush and Blair. Bush had pushed for a UN resolution to force Iraq to comply with the disarmament demands of previous resolutions and that failure to comply with the new proposed resolution should result in Iraq being disarmed by military force. On the 12 September 2002 Bush gave a speech to the UN outlining the US case and proposing the resolution. After intense negotiations that went on for some eight weeks a wording was agreed upon that enabled UNSC Resolution 1441 to go through. The rest, as they say, is history.

The big question now is, did John Howard know of the secret agreement between Blair and Bush, an agreement which more than likely was struck when Blair dined with Bush at Camp David on the evening of 7 September 2002 after Bush had spent most of that day with his national security team ‘finalizing his decision on the resolution’.(1) Is it a coincidence that it was also on this day that Bush had had a telephone conversation with Howard about the forthcoming resolution?(2) A little over two weeks later Howard was in London having talks with Tony Blair. On 25 September 2002, Howard gave a doorstop interview in London just after his meetings with Blair. A reporter asked him:

Prime Minister, the three former prime ministers and the former governor general have come out urging you not to back a US and UK strike without UN sanctions. Do you have a comment on that?

Howard’s reply was this:

Yes, I have got a comment. Right at the moment, Australia is strongly supporting the attempts of the United States and Britain to obtain Security Council support for a resolution on this issue. It is clearly not in Australia's interests for me to speculate as to what this country might do if those attempts fail. The right thing for Australia is for me to support those current attempts and to refrain from any comment as to what might be Australia's attitude if those bona fide attempts are not successful. Thank you.

In retrospect and knowing what we know now, his answer is, at the very least, telling. The phrasing, as always with Howard, is carefully chosen. One has to ask, however, why is it not in Australia’s interests for him “to speculate as to what this country might do if those attempts fail”?

And why was it “the right thing” for him “to refrain from any comment as to what might be Australia's attitude if those bona fide attempts are not successful”? It begs the question, was Howard privy to Blair and Bush’s agreement? And, more importantly, had Howard become a silent partner in that agreement since events, as it transpired, would be in line with such an agreement?

It is significant that Howard did not mention this September 2002 meeting with Blair in his autobiography. The upshot here is: Was this the meeting where Howard committed Australia to war – even if UNSC Resolution 1441 had been defeated? Because, if it was, Howard is very much guilty of misleading the Australian people and the Australia Parliament to whom he had insisted that he had not made a decision about going to war until almost the very eve of the invasion.

History will not be kind to Howard. The evidence so far, while only circumstantial, is fast becoming compelling. It is only a matter of time before the truth will eventually be told.


ENDNOTES

(1) George W. Bush, Decision Points. (New York: Crown Publishers, 2010.) pp. 238-239.

(2) John Howard, Lazarus Rising: A Personal and Political Autobiography. (Sydney: HarperCollins Publishers, 2010.) pp. 432-433.

Monday, August 22, 2011

NEOCONS WANT LIBYA TO BE A ‘WESTERN-STYLE DEMOCRACY’ – ENFORCED BY WESTERN BOOTS ON THE GROUND

Neocon armchair warmonger-in-chief, ‘Mad Max’ Boot, writing in Commentary today has said:

If Libya is to arrive at the destination we would all like to see – if it is to emerge as a liberal, Western-style democracy – much hard work lies ahead.

“…the destination we would all like to see”? What about what the destination the Libyan people would like to see? After looking at the way America has performed over the last couple of centuries and seeing how it has ended up today – broke and with a dog eat dog every man for himself mentality – the last thing the Libyan people would want is a ‘liberal, Western-style democracy’ with all of the hypocrisy and arrogance that goes with it.

Boot goes on to write:

I have been arguing for awhile, it is vitally important NATO be ready to help stabilize the situation, to prevent Qaddafi’s supporters from mounting an insurgency, to keep potent weapons from slipping out of governmental control–in short to ensure Libya does not suffer the fate of Iraq or Afghanistan, which descended into chaos after the collapse of their regimes

The best way to ensure that Libya doesn’t suffer the fate of Iraq and Afghanistan, both of which were invaded and destroyed by the US and their Western allies, is for the US and the West to keep well out of Libyan affairs and let them sort it out for themselves.

