Rotten Lies, Stale Illusions and Fresh Hopes

T HE YEAR 2003 would surely be remembered for long for some of the most rotten lies of modern times. First Iraq was ravaged in the name of destroying weapons of mass destruction. Then Iraq was occupied in the name of establishing democracy and transferring power to the Iraqis. And now when Saddam Hussein has been traced without any hint yet of those dreaded weapons of mass destruction, we are told he would be prosecuted for human rights violations! Meanwhile, we have been told that the informant who ratted on Saddam’s movements was not eligible for the promised $25 million reward for he did not ‘pinpoint the exact location’!

But for all their tireless dishing out of lies, Bush and Blair know very well that they have been caught lying. Each of their lies has been detected and exposed. The huge anti-war marches that shook every corner of the world made it amply clear that the emperor had no clothes on. With the lie machine failing to deliver, the emperor had to fall back on his ultimate war machine, and having bulldozed its way to Baghdad now the war machine too is reported to be developing snags. The smart war is turning messier with every passing day.

Indeed, the guerrilla resistance in Iraq has been the best news for the anti-imperialist camp in years. And with Saddam in their custody, the Americans will now learn that the resistance in Iraq is no handiwork of a group of fugitive Saddam loyalists. In invading and occupying Iraq, the US has actually managed to ignite a sleeping volcano and invite all-out resistance. If the developments since May are any indication, America’s mischievous attempts to provoke a Shia backlash against Saddam’s ‘Sunni dictatorship’ may only end up stoking the fire of Iraqi nationalism and Arab resistance.

Cornered by a growing resistance which has already claimed more than five hundred American and allied lives, the Bush administration now hopes to seek vindication and solace in the surprising arrest of Saddam Hussein. But a Saddam in US custody is liable to prove a much bigger burden for the US than a fugitive Saddam in an Iraqi bunker. By humiliating and victimizing Saddam Hussein the US will only ensure that he becomes a hallowed martyr in Arab memory. Even the Iraqi compradors may now feel emboldened to ask their American ‘guests’ not to ‘overstay’ in Iraq!

If Saddam’s arrest is the big prize for Bush to end his last pre-election year, back in India, the Sangh parivar too is basking in the glory of some very comforting election victories won in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh. The year had given the Parivar many anxious moments with internal bickerings coming to the fore, the UP applecart being upset with the alliance with the BSP turning sour, and the legal system at times threatening to penalize at least some of the Parivar people for some of their accumulated sins. But now the Sangh expects a change in the situation with these smart victories. Fresh coats of paint are being applied on the grand deception called the NDA and its so-called National Agenda of Governance. The illusion of the BJP doling out development from its promised temple in Ayodhya is being sought to be marketed with renewed fanfare. But all over the world, the rotten lies and stale illusions of yesteryear have begun to get exposed. Hope is marching again in a million steps. In many third world countries, the advancing contingents of the people have successfully put repressive regimes on notice. Some have already been overthrown. How long can India remain safe for the American imperialists and their trusted ‘swadeshi’ collaborators?

Let us welcome 2004 with new hopes and a renewed resolve to teach our enemies a lasting lesson.