Baker Commission Conundrum

Wednesday, December 6, 2006 10:28 AM

The "Iraq Study Group" aka "The Baker Commission" has just brought in its report on Iraq, and handed it to Bush II. The Group or Commission is analogous to an outside consulting firm in the business world, brought in to analyze a particular problem for a giant, multinational corporation. The major difference here, as I understand it, is that these outside "experts"--led by former Secretary of State for Bush I, James Baker--were not permitted to look backward to understand and explain how the problem was created which they are now trying to solve. They can't look back, and don't want to go there anyway, because they are not really outsiders--they are part and parcel of the same Washington Establishment, whose Mideast policies have contributed to the overall problem for the past several decades. We are now experiencing in Iraq and elsewhere the inevitable adverse repercussions from ignorant, intrusive policies, going back many years.

To explain how we got into this firestorm would require a stinging bill of indictment of the entire bipartisan Washington Establishment, and not just a bill of impeachment for the current sitting President, who is little more than a spokesperson for forces he hardly comprehends. I starting saying over two years ago that G.W. was irrelevant, and not just because Cheney was running the show behind the scenes. G.W. is irrelevant because he was always meant to be a front man, and has performed that function from day one.

In this regard, I do not blame Bush II so much as I blame his father, Bush I. The father should never, ever have allowed the Republican establishment to seize upon his son and use him to gain power. Bush 41 must have known full well the inadequacies of his son, but he stood by and did precisely nothing.

Here's the basic problem. Is there a legitimate "war on terror" or not, and is Iraq part of it or not? That is what the issue boils down to. The Baker Commission cannot address that issue, because it cannot look back, only forward. If the initial premise of the war was faulty (or fraudulent), then how can the recommendations of the Baker Commission be of much value? The recommendations will be based upon false premises and assumptions.

The whole thrust of the Commission is clearly to find a way out of this quagmire for the U.S. military; but why should the military leave, if it is actually engaged in a "war on terror", which war is vital to protect the people of the United States? Note a few words from the report: "If the situation continues to deteriorate, the consequences will be severe. A slide toward chaos could trigger the collapse of Iraq's government and a humanitarian catastrophe. Neighboring countries could intervene. Sunni-Shia clashes could spread while Al Qaeda could win a propaganda victory and expend its base of operations." Well, the situation is deteriorating; so what is the rationale for pulling out?

To say that the Iraqi government should do more and step up as we step down is a non sequitur and so much wishful thinking. The United States is the occupying power; it invaded Iraq, and is responsible for the current government in place in Baghdad as well as for the current chaos. You cannot have free elections under military occupation. The regime in Baghdad's "green zone" is illegitimate. The fact that Saddam Hussein was "a dictator" is beside the point. The invasion of Iraq was not part of a genuine, honest "war on terror", because Hussein was not involved with 9/11 and was not harboring terrorists and was in no way, shape or form a threat to the people of the United States.

The invasion created terrorism where there was none before. The invasion has been a godsend for Islamic extremists and for supporters of Jihad. But the "war on terror" outside Iraq was a fraud even before the U.S. invasion of Iraq created terrorism inside Iraq. It is the "lone, surviving Superpower"--working in tandem with Tel Aviv and the Israel Lobby--which brought about the terrorism it is now supposedly fighting. This "war on terror" is a self-perpetuating and self-fulfilling war, a war fueled by the enterprise of Zionism in the Middle East going back over eighty years. Washington is now a front for that enterprise. No wonder the Baker Commission cannot look back.