Boot’s idea of ‘helping to stabilise the situation’ is to put around hundred thousand Western troops on the ground in Libya. I can just see the rebels after all they’ve been through getting rid of Gaddafi, letting in a hundred thousand Western troops to ensure that they do what they are told by the US.

He’s not called ‘Mad Max’ Boot for nothing!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

NEOCONS NOT SURE YET WHO TO BACK FOR THE REPUBLICAN NOMINATION

It seems pretty clear as one reads through the various articles in neocon online rags such as Commentary, The Weekly Standard and National Review Online, that the neocons still haven’t firmed on backing any particular runner in the race for Republican nomination for the 2012 presidential elections.

They have, however, made it fairly clear who they don’t want - and that’s Ron Paul, the candidate who ran an extremely close second to Michelle Bachmann in the recent Ames straw poll. While Paul’s ideas about ending the wars goes down well with many war-weary Republican – and, indeed, Democrat – voters, it would be a complete anathema for the neocons who see the wars against Islam as essential for the long-term objective of Israel’s expansionist aspirations into the occupied territories and elsewhere.

Paul Ryan, who hasn’t said he’d run yet, apparently doesn’t cut it with the neocons either. In this case, it’s Ryan’s domestic policies that seem to be at odds with what the neocons advocate.

For the neocons – and also much of the commentariat of the mainstream media as well as at least one poll – the three main contenders at this stage of the game are Michelle Bachmann, Rick Perry and Mitt Romney.

There does seem to be a distinct trend toward favouring Rick Perry inasmuch that there is nothing being said by neocons that is critical of him – though, having said that, most comments about him are more simple observations about him rather than open support.

It may be that the neocons are still holding their cards close to their chest in case someone more favourable decides to throw their hat into the ring or they may think that it’s simply too early to put all their weight behind one candidate just to find that he or she later backs out.

One thing’s for sure; right now there is no one in the running who has really impressed the neocons. There is no George W. Bush or Dick Cheney combo anywhere on the horizon and, certainly, none of the current frontrunners could be framed as ‘neoconservative’, though all support certain aspects of neoconservative ideolgy and all have taken advise from neoconservatives. They still all have to fully prove their foreign policy credentials, particularly in relation to the Middle East and Israel, before the get the full unconditional support of the neoconservative movement.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

NEOCONSERVATIVES AND THEIR GRAND DELUSIONS

The neoconservative’s ability to delude themselves knows no bounds. Thomas Donnelly writing in the neoconservative’s comic The Weekly Standard says in his latest article:

With the congressional “supercommittee” – or, to be precise, the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction – now complete, the stage is set for a very high drama indeed. Now comes the moment when Americans must confront the costs of remaining the world’s sole superpower, the guarantor of an international system that has created a generation of great-power peace, widespread prosperity, and unprecedented human liberty.

The ‘world’s sole superpower’? ‘Guarantor of an international system that has created a generation of great-power peace’? ‘Widespread prosperity’? ‘Unprecedented human liberty’?

Who’s Donnelly trying to convince?

Ever since the downfall of the Soviet Union the US has fancied itself as the ‘world’s sole superpower’ but in reality of course, it is nothing of the sort. It forgets that China is also a ‘superpower’ with the ability to destroy the US, and it forgets that Russia, if push ever came to shove, could also still destroy the US. If it took five hundred nuclear warheads to destroy the planet, having a thousand of them when your two main potential enemies has only six hundred each doesn’t make you a superpower. The US, China and Russia all have Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) capability. How does that make the US the ‘sole superpower’? Perhaps the neocons think that the US propensity to throw their weight around gives them rights to such title but, again, reality shows us differently. In October 2001 the full technological might of the ‘world’s sole superpower’ was thrown against a rag-tag army of poorly armed Islamists and insurgents. Ten years later and the ‘world’s sole superpower’ still hasn’t anywhere near defeated the rag-tag army of Islamists and insurgents – and, after ten years of fighting, it’s unlikely that they ever will.

In March 2003 the ‘world’s sole superpower’ unleashed that same technological might against the people of Iraq. Just over nine years and four months later, on 15 August 2011, a series of bomb explosions across Iraq killed some 60 people and injured another 100.

So much for having ‘created a generation of great-power peace’.

