It’s Time for a Real Investigation
By Jack Balkwill
Source: Dissident Voice
There appears to be a bigger lie than “weapons of mass destruction.” It’s not simply that the illegal invasion of Iraq was based on lies, but that the entire “war on terrorism” is likely based on lies.
We were told by our government that Afghanistan was invaded for giving shelter to Osama bin Laden, who was responsible for the 9/11 attacks. Mainstream press have pushed this so repeatedly that “9/11″ and “Osama bin Laden” have become interchangeable.
While working on this piece I asked the first three people I ran into at my local grocery store “Who was responsible for the 9/11 attacks?,” three times getting “Osama bin Laden” for replies. This is not scientific, yet it makes one wonder how this would work out in national polling.
But what if bin Laden was not responsible for the 9/11 attacks despite the drumbeat of government officials and the corporate press? What if there has been a rush to judgment to make it appear the Bush regime was taking definitive action?
The invasion of Afghanistan certainly wasn’t about the Taliban – the Bush regime gave the Taliban $43 million in “aid” only four months before the 9/11 attacks, so were on friendly terms.
Following are three reasons to question official sources on their casus belli for invading Afghanistan.
Attempts to Peacefully Resolve the Issue
First, before the invasion of Afghanistan, the Taliban offered to try bin Laden in exchange for evidence that he was responsible for the 9/11 attacks.
President Bush provided no evidence, and invaded Afghanistan instead.
After the start of the U.S. air campaign, the Taliban offered to send bin Laden to a third country for trial if evidence could be provided that he had been involved in the 9/11 attacks – a proposal the United States also promptly rejected.
Why not provide evidence, if it were available, to prevent a war? It was obvious that the people of Afghanistan would defend their country from a foreign invasion, as they had since Alexander the Great invaded, and there would be a great loss of life (see Roman Empire, British Empire, USSR, etc.).
There can only be two answers– that there was no evidence supporting the cause for invasion, or that former President Bush is a psychopath who doesn’t care about human life, so contemptuously ignored the request for evidence.
Bin Laden’s Denials
Second, bin Laden denied, more than once, in the months following 9/11, that he was involved in the dirty deed. Less than a week after the 9/11 attacks, al Jazeera quoted bin Laden: “The U.S. government has consistently blamed me for being behind every occasion its enemies attack it. I would like to assure the world that I did not plan the recent attacks, which seem to have been planned by people for personal reasons.”
In an interview with Pakistan’s Karachi Ummat on 28 September 2001, bin Laden was quoted,
Neither I had any knowledge of these attacks nor I consider the killing of innocent women, children, and other humans as an appreciable act. Islam strictly forbids causing harm to innocent women, children, and other people. Such a practice is forbidden ever in the course of a battle. … I have already said that we are against the American system, not against its people, whereas in these attacks, the common American people have been killed.
This is a translation from Arabic to Urdu to English, and may not be entirely clear. But for those who believe bin Laden was lying, I would suggest they come up with a motive for such a lie. The USA had offered a $25 million reward for information leading to his capture, and President Bush had threatened “I want justice, and there’s an old poster out West that says, ‘Wanted Dead or Alive,’” so bin Laden had nothing to gain from such a lie – he was condemned either way. Bin Laden’s followers would have admired him as a great hero for having taken on the USA, so he had much to gain by accepting responsibility for the 9/11 attacks, were it a fact.
Third, there was an extensive effort to demonize bin Laden, at times with apparently false charges. Why would this be necessary for one who was guilty?
Our government and corporate media, as one on National Security State issues, made him out to be abominable, and without providing evidence, unceasingly assumed his guilt. Recordings were blasted and headlined in Western corporate print and electronic media of bin Laden accepting responsibility for 9/11. The public were not given the same eyeball-grabbing headlines when the recordings were proven to be likely bogus.
Here is a Guardian report showing that Swiss Scientists suggested that an audio tape of bin Laden taking responsibility was likely faked, although widely broadcast in the corporate press as evidence of his involvement in 9/11 attacks.
Here’s a BBC report showing how the “smoking gun” video may have been faked, again, after the corporate press hyped the video as incontrovertible evidence.
The official version, that 19 Arab hijackers were responsible, has flaws. One flaw was that many of the alleged hijackers have been found alive and well since 9/11. Of course, it may be that the hijackers used pseudonyms to conceal their identities.
But getting beyond these 19 Arabs is difficult because they are all dead and cannot be interviewed. Official government investigations into 9/11, much of which are classified, look like reflexive actions to neatly tie up loose ends rather than serious inquiries.
Certainly, as Ward Churchill pointed out (and lost his job for raising the issue), Arabs had a clear motive for the 9/11 attacks, with the UN revealing, only two years earlier, that the sanctions pushed mainly by the USA on the people of Iraq resulted in over 500,000 deaths of children under age five, mostly Arab, and most Arabs were aware of this and seething with anger.
To jump to the conclusion that bin Laden was behind the 9/11 attacks causes one to wonder, “Why then did the FBI never bring charges against bin Laden for the hijackings and murders? Why did the wanted posters (up to his death he was on the FBI ten most wanted list) not mention the biggest crime, though they mentioned smaller terrorist incidents as reasons for his being on the list?
We may never know if bin Laden was responsible for 9/11, but his involvement was used as the excuse for invading Afghanistan and slaughtering a massive number of people, based on the assumption that they gave bin Laden refuge.
Just as nobody has been charged with a crime for the illegal invasion of Iraq based on lies, it would appear that an investigation is in order involving the justification behind invading Afghanistan, starting with the matter of proof that bin Laden was directly involved. The American people and the people of Afghanistan have every right to be presented with the evidence.