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Is Sarah Palin’s God a Liar and a War Criminal?

 

By Ed Ciaccio

 

16/09/08 "ICH" -- -- In June, 2008, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, now Republican Senator John McCain’s choice for his running mate as vice-president, spoke to a group of ministry students at her Wasilla, Alaska Assembly of God Church. Palin asked these church leaders to pray for soldiers, including her own son, who would soon be deployed to Iraq, in these words: "that our leaders, our national leaders, are sending [U.S. soldiers] out on a task that is from God. That's what we have to make sure that we're praying for, that there is a plan and that that plan is God's plan."

 

Would God’s plan include lying about, and misrepresenting crucial information about, the alleged reasons for going to war against Iraq?  Would it include commission of the “supreme international crime” of waging an unprovoked, unnecessary war of aggression against a nation and its people who never threatened the United States?  What kind of God would have such a plan?

 

Or is it that Sarah Palin is so poorly informed that, three years after the first confirmation of George W. Bush’s intention to attack Iraq, whether or not there was any threat from Iraq, was revealed, she is unaware of this revelation?  Is she so out of touch with facts that she still believes the long-ago discredited lies told by the Bush administration?  Or was she just pandering to neoconservatives who still want to pervert the foreign policy of our country?  And why drag God into it?

 

We have known, from the U.K. Sunday Times of May 1, 2005 story “The secret Downing Street memo” (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article387374.ece) which leaked the July 23, 2002 “Downing Street Minutes,” that George W. Bush was “fixing the intelligence” to support his unsupportable assertions that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction which threatened Iraq’s neighbors as well as the United States:

 

Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. The NSC had no patience with the UN route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime's record. There was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action.

 

Bush, himself, knew these assertions were unsupportable, especially after he received the CIA’s National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) of October, 1, 2002 which concluded that it was NOT certain that Saddam Hussein still had weapons of mass destruction at all, let alone was threatening to use them.  But Bush was so intent about attacking Iraq that he ordered critical sections of this NIE kept from most members of Congress in addition to the press and the American people, as W. Patrick Lang, a retired U.S. Army colonel and Middle East intelligence specialist, wrote in 2004:

 

There was also the subtle hiding of the objections of the Department of Energy and the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) in the NIE of October 2002. One congressional source explained that the classified NIE was made available in its entirety to only a select few members of Congress. There were verbal briefings and an elaborate process to access the document in a secure location. But it was never clear that the 27-page unclassified version that was available to every office was missing any crucial information. (“Drinking the Kool-Aid” by W. Patrick Lang http://www.mepc.org/journal_vol11/0406_lang.asp)

 

In addition, on September 17, 2005, in “Powell's Widening Credibility Gap” (http://www.consortiumnews.com/2005/091605.html), investigative journalist Robert Parry wrote,:

 

At the CIA, doubts grew about WMD claims from Iraqi defectors, including one codenamed “Curveball” who had asserted that Iraq had mobile WMD labs, but who was suspected of fabrication.

Tyler Drumheller, former chief of the CIA’s European Division, said his office had issued repeated warnings about Curveball’s accounts. “Everyone in the chain of command knew exactly what was happening,” said Drumheller, who scoffed at claims by Tenet and McLaughlin that they didn’t know about Curveball’s credibility problems. [Los Angeles Times, April 2, 2005]

 

As veteran Los Angeles County prosecuting attorney Vincent Bugliosi makes clear in his recent book, The Prosecution of George W. Bush for Murder (May, 2008), Bush received the classified CIA NIE on October 1, 2002, and its conclusion was that there was no solid case for suspecting Saddam Hussein and Iraq of possessing weapons of mass destruction which posed an imminent threat.  Yet, six days later, Bush intentionally released an unclassified version of this NIE to the press and public which deleted that significant conclusion, so that he could mislead us to believe there were grounds to fear Saddam Hussein.

Coupled with former Ambassador Joseph Wilson’s July, 2003 exposure of the Iraq-Niger “yellowcake” hoax, which resulted in his wife, CIA officer Valerie Plame, being outed in retaliation, thus ending her CIA career as well as, possibly, the lives of many overseas agents in her network, all of the preceding information has been known for at least three years.

