Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search


William Rivers Pitt: His Red Right Hand

His Red Right Hand

By William Rivers Pitt
t r u t h o u t | Perspective

Wednesday 14 July 2004


He's a ghost, he's a god
He's a man, he's a guru
You're one microscopic cog
In his catastrophic plan
Designed and directed by
His red right hand

- Nick Cave

The top story on the New York Times website on Monday morning read, ''Rebels Routed in Fallujah''. It's a good thing, too, because we need to be fighting the terrorists over there in Iraq instead of over here in America. Who were these Fallujan terrorists, anyway? They really must have been the hardest of the hard-core to have gotten the kind of military reaction we have seen from U.S. forces in the last week. This is what I've been told, anyway.

Michael Georgy of the UK Independent, writing from the heart of the battlefield, described the aftermath of the battles: "After six days of intense combat against the Fallujah insurgents, U.S. warplanes, tanks and mortars have left a shattered landscape of gutted buildings, crushed cars and charred bodies. A drive through the city revealed a picture of utter destruction, with concrete houses flattened, mosques in ruins, telegraph poles down, power and phone lines hanging slack and rubble and human remains littering the empty streets."

At last, these scabrous terrorists have felt the awful price to be paid for defying our God-blessed right to bring 'democracy' wherever we wish by the point of the sword and the Sidewinder missile. The level of devastation wrought upon Fallujah is clear proof that the people who dwelled there were the scum of the earth, deserving of death and disaster. This must certainly be so, because George W. Bush would never order an all-out assault on a city filled with civilians in order to cover up his gross mismanagement of the situation lo these last twenty months. This is what I've been told, anyway.

An Associated Press photographer named Bilal Hussein calls Fallujah his home town. He was there to watch our justice come down. "Destruction was everywhere," said Hussein. "I saw people lying dead in the streets, wounded were bleeding and there was no one to come and help them. Even the civilians who stayed in Fallujah were too afraid to go out. There was no medicine, water, no electricity nor food for days."

After a few days, the shooting got too close for comfort, so Hussein decided to try and flee across the Euphrates River with other civilians. "I decided to swim," said Hussein, "but I changed my mind after seeing U.S. helicopters firing on and killing people who tried to cross the river." Down by the river, he was treated to the sight of a family of five being shot down as they tried to cross the water. Not long after, he "helped bury a man by the river bank, with my own hands. I kept walking along the river for two hours and I could still see some U.S. snipers ready to shoot anyone who might swim. I quit the idea of crossing the river and walked for about five hours through orchards."

Stories like this have been coming out of Fallujah for days now. Thousands of families went without food and water, trapped in their homes, watching tanks roll over dead bodies that littered the streets. Aid organizations like the Red Cross and the Red Crescent were barred from entering the city to distribute food and medical supplies. Large numbers of wounded civilians have been evacuated to hospitals in Baghdad because the Fallujah hospitals have either run out of supplies or been blasted to rubble.

A young refugee who gave his name only as Ahmed said, "The Americans didn't care about us. Every night we said goodbye to one another because we expected to die. You could see areas where all the houses were flattened, there was just nothing left. Even those of us who do not fight, we are suffering so much because of the U.S. bombs and tanks. Can't they see this is turning so many people against them?"

The Sunni population of Iraq, watching as Sunni mosques were destroyed and Sunni religious leaders were arrested in this Sunni city, see this assault as an attack upon their religious core. In all likelihood, the Sunni population will boycott whatever cobbled-together election American forces can manage to organize in the coming months. The attack upon Fallujah has further divided Sunni from Shi'ite; Sheik Mahdi al-Sumaidaei, leader of the Supreme Association for Guidance and Daawa, a conservative Sunni organization, took a swipe at the Shi'ites for not condemning the attacks. "We didn't hear from them at all," he said. "I assume they are either satisfied or they are afraid. However, when there were attacks on Shiite cities, the Sunni clerics in Iraq immediately condemned them. What about the Shiites?"

As for American casualties, 67 soldiers have died in the last fifteen days. The total number of American soldiers killed in Iraq since the March 2003 invasion stands at 1,188. The total number of 'Coalition' troops killed to date stands at 1,334. There is no accurate count of the number of wounded from these first two weeks of November.

Thanks to the competent yet generous leadership of George W. Bush, the military invasion of Fallujah will certainly cure what ails us in Iraq. To be sure, the deaths of thousands of civilians will further inflame the Iraqi populace. To be sure, the number of 'insurgents' killed in Fallujah will be immediately replaced by fresh recruits. To be sure, fierce battles have erupted in Mosul, Tal Afar, Ramadi, Beiji, Baquba, Buhriz, Khabbaza, Baghdad, and indeed all across the country. To be sure, we will have to grind all these cities to powder, along with all the residents of these cities, to make sure no one thwarts our aforementioned God-given right to bomb and shoot and burn and smash whomever and whatever we please.

Fear not, however. All is well. "The objective," said John Ashcroft in his resignation letter last week, "of securing the safety of Americans from crime and terror has been achieved." This is what I've been told, anyway.

Mission accomplished.


William Rivers Pitt is the senior editor and lead writer for truthout. He is a New York Times and international bestselling author of two books - 'War on Iraq: What Team Bush Doesn't Want You to Know' and 'The Greatest Sedition is Silence.'


STANDARD DISCLAIMER FROM UQ.ORG: does not necessarily endorse the views expressed in the above article. We present this in the interests of research -for the relevant information we believe it contains. We hope that the reader finds in it inspiration to work with us further, in helping to build bridges between our various investigative communities, towards a greater, common understanding of the unanswered questions which now lie before us.

© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Werewolf: Living With Rio’s Olympic Ruins

Mariana Cavalcanti Critics of the Olympic project can point a discernible pattern in the delivery of Olympics-related urban interventions: the belated but rushed inaugurations of faulty and/or unfinished infrastructures... More>>

Live Blog On Now: Open Source//Open Society Conference

The second annual Open Source Open Society Conference is a 2 day event taking place on 22-23 August 2016 at Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington… Scoop is hosting a live blog summarising the key points of this exciting conference. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The Politicising Of The War On Drugs In Sport

It hasn’t been much fun at all to see how “war on drugs in sport” has become a proxy version of the Cold War, fixated on Russia. This weekend’s banning of the Russian long jumper Darya Klishina took that fixation to fresh extremes. More>>


Binoy Kampmark: Kevin Rudd’s Failed UN Secretary General Bid

Few sights are sadder in international diplomacy than seeing an aging figure desperate for honours. In a desperate effort to net them, he scurries around, cultivating, prodding, wishing to be noted. Finally, such an honour is netted, in all likelihood just to shut that overly keen individual up. More>>

Open Source / Open Society: The Scoop Foundation - An Open Model For NZ Media

Access to accurate, relevant and timely information is a crucial aspect of an open and transparent society. However, in our digital society information is in a state of flux with every aspect of its creation, delivery and consumption undergoing profound redefinition... More>>

Keeping Out The Vote: Gordon Campbell On The US Elections

I’ll focus here on just two ways that dis-enfranchisement is currently occurring in the US: (a) by the rigging of the boundary lines for voter districts and (b) by demanding elaborate photo IDs before people are allowed to cast their vote. More>>

Ramzy Baroud: Being Black Palestinian - Solidarity As A Welcome Pathology

It should come as no surprise that the loudest international solidarity that accompanied the continued spate of the killing of Black Americans comes from Palestine; that books have already been written and published by Palestinians about the plight of their Black brethren. In fact, that solidarity is mutual. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news