November 24, 2010

Discourses in the Aftermath...

Someone remarked the other day - "Tweeting/reading/blogging about Iraq is simply super depressing. And am just an outside observer! "

Yes so true. It is super depressing.

Going daily through material related to post liberated Iraq leaves me hopeless, enraged, traumatized, gasping in horror at the extent of the hideous, heinous, grotesque acts that have been committed and are still committed in the name of Freedom.

Daily I go through not less than 50 articles, in Arabic and in English...I watch out for a sentence, a line, a word that will reveal the bigger picture...hidden underneath layers of politically correct garbage reporting and journalism.

I am still to finish my reflections on the Wikileaks war logs - and am exhausted, am mentally exhausted of being one of the few that sees the whole bloody picture staring me, glaring me in the eye, in my waking days and in my sleep, while others are still trying to sweep it under the thick carpet of silence, breaking the already shattered Truth into tinier shards of piercing glass, tucking it in between the lines of discourses, twisting the spiked broken glass, and sticking it somewhere in a text, in an article, in an interview with the dexterity of a devilish magician.

I watch out for words, syntax construction, omissions...and through these I see in no time where the author is coming from and what his/her political agenda is.

This is how discourses are constructed and maintained through their subliminal messages and omissions.

Some are quite sophisticated, others less so, but once you get the knack of it, it is so easy to spot them, read between the lines and figure out the manipulations, the deliberate use and twisting of words with the aim of burying the Truth even further.

The task of reconstructing that Truth is monumental because insofar as Iraq is concerned, there has not been at any time in History, such a cover up.

The reader needs to understand that this occultation of the Truth is done on many levels.
From the camouflage of real data - figures, to the concealment of gross human rights violations - arbitrary executions and the most sadistic forms of torture and rape, to the secrecy of daily killings that go unreported. And it does not stop there.

It does not step there because you also have the "aftermath of the Liberation". The thousands untold stories of the after effect of Liberation : stories of ethnic cleansing, stories of cultural cleansing, stories of rape, stories of post torture trauma and lives that will never become whole again, stories of disease from toxic contamination, stories of sex trade and trafficking, stories of lost lives in exile, stories of daily violence and disappearance, stories of loss of references and anchors, stories of displacement, stories of destitution and poverty, stories of usurpation, profiteering, exploitation, extortion embezzlement, corruption, theft...and it does not stop here either...

So daily, I try to retrace that Truth, through the hundreds of untold stories...because that picture must remain whole in my mind. And am vigilant, very vigilant...on my guards, on the look out for that word, that sentence, that discourse that tries to obliterate that Truth.

I will use two cases here to illustrate my point, by way of example. By no means exhaustive examples...just a sample of the kind of discourses that are maintained from both political poles - Right and Left. And hopefully their mendacity will be revealed.

Let me start with an article by Christopher Hitchens. I can't go through all of it, I suggest you read it. In that article  C.Hitchens is hoping that Tariq Aziz's death penalty be lifted. What a noble thing to do! And in that same article Hitchens goes on to praise the humanism of Jalal Talabani (noting that his party is a member of the Socialist International), he mentions en passant the "extermination of the Kurds", and in the same vein gives an overview of the "terrifying regime" of Saddam Hussein, the beastly declarations of Tariq Aziz on Iran and his atrocious crimes against Shias, links Baathism to Terrorism only to conclude that Jalal Talabani - the social democratic humane and brave puppet of the American occupation must be given the full sympathy he merits by the West.

What has started as an appeal to lift the death sentence against a Tariq Aziz, an ailing sick man imprisoned by the American occupation ends as a bolstering of that same occupation and a praise for its puppets.

Not one word is mentioned about the daily executions and bestial torture that goes on in Iraq's dungeons by Americans, Iranians and their Shia and Kurdish supporters in the "Democratic Humane" Iraq.

The above example is rather blatant, well to me it is. Let me give you a more difficult one to decrypt and decode.

The other day I was zapping and landed on CNN, a TV station I never watch as a rule of thumb. But this time around I did. I saw Nir Rosen being interviewed about his latest book on Iraq. I had in the past read Nir Rosen's articles and they left me unimpressed. Nir Rosen is supposedly an anti war writer. If one can qualify him that way that is. He visited Iraq a couple of times, pretending to be an Iraqi, he looks kind of Arab (his Iranian and Israeli origins did help) and was even a short guest of Muqtada Al-Sadr boys, under their protection so to speak.

So in that interview he was being asked questions about Iraq and how he saw the Future of this bleeding country - in the Aftermath...

On the surface, his replies to the CNN questions sounded good. He mentioned ethnic cleansing, he said that there is no democracy, he mentioned torture...but then he said a few other things that gave him away. He said that the structure of a "representative government" in Iraq has been established, and that it will take time for this government to conduct Iraqi affairs according to the laid structure. Then when talking about ethnic cleansing and current Shia sectarianism - he said en passant, now that the Sunnis have been defeated...

I was watching this with my mom. We both grabbed our slippers ready to shoot them at the TV screen. The only thing that prevented us is that we can't afford a new TV. Even my mom who never heard of Nir Rosen, never read his articles, does not know where he's from, is unaware of his "leftist anti war" stands, saw the twisting and the plot of the discourse.

So what Nir Rosen is basically telling the world is the following : The American occupation of Iraq did lay the foundation for a representative government. OK, there's ethnic cleansing of Arab Sunnis, but they were defeated. Re-read these sentences, they are textual.

A more representative government in Iraq implies that the previous one was not. It implies that Shias and Kurds were disfranchised in their political representation. Exactly what the neocons and the theorists for the Occupation of Iraq have been harping on for the past 20 years.

Now the second sentence - yes there was ethnic cleansing but the Arab Sunnis were defeated. That means that the Sunnis engaged in a war with the Shias and were defeated. They're out of the equation. So again Nir Rosen is reiterating what has been shoved down our throats for the past 7 years, namely that Saddam Hussein and his government was an Arab Sunni government, but that in the aftermath of the invasion (because Nir Rosen there is no Aftermath of the Occupation - we are still occupied - unless you consider Iraq to be sovereign now) the Sunnis engaged in a war against the Shias hence were defeated through ethnic cleansing.

Is this not the same discourse we've been hearing all those years ?! Namely Iraqis killing each other in a civil war, because the Sunni insurgents bombed the Samarra shrine, and that Shias and Kurds have been so oppressed and now finally the Arab Sunnis who are really insurgents read terrorists, are finally defeated. And after all, yes there's no true democracy in Iraq, but there are the structures for a representative government in occupied Baghdad.

I called on Nir Rosen with the crafty crap he spewed on CNN - he said that I confused explanations, descriptions and justifications. Basically he was telling me I understand nothing about my own country and what happened to it -- because only the likes of Nir Rosen (travelling incognito to Baghdad a couple of times under the protection of the Mahdi Army) and the likes of C.Hitchens understand really what is taking place in Iraq.

And before I wrap up - Did you notice the most obvious ? Not yet ? Well please do next time you read anything on current Iraq - notably : despite the fact that article after article mentions the extensive torture, executions, and killings in Iraq's prisons, be it in the North, South or central Baghdad, (UNHCR figures: 1 in 5 Iraqis have been tortured since 2003) not once did I read from the Right or the Left that Iraq today is a terrifying oppressive Dictatorship and that Maliki is a brutal Tyrant.

Ladies and Gents, the occultation of the Truth through such discourses is the occultation of Iraq and her people.

And this was EXACTLY the American Iranian and Israeli goal.