It is important for people to know that the official version of things that comes out of the U.S. White House is imaginary. They make it up. They hide that which they don't want the people to know, because that other information is damning.

Unless the people obtain truthful information, they cannot make informed decisions. The result is what we see all about the globe: War, destruction, torture, repression, starvation, greed, decadence, global warming, and all the other problems. With the truth, however, the people can reverse those mistakes. That's why the Holy Spirit has revealed so many things since 9/11 for instance.

Juan Cole has done a fairly good job below of exposing Bush administration spin about the so-called surge in the Iraq War (spinning tales for the willingly gullible and naive). It is a conspiracy. It is an agreement to commit huge crimes against humanity and war crimes.

(This is not a blanket endorsement of all of his observations.)

Most importantly, once the people of Iraq put themselves back together somewhat, the "Surge" will deserve zero credit for that. The Iraq War was wrong from the start. Nothing Bush or his neocons do can undo all the wanton death and destruction they caused. If you stop every last bit of violence in Iraq via the strongest clampdown imaginable, that still wouldn't make the Iraq War right. It wouldn't justify Bush's taking America to war on lies. It wouldn't mean that clampdowns are right either. After all, America has no right to be in Iraq clamping down.

There were other ways of dealing with Saddam Hussein than how the insane neocons handled things. They just used him as a pretext for stealing oil and enhancing Israel's and American's power in the region by undercutting (murdering, maiming, displacing, and terrorizing) tens of millions of civilians.

Anyone who thinks that a reduction in violence under a repressive, illegal occupier can be credited to that illegal occupier is arrogant at best.

"Top Ten Myths about Iraq 2007," by Juan Cole. Informed Comment.December 26, 2007.

10. Myth: The US public no longer sees Iraq as a central issue in the 2008 presidential campaign.

In a recent ABC News/ Washington Post poll, Iraq and the economy were virtually tied among voters nationally, with nearly a quarter of voters in each case saying it was their number one issue. The economy had become more important to them than in previous months (in November only 14% said it was their most pressing concern), but Iraq still rivals it as an issue!

9. Myth: There have been steps toward religious and political reconciliation in Iraq in 2007. Fact: The government of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki has for the moment lost the support of the Sunni Arabs in parliament. The Sunnis in his cabinet have resigned. Even some Shiite parties have abandoned the government. Sunni Arabs, who are aware that under his government Sunnis have largely been ethnically cleansed from Baghdad, see al-Maliki as a sectarian politician uninterested in the welfare of Sunnis.

8. Myth: The US troop surge stopped the civil war that had been raging between Sunni Arabs and Shiites in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad.

Fact: The civil war in Baghdad escalated during the US troop escalation. Between January, 2007, and July, 2007, Baghdad went from 65% Shiite to 75% Shiite. UN polling among Iraqi refugees in Syria suggests that 78% are from Baghdad and that nearly a million refugees relocated to Syria from Iraq in 2007 alone. This data suggests that over 700,000 residents of Baghdad have fled this city of 6 million during the US 'surge,' or more than 10 percent of the capital's population. Among the primary effects of the 'surge' has been to turn Baghdad into an overwhelmingly Shiite city and to displace hundreds of thousands of Iraqis from the capital.

7. Myth: Iran was supplying explosively formed projectiles (a deadly form of roadside bomb) to Salafi Jihadi (radical Sunni) guerrilla groups in Iraq. Fact: Iran has not been proved to have sent weapons to any Iraqi guerrillas at all. It certainly would not send weapons to those who have a raging hostility toward Shiites. (Iran may have supplied war materiel to its client, the Supreme Islamic Council of Iraq (ISCI), which was then sold off from warehouses because of graft, going on the arms market and being bought by guerrillas and militiamen.

6. Myth: The US overthrow of the Baath regime and military occupation of Iraq has helped liberate Iraqi women. Fact: Iraqi women have suffered significant reversals of status, ability to circulate freely, and economic situation under the Bush administration.

