Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Media Blackout of Winter Soldier Hearings

This weekend principled veterans of the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan testified
to war crimes and atrocities they had witnessed or participated in. The hearings
were held outside of the nation's capitol, Washington, DC. The corporate media
ignored the hearings. Apparently, on their moral scale, Eliot Spitzer's moral
shortcomings are more important than the US military's, and the demented rulers
who sent them.

This is the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. There are over one million
Iraqis dead, with three million refugees, and the rest of the population has been
forcibly ethnically cleansed. US soldiers kick down doors and terrorize the families
inside, hauling men to prisons on dubious grounds. Iraqis are subjected to concrete
barriers and checkpoints, with a chance of being shot for driving down their streets.
The Red Cross has called the occupation a continuing human rights disaster, with
Iraqis still without food, water, electricity or sewage treatment.

Yet Dick Cheney and John McCain have proclaimed the occupation a success. What
kind of sick human could look at the misery and death that Iraqis have been through
the last five years and call it a success, just because American oil companies have
now signed contracts?

These veterans have braved the scorn of the ruling class and the brainwashed
Americans who support it. Almost four thousand American soldiers have died in Iraq,
with many more wounded. There are an unknown number who have killed themselves
in despair after returning home, but the US ruling class is no more interested in
counting those numbers than they are in counting Iraqi deaths.

You'd think that US veterans generally would get a clue as to their worth
post use by seeing that the Bush administration has cut the VA budget, veteran's
benefits and Impact Aid. But only the vets who continue to blindly support US
imperialism get media time. If you're really a psycho supporter, you may get
to sit next to the Chief Deserter at a Republican convention!

Conscience stricken Iraqi veterans should band together in Iraq Veterans Against
the War, where they can comfort and support each other. The US ruling class apparently
prefers that each vet suffer alone. Suicide saves them money in mental health cost
and future benefits. So the media blackout of the IVAW could be seen as a way
to support the criminal ruling class in their abuse of the US military.

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