Of War and Sausages;
 Censoring the Bush Family Wars
      by Christian Dewar

"Without censorship, things can get terribly confused in the public mind." General William Westmoreland,
 Commander of the US forces in Vietnam, on why the media should be controlled in wartime.

 A pundit once remarked that a person should never have to see how sausages or wars are made,
 inferring that the observation of such gruesome, repugnant spectacles would repulse any normal human being.

 People  who are familiar with Upton Sinclair's book, "The Jungle", know about the hideous conditions and
 the health hazards that existed at American meat packing companies at the turn of the century. Animals were
 butchered in appallingly filthy, contaminated slaughter houses. The working conditions were horrible and dangerous.
 This was before there was any regulation of stock yards or food producers.

 More recently, Eric Schlosser's book, "Fast Food Nation", portrays the butchering of animals for America's
 franchise restaurants as so disgusting that it would make a vegetarian out of the most devout carnivore.
 Butchers stand ankle deep in blood as they render cattle for market. Workers often develop carpel tunnel
 syndrome from the repetitive motion. Others lose limbs or suffer severe cuts.

 The portrayal of war by correspondents, photographers and poets makes any thinking mortal realize the
 brutality and futility of combat. Historical books about soldier's true experiences at war have always shown
 the inhumanity and wretchedness of the mass murder. They paint vivid images of the carnage that they found so appalling.

 During World War 11, Americans had been blind-sided at Pearl Harbor and fascism threatened our way of life.
 We were united against our common foe. Correspondents like Ernie Pyle lived in the trenches and foxholes
 alongside our troops. Pyle was beloved by our nation because he risked his life and lived with the same deprivations
 in the field as the soldiers. Citizens relied on his reports to understand what life was like for their loved ones. It was said
 that he covered a "democracy at war". He was killed by a Japanese sniper in the South Pacific. Aging veterans still make
 the pilgrimage to his home to pay homage to the  man who told their stories.

 After Pearl Harbor, our nation was united. Graphic accounts and photos of the brutality of war only helped to
 stiffen the resolve of our citizens. Pictures of American dead on the beaches of Europe and the South Pacific
 made us aware of the ultimate sacrifice that our fellow soldiers were making to preserve our democracy from tyranny.

 Unlike WW 11, this nation was more ambivalent about the war in Vietnam. Most Americans could not even find
 the country on a map. Even fewer knew anything about their history. Was Ho Chi Mihn a nationalist or a communist?
 After all, he had drafted a constitution for his people based on our own. He had been an ally of ours in the fight against
 the Japanese. The OSS sent medical help when he was ill. After the war, he wanted America to recognize the right of
 Vietnam to resist recolonization by the exploitive French. Many wondered how an agrarian nation half way around the
 world from us could present a threat to the world's premier nuclear power.

 With the advent of television, Americans growing up during the Vietnam era became accustomed to daily coverage
 of the war. Photos in magazines showed naked, terrified children fleeing napalm attacks. Images in the media showed
 civilian bodies lying in the ditches of My Lai. Graphic footage showed a South Vietnamese officer summarily executing
 a Viet Cong at point blank range. We saw the aluminum  caskets and the body bags with the corpses of our friends,
 neighbors and family members being unloaded from helicopters and large transport aircraft. Americans were inundated
 with accounts of the atrocities, massacres and ambushes.

 America's "Best and the Brightest", such as Robert MacNamara, warned us that Vietnam could be the toppled domino
 that would lead to world-wide communism. While our government assured us that the war was proceeding brilliantly
 and that there was a light at the end of the tunnel, the coverage on the evening news suggested otherwise. When the
 Tet Offensive surprised our military with coordinated attacks throughout South Vietnam, it was a wake-up call that
 maybe all was not well. Skeptical journalists covering the war knew that they were being lied to by the brass and began
 to tell Americans at home. Vietnam did not seem to be worth the lives of our troops. Nightly television footage and
 photographs of the carnage allowed our citizens at home to come to their own conclusions about how the war was being waged.