5. Myth: Some progress has been made by the Iraqi government in meeting the "benchmarks" worked out with the Bush administration. Fact: in the words of Democratic Senator Carl Levin, "Those legislative benchmarks include approving a hydrocarbon law, approving a debaathification law, completing the work of a constitutional review committee, and holding provincial elections. Those commitments, made 1 1/2 years ago, which were to have been completed by January of 2007, have not yet been kept by the Iraqi political leaders despite the breathing space the surge has provided."

4. Myth: The Sunni Arab "Awakening Councils," who are on the US payroll, are reconciling with the Shiite government of PM Nuri al-Maliki even as they take on al-Qaeda remnants. Fact: In interviews with the Western press, Awakening Council tribesmen often speak of attacking the Shiites after they have polished off al-Qaeda. A major pollster working in Iraq observed,
' Most of the recent survey results he has seen about political reconciliation, Warshaw said, are "more about [Iraqis] reconciling with the United States within their own particular territory, like in Anbar. . . . But it doesn't say anything about how Sunni groups feel about Shiite groups in Baghdad." Warshaw added: "In Iraq, I just don't hear statements that come from any of the Sunni, Shiite or Kurdish groups that say 'We recognize that we need to share power with the others, that we can't truly dominate."
The polling shows that "the Iraqi government has still made no significant progress toward its fundamental goal of national reconciliation."

3. Myth: The Iraqi north is relatively quiet and a site of economic growth. Fact: The subterranean battle among Kurds, Turkmen and Arabs for control of the oil-rich Kirkuk province makes the Iraqi north a political mine field. Kurdistan now also hosts the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) guerrillas that sneak over the border and kill Turkish troops. The north is so unstable that the Iraqi north is now undergoing regular bombing raids from Turkey.

2. Myth: Iraq has been "calm" in fall of 2007 and the Iraqi public, despite some grumbling, is not eager for the US to depart. Fact: in the past 6 weeks, there have been an average of 600 attacks a month, or 20 a day, which has held steady since the beginning of November. About 600 civilians are being killed in direct political violence per month, but that number excludes deaths of soldiers and police. Across the board, Iraqis believe that their conflicts are mainly caused by the US military presence and they are eager for it to end.

1. Myth: The reduction in violence in Iraq is mostly because of the escalation in the number of US troops, or "surge."

Fact: Although violence has been reduced in Iraq, much of the reduction did not take place because of US troop activity. Guerrilla attacks in al-Anbar Province were reduced from 400 a week to 100 a week between July, 2006 and July, 2007. But there was no significant US troop escalation in al-Anbar. Likewise, attacks on British troops in Basra have declined precipitously since they were moved out to the airport away from population centers. But this change had nothing to do with US troops.

If you want to read some arrogant views, here's a post with some nasty comments that are very revealing of the callous mentality. For some of the commentators, the only thing that matters is U.S. image. Dead Iraqi civilians aren't worth shedding one tear. "Andrew Sullivan: Tenaciously Behind the Curve," by Karl. ProteinWisdom.


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  • Tom Usher

    About Tom Usher

    Employment: 2008 – present, website developer and writer. 2015 – present, insurance broker.

    Education: Arizona State University, Bachelor of Science in Political Science. City University of Seattle, graduate studies in Public Administration.

    Volunteerism: 2007 – present, president of the Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project.

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    • Dan Collins

      Your characterization of the piece and the comments over at Protein Wisdom omit to consider that in the view of the author, Karl, and the readers, all of whom follow this rather closely, especially through the testimony of people at the milblogs, what is at issue is the truth of Mr Cole's representations. To state that because they are less prejudicial to the US than the standard press account is not a matter of arrogance, but a matter of fact. You see, in our view it is Juan Cole, Glenn Greenwald, and incidentally you, who are arrogant. But to come directly to the point:

      "But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?"

      — James 2:20.

    • Hello Dan,

      Anyone who follows the link and reads the post will readily see that Karl is disputing some of the things Juan Cole represents as facts. I have no doubt that Juan makes factual errors. Who bats a thousand? Karl doesn’t. You don’t. I don’t. Preponderance and saliency matter though despite some errors. Surely you aren’t saying that Juan is always wrong.

