portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article reposts united states

imperialism & war

What would America look like if it were in Iraq's current situation?

President Bush told the UN on Tuesday that the Iraqis are refuting the pessimists and implied that things are improving in that country.

But what would America look like if it were in Iraq's current situation?
"If America were Iraq, What would it be Like?"

by Juan Cole
 http://www.juancole.com/

President Bush said Tuesday that the Iraqis are refuting the pessimists and implied that things are improving in that country.

What would America look like if it were in Iraq's current situation? The population of the US is over 11 times that of Iraq, so a lot of statistics would have to be multiplied by that number.

Thus, violence killed 300 Iraqis last week, the equivalent proportionately of 3,300 Americans. What if 3,300 Americans had died in car bombings, grenade and rocket attacks, machine gun spray, and aerial bombardment in the last week? That is a number greater than the deaths on September 11, and if America were Iraq, it would be an ongoing, weekly or monthly toll.

And what if those deaths occurred all over the country, including in the capital of Washington, DC, but mainly above the Mason Dixon line, in Boston, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City, and San Francisco?

What if the grounds of the White House and the government buildings near the Mall were constantly taking mortar fire? What if almost nobody in the State Department at Foggy Bottom, the White House, or the Pentagon dared venture out of their buildings, and considered it dangerous to go over to Crystal City or Alexandria?

What if all the reporters for all the major television and print media were trapped in five-star hotels in Washington, DC and New York, unable to move more than a few blocks safely, and dependent on stringers to know what was happening in Oklahoma City and St. Louis? What if the only time they ventured into the Midwest was if they could be embedded in Army or National Guard units?

There are estimated to be some 25,000 guerrillas in Iraq engaged in concerted acts of violence. What if there were private armies totalling 275,000 men, armed with machine guns, assault rifles (legal again!), rocket-propelled grenades, and mortar launchers, hiding out in dangerous urban areas of cities all over the country? What if they completely controlled Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Denver and Omaha, such that local police and Federal troops could not go into those cities?

What if, during the past year, the Secretary of State (Aqilah Hashemi), the President (Izzedine Salim), and the Attorney General (Muhammad Baqir al-Hakim) had all been assassinated?

What if all the cities in the US were wracked by a crime wave, with thousands of murders, kidnappings, burglaries, and carjackings in every major city every year?

What if the Air Force routinely (I mean daily or weekly) bombed Billings, Montana, Flint, Michigan, Watts in Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Anacostia in Washington, DC, and other urban areas, attempting to target "safe houses" of "criminal gangs", but inevitably killing a lot of children and little old ladies?

What if, from time to time, the US Army besieged Virginia Beach, killing hundreds of armed members of the Christian Soldiers? What if entire platoons of the Christian Soldiers militia holed up in Arlington National Cemetery, and were bombarded by US Air Force warplanes daily, destroying thousands of graves and even pulverizing the Vietnam Memorial over on the Mall? What if the National Council of Churches had to call for a popular march of thousands of believers to converge on the National Cathedral to stop the US Army from demolishing it to get at a rogue band of the Timothy McVeigh Memorial Brigades?

What if there were virtually no commercial air traffic in the country? What if many roads were highly dangerous, especially Interstate 95 from Richmond to Washington, DC, and I-95 and I-91 up to Boston? If you got on I-95 anywhere along that over 500-mile stretch, you would risk being carjacked, kidnapped, or having your car sprayed with machine gun fire.

What if no one had electricity for much more than 10 hours a day, and often less? What if it went off at unpredictable times, causing factories to grind to a halt and air conditioning to fail in the middle of the summer in Houston and Miami? What if the Alaska pipeline were bombed and disabled at least monthly? What if unemployment hovered around 40%?

What if veterans of militia actions at Ruby Ridge and the Oklahoma City bombing were brought in to run the government on the theory that you need a tough guy in these times of crisis?

What if municipal elections were cancelled and cliques close to the new "president" quietly installed in the statehouses as "governors?" What if several of these governors (especially of Montana and Wyoming) were assassinated soon after taking office or resigned when their children were taken hostage by guerrillas?

What if the leader of the European Union maintained that the citizens of the United States are, under these conditions, refuting pessimism and that freedom and democracy are just around the corner?
Yes..I have a thought 22.Sep.2004 16:21

alan

Hmmm...sounds like your talk'n bout...next week!

and... 22.Sep.2004 18:53

U.S. Citizen

And what if those that overran our country are from a land far away who attempt to replace our nation's culture with their own, very foreign culture, but very friendly to their country's businesses. For example, maybe they think "democracy" is a bad idea and that a tribal system led by leaders of their own religious system is better (after all, their religion is the "right" one and we would be much better off if we all converted and submitted), and they install that, assuming we will come to our senses and embrace it once we see its great benefits.

