Debacle In Iraq
President Bush declared after the attack on Iraq: “We’re not an imperial power. We’re a liberating power.” The president maintains the rhetoric that empires throughout history have taken—wars are waged for “liberation” rather than for domination. Perhaps Bush is unaware that he was echoing British General Stanley Maude, who, after conquering Baghdad in 1917, proclaimed, “Our armies do not come into your cities and lands as conquerors or enemies, but as liberators.” A major revolt by Iraqis against their liberators ensued. Sound familiar? Language is important in providing legitimacy and a facade for aggression. The debacle in Iraq today is infused with the same kind of imperial doubletalk that the British used.
Naomi Klein of Canada, an award-winning journalist, author and filmmaker, is in the forefront of environmental activism. Her articles appear in major newspapers and magazines all over the world. She is the author of the bestseller This Changes Everything.