Deranged, Disconnected, and Dangerous
by Paul Craig Roberts
-- -- On March 17 William Rivers Pitt
wrote that Bush is "deranged, disconnected, and dangerous." In
his March 20 Cleveland speech, Bush proved Pitt right.
Bush gave a delusional speech that shows he is detached from
reality. "We’re going to help the Iraqis build a strong
democracy that will be an inspiration throughout the Middle
East, a democracy that’ll be a partner in the global war against
Has no one told Bush that the Iraqis cannot even agree to form a
The day before Bush’s delusional Cleveland speech, Iyad Allawi,
the former prime minister of one of our make-believe Iraqi
governments, said that in Iraq the casualty rate from the
sectarian strife is so high that "if this is not civil war, then
God knows what civil war is."
The day of Bush’s delusional speech, Patrick Cockburn, present
on the scene in Irbil, Iraq, gave a much more truthful account
of the situation. Writing in CounterPunch, he reported: "Iraq is
a country convulsed by fear. It is at its worst in Baghdad.
Sectarian killings are commonplace. . . . The scale of the
violence is such that most of it is unreported. . . . Unseen by
the outside world, silent populations are on the move,
frightened people fleeing neighborhoods where their community is
in a minority for safer districts. There is also a growing
reliance on militias because of fears that police patrols or
checkpoints are in reality death squads hunting for victims."
Not a word of this reality from our delusional president.
The fantasy Iraq that Bush painted was only his warm-up. He went
on to tell his Cleveland audience that American could not be
safe unless Iraq was a democracy. What a weak, pitiful,
vulnerable place Bush’s America must be. Unless a small,
devastated Middle Eastern country is a democracy, America cannot
be safe. Who in the Cleveland audience could possibly have
believed this utter nonsense.
Bush told his audience that "the security of our country is
directly linked to the liberty of the Iraqi people, and we will
settle for nothing less than victory." What victory is he
talking about? Despite the huge sums of dollars paid by the Bush
regime to all the leaders of all the factions, Iraq cannot form
Without victory, Iraq will be "a safe haven for terrorists to
plot new attacks against our nation." Alas, there were no
terrorists in Iraq until Bush invaded the country and drew them
in. The problem our troops face in Iraq is not terrorists, but
resistance fighters, "insurgents" in the Bush regimes parlance.
Democracies lack the dictatorial, extra-legal powers to suppress
terrorists. That is why Bush is destroying civil liberties in
the US. Under Saddam Hussein, there were no terrorists and no
insurgents. Bush is modeling his no habeas corpus, torture
prone, all intrusive government on Saddam Hussein.
The security of Americans has nothing whatsoever to do with
Iraq. Iraq cannot overthrow the US Constitution, the Bill of
Rights, the separation of powers, and American civil liberties.
Iraq cannot illegally spy on American citizens, declare them to
be "suspects" and detain them forever without warrant or
charges. Iraq cannot put American critics of the Bush regime on
The real dangers to Americans reside in the neocon Bush
administration. This delusional warmonger administration
believes it has the power and the right to dictate to Muslim
countries their political and social institutions. This
extraordinary arrogance and hubris breeds opposition where there
was none. The world is not going to obey Bush and a handful of
In his speech Bush told Cleveland that "the decision to remove
Saddam Hussein was a difficult decision." That is a lie. Bush’s
Treasury Secretary, Paul O’Neill, and a number of others have
reported that Bush came into office intending to remove Hussein.
The head of British intelligence told the British Cabinet that
Bush first decided to go to war and then created the reasons to
justify his aggression against Iraq.
"Before we acted," Bush told his audience, Hussein’s "regime was
defying U.N. resolutions calling for it to disarm. It was
violating cease-fire agreements, was firing on American and
British pilots which were enforcing no-fly zones." Gentle
reader, think what Bush is saying. As Iraq had no weapons of
mass destruction, a fact that Bush has acknowledged, how could
Iraq possibly have been violating U.N. resolutions calling on it
What cease-fire agreements are Bush talking about? It was US and
UK planes that continued to fly over Iraqi territory and bomb
Do you know what Bush means by no-fly zones? He means that US
and UK jet fighters could fly all over Iraq, but if Iraqi planes
flew over Iraqi territory, we would shoot them down.
Where did the US get the right to tell countries that they dare
not try to control their own air space?
Americans need to understand that terrorists are responding to
America’s behavior, or misbehavior. The only successful way to
stop terrorism is to alter our behavior. America is not God. It
has no right, and it certainly lacks the power, to impose its
will on the world.
The Bush regime cannot lead the world to democracy by tearing
democracy down at home. Not since Abraham Lincoln have American
civil liberties been so threatened as by the Bush regime.
America even has an Attorney General, a Vice President, and a
Secretary of Defense who believe in torture. How do they differ
from officials in the Third Reich or Stalin’s KGB? Anyone who
believes in torture is not an American. That person is outside
our tradition. Yet, it is people who believe in torture who
occupy our highest offices.
When we get the mote out of our own eye, then we can instruct
the Middle East.
Dr. Roberts [send
is Chairman of the
Institute for Political Economy and Research Fellow at the
Independent Institute. He is a former associate editor of
the Wall Street Journal, former contributing editor for
National Review, and a former assistant secretary of the