Thursday, August 19, 2004

the inevitable post on iraq
One of things that I find the most valuable about blogging is that it allows us to delve into a multitude of different points of view and sources of information. Before the internet and blogging, we were largely limited to nationally biased newspapers and television for our picture of the world. This is no longer true.

The amount of information freely available just one click from a google search makes it much easier for us to expand our perspective of events, and follow our suspicions about official government lines and propaganda.

Before the Iraq invasion, I clearly remember searching for anything on ‘Iraqi oil reserves’. The information I found helped me to paint a convincing picture for myself about the wider reasons why we were so keen to invade Iraq.

Fact1: Iraq possesses the 2nd largest proven reserves of oil
Fact2: Oil is a finite resource and it is going to run out.
Fact3: Our entire western lifestyle and world economy is built on oil.

If I was a president or a prime-minister, invading Iraq on the basis of ‘spreading democracy’ or ‘findings WMD’ would seem to me like ridiculous and silly motives compared to the longer term national need to secure the oil in order to mitigate against the impact of these facts.

Securing the oil enables us to ensure the continuation of our elevated status in the world pecking order, and it enables the owners of capitalism to maintain their position in society by continuing to squeeze money out of consumers. Consumers themselves are mostly quite happy to keep guzzling up the planet we live on.

But of course you can’t sell these as reasons to go to war. As a result we were presented with the ridiculous and highly unbelievable lines about ‘democracy’ and ‘WMD’.

If you look into history you will find example upon example of the fact that our governments have been trotting out literally the same lines and playing the same old game of domination for centuries.

They use various ploys such as demonising an enemy, and give us 'moral' or defensive reasons why we should, on their behalf and in order to take control of another state, kill ourselves and other members of the human race. When an enemy attacks, our leaders fail to mention to us all the antagonism our society caused which led up to the attack. They hide the fact from us that they schemed for such an event as a pretext for invasion.

Back to the impact of blogging, I think Mr Blair especially (a self confessed techno-idiot) has underestimated the impact of information technology on this invasion and domination game.

While there are still those who will continue to be selective in their perspective and fail to understand that all life is sacred, and not just their little bit of it, others of us can seek out the truth.

When governments lie, their lies can now be much more easily exposed and ridiculed. If they demonise enemies, we can find blogs and discover that they are human. If the reportage of war is distorted by the media, we can get down to ground and find out the horror from a soldier’s perspective.

I hope that this is a development in history, and that in a hundred years or less humans will look back at us now and laugh about what a bunch of brainless idiots we were, until we managed to figure peace out.

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