[ Wednesday, May 28, 2003 ]
"The Truth Will Emerge"
Author: Sen. Robert Byrd
May 23, 2003
"Truth, crushed to earth, shall rise again,
The eternal years of God are hers;
But Error, wounded, writhes in pain,
And dies among his worshippers."
Truth has a way of asserting itself despite all attempts to obscure it.
Distortion only serves to derail it for a time. No matter to what
lengths we humans may go to obfuscate facts or delude our fellows, truth
has a way of squeezing out through the cracks, eventually.
Regarding the situation in Iraq, it appears to this Senator that the
American people may have been lured into accepting the unprovoked
invasion of a sovereign nation, in violation of long-standing
International law, under false premises. There is ample evidence that
the horrific events of September 11 have been carefully manipulated to
switch public focus from Osama Bin Laden and Al Queda who masterminded
the September 11th attacks, to Saddam Hussein who did not. The run up to
our invasion of Iraq featured the President and members of his cabinet
invoking every frightening image they could conjure, from mushroom
clouds, to buried caches of germ warfare, to drones poised to deliver
germ laden death in our major cities. We were treated to a heavy dose of
overstatement concerning Saddam Hussein's direct threat to our freedoms.
The tactic was guaranteed to provoke a sure reaction from a nation still
suffering from a combination of post traumatic stress and justifiable
anger after the attacks of 9/11. It was the exploitation of fear. It was
a placebo for the anger.
Since the war's end, every subsequent revelation which has seemed to
refute the previous dire claims of the Bush Administration has been
brushed aside. Instead of addressing the contradictory evidence, the
White House deftly changes the subject. No weapons of mass destruction
have yet turned up, but we are told that they will in time. Perhaps they
yet will. But, our costly and destructive bunker busting attack on Iraq
seems to have proven, in the main, precisely the opposite of what we
were told was the urgent reason to go in. It seems also to have, for the
present, verified the assertions of Hans Blix and the inspection team he
led, which President Bush and company so derided. As Blix always said, a
lot of time will be needed to find such weapons, if they do, indeed,
exist. Meanwhile Bin Laden is still on the loose and Saddam Hussein has
come up missing.
What has become painfully clear in the aftermath of war is that Iraq was
no immediate threat to the U.S. Ravaged by years of sanctions, Iraq did
not even lift an airplane against us. Iraq's threatening death-dealing
fleet of unmanned drones about which we heard so much morphed into one
prototype made of plywood and string. Their missiles proved to be
outdated and of limited range. Their army was quickly overwhelmed by our
technology and our well trained troops.
But, I contend that, through it all, the people know. The American
people unfortunately are used to political shading, spin, and the usual
chicanery they hear from public officials. They patiently tolerate it up
to a point. But there is a line. It may seem to be drawn in invisible
ink for a time, but eventually it will appear in dark colors, tinged
with anger. When it comes to shedding American blood -- when it comes to
wreaking havoc on civilians, on innocent men, women, and children,
callous dissembling is not acceptable. Nothing is worth that kind of lie
-- not oil, not revenge, not reelection, not somebody's grand pipedream
of a democratic domino theory.
And mark my words, the calculated intimidation which we see so often of
late by the "powers that be" will only keep the loyal opposition quiet
for just so long. Because eventually, as it always does, the truth will
emerge. And when it does, this house of cards, built of deceit, will
art [3:18 PM]