It has been evident well before 9/11 that George Bush would invade Iraq in the name of the United States of America. The carnage, the savagery, the tribal, sectarian and feudal brutality was foreseen by many, including me. Some of us have been writing and speaking against this butchery since Bush took office. Our choice before invasion and civil wars was: “Pray God, don’t do this. Don’t do this in God’s name. Don’t do this in our name.” We failed.
The butchery began. And it was aided, abetted, and applauded by corporate killers. Even a number of religious bodies have dared to mock god by declaring this slaughter a just war. A just war, indeed. Hogwash.
Now, our choices are bleak. In fact, there is really but one choice. We can stop now. Or stop in one year, two years or, as Thomas Friedman now says, in ten years. After which, he says, we will have built a new Iraq from the ground up. And one that will be safe, democratic, free. He’s as wrong now as he has been from day one of this butchery, which he has favored from that day. With all his knowledge, he does not understand the fundamental instability of violence. Once we turn to violence, all bets are off. And no one is in charge. Only Karma. Utterly Darwinian. God is not in sight.
The reality, from my point of view, is that there will be civil war immediately after we leave, now or in ten or forty years. Indeed, Iraq now is in civil melt-down, several steps lower than civil war. In civil war, two or more sides, clearly visible and known, wage war and then make peace. Eventually. In Iraq, and in some other Middle Eastern states, the necessary prerequisites to modern states do not exist. For example, a rule of law community; and nation-states, whose constituent parts have been self-made and defined. In fact, the Middle East was, in large part, the creation of the West, as the carnage ending World War One ended. The War to End All Wars, in the words of Field Marshall Archibald Wavell, who served under Allenby in Palestine, was followed by a “Peace to End Peace.” For here, the boundaries of much of the Middle Eastern states were violently and artificially created by the imperialists of Europe, as the nineteenth and twentieth centuries collided. When we leave, no matter when, the fractionalized brutalized remnants of what was never really a nation will begin to rebuild their own nation their own way, congruent with their rich history of Islam. All we can do, really, is to beg their pardon, and leave. Now.
This has all been about oil. Oil does not exist under North Korea. It is in Iran. And Iraq. It seems God erred. God did not know that the Bush family, and a few sheiks in Saudi Arabia, owned that oil. It was all supposed to be under Texas. Would that God could get the big picture.
It is time, now, and long past time, to impeach George Bush and bring civil and criminal charges against those who plotted and planned and carried out this international criminal conspiracy. This includes the Vice President, the former Secretary of Defense, and the President of the World Bank and, perhaps, the Attorney-General. It should also include members of Senate and House Oversight Committees who were briefed, to some extent, by this particular branch of organized crime we call the executive leadership of the United States of America. Subpoenas please, members of the Senate and House committees. Persons and papers. By demand, not request. This is still a rule of law community, I pray.
Edwin Brown Firmage (website, bio)
Samuel D. Thurman Professor of Law, Emeritus
University of Utah College of Law Salt Lake City, Utah
Salt Lake City
Ed Firmage is the Samuel D. Thurman Professor of Law, Emeritus, at the University of Utah College Of Law. Ed wrote “The Law of Presidential Impeachment,” 1973 Utah Law Review, Winter, No. 4, at 581; and “Removal of the President: Resignation and the Procedural Law of Impeachment, 1974 Duke Law Journal, No., 6, at 1023, at the request of Senator Frank E. Moss, as requested by the Majority Leader of the Senate. He is also co-author of To Chain the Dog of War: The War Power of Congress in History and Law, with the late Francis Wormuth. Both the first and second editions appeared after Professor Wormuth’s death. The paperback and hardback editions are published by the University of Illinois Press, Urbana and Chicago, 1989. Along with several thousand articles, chapters, and a few books, Professor Firmage wrote Zion in the Courts: A Legal History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1830-1900, with R. Collin Mangrum, University of Illinois Press, paperback edition, 2001. He is senior editor of Religion and Law: Biblical-Judaic and Islamic Perspectives, Eisenbrauns, 1990; and with Chris Blakesley, et al, is the senior editor of The International Legal System: Cases and Materials, fifth edition, University Casebook Series, Foundation Press, 2001. Ed served on the staff of Hubert H. Humphrey, Vice President of the United States, as White House Fellow, in 1965-66. He has served as United Nations Visiting Scholar, at the arms control talks in Geneva, Switzerland, and at the United Nations, in New York; and has spoken on behalf of HH. The Dalai Lama, at the Sub-commission on Human Rights, 1999-2001. He continues his friendship with H.H. The Dalai Lama, working in Dharamsala, Inda, Tibet, and other Asian nations and in the United States. He was awarded the Rosenblatt Prize for Excellence, the highest award given by the University of Utah, in 1991.