March to War

As we march towards war with Iran, with one alarming news story after another, it is useful to turn our attention to some recent history.

Ten years ago the neo-cons stampeded the US into a disasterous war with Iraq, using a nonstop propaganda campaign. In August 2002, President Bush’s chief of staff, Andrew Card, made the connection of war to another product being sold explicit. “From a marketing point of view, you don’t introduce a new product in August.”

It is also useful to remember that some things are timeless.

Herman Goering, in a jailhouse interview at Nuremberg, stated an obvious truth on the ease of marshaling a populace for war.

“Naturally the common people don’t want war; neither in Russia, nor in England, nor in America, nor in Germany. That is understood. But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought along to do the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.”

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