      Why though are you defending the Iraq War at all? You say that I am arrogant; however, I’m not being coercively imperial. Why are you defending the U.S. war of aggression against Iraq? The Nazi invasion of Poland was a war of aggression that was condemned by the U.S. The U.S. hanged Nazis for it, didn’t they? Really Dan, you know that George Bush lied. Don’t you care about that? Doesn’t it matter?

      You quoted from the New Testament. How do you reconcile the Gospel of Jesus Christ, who said not to be violent, with the Iraq War? Don’t you see the hypocrisy? It was Jesus exposing to them their own hypocrisy that made them all drop their stones and walk away rather than stone the adulteress, which they had been itching to do. If war were fine with Jesus, why would he have exposed the hypocrisy in the law of Moses? If stoning the adulteress was not right and only he who was without sin could cast the first stone, who fired the first missile at Iraq? Was he without sin? Most importantly, who ordered the War? Was he without sin? Of course they weren’t. Yet George Bush calls himself a Christian.

      Dan, please do some soul searching about this.

      As for James 2:20, it doesn’t mean that war is a deed consistent with faith in Christ and God. That would be an extreme perversion of the revelation.

      I hope for your sake and the sakes of those you could sway that you are listening and actually hear and understand what I’m saying.


    • Dan,

      Your trackback, "Gaia Dislikes Human Greed," was in the SPAM hopper while I was replying to your earlier comment, so I didn't see it until after I was done.

      Why do you make false accusations of avarice? You want people to believe you about "facts" concerning the Iraq War; yet, you write in your blog post that what is behind this site is exactly what it stands against: Selfishness and greed. Is that showing good sense or judgment on your part? Is it mature? Isn't it ironic, on several fronts, that you used the term "schoolboy"?

      You've judged on what basis? Well, your standard will be that by which you'll be measured.

      I still hope you turn from your violent means and your goal, which is Worldly Empire.


    • Tom, I wonder myself how you reconcile being a self-styled 'liberal', with the trappings of religion all around you here, chapter and verse, and at the same time you are obviously supporting the modern Liberal-Progressive movement here in the United States. In doing so, you must realize how steeped in hypocrisy you are.

      You go on and on about the deaths in Iraq, but you've ignored the 6,174,518 babies who've been murdered in the Unites States, since the beginning of the Iraqi conflict, murdered by the Liberal sacrament: abortion.

      Abortion is the murder of unborn children, and as you know, Tom, these children possess a soul, given to them at conception by God.

      There's not a liberal Democratic leader running for President who does not support this heinous 'right' that, by association, you support.

      How do you call reconcile that knowledge in your own soul, Brother Tom?

      Matthew 2:18

      "A voice is heard in Ramah, weeping and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted because they are no more."

    • Hello Serr8d,

      Your questions and assumptions are common and understandable given today's hyper pace.

      In a rush to judgment, you have come to incorrect conclusions base upon faulty premises.

      The most prolific bloggers in your sphere are in a rush to stay on the bleeding edge of the battle between the mainstream right and left that are each about a dime's distance from each other and the moving center on a completely false ideological spectrum. They are conditioned to see things first within the language of that context laden with falsehood.

      Please read the following linked post of mine. It will help to introduce you to a different context that comes directly from the Word. If you have serious questions thereafter, I'll do my earnest best to answer.

      Jesus: Liberal-Conservative-Populist-Demagogue versus False-hearted Cynics and Skeptics

      Posted: Sunday, Dec. 23rd 2007 by Tom Usher

      Jesus is a demagogue. He became a leader by moving the emotions of the populace. The powers that be characterize him as contemptuous, disrespectful, and willfully disobedient concerning their authority.

      This is a preview of, Jesus: Liberal-Conservative-Populist-Demagogue versus False-hearted Cynics and Skeptics. Read the full post: 1053 words, estimated 4:13 mins reading time

      May God bless,


    • Pingback: Gaia Dislikes Human Greed [Dan Collins]()

    • Dear me, Tom, the ideological positional wraps you put Jesus into aren't quite the same as readings and teachings I've studied.

      Jesus had a temper, and took action when necessary...he drove the moneychangers out of His Father's temple, for example. The entire book of the Revelations is full of promises of 'violence'...

