[Marxism] Herman: "We Had To Destroy Fallujah in Order to Save It"

Charlie Parks jcparks5550 at hotmail.com
Thu Nov 11 20:42:21 MST 2004

Znet Commentary

November 08, 2004

We Had To Destroy Fallujah in Order to Save It

By Edward Herman

""The similarities between the Vietnam and Iraq wars become more marked with 
each passing week.We are now told that the U.S. forces have surrounded 
Fallujah and are about to unleash a full-scale attack to recover it from the 
insurgents. They are already bombarding the town with howitzers and 
missiles, so we can be fairly certain that the town will be destroyed and 
that civilian casualties will be very heavy. Fallujah must be destroyed in 
order to save it from control by a resistance to the 
U.S.-invasion/occupation and U.S. control, as was the case with Ben Tre in 
Vietnam, about whose destruction the famous phrase "We had to destroy the 
town in order to save it" was coined by a U.S. officer implementing the 
destruction. Then as now the U.S. right to invade and destroy in order to 
shape the politics of a distant country was taken as a given by the media 
and ready-access intellectuals.

In both cases there was this ready willingness to use advanced weaponry on 
relatively defenseless peoples, with heavy civilian casualties entirely 
acceptable, and of course kept under the rug as much as possible, with media 
assistance. There were no body counts of civilians in Vietnam, and U.S. 
leaders like Colin Powell and General Tommy Franks have been explicit that 
such counts as regards Iraqi civilians are not an interesting subject and in 
fact "We don't do body counts" (Franks). In Vietnam, U.S. legal personnel 
even coined the phrase "the mere gook rule," to describe the attitude toward 
the locals we were allegedly saving. In Iraq the natives are referred to as 
hajis by the invaders, a term of derogation that is matched by actions in 
raiding homes, dealing with prisoners, and once again the lavish use of high 
tech weapons in civilian-heavy locales with heavy civilian costs (heavy 
bombs, cluster bombs, DU ammunition).

full: http://www.zmag.org/sustainers/content/2004-11/08herman.cfm

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