Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | 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


Keith Rankin: Science, Scientists, And Scientism
Science, in the not-so-recent-past, has often had a bad press. It's been personified, particularly by the political left, as Frankenstein, as agents of capitalism, classical liberalism, colonialism, sexism (yang over yin), eugenics, and god-like pretension. More recently though, in the zeitgeists of climate change awareness and covid, it's had an unusually good press; although we retain this persistent worry that viruses such as SARS-Cov2 may be the unwitting or witting result of the work of careless or evil scientists... More>>

Dunne Speaks: Can ACT's Dream Run Continue?

By most reckonings the ACT Party has had a very successful political year. Not only has its expanded Parliamentary team settled in well to its work, without controversy or scandal, but its leader has gained in community respect, and the party’s support, at least according to the public opinion polls, has increased sharply... More>>

Keith Rankin: Basic Universal Income And Economic Rights
"Broad growth is only going to come when you put money in the hands of people, and that's why we talk about a Universal Basic Income". [Ritu Dewan, Indian Society of Labour Economics]. (From How long before India's economy recovers, 'Context India', Al Jazeera, 31 Oct 2021.) India may be to the 'Revolution of the twenty-first century' that Russia was to the 'Revolution of the twentieth century'... More>>

Gasbagging In Glasgow: COP26 And Phasing Down Coal

Words can provide sharp traps, fettering language and caging definitions. They can also speak to freedom of action and permissiveness. At COP26, that permissiveness was all the more present in the haggling ahead of what would become the Glasgow Climate Pact... More>>

Globetrotter: Why Julian Assange’s Inhumane Prosecution Imperils Justice For Us All

When I first saw Julian Assange in Belmarsh prison, in 2019, shortly after he had been dragged from his refuge in the Ecuadorean embassy, he said, “I think I am losing my mind.”
He was gaunt and emaciated, his eyes hollow and the thinness of his arms was emphasized by a yellow identifying cloth tied around his left arm... More>>

Dunne Speaks: Labour's High Water Mark
If I were still a member of the Labour Party I would be feeling a little concerned after this week’s Colmar Brunton public opinion poll. Not because the poll suggested Labour is going to lose office any time soon – it did not – nor because it showed other parties doing better – they are not... More>>