And what if our country had highly valuable natural resources that were taken under control by that country and its private businesses? They bring in their companies to take over these resources. Americans remain unemployed as they are not highered by these foreign contractors to pillage our nations resources from us.

And what if they just don't care when they kill us? When asked about civilian casualties, their leaders defend it, claiming our previous government killed more of us (with assistance from the occupying country due to embargos, etc.) so who cares? Anyone who asks too many questions is with the terrorists.

And what if the Statue of Liberty was toppled by their army, and the Washington Monument, and the St. Louis Arch, and our war memorials, and the Seattle Space Needle, and...., broadcasted live on television to their homeland, because they decided it was best to topple our historical/cultural structures and their people back home enjoy watching it on TV, and reminders of our history, rather than letting us decide what we want to keep? Their country's leader keeps a pistol that was a gift provided by his army that was taken from our country's leader.

And what if their media presented this war and occupation to their people back home on TV kind of like a football game? They see big explosions and think "cool!!" but do not see the suffering. Their team is ranked #1. Everybody supports the home team when it is ranked #1.

And, as our nation's people suffer, what if they take over all of our nation's most luxurious hangouts, palaces, etc., and relax in luxury, converting them to their military bases and embassies. Our people are struggling to make ends meat in the economic ruins of the occupation and our homes are blown up rubble from their bombs. They have air conditioning while hanging out in those palaces but we don't get electric power and its 115 degress out. They have sanitary drinking water in those palaces but we don't.

And what if they littered our nation from end to end with depleted uranium? We have no where to go to escape the harm from these WMDs they spread across our land.

I think I would be a bit angry at these occupiers and want them to leave.

What would Iraq look like if it were in America’s current situation? 22.Sep.2004 19:08

Red neck

I know you mean well but your analogy is a little naïve.

"Thus, violence killed 300 Iraqis last week, the equivalent proportionately of 3,300 Americans. What if 3,300 Americans had died in car bombings, grenade and rocket attacks, machine gun spray, and aerial bombardment in the last week?"
25,000 Americans are murdered every year about 500 a week, 15 Children are killed by firearms every day and we're supposably at peace.
In fact Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld created quite a ruckus last June when he used D.C. murder rate to play down they chaos in Baghdad : "You've got to remember that if Washington, D.C., were the size of Baghdad, we would be having something like 215 murders a month." What was he trying to say? If you think your capital is in bad shape you should see ours.

"And what if those deaths occurred all over the country, including in the capital of Washington, DC, but mainly above the Mason Dixon line, in Boston, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City, and San Francisco?"
I'm not sure what you're trying to say here. You mean like Washington, Baltimore, N.Y. Chicago, Detroit, and Philly, those murder capitals of the world.


"What if the grounds of the White House and the government buildings near the Mall were constantly taking mortar fire? What if almost nobody in the State Department at Foggy Bottom, the White House, or the Pentagon dared venture out of their buildings, and considered it dangerous to go over to Crystal City or Alexandria?"
This one really makes me laugh. Have you ever been to Washington because it's just like that? There's also a green zone around the capital, go few blocks out of that you're in a war zone!
Poverty, crime and racial segregation in the shadow of glorious monuments proclaiming 'equality for all'
Washington is strictly segregated, there's only two marginally integrated neighborhoods in all of Washington. Washington is pretty much a federal colony with no federal representation. Federal property is exempt from DC taxes and most it's employees don't live in the district. So the poor of Washington get to pay for all those goods, services and security that fed. uses. $2 billion in property taxes lost due to non-taxable land. Congress is constantly melding in the affaires of DC even imposed its own interim government after the fall of Mayor Marion Barry.

"There are estimated to be some 25,000 guerrillas in Iraq engaged in concerted acts of violence. What if there were private armies totalling 275,000 men, armed with machine guns, assault rifles (legal again!), rocket-propelled grenades, and mortar launchers, hiding out in dangerous urban areas of cities all over the country?"
We have much more than that
"researchers estimate that more than 24,500 gangs and 772,500 gang members were active in more than 3,330 jurisdictions across the United States in 2000" Armed to the teeth. They're being trained at those institutions of lower learning we have for the poor, prison and the military.

I was for the war because I knew it would turn into a debacle quagmiring the empire. It got rid of Saddam hussein and ended the most murderous siege in history that killed close to 2 million Iraqis.
"a total of 1,394,883 people had died in Iraq since the imposition of sanctions up to February 2000, of whom, 523,204 were under five years of age"

About 50 milion Americans don't have health coverage almost the population of France!

America, it's that bad!
Beat America not Bush

Florida! 24.Sep.2004 15:02

Can any one say Carma!

I do not wish any thing bad to any one, but my question is when will people learn!

Florida is looking for storm #4 and we are only half way through the season.

The saying says, do to others as you would have them do onto you.

If you take pictures of both flordia and Iraq and the destrution, one could say it is the same place.

When you kill for greed and want, It always comes back.