 Despite the leaked Pentagon Papers which showed that our generals really thought that the war could not be won
 and that the best case scenario would be a stalemate, many hawks in the military concluded that the media was somehow
 responsible for our failures in Vietnam. Rather than blame our country's poorly thought out policies, they convinced themselves
 that the press were traitors who under minded the determination of our citizens to see their war to it's successful conclusion.

 America's generals were determined not to allow the press to undermine their actions again. From then on, reporters were to
 be treated as hostile to their mission and were to be marginalized. Journalists would no longer be given the freedom to report
 our nation's wars. Our armed forces had no use for an informed citizenry.

 The underlying reasons for this policy of censorship was that if Americans were exposed to graphic footages of the massacres
 and atrocities which take place during any war, we might once again reconsider our policies and conclude that they were morally
 bankrupt. Out of sight, out of mind. A conscious decision was made to censor all of our future wars.

 Our campaign against Grenada did not receive any substantial coverage by the US media. Access to the scenes of violence was
 controlled. Press accounts were cleaned up for domestic consumption. Journalists could only report what the Pentagon wanted
 them to see. Americans saw photo-ops of American medical students who were saved from the tyranny of a slightly left-leaning
 head of government by the US calvary, even though some of these future doctors didn't realize they were in need of saving.

 Pulitzer prize winning journalist Patrick J. Sloyan wrote that "Reporters were banned from Grenada. Those who tried to land
 on the island such as Morris Thompson of Newsday were arrested and imprisoned on US ships offshore. All details and videos
 were supplied by military reporters and Pentagon briefings."

 It is widely suspected that the Grenada campaign was a "wag the dog" scenario to distract the American's attention from the
 terrorist attack on a US Marines barrack two days before that killed 241 of our troops. The Reagan administration had sent
 them to Beirut on a fool's mission and we were pondering why they had been stationed there in the first place.

 We also saw comprehensive censorship implemented during the campaign in Panama to oust Manuel Noriega. Like bin Laden,
 Noriega was once a CIA asset who had worked closely with US intelligence. Like Saddam Hussein, he had been an ally of the
 Reagan/Bush administrations. Noriega was lauded for his cooperation with our government by George H. W. Bush long after
 he was known to have been involved in drug smuggling, money laundering and other criminal behavior.

 Critics of the Bush administration suggest that some of Noriega's crimes were committed on behalf of the CIA during the
 Reagan/Bush era. The CIA's own inspector general admitted in 1998 that the CIA was complicit in Contra drug smuggling.
 Some people believe that Noriega became too greedy with the profits. When he no longer served our interests and became
 an inconvenient liability like Saddam, our government did not hesitate to turn on him like a rival Mafia don.

 The Bush administration, in what would become a familiar pattern, launched a PR campaign to demonize the dictator in the
 eyes of Americans. Our army then invaded in a poorly conceived and bungled attack which resulted in unnecessary US
 casualties and the deaths of perhaps 3000 innocent civilians who had labored under the illusion that they were our friends and allies.

 The press was kept away from the carnage. There would be no evening news coverage showing shattered, bloody bodies.
 Battlegrounds were sanitized. Corpses were quickly hidden from view. No footage that showed the Pentagon or the
 administration in a bad light would be allowed to appear in the US media.

 When images of the coffins of US troops arriving stateside appeared on a split screen with Bush gloating and boasting of
 his great success in Panama, the Pentagon ordered that the media be prohibited from filming the return of our soldier's caskets.
 The cover-up was complete. Most Americans are still unaware of the immense loss of life.

 These were not wars at all. There was only token resistance by a handful of defenders to our overwhelming force. They were
 one-sided massacres. If Americans understood the real reasons for these campaigns and saw the slaughter, they would have
 been appalled at our government's actions.

