One Veteran’s Outrage: Bush, Iraq and the Dead

February 27th, 2004 - by admin

by Commentary by Jack Dalton / Freelance Writer –

There is a trend toward autocratic takeovers of imperial republics… especially after they reach a certain stage of growth.

Even now this process is underway in the USA — the President, like the first Roman emperors, decides when and where to wage war, and his Senate rubber stamps and extorts the funding for his imperial adventures, just as the original came to do in the time of Caesar and Octavian.

— Chalmers Johnson, The Sorrow of Empire (Metropolitan Books)

(February 23, 2004) — 548 American soldiers have died as of February 24, 2004.
Bush, like all good, upstanding autocratic imperial heads of empire cares about one thing and one thing only — power and expansion.

God help anything or anyone that has the nerve to get in the way! After all, his “majesty” must make the world safe for “democracy.” He must “civilize” the “uncivilized.” It is such a “short mental leap for people superior in power to infer that they were (are) superior in intellect, morality and civilization as well.”

Achievement of an “end” is all that matters and the “means” of achieving that end are irrelevant. Whatever the cost, the end must be achieved. No matter the cost economically, socially, politically, the end is all-important. No matter the cost in human life, the end is all-important. English political economist John Hobson sums it up rather nicely:

“[I]mperialists are parasites upon patriotism. They are the people who anticipate profitable business and lucrative employment in the course of creating and exporting an empire.”

Currently this country operates over 725 permanent military bases everywhere but Antarctica — with more being built. And the dead keep piling up. A grotesque monument to his “Imperial Majesty’s” empire expansion.

• The Rising Death Toll of US Troops in Iraq
• War Profiteers Flourish; Soldiers and Their Families Pay the Price
• No Help for the Masters of Chaos and Fear

Does Bush or anyone in his cabal care about the mounting death toll? I think not! After all, as we keep being told, we are at war and people die in wars. And the dead keep growing in numbers.

534 Dead; 26,000 Wounded
True to form as head of the “American Empire,” Bush ignores the mounting death toll and the enormous number of wounded and medical evacuations (534 dead, 26,000 evacuated… this is all in the public domain and all over my web site).

His mouthpiece, in the form of corporate media, has taken instructions well: no footage or photos of returning coffins. Out of sight, out of mind… this in and of itself is disrespectful — an outrage and a betrayal of the fallen!

Bush could care less how many of our young people are killed or wounded. Twice he has been asked about the mounting death toll and both times he glibly dismissed the question.

When Tim Russert interviewed Bush on Meet the Press he asked him, “Now looking back, in your mind, is it worth the loss of 530 American lives and 3,000 injuries and woundings simply to remove Saddam Hussein, even though there were no weapons of mass destruction?”

Did Bush show any signs of understanding, compassion, sympathy or loss about the dead and dying? Not by any stretch of the imagination.

Instead, he went into one of the most obscene diatribes, an “instruction” for the families of the fallen, about Saddam being a “bad” man.

So What?! We knew he was a “bad” man; the entire 20-plus years he was our bad man. It didn’t seem to matter much when Rumsfeld was having “tea” with him back in the 1980’s and giving him the things necessary to manufacture bio/chem weapons. Or when Cheney’s Halliburton was doing business with him in 1998!

Bush Calls for ‘Sacrifice’ and Calls on Others to Do the Sacrificing.
As an American, a former Marine (if there is such an animal — former that is), as a disabled Vietnam veteran, I am outraged over the glib, cavalier and dismissive attitude of Bush and his cabal when it comes to the wholesale slaughter of our young men and women, which is being done only to further their quest for empire.

Bush talks of the “sacrifices” that “we” must make. After all we are at war, he tells us.

D**m it! The only people doing the sacrificing are the poor, people of color, and what is left of an ever decreasing middle class.

He does not care! If he did, even just a little, he would show some sign of respect for the dead, the wounded and their families.

Instead, he goes into a ten-minute “lecture,” attempting to convince us and the families of the fallen that he, Bush, is making the world a safer place. After all, didn’t he get rid of that bad man Saddam?

And the dead keep growing in numbers.

To Bush and his cabal, we are just numbers on paper, pieces on a chessboard to be moved around at his “pleasure.”

In the meantime, the dead keep growing in numbers.

Bush stated he is a “war president,” that his policy decisions are made with “war in mind.” Welcome to militarism and the “American Empire.”

And the dead keep piling up.

Empire and its accompanying “might makes right” dogma — by any of the Orwellian double-speak terms or the euphemisms currently in vogue — is still “empire.”

While Bush keeps beating his chest about being a “war president,” the pile of bodies, arms, legs and other assorted body parts of our young people in uniform keeps getting larger and larger.

While he tells us “the American people have got to know they got a president who sees the world the way it is,” I wonder how much of what he sees is left-over brain rot from the years of cocaine and alcohol abuse.

And the number of dead keeps growing.

Jack Dalton is a 60-year-old service-connected, disabled veteran. He spent two years at Vietnam (1965, 66, 67). He holds an MS in Labor and Political Economics. He can be reached at
Jack Dalton’s wbesite is: