War, War, and More War

As one would expect from the Obama administration, the U.S. is currently preparing to go to war in the Middle East again: this time against Iran and Syria. The American people are oblivious as to the reasons for the troop build-up in the Middle East, and have no more ability to stop the impending violence than they do over any other aspect of their lives. The lame rationale for our latest anti-Muslim sortie is that we are concerned about Iran building a nuclear bomb. The fact that we, in this country, have stockpiled hundreds of these nuclear weapons is, presumably, supposed to make everyone else in the world feel safe and comfortable. The frivolous and transparent lie about Iran’s potential nuclear arsenal is about as believable as the fantasy about Iraq’s non-existent weapons of mass destruction.

What we are told is what Panetta-Petraeus, and the weapons manufacturers instruct the media to say:

— U.S. combat forces are surging in the Middle East. Earlier this week the “American carrier Carl Vinson joined the carrier Stennis in the Arabian Sea, giving commanders major naval and air assets in case Iran carries out its recent threats to close the Strait of Hormuz.”

— Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis (chief of U.S. Central Command) warned that he needed additional forces to deal with Iran and other potential threats.

— 15,000 troops are stationed in Kuwait joining the others that are there. This includes two new units — Army infantry brigades and a helicopter unit. General Mattis said that we should not take this as a build-up to war.

With the recent news of another assassination of an Iranian nuclear scientist, carried out by Israeli forces (a.k.a. U.S. special forces), we are told that Israel is “pushing” the U.S. toward war. To lend credence to this, pundits last week on CNN stated that in terms of war-making, that Israel could not act alone — that it, in fact, needs the U.S. Air Force to carry out a war and attack on Iran. It is very clear to most Americans that Israel cannot carry out a war by itself — that the U.S. is involved in every decision that affects Israeli actions against Iran, and that the Pentagon began planning and training for it years ago.

The attacks on Iran and Syria are imminent even though Russia is asking the U.S. and Iran to abandon the militant rhetoric. China, upon Geitner’s recent request during his visit there this last week, has not “significantly” reduced its Iranian oil imports. Turkey has also requested the U.S. resume diplomatic efforts. ((“US military operation against Iran would be a grave mistake,” RT, 1-14-12)) The U.S.’s commitment to destabilize every Muslim country in the Middle East is almost complete. Iran and Syria are among the last remnants of independent nation-states in that area of the world, with lackeys such as Saudi Arabia, and a handful of other client states prepared to do whatever the U.S. demands. It will be decades before any Muslim country will have the economic and military independence it would take to prevent the U.S. from intervening when and where it chooses.

What the U.S. media doesn’t discuss is why we seek to destabilize the entire Arab world. The reason is obvious: by destroying the infrastructure of countries that have valuable natural resources, the U.S. and Europe ensure the stability and price-fixing capacities of U.S. and European oil interests as well as artificial control over other natural resources worldwide. It is not necessary for us to steal Iraq’s or Iran’s oil. By destroying their ability to compete on the world market, our oil companies are free to set whatever prices they want, and can insist on a regulation-free environment within which to maneuver.

By manufacturing a non-existent threat, and engaging in another unwarranted, one-sided war, Obama can once again bow down to corporate America, pretend to be concerned for the welfare of the American people, and do nothing to control the war mongers.

The American people are so marginalized and disenfranchised that there is simply nothing that can be done to stop this madness. Just as we sat by and watched the destruction of Libya, the bailout of Wall Street, the theft of jobs, money and houses from right under our noses, the latest imperial assault is a done deal.

This will be a vicious war with the U.S. utilizing its “tactical” nuclear weapons (light weight nuclear devices and also drones) to destroy the Iranian nuclear plants underground. ((Global Security describes “tactical” weapons:

“The B61-11 can penetrate and detonate below the earth’s surface, creating a massive shock wave capable of destroying underground targets. In tests the bomb penetrates only 20 feet into dry earth, even when dropped from altitudes above 40,000 feet. But even this shallow penetration before detonation allows a much higher proportion of the explosion to be transferred into ground shock relative to a surface burst. It is not able to counter targets deeply buried under granite rock. Moreover, it has a high yield, in the hundreds of kilotons. If used in North Korea, the radioactive fallout could drift over nearby countries such as Japan.” (“Info for the B61-11 Earth Penetrating Weapons”:

Chossudovsky, Michel, ” ‘Tactical Nuclear Weapons’ against Afghanistan?,” Centre for Research on Globalisation (CRG), globalresearch.ca,  12-5-11

The US Air Force is using GBU-28 “bunker buster bombs” capable of creating large scale underground explosions.  The official story is that these bombs are intended to target “cave and tunnel complexes” in mountainous areas in southern Afghanistan, used as a hideaway by Osama.

Dubbed by the Pentagon as “the Big Ones”, the GBUs (“guided bomb unit”) are 5000lb laser guided bombs with improved BLU-113 warheads, capable of penetrating  several meters of reinforced concrete. The BLU-113 is the most powerful conventional “earth penetrating warhead.”

While the Pentagon’s “Big Ones” are classified as “conventional weapons”, the official statements fail to mention that the same “bunker buster bombs” launched from a B-52, a B-2 stealth bomber or an F-16 aircraft can also be equipped with a nuclear device. The B61-11 is the ” nuclear version” of its  “conventional” BLU-113 counterpart. The B61-11 was developed from the old “conventional” B61-7 “gravity bomb.”

While in the case of these “bunker buster bombs”, the distinction between “nuclear” and “conventional” warheads is not always brought out in official statements, the impacts of the “nuclear version” on civilians are far more devastating, in view of the toxic radioactive fallout over a large area.))

This represents yet another escalation of weaponry, just as did Mustard Gas in WWI; as bombing, conflagration and destruction of entire cities during WWII, culminating in nuclear war; as Agent Orange did in the American War against Vietnam; and torture and drones have in these wars in the Middle East.

We have become apt at war; we excel at it. If only we could be as apt at peace.

Luke Hiken is an attorney who has engaged in the practice of criminal, military, immigration, and appellate law. Marti Hiken is the director of Progressive Avenues. She is the former associate director of the Institute for Public Accuracy and former chair of the National Lawyers Guild Military Law Task Force. Read other articles by Marti Hiken and Luke Hiken, or visit Marti Hiken and Luke Hiken's website.