And ‘widespread prosperity’!? The country is on the verge of bankruptcy. The American people are at breaking point with almost an entire middle and working class facing ruin. The only people who have prospered are the bankers and the Military Industrial Complex.

And, as for ‘unprecedented human liberty’; all this ‘liberty’ has ever given the American people is the freedom to hate each other and to exploit and manipulate each other. The wealthy have been free to enslave and fleece the gullible. The power hungry have been free to lie and trick the people in to sacrificing their lives for the cause of a nation that’s not theirs. While they talk of ‘human liberty’ they have imprisoned and tortured thousands who have had no trial or justice.

So much for ‘unprecedented human liberty’.

It is the grand delusions of the neoconservatives that will keep America from ever becoming a real superpower. Arrogance and military might do not a superpower make.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

THE ‘ETHNIC CLEANSING’ CHUTZPAH OF THE NEOCONSERVATIVES

Jonathan Tobin, a neoconservative Zionist writer at Commentary magazine seems to think that Jews will be ‘ethnically cleansed’ from a new Palestinian state. However, as I have explained in a letter to him, his argument is flawed. Here’s what I wrote to him:


Jonathan

Your argument in
your article “Abbas’ Vision of an Ethnically Cleansed Palestinian State” is flawed. You write “…that any Israeli who would call for the expulsion of Arabs from Israel is rightly branded as an extremist whose views are out of touch with the democratic values of the nation.”

The problem with this is that Arabs living in Israel are subject to Israeli law and jurisdiction whereas Jewish settlers living in the West Bank want to remain subject to Israeli laws and jurisdiction if and when there is ever a Palestinian state. Settlers remaining in the West Bank after the creation of a Palestinian state would not be prepared to subject themselves to the laws and jurisdiction of a Palestinian state if the settlements were included within the new Palestinian state.

It’s not so much a case of ‘ethnically cleansing’ the new Palestinian state but, rather, Jews living in the settlements not wanting to subject themselves to the laws and jurisdiction of the new Palestinian state and, therefore, leaving and returning to Israel or from wherever they originally came from.

Neoconservatives and Zionists have consistently argued when discussing Israel’s history that the Palestinians were never ‘ethnically cleansed’ from modern Israel – with all that that implies – but left as the state was being created. Now you are arguing that, when the state of Palestine gets created, Jews living within it are somehow going to be ‘ethnically cleansed’ when in reality they will simply prefer not to live under Palestinian laws and jurisdiction.

Unlike most Palestinians that fled to become refugees at the creation of Israel, Jews in the new state of Palestine will not be chased out at the point of a gun amidst threats of death. In fact there will be no ‘ethnic cleansing’ of Jews from a Palestinian state, only an orderly departure of those Jews that live in the West Bank who would prefer to remain Israeli and not become Palestinians.

Damian Lataan

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

THE UK RIOTS: A PRELUDE FOR ‘ETHNIC CLEANSING’ BY ENGLISH RACISTS AND ISLAMOPHOBES?

It was only a matter of time before the Islamophobic extreme right-wing English Defense League (EDL) used the riots that originated in London but have since spread to other areas in the UK as an excuse to take to the streets themselves “to stop the riots”. According to a report in the UK Daily Telegraph, EDL leader Stephen Lennon has said that “up to 1,000 members would take to the streets in areas of unrest to stop the riots”. Lennon added that the “police obviously can’t handle it”.

One wonders how the EDL plan to “stop the riots” and, if they choose to use violence, who exactly will their violence be perpetrated against.

We were told at the beginning that these riots were race related. Later, however, it became obvious that it was much more about disenfranchisement of youth, caused by unemployment, poor living conditions, lack of opportunity, etc., than with race though there is certainly an element of racial tension involved and, indeed, the shooting that set it all off seems to have had racial connotations.

The question now is; if the unrest continues and the EDL do take to the streets to “stop the riots”, will they use it as an excuse to go after the Islamic youth in those areas that are affected and, if they do, where will it end?

Those that have spread hatred against Islam have a lot to answer for.

See here for more on this as seen through the eyes of an Australian Murdoch Islamophobic journalist.


UPDATE

Three Muslim men guarding their properties have been murdered in Birmingham by being run over. One man has been arrested.