Originally published December 19, 2005
When George W. Bush first announced he was invading Iraq, I vaguely supported it. This was right after “9-11” and I figured they (the Government) knew something we didn’t know about “terrorist” activities in Iraq and Weapons of Mass Destruction and all that shit. I figured they were gonna do like what they did with Noriega in Panama, where the army marched in there, yanked Noriega out of his throne, and then got the hell out of there. Saddam Hussein was an obvious asshole, and a definite threat to any human being within his sorry-ass radius. So I wasn’t crying any tears over him, and good riddance to the bastard.
But as soon as Bush started talking about bringing “Constitutional democracy to the heart of the Middle East” I couldn’t help thinking: “GEORGE W.BUSH; YOU STUPID WORTHLESS SHIT-FOR-BRAINS SONOFABITCH! Surely you are joking? ‘Democracy to Iraq’?”
The only forms of government that have EVER taken hold in the Middle East are a.) blatant military dictatorships — like Saddam Hussein in Iraq, where the people are kept at bay by the barrel of a gun. Or b.) religious dictatorships — like the Ayatollah Khomeni in Iran, where they kept the people at bay by cowing them with “Wizard of Oz” type of religious pyrotechnics (‘DOWN ON YOUR KNEES BEFORE THE AWESOME POWER OF THE GREAT AND ALL-POWERFUL WIZARD OF ALLAH!!’). And I guess a third type of Middle East government would be like in Kuwait, where you got Oil Company dictatorships propped up by western corporations.
But “democracy in the Middle East”? Surely this George W. Bush fellow isn’t THAT stupid? (Feel free to correct me on this assumption.) It’s never going to happen, I said at the time. You can figure that out now. Or you can figure that out 20 years and countless billions of dollars and countless thousands of U.S. servicemen’s deaths, later.
There is no third alternative.
The only so-called “democracy” that’s ever been able to survive in the Middle East is Israel. And that so-called democracy has been artificially propped up with endless billions in foreign aid courtesy of the U.S. taxpayers, as well as the full backing of the U.S. military. And even then, the so-called Israeli democracy has only been sustained by absolutely and brutally squashing all the democratic rights of one half of the population, namely, those hapless Palestinians. So, some “democracy.”
Meanwhile, this blithering imbecile — otherwise known as President George W. Bush — is going to continue in his folly to bring a European-style, representative type of “democracy” to the Middle East. To which I can only say: Good luck. And I admit I am hardly a sophisticated observer of political matters (so far, I’ve concluded that politics is all bullshit, but I haven’t worked up any political ideology much more sophisticated than that). And — unlike many strident, leftwing, Bush-hating, Michael Moore-loving, Leftists — I certainly would love to be proven wrong. I’d love to see Bush actually salvage something out of this seemingly hopeless mess.
Can anybody out there tell me how that could be humanly possible? Grafting western style democracy onto the hopelessly barbaric landscape that is the Middle East seems about as feasible as transplanting an internal organ from a baboon into the body of a butterfly.
My prediction — and its here in black-and-white permanently embedded in the rock that is cyberspace — is that we’ll be able to prop up some kind of phony-baloney government in the Middle East for only so long as we’ve got the military might to back it up.But once we leave — 5 minutes after we leave — the country of Iraq will devolve into an endless series of civil wars. Until one tribe gets the better of the other and props up a.) a military dictatorship, or b.) a religious dictatorship.