These acts, in other words, are considered beyond the pale when Donald Trump suggests them, but here’s the strangeness of it all: what The Donald is only mouthing off about, a perfectly real American president (and vice president and secretary of defense, and so on) actually did. Among other things, under the euphemistic term “enhanced interrogation techniques,” they ordered the CIA to use classic torture practices including waterboarding (which, in blunter times, had been known as “the water torture”). They also let the U.S. military loose to torture and abuse prisoners in their custody. They green-lighted the CIA to kidnap terror suspects (who sometimes turned out to be perfectly innocent people) off the streets of cities around the world, as well as from the backlands of the planet, and transported them to the prisons of some of the worst torture regimes or to secret detention centers (“black sites”) the CIA was allowed to set up in compliant countries. In other words, a perfectly real administration ordered and oversaw perfectly real crimes. (Its top officials even reportedly had torture techniques demonstrated to them in the White House.)
At the time, the CIA fulfilled its orders to a T and without complaint. A lone CIA officer spoke out publicly in opposition to such a program and was jailed for disclosing classified information to a journalist. (He would be the only CIA official to go to jail for the Agency’s acts of torture.) At places like Abu Ghraib, the military similarly carried out its orders without significant complaint or resistance. The mainstream media generally adopted the euphemism “enhanced interrogation techniques” or “harsh techniques” in its reporting – no “torture” or “war crimes” for them then. And back in the post-2001 years, John Brennan, then deputy executive director of the CIA, didn’t offer a peep of protest about what he surely knew was going on in his own agency. In 2014, in fact, as its director he actually defended such torture practices for producing “intelligence that helped thwart attack plans, capture terrorists, and save lives.” In addition, none of those who ordered or oversaw torture and other criminal behavior (a number of whom would sell their memoirs for millions of dollars) suffered in the slightest for the acts that were performed on their watch and at their behest.
To sum up: when Donald Trump says such things it’s a future nightmare to be called by its rightful name and denounced, as well as rejected and resisted by military and intelligence officials. When an American president and his top officials actually did such things, however, it was another story entirely. Today, TomDispatch regular Rebecca Gordon catches the nightmarish quality of those years, now largely buried, in the grim case of a single mistreated human being. It should make Americans shudder. She has also just published a new book, American Nuremberg: The U.S. Officials Who Should Stand Trial for Post-9/11 War Crimes, that couldn’t be more relevant. It’s a must-read for a country conveniently without a memory…
Watch the first four minutes for a startling revelation.
In late 2011, in accordance with an agreement signed by President Bush, President Obama was forced to adhere to a deal with the Iraqi government and pull out the vast majority of our occupational forces, much to Obama’s dismay.
Back then, a lot of neocons and fake dems alike said we should stay in Iraq regardless of the agreement but our puppet regime was insistent that we pull out our troops and as expected, a popular revolt started taking shape in the country in 2012 and by 2013, it was a full on insurgency against our neoliberal puppet dictator.
Here is a picture of the real “ISIS™”. Notice they aren’t terrorists. They aren’t hiding their faces. They aren’t beheading anyone and as far as I can see, there are no white Toyota trucks anywhere to be seen.
After an illegal war of aggression and a decade of brutal occupation in service to neoliberal economic ideology, the people of Iraq wanted their country back. It had nothing to do with creating an Islamic State. In fact, the Baathists were adamantly secular.
At first it was peaceful demonstrations against the Nouri al-Maliki government but things turned particularly brutal and what started off as a political revolution became a full-scale military one.
In April and May of 2013, bodies of the victims of Nouri al-Maliki were piling up by the hundreds and yet nothing was said by our leaders here in this country about any of it. Not a word.
Ultimately, people like Izzat Ibrahim ad-Douri and other leaders of various factions came together and formed the General Military Council for Iraqi Revolutionaries and the new revolution for Iraq was on.
By mid-2014 the mostly Sunni revolutionaries were making advances deep into Iraq and were practically on the border of the Green Zone in Baghdad so something had to be done.
All the advances for US and British corporations stood to fall apart if Iraq was delivered back into the socialist hands of the Baath Party, whom most of the revolutionaries belonged.
But the problem was, President Peace Prize had already stated Iraq was the wrong war and his followers took pride in the fact that it was the only promise he actually kept, getting US troops out of the wrong war.
How could Obama justify returning US soldiers to fight legitimate Iraqi civilians who only wanted their country back after President Bush and war-monger Cheney decimated it?
This was a problem.
The group has referred to itself as the Islamic State ( [[:Media:|الدولة الإسلامية]] (help·[[:File:|info]]) ad-Dawlah al-Islāmiyah) or IS ever since it proclaimed a worldwide caliphate in June 2014 and named Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as its caliph.
Right on time to help justify a return to Iraq, “ISIS™” pops up in the country with their fake beheading videos and a professional propaganda campaign to rival any marketing strategy Coke or Pepsi could ever come up with.
Though the public would never accept Obama sending troops back to Iraq to squash a popular uprising against Cheney’s hand-picked brutal dictator, they certainly couldn’t say no to his bombing the monsters of “ISIS™” and that was the whole point.
al-Baghdadi had been in US custody several times during the Iraq occupation and released so he was probably working for Special Ops very early on. He was later photographed having a little chat with John McCain when he went to Syria to rally his mercenary terrorists in their campaign against Assad, which “ISIS™” conveniently helps us with as well.
Wonder why they do that? Anyone know? Hmmm…