      Revelation 18:21

      "Then a mighty angel picked up a boulder the size of a large millstone and threw it into the sea, and said: "With such violence the great city of Babylon will be thrown down, never to be found again."

      Your linked post didn't include any condemnation of Abortion. Your linked post tries to skillfully wrap Jesus Christ to your own purpose, one I'm not sure He would agree with. But I'm sure you've prayed for guidance.

      I know this: the Iraqi conflict wasn't the best course of action, but we (with leadership from our President and Congress) took that course, and we have to see it finished, to help the good people of Iraq who are still alive. To continually post Bush Derangement Syndrome over and over again, using the Bible and scripture as a platform, is in poor form. For either side of the aisle.

      I really wonder if your Liberal Church is just a fabrication, something invented, like the 'Flying Spaghetti Monster' atheists invented to mock God and Religion. With your dodging of my Abortion question, that feeling is deepened.

      # Titus 1:16

      They claim to know God, but by their actions they deny him. They are detestable, disobedient and unfit for doing anything good.

    • Hello again serr8d,

      Thanks for returning. Thanks also for a thought-out reply that isn't filled with nothing but vindictiveness. Of course, I have no idea what you might say in private behind my back, so to speak. However, I give you the benefit of the doubt.

      When Jesus cleansed the Temple, he didn't harm a soul. You will note that when they arrested and tried him, it wasn't for any injuries he caused. He put the fear in the moneychangers no doubt. He did it with authority, and they felt it. That's why they ran. It wasn't because he was lashing them physically. What he was doing was warning them without harming them. That's completely consistent with everything he taught.

      As for Revelation being full of violence, there's plenty of violence too in Jesus's parables. I'm well aware of it. You will note also that Jesus never says anywhere that he will commit violence. Someone will though. He actually pronounces woe on that one.

      Here is where I stand. Jesus preached against hypocrisy. He told them not to resort to violence or even wrath. When his disciples asked him if they should call down fire from Heaven, he told them they don't know their own root spirit. If Jesus preached against violence always, which he did, and then were to turn around and be violent, he too would be a hypocrite. However, I know he is not a hypocrite. I know that the spirit of wrath is what the righteous spirit does not want.

      This point goes right to the heart of people's feelings as to the nature of God. The Bible is full of contradictory statements about the nature of God. The prophets (as written) were/are not unified in their characterizations of God. God's true nature is being revealed over time in the text. It's why Jesus had new things to say about God, new things to reveal. It's why his law doesn't violate the law of Moses but fulfills it even though Moses said stone her and Jesus prevented that from happening.

      Unless one gets into this train of thought, one will never "get it" or grasp that the God of Jesus is not as God is characterized in every way throughout the text. In other words, God was often misunderstood or over people's heads to comprehend. That's not to say that anyone fully comprehends God yet. I'm not laying claim to that for myself. I do believe that Jesus comprehended God better than anyone. I believe his comprehension was and is so extensive that that's why it is right and justified to say of Jesus that he is one with God and divine. In other words, I believe Jesus about himself. He did and does fit the bill.

      As for the post I asked you to read not addressing abortion, I thought for sure it did. When I looked at it again, I found that it does:

      Is Jesus a conservative? Yes. He is a social conservative in that he is against same-sex marriage (the sin of Sodom) and abortion (harm and disbelief).

      There it is. It's not the only place I've written on the subject. What are you looking for me to say? Do I think I can punish people? No. I can't punish people anymore than those Jews who wanted to stone the adulteress. I'm not without sin. I've made plenty of mistakes. Thank you God for allowing me the opportunity to repent. Listen, it's both mercy and forgiveness. Oh, I've been punished. I've suffered consequences, of course. I wasn't stoned to death though. I wasn't judged and condemned to beyond where I could turn to see the light I hadn't seen before. I'm sure you get the point.

      Choices are difficult for many people. People struggle with both war and abortion. Others don't care about either. There are people who hate Jesus, would crucify him right this moment, and just aren't going to turn no matter what I say. I'm not talking to them. I'm talking to the people who are reachable and to those who think they are Christian but just haven't analyzed how he was against greed, violence, and sexual depravity and for giving and sharing all, harmlessness that is pacifism, and at least sexual harmlessness (faithful, heterosexual, monogamous, non-abusive) and even purity for those to whom that's given.