 During the Gulf War, reporters were again assigned to pools which would only be allowed to cover sights previously selected
 by the Pentagon. The graphic footage of American war planes bombing the retreating Iraqis at the "Highway of Death" was
 scrubbed although some shots of the horrific slaughter were leaked out by independent photographers. (See, "The Unseen
 Gulf War by Peter Turnley at digitaljournalist.org/issue 0212/pt_intro.html).

 Images of the carbonized bodies of Iraqi tank crews burned beyond recognition by our depleted uranium shells (dubbed
 "crispy critters" by our troops) which appeared abroad were not shown by our media.

 In the February 14th edition of the Guardian, Patrick J. Sloyan wrote an article entitled, "How the Mass Slaughter of a Group
 of Iraqis went Unnoticed". According to Sloyan, reporters including Leon Daniel were prevented from observing a large tank battle.
 An estimated 6000 Iraqis had been killed. "It was a battlefield without the stench of urine, feces, blood and bits of flesh."
 When they were finally permitted to see the site, they asked where the bodies were. An army major replied, "What bodies?"

 Observers claim that US tanks moving parallel to Iraqi trenches poured machine gun fire into their troops while armed vehicles
 with immense plows buried the soldiers, dead and alive. "The tanks had flanked the lines so that tons of sand from the plough
 spoil had funneled into the trenches. Just behind the tanks, straddling the trench line, came Bradleys pumping machine-gun
 bullets into Iraqi troops."

 Sloyan quotes Colonel Anthony Moreno who said that "I came through right after the lead company...What you saw was a
 bunch of buried trenches with people's arms and legs sticking out of them. For all I know, we could have buried thousands."

 "Two other brigades used the same tank-mounted ploughs and Bradleys to obliterate an estimated 70 miles of defensive trenches...
 The finishing touches were made by armored combat earth-movers (ACEs). These massive bulldozers, with armored cockpits
 impervious to small-arms fire, smoothed away any hint of the carnage.

 Daniel said that, "They wouldn't allow us to see anything."

 Military handlers "interrupted interviews to chastise soldiers into changing their statements while reporters stood back, or forcibly
 removed film from cameras that captured images deemed offensive by an Army public affairs officer." Dick Cheney, one of the
 architects of the Pentagon's censorship policy remarked of the press that, "Frankly, I looked on it as a problem to be managed."
 The American press, cowed by the administration, allowed themselves to be censored. They no longer were engaged in journalism.
 They were now doing PR for the Pentagon.

 Sloyan wrote that life was much more difficult for independent journalists. "More than 70 operating outside the pool system were
 arrested, detained, threatened at gun point or chased from the front line. Army public affairs officers made nightly visits to hotels
 and restaurants in Hafir al Batin, a Saudi town on the Iraqi border. Reporters and photographers would bolt from the table.
 The slower ones were arrested.

 Photographer Scott Applewhite went to the scene of a SCUD attack on an American tent which killed 25 and wounded 70.
 Applewhite was stopped by military police. When he objected, "they punched and handcuffed him while ripping the film from
 his cameras." Pictures of dead Iraqi civilians and "collateral damage" were censored.

 During the Gulf War, Colin Powell claimed that the number of Iraqi casualties did not concern him. A government contractor
 who estimated the deaths at around 158,000, much higher then official figures, was harassed and fired.

 Sloyan writes that "Not a single eyewitness account, photograph or strip of video of combat between 400,000 soldiers in the
 desert was produced by this battalion of professional observers."

 Aside from not being allowed to witness the repulsive carnage of war, Americans at home were also conveniently prevented
 from seeing just how dumb our "smart" bombs really were and that our cruise missiles which seemed so effective and accurate
 on the video tapes, were actually failing to hit their targets in the majority of firings. Patriot missiles designed to intercept in-coming
 SCUDs which were touted by the Pentagon as being so effective were also found to have been largely unsuccessful. Taxpayers
 witnessing such waste in the development of these multi-million dollar weapons systems might have suspected that this war was
 a boondoggle for the merchants of death.

