3rd Anniversary of 9/11


World suffers consequences of George W. Bush's "catastrophic success"

By SANDRA L. SMITH*

OTTAWA (11 September 2004) -- Today the American people mark the third anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the Twin Towers in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. and the hijacking of civilian airplanes. They do so with great trepidation over what the future holds as a result of George W. Bush's "war on terror." Already since the United States invoked a permanent state of war, emergency and rule by exception, an untold number of unprecedented crimes have been committed. It is argued that Americans are safer today than they were three years ago, but still the U.S. administration continues to express a morbid preoccupation with defeat. It uses every occasion to express its determination to do whatever is required to defeat the enemies of America from both within and without the United States.

On the eve of the Republican National Convention, in an interview with Time magazine quoted by the Associated Press, Bush upheld his decision to invade Iraq saying: "The right decision was to remove Saddam Hussein from power.... Had we to do it over again, we would look at the consequences of catastrophic success being so successful so fast that an enemy that should have surrendered or been done in escaped and lived to fight another day. I couldn't have sat down and said to you, 'By the way, we're going to be so victorious so quickly that we'll end up having to fight another third of the Baathists over the next year in order to bring liberty to the country.'"

This statement is yet another example which shows how Bush is haunted by Hamlet's dilemma: "conscience doth make cowards of us all." He is the Fortinbras, the strong military arm who is out to prove his determination to wield the sword -- the power of state -- to impose the U.S. as the world's only superpower to which everyone must submit. He will wipe out anyone and anything that stands in his way. Fortinbras has to offer security to the people. He has an obligation to protect them. But to be truly successful he has to create the public opinion for it. In other words, a people -- whether American, Iraqi or any other -- has to feel it is a part of the nation-state which operates in the people's name. People have to agree to sacrifice their lives for a certain ruler or regime even though their sectional interests may tell them they are better served in another way.

And here is the rub: Bush is having trouble with a disinformed public which does not conform to his view of authority. Horatio -- oratory -- has failed him and Fortinbras must wreak his revenge; he must wield his sword come what may and, out of violence, will come the stability and order he promises. Unless the people can be persuaded to agree that their only option is to submit, then they will face the consequences of "catastrophic success."

How then is the polity to be unified behind the U.S. imperialist aim for world domination? Where are the institutions capable of creating such a public opinion?

The factional fighting in the legislative bodies whose main role is to create this public opinion shows that such institutions do not currently exist. So too do the electoral politics of the Republican and Democratic parties and their presidential candidates, the degradation of the educational institutions and the role of the media as purveyors of the state's disinformation. It is in the absence of institutions capable of forming public opinion to justify the aim of the U.S. superpower that all Bush has to offer is more violence. This will sort things out, he argues. In other words, once brutality and violence establish order, the outcome will be democracy, stability, liberty, rights and prosperity.

It is also for this purpose that alleged threats of terrorism and treason are fabricated, coupled with the use of state terrorism, adventurism, provocations and the creation of divisions among the people. The use of lies, deception and all kinds of secrets becomes essential to keep the people entangled so that the wielder of the sword can have a free hand. It is all intended to destroy the movement of the peoples for the other world which is possible because it is consistent with the demands of history. It is intended to stifle their revolutionary enthusiasm and their initiative to bring it about. The mechanism is to overwhelm them with the claim that the current nightmare is eternal; the only option is to submit in order to hasten the rule of law which Bush promises the violence will bring into being.

Meanwhile, the other big powers both collude and contend with the U.S. as they strive to preserve their own spheres of influence, zones for the export of capital and sources of cheap raw materials and labour. Thus, the dangers facing the peoples of the world become ever greater and the striving to provide themselves with an outlook which enables them to sort things out for themselves becomes ever more significant. It is the sure way to avert the catastrophes which lie ahead.

In this regard, the past three years since 9/11 also clearly show that the more the U.S. tries to openly tout itself as a military superpower and claim ipso facto that it can lay down the law for the world, the more the peoples of the world declare: Not in My Name! No-one Is Illegal! Another World Is Possible! Neither the people of the U.S. let alone the peoples of the world have accepted the conception of a country as a military superpower that can do whatever it wishes at home and abroad. Far from conscience making cowards of us all, the peoples are refusing to accept such a thing which would be to abandon all dignity and honour, to give up all pretence of being for the strengthening of democracy and the defence of human rights.

On the occasion of the third anniversary of 9/11, all the developments point to a growing maturity of the peoples' forces whose resistance struggles have made it impossible for the U.S. ruling class to make their success anything but "catastrophic." All people of conscience are determined to step up the tempo of their work so as to make sure the forces of darkest reaction do not succeed in overwhelming the resistance to the brutality and violence which is all reaction can offer. They are determined to find the ways and means to strengthen the resistance movement of those who have become the immediate targets of the "war on terror," as well as of those within the United States itself and other imperialist heartlands, including Canada.

* Sandra L. Smith is the National Leader of the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist).



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