With world opinion now focused on news that Russian forces have committed crimes in the Ukraine war, it’s important to note that no army has a monopoly on committing war crimes against civilians in any war zone worldwide.
As this article by Chris Hedges on the site, Substack, points out, the U.S. committed
atrocities in Iraq as part of the unprovoked 2003 attack after September 11, 2001, even though Iraq had nothing to do with the attack on the World Trade Center. Remember, that the public excuse was that Iraq had “weapons of mass destruction,” none of which were ever found.
Instead, the George Bush administration orchestrated a plan to dupe Americans into thinking that Iraq was part of the World Trade Center attack. This was an easy thing to do. Americans have no sense of history. Plus, this ploy worked before. President Lyndon B. Johnson used fabricated news about an attack in the Gulf of Tonkin in 1964 to get the U.S. more involved in the Viet Nam War. That war was ostensible to prevent the expansion of Communism, but another prime cause was that a Communist South Viet Nam would interfere with U.S. business interests.
In the events leading up to the Iraq invasion, an article by Bruce Reidal, a senior fellow and director of the Brookings Intelligence Project, who also spent 30 years in the CIA, concluded that “despite the intelligence community’s unequivocal conclusion that Iraq had nothing to do with either 9/11 or al-Qaida, the (George Bush) administration let Americans believe the contrary.”
This allowed the neoliberals in the Bush administration (Cheney, Bush, Condoleeza Rice, Colin Powell, Paul Wolfowitz, among them) to say that Iraq had plenty of oil and oil would pay for the US invasion. Needless to say, the oil never paid for the invasion. US taxpayers did. And it cost a fortune. “In 2020, Neta Crawford, chair of the political science department at Boston University, in her Costs of War Project, estimated the long term cost of the Iraq War for the United States at $1.922 trillion.”
If anything, Saudi Arabia should have been confronted since 15 of the original 19 hijackers of the four jets that were part of the World Trade Center attack were manned by terrorists who were citizens of Saudi Arabia. But, Saudi Arabia has oil and is a billion-dollar customer of US military supplies, so nothing was ever done about it.
A report from Brown University found that at least 184,382 and 207,156 civilians “have died from direct war-related violence caused by the U.S., its allies, the Iraqi military and police, and opposition forces from the time of the invasion through October 2019.”
Russian Mass Killing in Ukraine War vs. Civilians Killed in Iraq
In contrast, the Russian army has killed fewer people so far in its invasion. A United Nations report found that “from 4 a.m. on 24 February 2022, when the Russian Federation’s armed attack against Ukraine started, to 24:00 midnight on 2 April 2022 (local time), the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) recorded 3,455 civilian casualties in the country: 1,417 killed and 2,038 injured.”
As this article by Hedges notes, Americans do not get the full report of war atrocities in any context. The US media has no historical memory, except for big events, and these events get even more airtime if they have video footage to accompany the reports. That’s just one deficiency of broadcast journalism.
Here is the article in its entirety. It is also important to note that all of Hedges’ video reports on a wide variety of important political, social, historic, and economic topics have been removed by YouTube for a reason they will not publicly announce. It certainly looks like blatant censorship by YouTube. Hedges can now be found online at SubStack
Here is the well-done article by Chris Hedges.