 Closely allied with the military-industrial complex, the Reagan/Bush administrations did not want to expose their cronies and
 campaign contributors in the defense industry to charges of war profiteering. (In perhaps one of the biggest conflicts of interest
 for any president, George H.W. Bush owns a large stake in the Carlyle group which is making a killing from this war. Cheney's
 Halliburton will make fortunes from no-bid contracts. Bechtel, home to many former republican politicians, is equally well positioned.)

 The media was effectively muzzled from reporting that the Reagan/Bush administrations had illegally sold hundreds of millions of
 dollars worth of weapons and the dual-use technology for the manufacture of biological and chemical weapons to Saddam long
 after we knew he had gassed the Kurds and Iranians. These weapons were then used against our troops. Allegations are now
 quietly leaking out that in this most recent war, our troops have finally found Saddam's WMD: US missiles that our government sold him!

 Before this last war, the Bush administration seized Iraq's dossier prepared for the UN outlining their weapons program and
 censored 8000 pages which listed foreign countries that sold Saddam weapons. A leaked copy revealed that 24 companies
 selling arms to Iraq were from the United States.

 The footage of the war that the Pentagon did release was a dazzling, high-tech video display of "smart" bombs plowing into
 abstract targets, resembling more of an arcade game than the wholesale murder of human beings. It seemed only a bit more
 "virtual" then a Nintendo game. Soldiers seen manipulating complicated electronic devices and laptops appeared more like
 technicians than paid professional killers. The Pentagon portrayed this war as a pyrotechnics show with flash pods and
 special effects like those at a rock concertl.

 American audiences did not witness how a single cluster bomb could kill virtually every living being in the space of ten
 football fields. They did not see the charred flesh of civilians who were mistakenly bombed in their shelters.

 The aftermath of the war was also hidden from the American public. Our media did not report on the devastated infrastructure
 of Iraq. Electric grids had been bombed. The water supply was devastated. Hospitals had been destroyed Sewage ran through
 the streets. Epidemics flourished. Cholera, diarrhea and typhus were common. The media never mentioned the estimated 500,000
 Iraqi children who died from malnutrition and disease. They did not report on the sky-rocketing rates of leukemia and cancer
 thought to have been caused by our depleted uranium shells.

 In the recent campaign against the Taliban, journalists were again isolated from the battle scenes. One correspondent who
 was investigating reports of civilian casualties claimed he was thwarted by US soldiers who threatened to shoot him if he
 continued. Other reporters believe that soldiers from the Northern Alliance were instructed by American soldiers to harass them.
 US media did not show photos of the wedding procession which was turned into a funeral by our bombs. We did not see the
 dismembered bodies or the bloated corpses.

 A documentary entitled, "Afghan Massacre; The Convoy of Death" alleges a media cover-up of US complicity in the massacre
 of up to 3000 Taliban prisoners. According to 'Democracy Now', the producer Jamie Doran was told by the State Department
 officia,l Larry Schwartz, that his film would not receive coverage in our main stream media. Schwartz is quoted as saying,
 "You have to understand, we're involved with the national [ newspapers] on a daily basis - this story won't run, even if it's true."
 Televison industry insiders told Doran, "not now Jamie."

 The American people no longer know how our army conducts it wars. There are reports leaking out that our intelligence agents
 use "stress and duress" techniques, beating up prisoners to get information. Two Afghans recently died at our POW camps there
 and their deaths are being investigated as homicides. A BBC crew that recently toured Guantanamo had their visit cut short when
 a prisoner attempted to speak to them. Some prisoners are "rendered" to other allied countries which regularly use torture. One
 US intelligence officer said that if the guards are not violating the prisoner's civil rights once and awhile, the probably aren't doing
 their job. Now, the US is considering executing prisoners at Guantanamo after a military tribunal. Amnesty International says the
 US is routinely violating the Geneva Convention.