Then, in a March 7, 2006 broadcast of “Democracy Now!”  (http://www.democracynow.org/2006/3/7/lawless_world_bush_considered_flying_us), host Amy Goodman interviewed British international law professor Philippe Sands, who revealed yet another piece of evidence revealing how Bush was so desperate to attack Iraq that he considered resorting to a type of “false flag” provocation:

New evidence has emerged that President Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair agreed in January 2003 to attack Iraq regardless of whether diplomatic efforts succeeded. The revelation comes in a newly updated version of the book “Lawless World” by British international law professor Philippe Sands. According to the book, Blair offered Bush his full support of the war during a meeting at the White House in January 2003. Sands says his account is based on a summary of the meeting prepared by one of the participants.

Bush also reportedly said the “diplomatic strategy had to be arranged around the military planning”. In addition the book reveals President Bush told Blair that the United States was considering flying U2 spy planes disguised as United Nations planes over Iraq in an attempt to provoke Saddam Hussein. If Iraq fired on the planes, it would help justify a U.S.-led invasion.

As Sands asked, “Why would the British prime minister and the American president be talking about the possibility of provoking a material breach if they had clear and compelling evidence?”

So, years before Sarah Palin told ministry students in her Alaska church congregation that our war on, and occupation of,  Iraq was “a task that is from God,”  George W. Bush was lying and misrepresenting information about the need to attack Iraq.

Therefore the war on Iraq was illegal, as then United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan stated in a BBC interview on September 16, 2004  (see “Iraq war illegal, says Annan” http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3661134.stm).  It was an unprovoked, unnecessary war of aggression against a sovereign nation which did not threaten the United States.  As such, it is the “supreme international crime, differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole," according to Justice Robert H. Jackson, Chief of Counsel for the United States at the International Military Tribunal in Nuremberg, Germany, immediately following World War II.

 

So we know that Bush, Cheney, and all the other architects of the Iraq War are war criminals and that this “supreme international crime” was definitely their task.  But how does that make it God’s task?  If it is, then God must surely be not only a serial liar, but a war criminal as well. 

 

But I doubt any Christian, or any believer in God, for that matter, would claim that the supreme international war crime of waging aggressive war, especially one based on lies, was “a task that is from God.”  So is Sarah Palin deluded, ignorant, or just pandering to the worst, most extreme elements in our country?

Finally, on Thursday, Sept. 11, 2008, speaking before soldiers in Alaska, including her own son, who were about to be deployed to Iraq, Gov. Palin actually told them they were being sent there to, "defend the innocent from the enemies who planned and carried out and rejoiced in the death of thousands of Americans" (see “Palin Links Iraq to Sept. 11 In Talk to Troops in Alaska” http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/09/11/AR2008091103789_pf.html).

But, on September 18, 2003, Bush himself had said there was no evidence linking Saddam Hussein to the September 11, 2001 attacks (see "Bush rejects Saddam 9/11 link" http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/3118262.stm).

 

And on June 17, 2004, the Washington Post had reported that "The Sept. 11 commission reported yesterday that it has found no ‘collaborative relationship’ between Iraq and al Qaeda, challenging one of the Bush administration's main justifications for the war in Iraq." (see "Al Qaeda-Hussein Link Is Dismissed" http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A47812-2004Jun16.html).

 

So where has Sarah Palin been during all these revelations which clearly debunk Bush’s reasons for attacking and occupying Iraq?  Aside from being deeply offending believers by claiming the Bush lies and supreme international war crime were “a task from God,”  these claims made by Palin in June, 2008 and then in September, 2008 prove how completely unqualified she is to be considered as a vice-presidential candidate when she clearly knows nothing of the truth about the most important historical events of our time.

 

Worse still, if she does, indeed, know these vitally important basic facts which are a prerequisite for national office, but is continuing to perpetuate the Bush lies and justifying his war crime by calling it all “a task from God,” who would want someone of that despicable character to be only a heartbeat away from the U.S. presidency, especially given John McCain’s advanced age and history of multiple occurrences of potentially fatal skin cancer?

 

Much worse than her repeated lies about opposing “the bridge to nowhere” and always fighting against earmarks and not firing her Commissioner for failing to fire her ex-brother-in-law, and visiting Iraq, these inaccuracies or, perhaps, lies, about the Iraq war and her attempts to cloak them in religious justifications reveal a desperately ambitious person whose extreme ideas present a danger to our republic.

 

Ed Ciaccio, a retired teacher, studied theology as an undergraduate.

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