Sunday, May 17, 2009

Holy War

GQ has pictures and the story behind the spin of the invasion of Iraq at the highest levels of the Bush Administration into a literal faith-based crusade:
the Worldwide Intelligence Update, was a daily digest of critical military intelligence so classified that it circulated among only a handful of Pentagon leaders and the president; Rumsfeld himself often delivered it, by hand, to the White House. The briefing’s cover sheet generally featured triumphant, color images from the previous days’ war efforts: On this particular morning, it showed the statue of Saddam Hussein being pulled down in Firdos Square, a grateful Iraqi child kissing an American soldier, and jubilant crowds thronging the streets of newly liberated Baghdad. And above these images, and just below the headline SECRETARY OF DEFENSE, was a quote that may have raised some eyebrows. It came from the Bible, from the book of Psalms: “Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him…To deliver their soul from death.”

This mixing of Crusades-like messaging with war imagery, which until now has not been revealed, had become routine.
This all strikes me as the logical, literal extension of the more metaphorical culture wars that social and theological conservatives wage against anyone, friend or foe, who stands in their way. The Iraq Holy War is the beast belched from those very same fires.

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