 Human rights activists are forbidden from visiting our POW camps. Prisoners are kept in solitary confinement. Leaked pictures
 show sensory deprived prisoners in four-point restraint with ear plugs and blacked-out goggles. Some are forced to kneel on
 concrete for hours. Others have loud rock music blasted at them. Has our democracy been co-opted by Nazis? How are we
 different then the Waffen SS? Weren't we the "white hats" who prosecuted German war criminals at Nuremburg for the same
 offenses? Has the United States become a fascist nation without it's citizens knowing? There is a reason why George W. Bush
 does not want an International Criminal Court.

 Now, Dubya has had his own Iraqi war. The reasons for it seem to change from day to day. Bush continued to flog off discredited
 reports that aluminum tubes were to be used to enrich uranium. A "sexed up" report by Tony Blair (now known as the "dodgy dossier")
 was found to have been plagiarized from a ten year old graduate thesis. A report that said Niger was providing uranium to Iraq was
 known to be a forgery. Trucks which Bush claims were to be used to develop WMD apparently were really to produce hydrogen
 for weather balloons. The CIA has been leaking for months that the administration was "cherry picking" only that information which
 bolstered their case for war. Those people who read the foreign press have known about this for months. The US press is finally
 beginning to report on this.

 American generals such as Zinni, Clark, Schwarzkoph and Shinseki were reluctant to see us go to war. (Clark recently disclosed
 that the administration pressured him to report links between Osama and Saddam and he refused to do so when they would not
 provide evidence.) Brent Scowcroft and other allies of the first Bush administration voiced reservations about the war but these
 chicken hawks steam rolled these critics and the media acquiesced.

 Cheney's claim that American troops would be greeted as liberators has proven to be wishful thinking. Wolfowitz's belief that
 General Shinseki was wrong in saying that at least 200,000 troops would be necessary to occupy the country was "wildly off
 the mark". The certainty of the neocons in the correctness of their assumptions is baffling, but as Bertrand Russell once said,
 "The whole problem with the world is that the fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people are
 full of doubts. Many people would sooner die then think; in fact they do so."

 The ongoing revelations about this war show that we are sinking into the quagmire in both Afghanistan where the Taliban have
 regrouped for attacks against us and in Iraq where our troops are routinely being murdered in urban warfare. There were around
 25 attacks against our troops in one day, recently. Critics of this war warned of a Stalingrad scenario where guerillas would fight
 skirmishes from the rubble. Despite the media's poor coverage, it is even becoming apparent to the red states that we are in trouble.

 Reporters covering this nation's wars are now required by the Pentagon to go through indoctrination courses. They are "embedded"
 in military units where it is hoped that they will be reluctant to report unfavorable news about their new acquaintances in the service
 who guard their lives. Doonesbury cartoonist Gary Trudeau compares this effect on the reporters as similar to the Stockholm
 Syndrome in which hostages begin to empathize with their captors.

 Embedded reporters are forbidden from traveling independently or to use their own transportation. One BBC reporter claimed
 that the US military threatened to attack all satellite communication gear that was transmitting and told her that they could not
 guarantee her safety as an independent journalist. She took this to be thinly veiled threat. Several reporters have been killed.
 A US tank crew fired a shell at the Palestine Hotel where scores of journalists were base, killing two. Our troops have
 repeatedly targeted Middle Eastern television stations like Al Jazerra that broadcast pictures of US POWs and civilian casualties.

 When a photographer attempted to film a convoy which was recently attacked, wounding several Syrians, a US soldier
 threatened to break his camera if he continued.

 The corporate media has consistently portrayed Bush in a favorable light in this war. His history has been white washed by the press.
 Dubya (who never refuted allegations that he was AWOL from the Texas National Guard for 17 months) landed on an air craft carrier
 in a pilot costume to proclaim "Mission Accomplished", never mind that our troops are dying daily. Photo-ops and sound bites help
 to deflect our attention from the reality of war. The Jessica Lynch story has been revealed to be a Pentagon fabrication.

