The Hegelian Dialectic and Iraq

Kibbitz: Justin Raimondo writes an interesting article that clearly describes the how the “Devil’s Logic” (i.e., the Hegelian Dialectic) is at work in the calculated decisions that first led the United States to attack Iraq and Afghanistan and now plays itself out in constant propaganda and disinformation campaigns delivered by the Bush Administration. (What Raimondo fails to see, however, is the Satanic connection in all this — i.e., the deliberate attempt to undermine the idea of a national sovereignty so that all the nations will be under the authority of the “New World Order” of the coming antichrist.)

‘That’s not the way the world really works anymore,’ he continued. ‘We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality – judiciously, as you will – we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.’


By: Justin Raimondo

The debate over the Iraq war has become a spectacle of dueling narratives. You’ll recall, however, that in the beginning there was only one narrative, and that was the War Party’s.We were told that Iraq possessed “weapons of mass destruction,” a war machine that included nuclear, chemical, and biological components. Hardly anyone disputed this. Oh, there were a few, to be sure, such as former UN weapons inspector Scott Ritter, but he was not listened to: the mainstream media didn’t consider him credible enough to quote. After all, what did a former UN weapons inspector know? Instead, they featured the sensational “revelations” of various Iraqi “defectors,” notably one “Curveball” who wound up throwing us a real curveball when his story was exposed as an elaborate fabrication. This didn’t happen until after the war – when US officials finally interviewed him in person, and determined he was a fraud – but by that time it no longer mattered: “Curveball” and his fellow Iraqi exiles associated with Ahmed Chalabi’s Iraqi National Congress had done their part in writing the narrative that sent us marching off to war. Mission accomplished.

In a piece for the New York Times magazine, published in October 2004, writer Ron Suskind related an incident that underscores the methods and madness of the mindset behind our forced march to war – and the administration’s rationalization of the disastrous aftermath. Having written an article for Esquire that displeased the White House, Suskind was privy to a rare moment of candor during a meeting with a senior White House aide, who, after letting him know that he wasn’t exactly the administration’s favorite journalist, got down to brass tacks:

“The aide said that guys like me were ‘in what we call the reality-based community,’ which he defined as people who ‘believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.’ I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. ‘That’s not the way the world really works anymore,’ he continued. ‘We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality – judiciously, as you will – we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.'”

At the time, Suskind didn’t fully understand what the aide was talking about. However, as the events leading up to what General William E. Odom describes as the biggest strategic disaster in American military history unfolded, he began to see that the aide’s remarks “get to the very heart of the Bush presidency.”

In creating new realities, these Great Men of History are basically telling us a story that is mostly about themselves: about their role in history, and their will to shape it. They are weaving a narrative in which they are the heroes, and the rest of us are just spear-carriers, waiting for direction. As they cavort about on the world stage – invading countries on various pretexts, and changing regimes at will – they mesmerize their audience and draw them into a shared illusion. Their last performance was quite a success, at least for a while, one that so dazzled the media that hardly anyone who mattered dared challenge the administration’s imaginative narrative – until it was too late….

Instead of stepping outside the box, reporters preferred to stay inside the echo chamber so skillfully constructed by the War Party, where it was warm, and safe, rather than go outside and face the scorn of what former CNN chief executive Walter Isaacson calls the “patriotism police.” The efforts of the media vigilantes had an effect: even a hint that news anchors didn’t share in the Bushian belligerence that swept the nation after 9/11 provoked a storm of outraged emails and phone calls. Isaacson sent out a memo soon after he invasion of Afghanistan telling his staff to “balance” reporting of civilian casualties with reminders of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. As the administration began ginning up the invasion of Iraq, not a lot of intimidation was required to make the media malleable. As Howard Kurtz puts it in his recent book, Reality Show: Inside the Last Great Television News War,

“For [Brian] Williams, it all went back to 9/11. As a citizen, he had thought on that fateful day, thank God that Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld and Colin Powell were on this team. How together we all seemed. In Williams’s view, there was something about the murderous attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon that, in the eyes of the White House press corps, gave Bush a stature that could not be violated.”

No wonder Williams does “not enjoy looking back on the run-up to war,” as Kurtz puts it. And when he did look back, in an interview with the President in late summer of last year, the President’s stature, at least in his eyes, was apparently still inviolate. When Bush stubbornly insisted that pre-war Iraq had “the capacity” to build WMD, Williams failed to challenge him. When Bush denied making a direct connection between Iraq and 9/11, Williams sat there similarly dumbstruck – although he might have cited the President’s March 19, 2003 letter to Congress in which he contended that war with Iraq constituted “continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.”

In order to maintain even minimal support, the War Party must create an alternate reality, a Bizarro World where failure is success, civil war is civil society, and a theocracy is, in Bush’s phrase, a “free Iraq.” If they can project that impression to the American people, via the media, History’s Actors can continue their bloody drama, “creating other new realities” in a looming confrontation with Iran.

1 comment to The Hegelian Dialectic and Iraq

  • You make some very good points, however the connection between 9/11 and Iraq is what strikes my interest. I believe that Iraq was strategically chosen after 9/11 because the United States needed a foot-hold in the Middle East. Iraq being run by Saddam Husain, whom many of the surrounding Arab governments wanted out of power, became the perfect place for U.S. invasion after 9/11. Overthrowing Iraq would put the United States directly in the center of the Middle East, surrounding some of the largest terrorist sponsors by U.S. friendly governments. This would send a powerful and forceful message to other dictators that the U.S. will not allow them to make fools of the United States. Because the U.S. was attacked by terrorists in the Middle East the government saw the fear of the American people and decided that we needed to take action. According to William J.Bennett in his book Why We Fight “A war has to be fought and we are the only ones who can lead it” (pg 2). The U.S. was the only country who could lead the war because we had just been attacked, giving us reason. It also makes since for the U.S. to lead the war on terror because The United States is a super power and we have the military and technological advances to aid in preventing another 9/11 from happening.

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