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:REALITY CHECK

SURREALISM SAFETY BRIGADE
The Iraq Papers Part IV
James Campion

U
ncovering The Fairy Tale Of Protecting America Through War...
The following is Part IV of five segments tying together the loose ends of a fantastic load of misinformation, propaganda, media hype and revisionist history surrounding what is now being dubbed the worst war effort in the 229 years of this republic.

Today we have the unenviable task to remind our readers that despite billions of their tax dollars spent, many of their civil rights compromised and some of their friends and/or family members dead or crippled in war, we are not only not safer, but in more danger than before 9/11/01.

During the laff riot that was the 2004 presidential election campaign there was a great deal of discussion on the Iraq War: Is it protecting the nation by taking the fight to the terrorists or is it creating a larger terrorist network? Both of these theories have been more or less debunked by the less impassioned and easily duped among us. There was only a need for this country, as mentioned in Part II of this series, to be involved in the first war with Iraq to accomplish a polarization of our enemies. Anything else has been merely icing on the cake, as it were. And the idea that we are any safer by engaging in skirmishes with religious wackos in a faraway desert is also patently false.

You might also recall hearing a great deal of posturing about which party and which candidate could best protect you and your family. All of it was utter nonsense by both sides of the political spectrum. This space is on record as suggesting that at the very least the present administration had effectively shown no ability to protect the nation’s borders, so that was an easy one. Who knew what the new guy was proposing? We doubted he knew. We just figured anything has to better than having our citizens murdered. But, as it turned out, the administration the nation chose to continue the job of protecting us was a mistake. That is no longer opinion…it’s fact.

In July of 2004, nearly three full years after the attacks of 9/11, some 16 months after the start of the resultant Iraq War, and literally billions of tax dollars later, the band-aid outfit called the 9/11 Commission sought to find reason and place blame for failed responsibilities and pitch suggestions for those responsible to never fail again. Reason? Pick one of many. Blame? No one really got blamed for anything. Well, they may have been blamed, but not a whole lot was done about it. And what about the latter issue of setting a more stringent security agenda in motion? Snake eyes.

In its final report, the 10-member group comprised of five Democrats and five Republicans produced a wildly acclaimed 567-page report with 41 precise recommendations to shore up national security. Everyone cheered, the president praised it and congress did a collective somersault of glee. But just last week, a year and a half later, this same group reconvened to register a report card on the federal government’s efficiency, or lack thereof, in administering said recommendations. None of it was good. In fact, it was downright frighteningly atrocious. The commission’s chairman, Thomas Kean, former Republican governor of New Jersey backed up the "F"-addled document with this statement: "It’s not a priority for the government right now. More than four years after 9/11 people are not paying attention. God help us if we have another attack." The good news is there was one A- out of 41 grades. That’s pretty good. Hey, at least no more buildings came down. Kean went on to use such words as "scandalous" and "appalling" to further describe the comically tragic results of the grading. It could not be worse, suggested Kean and his angered colleagues, if nothing had happened on 9/11. In other more staggeringly pathetic terms: we are less safe now than before we were hit. And we’re all poorer for it as well – poorer financially, ideologically, politically, legally and militarily. Oh, and there’s some dying going on in Iraq too, Americans and Iraqis and contractors and newsmen, etc.
Not safer. Worse off.

Now anyone who has read a sentence of this space’s lunacy over the past years knows we despise these reports and hearings and commissions and recommendations. They’re political masturbation and another fashionable sinkhole for our tax dollars. Hardly any citizens really pay attention to these things and they rarely affect legislation or voting trends, but I gotta tell ya, this ain’t good for Republicans no matter which way you slice it.
Not safer.
Or as safe.
Worse.
Much worse.

And this would be easier to swallow if the present government wasn’t filled with tough talking hawks and macho loons. The budget is a mess. We’re in serious debt. The economy isn’t disastrous, but it ain’t thriving by any stretch of the imagination. The crazy social agenda of Conservative Ideals and Values is preposterously silly, even for these cretins, but not being safe? Wasn’t that the sole and binding reason to voting for these jack-offs? That and it was a God thing.

Secure. Safe. These are the buzzwords of the Republican excuse machine, and it all turns out to be a big fat fabrication. Turns out not only Democrats are dumb, arrogant pussies. Step right up; we’ve got ourselves an issue that crosses party lines, a bonafide bipartisan think tank of incompetence.
And if you think I’m going to waste precious slamming space listing these government oversights, think again. There’s a lot of stuff about the failure to have clear communications between local authorities and federal ones like what went down in Louisiana a few months back and freeing up radio waves for federal instruction announcements and allocating funds properly. Apparently, and this is a funny one, much of the New Jersey national security funds for 2004 went to air-conditioned garbage trucks. I know I feel safer now.
I’ll trust my hearty readers to sniff out the report and struggle to keep the jaw from dropping. Fuck it, go here:
www.9-11pdp.org/press/2005-12-05_report.pdf.

Suffice to say after reading the thing if you’d like to attempt a sunny dissertation on the subject we’re all for it. Yeah, I’m pretty sure some idiot will write me: "Hey, there were some B and C grades in there!" Okay, great. Billions spent. Rights compromised. Wars on several fronts. There should be nothing but A’s and certainly no F’s.
Read the goddamn report.

© James Campion Dec 19th 2005
www.jamescampion.com
realitycheck@jamescampion.com
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