The Truth About Fallujah: U.S. War Crimes, Not Marine “Sacrifices”

By Larry Everest | January 13, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


Iraq is being convulsed with reactionary violence. Nearly 8,000 Iraqi civilians were killed in 2013, double the number in 2012 and more than any year since 2008. As 2014 began, various Sunni forces attacked police stations and occupied the cities of Fallujah and Ramadi. Iraq’s government has threatened to retake the cities by force, and the U.S. government has rushed it more arms.

How is the U.S. imperialist media dealing with the ongoing carnage in Iraq? One example was the January 10 New York Times front-page story titled, “Fallujah’s Fall Stuns Marines Who Fought There.” This article is an exposure of the bankruptcy and illegitimacy of the U.S. imperialist media. People need to reject this drumbeat to think like Americans, and see the world through the lens of the American empire, and start thinking about humanity!

The Times theme was the real tragedy here is that U.S. Marines had sacrificed so much to take control of Fallujah, a town of 350,000 in central Iraq, in November-December 2004 (the Times called it the Marines’ “biggest and most iconic fight since Vietnam”), and now the ‘bad guys’ had retaken it again, so their heroic sacrifice seemed to have been in vain: “It made me sick to my stomach to have that thrown in our face,” one Marine said, “everything we fought for so blatantly taken away.”

Well, what did you fight for?

The U.S. attack on Fallujah was aimed at crushing any opposition to America’s illegal and unjust invasion and occupation of Iraq—justified with the most absurd lies (“weapons of mass destruction”). This war was about conquering Iraq and restructuring the entire Middle East to entrench and expand an empire of global exploitation and oppression. It wasn’t about liberating anyone, just the opposite. And how did you fight?

The 1st Marine Division bombarded Fallujah with thousands of artillery rounds, hundreds of rockets, bombs, and missiles, and nearly 100,000 machine gun and cannon rounds. As many as 2,000 Iraqis labeled “insurgents” and another 800 or more civilians were killed. Sixty of the city’s 200 Mosques were destroyed.  Some 200,000 residents were forced out of the city and into internal exile. Italian television aired a documentary entitled Fallujah, The Hidden Massacre, documenting how the U.S. government indiscriminately rained white phosphorous chemical fire down on the Iraqi city and melted women and children to death. And U.S. forces used depleted uranium weapons against the people of Fallujah, leaving a legacy of birth defects to this day.

None of this is anything to identify with or to be proud of being part of, and there is nothing to uphold about those who carried out these crimes.

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