Real Wealth Society

Friday, September 01, 2006

I’ve been thinking about policing By Fred Cederholm

Column for on/after August 27th, 2006

I’ve been thinking about policing. Actually I’ve been thinking about reasons/answers, damning stats, security deployments, Baghdad, ratios, costs of war, and exclusions. Initially the invasion/occupation of Iraq was justified by weapons of mass destruction, links to Al-Qaeda, and the events of 911. Now, when asked about what Iraq had to do with the terrorist attacks of 911 at an August 21, 2006 press conference, President Bush responded: “Nothing… (pause) Except it’s part of… (pause) Nobody’s ever suggested that the attacks of September the 11th were ordered by Iraq.” Huh? Yes, you heard him correctly quoted – the truth finally comes out.

You see we are witnessing the biggest backtracking flip-a-roo in the history of political damage control, spin, hype, or Orwellian doublespeak revisionism. The mid-term elections are now ten weeks away and the defining issue is the quagmire of Iraq. While the campaigns do not begin in earnest until after Labor Day, incumbents of both parties are distancing themselves from the Bush Administration - or any bi-partisan connection of support for the actions in Iraq. Because we broke it, it is ours. We are now (at best) in a policing mode - trying to keep the lid on things until some other authority comes along and allows US/us to transfer/dump it on them. Any way you cut it, the war in Babylon is a complete and unmitigated failure – a total disaster.

Iraq sits atop the world’s third largest known oil reserves. Yet… the Iraqi budget for oil/petroleum distillate IMPORTS for August and September had to be doubled. The wells are not pumping; the refineries are not refining. Current functioning petro-capacity is less than half of what it was under Saddam – even under the restricted limitations of sanctions/embargoes.

How many Iraqis are working – being gainfully employed? How many Iraqi children are in schools? How many Iraqis feel free to leave their homes for whatever reason without fear? Is electricity available 24/7 at the flick of a switch? How many toilets now flush? Do the faucets run; and if they do, is the water potable? Why is such data/information not heralded or forthcoming? Trust me, if answers to those questions were anyway positive; we’d hear about it.

Baghdad was the crown jewel of Iraq. It is now a cesspool of death and destruction. In July, an averages to upwards of 100+ Baghdadians were slaughtered by uncontrolled sectarian violence each day. August stats will not be much better. New York State has the highest US ratio of law enforcement personnel per capita with 93 per 10,000 of population – about 1 per 1,000. With 133,000 US troops in Iraq and assuming 75% of those detailed in Baghdad (with a population of 6 million) that’s 1 “peacekeeper” per 60 Baghdadians. And… that’s not enough?

48 nations initially joined Bush’s “Coalition of the Willing” (COW) in Operation Iraqi Freedom. Of those, 39 actually sent troops. Of those, 32 provided less than 1,000 in personnel including non-military humanitarian helpers. Of those, 17 have already withdrawn completely. More indicate their intention to get the hell out by year end. Last Friday when British forces were consolidating troops and abandoned the base at Abu Naji; Iraqi looters stripped it of everything moveable within minutes/ hours. Meanwhile, the Bush Administration is proceeding with construction of the largest, most costly embassy complex on planet Earth. At 104 acres, it will rival the Vatican City in size. Cost estimates range from $592 million to $1.5 billion. Why not just leave pallets of cash, a container of petrol, and a book of matches by the Tigris instead?

$310 billion has been spent by Uncle $ugar on this “undeclared” war in Iraq of the $318.5 billion appropriated for it through Sept.30, 2006. This does not include the costs of “benefits” to the families of our 2800+ acknowledged as killed, or the medical/ rehab costs for our 25,000+ seriously injured. The replacement costs for equipment/munitions “appropriated” by the Department of Defense and sent with the reserve units and the State National Guard units being deployed in Iraq have not been publicly quantified. THAT amount will be huge.

In the coming weeks, candidates for national offices – both the newbie’s and the incumbents – will be hawking their song and dance to the electorate. They’ll try to steer the focus to their own agenda – anything to get them elected/re-elected. We must “police” the debates, the issues, the questions, and above all “REMEMBER in NOVEMBER.” I’m Fred Cederholm and I’ve been thinking. You should be thinking, too.

Copyright Questions, Inc. 2006 all right reserved.

To “audit” this column and to learn more about the subjects discussed, please check out:

Iraq doubles funding for oil imports

Iraqi Death Toll Rose Above 3,400 in July

July deadliest month in Iraq, tallies show

Variation of Incarceration Rates in the States

Iraqi military base looted after Britons leave.

Giant U.S. embassy rising in Baghdad

The Cost of War in Iraq

Notes and Sources

Interesting Statistics about Iraq.

Another Milestone for Bush’s War


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home