Thursday, May 5, 2011

Bin Laden Is Dead, Remember The Maine!

I waited patiently for the President's big announcement. The talking heads on TV had assured me that Mr. Obama would momentarily appear at the podium and deliver some startling news. Some great news. OK, some news about Bin Laden. Earth shattering news about Bin Laden having been...captured or killed! Captured or a Pakistan...

And so the news dribbled out over the next hour while we waited for the procrastinator-in-chief to appear and tell us what we already knew. Thousands of young people gathered outside the White House, many waving little American flags, chanting 'USA, USA, USA,' having been informed by tweets and a spontaneous desire to show support for our President and our Global War On Terror.

The actual speech was mercifully short. It had few details. It was, after an hour of prepping by every talking head that ever drew a paycheck from a network, anticlimactic. Bin Laden had been killed in a firefight in Pakistan. We were in possession of his body.

From the moment I heard the words, I had two conflicting thoughts: I was wrong to believe Bin Laden had been dead since 2001, and this latest announcement was one great big fat lie. The only way to resolve this was to wait for the evidence.

A photo of the dead Bin Laden quickly appeared on Pakistani TV, and was published in the UK Guardian. It was not, as far as I know, issued by the U.S. government, and the photo was quickly exposed by bloggers as a photo shopped fake. Another photo appeared yesterday, again quickly exposed as fake.

By the morning after the announcement, the body had been dumped into the sea. Hmmm. Then it was said the body had been positively identified as Bin Laden through DNA tests, yet skeptics noted that DNA tests generally take a couple of days. The comeback was that the tests are new, faster, and done aboard a U.S. aircraft carrier. Hmmmm. Not verifiable at this time. Then the White House said the photos might be too gruesome to publish, with brains hanging out and all. I don't doubt that, and I personally don't really want to see it...but how else am I to assess the truthfulness of Mr. Obama's claims?

Today, May 4th, the government is backtracking and saying the events did not unfold exactly as originally announced. Bin Laden was not armed. Nor did he use a wife as a shield. Both were shot dead. Hmmmm. What else will we learn in time?

So here I am, once again thinking...this is all a big fat lie to be lined up with all the other big fat lies that have caused the world so much harm in the last 100 years.

A short history of lies:

1. Sinking of the USS Maine: Caused by a coal fire, not the Spanish navy. Tens of thousands of innocent Filipinos are put in concentration camps or die in our dirty war sparked by a lie.

2. Sinking of the Lusitania: Was carrying munitions, which made it a military target, but the U.S. government didn't tell the civilian passengers they were at risk. The Germans were within the rules of war to torpedo it. Nevertheless, the U.S. uses the sinking as the reason to get us into WWI, which extended the war, killed millions more, resulted in the punitive Treaty of Versailles, and gave Hitler something to rally the German people around.

3. Pearl Harbor: Hardly a sneak attack, it was the calculated result of U.S. foreign policy to push the Japanese into making the first "overt act." Our soldiers and sailors were left, undefended and blind, as bait for a trap set to ensnare the Japanese and allow the U.S. to enter WWII. Millions died.

4. Gulf of Tonkin: The attack never happened. The President knew it, but he used it as an excuse to send ground troops into Vietnam. 58,000 Americans died, and about 2 million Vietnamese.

5. Gulf War I: We green lighted Iraq's attack on Kuwait, then we were shocked, SHOCKED, that Iraq invaded Kuwait. The rest is history. Hundreds of thousands died.

6. Gulf War II: No weapons of mass destruction. But that was the official reason for our attack on Iraq, with a little Bin Laden fear mongering thrown in to sweeten the story. All lies. About a million Iraqis died.

I could go on about the Jessica Lynch story, the Pat Tillman fable, and the most recent proven complete fabrication by Susan Rice that the Libyan army was issuing Viagra to it's soldiers as they went on a killing and raping spree. All completely made up stories intended to manipulate the American public. Sadly, Ms Rice still has her White House job.

Our government has lied repeatedly. Pathologically. That is not to say they don't sometimes tell the truth, but for god's sake, we can't be expected to know the truth from the fabrications unless we see evidence. "Because we said so" just doesn't cut it anymore.

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