// The Iraq CrisisThe War against Bush//
Non se ne sente parlare molto, ma le voci di pace negli Stati Uniti ci sono: dal movimento per l'impeachment contro George Bush a Gore Vidal, che teme la morte della democrazia americana. Sentiamo anche la voce del presidente, in un discorso che spiega le ragioni della sua guerra.[Speaker: Mark Worden ][Material recorded by: Jennifer Chan and Christopher DiMatteo ]
It's well known that the majority of the population of Europe is opposed to a war in Iraq, but what about the United States? Well, the country does have a vociferous anti-war movement, even though it tends to find expression on the internet, rather than in the mainstream media. Senator Edward Kennedy and former President Jimmy Carter have spoken out against the war, as have many musicians and actors, several of whom have been attacked by the country's so-called "hate radio" stations. And, although it hasn't made the news, there is even a movement that would like to impeach President Bush, should he go to war with Iraq. Francis Boyle, who worked with Congressman Henry B. Gonzalez on a campaign to impeach Bush's
father at the time of the last Gulf War and who feels that fear of impeachment was actually what prevented him from invading Iraq, is its main advocate. Speak Up called him at his office at the University of Illinois:
We have a committee here of 10 students, very bright, dedicated students. They are in the process and have been in the process of contacting every member of the United States Congress with my six proposed
articles of impeachment ,
to get it into their hands, and that is going on now as we speak. And we are attempting to get at least one member of Congress with the courage, integrity and principles of the late great Congressman Henry B. Gonzalez, to put that Bill of Impeachment into the House of Representatives and then everyone can rally behind that and indicate to Bush Junior that he runs a good risk of impeachment if he goes to war against Iraq.
Bush Junior lost the 2000 presidential election – everyone in the United States knows that – and he stole it from the American people and Congress at the United States Supreme Court, from five Republican-appointed justices, in a completely disreputable, disingenuous and sophistic opinion. He has no democratic mandate or legitimacy at all and, if we point out to him that he very well could be impeached if he goes to war, I think that will have an impact on him. If there’s anything he desperately wants, (it) is to win that 2004 presidential election campaign, and get some type of democratic legitimacy, which he doesn’t have today.Boyle then explained the procedure for impeachment, should the motion find a sponsor in Congress:
Francis Boyle: It gets introduced into the House and then it gets referred to the House Judiciary Committee and I think you've seen the process with respect to former President Clinton. In his case, these fascistic Federalist Society lawyers impeached President Clinton over oral sex. That's what it amounts to. And you saw the whole process there: trivial, compared to what's going on here. This is clearly a war of aggression: steal oil, committing outright genocide against the people of Iraq.
right: An anti-war demonstrator dressed as "Uncle Sam." Even if it has been largely ignored by the mainstream media, there is a peace movement in the United States and many of its supporters have called for the impeachment of President Bush in the event of a war on Iraq.
If you look at the plans, they're going to destroy the Iraqi cities: Baghdad, a city of five million people, Basra, Tikrit, Kirkuk, Mosul, the rest of them, they're all going to be blown away. So, that's really what's going on here. And I remember when I was in college, Congressman Robert Drinan introduced a bill of impeachment against Nixon into the House and everyone sort of scratched their heads at that, but eventually it came to pass, and there were hearings and finally Nixon was forced to resign, rather than be impeached and undoubtedly convicted. So, that's our agenda here, to try to stop this war. Nor is the war the only article of impeachment:
Francis Boyle: Well, Article One of my impeachment resolution, is (in) addition to the five I did for Congressman Gonzalez, and that deals with, clearly, the establishment, their attempt to establish a police state here in the United States of America. I've been a practising lawyer since 1977, and a law professor since 1978 and a human rights lawyer and an international lawyer. Clearly, they are doing everything humanly possible to set up a police state here in America. And that's why I put that right there in Article One, to try to stop this. America is moving toward a police state, something that you Italians were familiar with in the early days of Mussolini and the fascist movement. That's exactly what's going on here in America today, as I speak.
Self-defense But, as is well known, the position of the Bush administration is that the war in Iraq is an act of defence, rather than of aggression. This is what the President had to say in his recent State of the Union address:
President BushStandardAmerican/Texan accent
Today the gravest danger in the war on terror, the gravest danger facing America and the world, is outlaw regimes that seek and possess nuclear, chemical and biological weapons.These regimes could use such weapons for
blackmail, terror and mass murder. They could also give or sell those weapons to terrorist allies who would use them without the least hesitation.
