Comment, Comics and the Contrary.
Really, on seeing two dodgy ‘Arabs’ (who must surely even further along the current physiognomic scale of evil than a Brazilian with ‘Mongolian eyes’), I would have thought that the appropriate police reaction should have been to ‘destroy the brain, instantly, utterly’. Even more so when these dodgy ‘Arabs’ are prowling round the streets in a car with a boot full of killing equipment. Even more so when this occurs in a city plagued, not by a single, atypical terrorist attack, but by daily bombings. Even more so when these dodgy ‘Arabs’ have shot a policeman and a civilian. There would be no need to spin lies about non-existent bomb-belts, bulky jackets or ‘terrorist-like’ behaviour. If there was ever a case of legitimate recourse to the sort of language used in zombie movies in order to justify a extra-judicial execution, this was that case.
This farce reminds me of the scene in Team America where Gary, the actor, is (badly) disguised as an Arab. Or, indeed, of old British colonial efforts at intelligence gathering, mostly involving a liberal use of boot polish. “Durka durka, Mohammed jihad!” Indeed, low comedy.
So, our SAS ‘boys’ must thank their good fortune that they were merely held prisoner. And, perhaps, our own government ought to be a little more humble when condemning an Iraqi civilian authority who refused to release men accused of murderous actions taking place in a situation not unlike that of a terrorist ‘event’.
Of course, we have heard that they were ‘undercover soldiers’? I have to say that I had thought that the modern term for this was ‘illegal combatants’. I had understood that our disgust at these tactics was based on the fact that if the ‘baddies’ do not do the decent thing and wear uniforms then the trigger-happy USMC cannot be blamed when they make Swiss cheese out of perfectly innocent civilians.
I had thought that the Iraqis were celebrating democracy. I thought that those purple fingers symbolised a return of political power to Iraqi people. But evidently not. It is evident that this is an occupation. All the news agencies are concentrating on the infiltration of the police by ‘militant organisations’, composed of Iraqis, you will understand. Everyone is asking why these SAS men were not release when the order came from Baghdad. Why is there no person asking what these SAS men were doing? Why is no one asking why these SAS men appear to be above the law of ‘free’ Iraq?
The very people who have argued that we have murdered Iraqis for the sake of giving Iraqis their freedom, are now argue that we must murder more in an effort to prevent Iraqis from governing Iraq. I would pretend to be confused. But I am not. This is a colonial game, pure and simple. It is dressed up as bringing freedom, civilisation, removing a tyrant, or self-defence. Such games always are; they always have been. Take a look at the political and intellectual heritage of the men involved in planning and running this war and this occupation. They are not Christopher Hitchens, for all his faults. They are not men of progressive politics. They are not men who have demonstrated a respect for democracy and human rights. The men with power, and here we must separate them from their cheerleaders on the left, hearts full of wishful thinking, are men who have support death squads, torture camps and dictators.
This is a colonial game, and it will continue until Iraq has been destructed and reconstructed according to the wishes of these men; not the wishes of Iraqis. This process of civil disorder, of infiltration, allows – no, demands – that occupying troops remain in Iraq indefinitely. When the Iraqis next have ‘power’, the structures of economic and political control will be in place.