      You think I'm skillfully wrapping Jesus to my own purpose. Well, yes it is my purpose, but it was his first. I've only came into it. I didn't created and then work to try to bring Jesus into line with my ideas. Hey, turning hasn't been a walk in the park. I'm still learning everyday too and don't imagine that will ever stop.

      You wrote:

      I know this: the Iraqi conflict wasn’t the best course of action, but we (with leadership from our President and Congress) took that course, and we have to see it finished, to help the good people of Iraq who are still alive.

      The question then is how to finish it consistent with Christian principles. Jesus would not fire a bullet. If you believe he would, you and I just don't know the same Jesus.

      "Bush Derangement Syndrome" is an expression I haven't heard before. Do I think he's deranged? Everyone is deranged relative to Jesus and God. It's a matter of degree. I believe he believes that lying is okay within compartments. I don't hold with lying. The main reason I use the Gospels especially when discussing issues about him in particular is because he openly claims to be Christian and then orders things that he knows Jesus would tell him not to order. This damages Christianity in the minds of those who might otherwise come to know the real message of Jesus. Therefore, I'm voicing this and will continue to do so for their sakes.

      You "really wonder if [the] Liberal Church is just a fabrication, something invented, like the ‘Flying Spaghetti Monster’ atheists invented to mock God and Religion." Well, one could wonder that about anything and everything. I trust Jesus. God knows my heart. I really want exactly what the site is working to accomplish. I do believe in miracles. I do believe that enough of the right kind of faith can heal. I also believe that the times are very dark spiritually (full of false-heartedness) and that that is retarding the healing and bountiful spirit.

      You're very concerned about the abortion issue. Well, I hold with the people who say they are consistently pro-life. They are against capital punishment, abortion, war, and really all unnecessary or wanton death. What about removing technological life-support? Whose call is that? Of course, pro-abortionists raise all sorts of hypotheticals that many women and family members actually do face, such as incestuous rape of those too weak to survive. Well, of course the lack of faith resulted in the rapist and the disease or weakness. It's a hard sell though, just as pacifism doesn't sell well with the U.S. Marines. Jesus though didn't use the hard-sell. He just said the truth and that was that. They sort themselves. I agree.

      I believe that if we all turn away from selfishness that all these issues will become moot. God will heal everything and everyone such that there won't be any such artificial life-support because people will be completely faithful.

      As for Titus 1:16, doesn't that apply to people who not only resort to needless death by abortion but also by punishment and war? Don't they show that they really, on a certain level, hate Jesus? I also know that many can turn. They must choose to turn to be chosen. That's too paradoxical for the rest though. They can't reconcile such things.

      God bless,


      P.S. Where do you find the time to do all the image work on your site and still read, write, and post?

    • I want to flesh out some things some more.

      I wrote the following above:

      I’m talking to the people who are reachable and to those who think they are Christian but just haven’t analyzed how he was against greed, violence, and sexual depravity and for giving and sharing all, harmlessness that is pacifism, and at least sexual harmlessness (faithful, heterosexual, monogamous, non-abusive) and even purity for those to whom that’s given.

      Analysis in the sense I mean above is much more than dispassionate and technical processing. Soul-searching is good terminology here. It goes as deep as one will. What is at the root of our motivations? What is our core emotional basis? Is our root-spirit selfish or unselfish? The root of evil is selfishness. Yes, Paul said it's the love of money. It's the same root. There's no semantical debate in it.

      The temptation of evil is to selfishness, for it we knew then what we may know now, we would have been vigilant to say, among other things befitting the given circumstances, "But that's selfish. It's harmful. It isn't being good. It doesn't benefit anyone." We were asleep to the pitfalls because temptation rushes in to steal little ones before they can grasp cascading cause and effect and before they can realize just how subtle temptation can begin. It is right there to one degree or another in those we love and trust to look out for us and often unbeknownst to those very souls.

