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Volume 68, Issue 117, Monday, March 24, 2003


Bush and media deceive all

Tom Carpenter
Opinion Columnist

The swirling smoke and leaping flames from the explosions of "precision" bombs and cruise missiles bombarding Baghdad cloak the city of 5 million people beneath a demonic cloud of war. But that hellish veil pales in comparison to the deceitful shroud of propaganda the media and the Bush administration utilize to hoodwink the American public and the world about the justifications for the American invasion of Iraq.

This war is not about weapons of mass destruction, installing democracy, implementing a "regime change" or ousting Saddam Hussein. The president and the media cram those reasons down the throats of the American people and the world, and nobody on the globe believes President Bush except the 70 percent of Americans who demand Saddam Hussein's head. 

The people of this nation have taken a decidedly militaristic stance since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11 2001, and the Bush administration is using this increased aggressiveness to implement a dangerous foreign policy.

With the lone exception of the United Kingdom, the president's invitation to join his "coalition" to attack Iraq met with little or no enthusiasm around the world. Most nations voiced shock and dismay at the U.S. resolution to go it alone.

The Bush U.S. Strategy Plan details his bold objectives for America in the 21st century, yet the administration and the media absolutely refuse to base the Iraqi onslaught on the New World Order blueprint that stunned the rest of the world when it was made public in March 2002.

Richard Nixon abandoned the ethical standards Americans expect of a president during the rampant corruption in his White House because of the Watergate scandal. Bill Clinton willingly surrendered the moral high ground Americans associate with a president because of his deliberate lies and his sleazy affair with a 21-year-old intern. 

The steady erosion of ethics, morals and principles in the Oval Office has placed this nation in great peril. The morally bankrupt businessmen, corporate thieves and liars who inhabit the towers of international finance took their cues from the White House and Congress. The results devastated millions of Americans.

Bush rejected the founding ideal of this nation when he ordered Iraq's invasion.

It's a sobering thought that the days when Americans could saunter around the globe, despised for their arrogance and ignorance but praised for their generosity and compassion ended with the first cruise missile that hit Baghdad.

The U.S. became a military aggressor, a bully, abandoning more than 200 years of precedence to implement Bush's vision of America's revised role in world affairs. 

Not satisfied with spending more money on defense than the combined defense budgets of the next 10 nations, more than a billion dollars a day, the Republican-dominated Congress is lobbying to secure increased funds for nuclear armament for the 2004 fiscal year.

This represents a dangerous melding of nuclear and conventional weapons to settle disputes, and a new attitude that advocates first strikes against enemies, real or perceived.

For some reason, the Bush administration and the media failed to inform the American public about this abrupt policy swing and Iraq's place in the big picture. 

It's ironic that Bush's "moment of truth" contained so little truth.

One expects the politicians to lie and hide the facts, but more ominous for the world is the media's abdication of its watchdog role and its puzzling refusal to enlighten and inform the American public about the dramatic changes in our nation's strategic policy.

But they put on a great show riding around Iraq on tanks.

Carpenter, a College of Education student, can be reached via


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