This threat is new. America's duty is familiar. Throughout the twentieth century, small groups of men seized control of great nations, built armies and arsenals and set out to dominate the weak and intimidate the world. In each case their ambitions of cruelty and murder had no limit. In each case the ambitions of Hitlerism, militarism and communism were defeated by the will of free peoples, by the strength of great alliances and by the might of the United States of America. Now, in this century, the ideology of power and domination has appeared again and seeks to gain the ultimate weapons of terror. Once again this nation and all our friends are all that stand between a world at peace and a world of chaos and constant alarm.
Once again we are called to defend the safety of our people and the hopes of all mankind and we accept this responsibility. America is making a broad and determined effort to confront these dangers. We've called on the United Nations to fulfill its charter and stand by its demand that Iraq disarm. We are strongly supporting the International Atomic Energy Agency in its mission to track and control nuclear materials around the world. We are working with other governments to secure nuclear materials in the former Soviet Union and to strengthen global treaties banning the production and shipments of missile technologies and weapons of mass destruction.
In all these efforts, however, America's purpose is more than to follow a process. It is to achieve a result: the end of terrible threats to the civilized world. All free nations have a stake in preventing sudden and catastrophic attacks. And we're asking them to join us, and many are doing so. Yet the course of this nation does not depend on the decisions of others. Whatever action is required, whenever action is necessary, I will defend the freedom and security of the American people.
One of the most vehement critics of this position is the novelist, essayist, occasional actor and history Gore Vidal, who recently published the book, Dreaming War - Blood for Oil and the Cheney-Bush Junta.
The 76-year-old Vidal addressed an anti-war rally in Los Angeles on February 15th:
I belong to a minority that is now one of the smallest in this country, and with every day it grows smaller: I am a veteran of World War Two. And I can recall thinking, when I got out of the Army in
1946, "Well, that's that! We won, and those who come after us will never need do this again."
Then came the two mad wars of imperial vanity, Korea and Vietnam. They were bitter for us, not to mention for the so-called enemy. Next we were enrolled in a perpetual war against what seemed like the enemy of the month club. Remember Gaddafi, remember Noriega, all the drugs in the world, remember Bishop of Grenada, remember Bush Senior standing tall in the Gulf somewhere. This long war has kept major revenues going to military procurement, secret police, while withholding money from us taxpayers with our petty concerns for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. But no matter how corrupt our system became over the last century - and I lived through three quarters of it - we still held onto the Constitution and, above all, to the Bill of Rights. I have been discouraged at times, like all of you, but I always felt that the Republic was upon such a firm foundation that no one could undermine it.
I never once believed that I would ever see a day like this, when a great part of the nation of We The People should be obliged to march against an arbitrary and secret government preparing wars for us to fight in. It was Benjamin Franklin, that nice, witty, plump gentleman, who saw our future most clearly, back in 1787, when he was a delegate to the Constitutional Convention at Philadelphia. He was old, he was dying, he was not well enough to speak. But he had prepared a text, which a friend read. It is so dark a statement that most school histories omit his key words. Benjamin Franklin urged the Convention to accept the Constitution, despite all its faults. "It might," he said, "provide good government in the short term, and may be a blessing to the people, if well administered."
And I believe he said that this is likely to be well administered "for a course of years, and only end in despotism, as other forms have done before it when the people have so become corrupted as to need despotic government, being incapable of any other." Franklin's prophesy came true in December 2000 when the Supreme Court bulldozed its way through the Constitution, in order to select as their President, the loser in the presidential election of that year. Despotism is now securely in the saddle. The old republic is a shadow of itself and we now stand in the glare of a nuclear world empire, with a government that sees as... its true enemy We The People, deprived of our electoral franchise.
War is the usual aim of despots and war is what we are going to get, unless with help from well-wishers (well-worshipers, sic) in new Old Europe, and from ourselves, awake at last. We must persuade this peculiar administration that they are acting entirely on their own and against all of our common history. The other night on CNN I brought the admirable Aaron Brown to a full stop, not with Benjamin Franklin - I feel the history lesson coming on! -
but with President John Quincy Adams, who said, in the 1820s, on the subject of our fighting to liberate Greece from Turkey, he said, "The United States goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy. If the United States took up all foreign affairs, she might become the dictatress of the world, but she will no longer be the ruler of her own spirit." So let us regain our lost spirit and, should we be allowed in the year 2004 to hold a presidential election here in the homeland, we shall realize that the only regime change that need concern our regained spirit, or soul, is in Washington.