 The media has given Bush a pass on many other scandals as well. His past has been sanitized as much as his wars including
 allegations of insider trading, perjury in a Texas funeral home scandal, a possible cocaine arrest cover-up, the diversion of
 University of Texas funds to his cronies and the land-grab scam of the Texas Ranger Stadium. The Fox "Fair and Balanced"
 News, which maintains a 24/7 assault on liberals, is run by veteran republican media consultant, Roger Ailes, who once said
 that Americans don't want to be informed; they only want the illusion of being informed. Happy to comply, Fox has been a
 cheerleader for Dubya's wars, abandoning any semblance of objectivity.

 Colin Powell's son, Michael, has been working feverishly to deregulate the media so that extreme right wingers like Rupert Murdoch
 and the Reverend Moon (who has given millions to Dubya's father) can more thoroughly monopolize the news. Moon, who owns the
 Bush mouthpiece, The Washington Times, believes he is the new Messiah. He has links to many right wing juntas and has denounced
 Americans for their independence of thought.

 Clear Channel, which is owned by a close Bush crony, owns around 1200 radio stations as well as bill boards. They organized
 pro-war rallies and lead the attacks on the Dixie Chicks. The corporate media featured an overwhelming number of hawks on
 their talk shows. Perhaps around five percent of the talking heads had reservations about the war. The number of anti-war activists
 at rallies was consistently under reported. The ten million who demonstrated world wide on February 15th were dismissed by Bush
 as a focus group. Karl Rove contrived to have protesters at Bush appearances corralled into the Orwellian termed "First Amendment
 Zones" where they would be overlooked by the press.

 Talk Radio is dominated by screeching heads who stay on message for the Bushies. The eloquent Michael Savage rants about the
 imagined foibles of "turd world countries". Bill O'Reilly was recently exposed by Al Franken on C-Span for his repeated lies about
 winning a Peabody award for excellence in broadcasting. (Franken also exposed the Fiery Nazi Windbag's serial lying in his book,
 Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot.")

 Web sites like mediawhoresonline.com, bushwatch.com, buzzflash.com, democrats.com and bartcop.com thoroughly dissect and
 discredit the shoddy stenography of hacks like Ann Coulter and more mainstream reporters like Judith Miller. But the republicans
 understand Goebbel's theory that a big, audacious lie is more easily believed by the masses than a small one and that a lie repeated
 often enough becomes the truth. Former CIA director, William Colby, once remarked that "The CIA owns every one of any
 significance in the major media." It appears that the media has now become a subsidiary of the Bush Family Dynasty.

 The censorship and slanting of the news has very real consequences for our troops in the field. We are not hearing much in the press
 about the more than 200,000 vets who are on disability for Gulf War Syndrome or the more then 10,000 who have died from the illness.
 If depleted uranium is the cause of this syndrome as many suspect, then tens of thousands of our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan can be
 expected to also become ill as our army continues to use DU. The lives of our troops are more expendable then toilet paper for this
 Pentagon and the media is complicit in the cover up.

 The corporate media has also been silent about allegedly faulty respirators and defective chemical hazard suits issued to our troops.
 Fox hasn't been reporting on the experimental vaccines administered to our troops such as the anti-malaria drug which is thought to
 have triggered murderous paranoid, psychotic reactions in vets returning from Afghanistan.

 There have been few stories about this administration's plan to use tactical nuclear bombs in our new wars. What ramifications
 does this have for our troops who find themselves downwind from the radiation?

 The media has been assisted in foisting off propaganda on the American public by public relations firms like Hill and Knowlton
 and the Rendon group which fabricate lies and sow disinformation such as the story about Iraqi soldiers ripping babies from their
 incubators. This was proven to be a fabrication.

