Food for Thought: Masters of Deceit

U.S. Lies from Pearl Harbor to Iraq

Revolutionary Worker #1175, November 17, 2002, posted at

It has been clearly shown and well documented that the American government has told lie after lie to justify its wars--going back to World War 1 and the "Spanish-American War" before that. Many people today are familiar with the lie embodied in the Tonkin Gulf Resolution that gave sweeping powers to the president to wage war against the Vietnamese people. The same kind of thing has now taken place with the granting of perhaps even more sweeping powers to the current president, also on the basis of lies. And before that, in the previous war against Iraq, lies were used to justify U.S. military action--to sway public opinion and give the Congress a rationalization for supporting this war. These lies included the horror story that Iraqi soldiers in Kuwait had dumped babies out of incubators in a hospital, leaving them to die on the cold floor--a story told over and over, including by then-president Bush--a story which has since been proven to be a total fabrication made up by Kuwaiti and U.S. government officials and a public relations firm they hired.

But that is not all: Even in the so-called "good war," World War 2--and even with regard to the "infamous" event that led directly to the entry of the U.S. into that war--the president of that time (Franklin D. Roosevelt) relied on a Big Lie to overcome what he understood to be widespread reluctance and resistance among the American people to getting into that war. This Big Lie--which of course has been repeated ever since and propagated in everything from politicians' speeches to Hollywood movies--is that somehow Japan had pulled off a "sneak attack" on Pearl Harbor. The fact is that Roosevelt knew very well that this attack was coming.This, too, has been well documented, for example in the book Day of Deceit, The Truth About FDR and Pearl Harbor, by Robert B. Stinnett.

But even that is not all: Well before Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt had adopted a course of action that was designed to provoke an attack by Japan, to create a situation in which Japan would have virtually no choice but to enter into a war against the U.S.This too is well documented in Stinnett's book.

This provided Roosevelt with the basis for rallying people behind his long-established aim of waging war with Japan for control of vast areas of the Pacific and Asia and projecting and extending American imperialist power and domination, in rivalry with other imperialist states--both enemies, such as Germany as well as Japan (and Italy), but also even allies, such as England.

In light of the events of September 11, 2001--and everything that the Bush regime and the U.S. government as a whole has done since-- this experience of World War 2 is definitely food for thought.

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