      You wrote, "...the Iraqi conflict wasn’t the best course of action, but we (with leadership from our President and Congress) took that course, and we have to see it finished, to help the good people of Iraq who are still alive." Now, you say, "we" took that course. I understand that you mean this in the sense of the nation being a representative, democratic republic. In truth though, that process has been severely corrupted, not that it is the best anyway. I don't include myself in the "we" of whom you speak. That doesn't absolve me from speaking out.

      I see from your site that you are opposed to Ron Paul for President. There are many things for which he stands with which I don't agree; however, he has made the point that Vietnam, even though the very forces the U.S. military and intelligence community were fighting came to power, that country is not as predicted by the Hawks of the 1960's and early 1970's. If anything, it's an economic Wild West. That's not what I want, but it isn't what the Hawks claim they wanted to prevent via massive bombing, poisonous defoliation, and throwing people out of helicopters and airplanes alive in large numbers, as testified to before Congress by those who were directly involved in Operation Phoenix. My point is that Ron is right that the people of Iraq could and would put their country back together in a way that would not result in what the Hawks today claim to be fighting.

      As for “Bush Derangement Syndrome,” the Christian Zionists are a really dangerous group. They are Old Testament all the way. They only use the New Testament selectively in ways that promote their Old Testament vision.

      George W. Bush informed his father before George W. (GW) ran for President that he, GW, could tactically win by exploiting what the Moral Majority started at the school-board level throughout the nation. It must be remembered that those calling themselves Christians by and large in the Deep South had not been involved in crass politics. They shunned that corrupt field and for good reason, albeit they weren't all consistent throughout their theological positions. The Moral Majority was invented to bring those people into the worldly world (not eternal but rather secular) and to make them part of that world and to bring them to lead that world. It was an appeal to them to gain control of the coercive power of the secular state. That's leading people astray! It has led to many self-styled Christians being extremely materialistic and anti-egalitarian. The common folk who professed The Bible in the Deep South and across the nation were much less materialistic and vastly more egalitarian. That goes with the qualification that individuals do have different gifts and needs. The glitziest televangelists have just been pied pipers with all their false promises, self-aggrandizement, greed, and covetousness.

      Covetousness is at the root of the Iraq War. The covetous set it up. All the other reasons given are to rationalize and to distract from what is at heart. The false-Zionist Jewish neocons appeal to "existential" threats. Well, is living in this flesh by-any-means-necessary what Jesus taught? Did he say fight and kill to survive in the here and now? At the same time, to thrive in a manner consistent with what is going on in Israel in general is to lord it over more and more peoples and land. Jesus stands firmly against lording it over others. Those neocons are spreading falsehood. They are not true Zionists because true Zionism is peace. Zion is the state of peace. It is the peace of which Jesus and Isaiah spoke.

      Also again, you said you “really wonder if [the] Liberal Church is just a fabrication." Why did you write that? What is it about this site and what I've written about the Real Liberal Christian Church or the Christian Commons Project™ that gave or gives you pause, or is it just general mistrust? Why is it that I'm placed in the position of being guilty with the burden of proof resting on me before anyone has offered up any evidence for any charges they allege? I'm not directing that at you. I'm referring to the numerous people who have contacted me and/or commented on this site, many of who have written scathing accusations that they never even try to substantiate. It's very nasty. I don't lose any sleep over it mind you. I understand on a certain level why they are that way. It's just so obviously wrong; however, they act as if they know better.

      A reading of the comments on this site shows that no one has addressed the entirety while offering up anything better. Most have assigned evil intent based solely upon my asking for donations for the Christian Commons. They do that without thinking about Jesus having a purse that was carried by Judas into which people placed money to further Jesus's cause. Lodgings and meals were paid for out of those contributions. During the Last Supper, his disciples wondered if he had sent Judas out to give alms. I should think that the disciples did that on a regular basis. That's consistent with Judas complaining about Mary anointing Jesus with very expensive ointment that Judas said could have been and should have been sold so the money could then be used to help the poor. Was he earnest in his thinking? We know from the record that Jesus rebuked him for not being able to see the full picture and to keep his priorities straight and in proper balance — no small expectation.