 The Pentagon has been surprisingly open about it's attempts to distribute propaganda for foreign and domestic consumption.
 Our government broadcasts pro-US radio shows to a dubious audience in the Middle East. Polls show that the Muslim countries
 hate us more then ever. They saw how our "shock and awe" campaign leveled much of Baghdad. They have seen the carnage
 and blood. Most Europeans now think that Bush is more dangerous than bin Laden. Maybe the Pentagon will start to paint
 yellow "smiley faces" on their cluster bombs.

 It is not only our nation's wars that this administration does not want us to see. As soon as the took power, they declared that
 they could withhold all presidential papers, including those of Dubya's father which could implicate him in Iran-Contra gate
 scandals. Bush also hid his papers from his tenure as Texas governor.

 Our nation's energy policy was written in secret so that we won't know the extent to which Enron and US oil helped to formulate
 our laws. It is not only a matter of what Bush knew about Enron's gouging of California for billions of dollars but also whether
 they influenced foreign policy when they planned to build a pipeline in Afghanistan. This administration met with the Taliban to
 help Enron's case and threatened to bomb them if they did not cooperate. Some people think that the attack on the WTC was
 a pretext for this promised attack on Afghanistan.

 Bush holds few press conferences and the ones that he does have are tightly scripted. Any respectable journalist like Helen Thomas
 who asks uncomfortable questions gets exiled to the Siberia of seating assignments and is never called on again. Others are frozen
 out from any access to the White House. The press corp now only lobs softballs at Bush.

 The EPA recently censored scientific conclusions about global warning which blamed smokestack and tail pipe emissions for
 much of the problem.

 Bush and Cheney are also pulling out all of the stops to thwart an investigation into the World Trade Center tragedu. It appears
 that they fear damaging information about what they knew could effect the next presidential election. What are they trying to hide?

 This administration, with the complicity of the media has kept us uninformed and ignorant. As Mark Twain once said,
 'if you don't read the papers, you are uninformed. If you do read the papers you are misinformed'.

 Of course, it is possible that if our citizens were informed they still might back this administration.
 To paraphrase H. L. Mencken, "No one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people. Albert Einstein
 once said, "The tyranny of ignoramuses is insurmountable and assured for all time." Musician and composer Frank Zappa claimed
 that, " It's not getting any smarter out there. You have to come to terms with stupidity and make it work for you." Hitler said,
 "What good fortune for those in power that the people do not think."

 Republican pollster Frank Luntz recently said that, "It doesn't matter whether any WMD are found "because the rationale for the
 war changed. Americans like a good picture. And one picture of an Iraqi child kissing a US soldier is  more powerful than two
 months of debate on the floor of Congress." Karl Rove once said that the ideal campaign image should be conceived of as an
 image on the television set with the sound off. Most Americans think with their brain stem, not the frontal lobes.

 Bush now dismisses critics who wonder where the WMD are as "revisionist historians" but it is this administration that is revising history.
 By repeatedly mentioning Osama and Saddam in his speeches, he has convinced many Americans that the two are allies when there is
 no proof. Similarly, Bush has managed to convince many people that Saddam had a hand in the World Trade Center tragedy and that
 Iraqis hijacked the planes when there were none on board. Fifteen of them were from our ally, Saudi Arabia.

 Bush has been quoted as saying that "You can fool some of the people all of the time and those are the ones you concentrate on."
 This administration operates on this assumption. His "Clean Air" and "Healthy Forests" campaigns are misnomers which have exactly
 the reverse effect on our environment. He campaigned in the primary with a stage full of minorities while he planned to gut affirmative
 action and programs which help the poor.

 As Hiram Johnson once said, "The first casualty when war comes, is truth." The Bush administration did not even wait until they got t
 heir wars before they started lying to us. The British are incensed that Tony Blair lied to them. We can only hope that Americans will
 become similarly outraged.

 It was said of the renowned Ernie Pyle that he reported on a "democracy at war".
 We are at war, but we are no longer a democracy

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