"There are 10^11 stars in the galaxy. That used to be a huge number. But it's only a hundred billion. It's less than the national deficit! We used to call them astronomical numbers. Now we should call them economical numbers." ~ Richard Feynman
East Lynch: A Melodrama With a Moral
We have arrived at a point in time sufficiently distant to gain a wide-angle perspective of that wonderful extravaganza portraying the latest holy war to Make The World Safe For Democracy: the American 'liberation' of Iraq . The multi-billion dollar production having wrapped and gone into post-production, various pesky facts are showing-up in the background, spoiling some of the best effects. It is possible not only to reconstruct a more reasonably believable picture of some of the least likely scenarios by examining what has wound up on the cutting room floor, but, by shining the laser of truth through it, hologram-like, also obtain a startling picture of reality from what was not apparent in the original. A case in point is the Pvt. Jessica Lynch story.
The front-page story run by a New York City daily tabloid of high circulation provides a good idea of the rushes coming in from the set at the time: Fade in on the stern, blonde-haired, blue-eyed, Anglo-Saxon warrior, Private Jessica Lynch, riding in her Humvee on a mission to tame the frantic autocrat, Saddam Hussein. Suddenly, hordes of filthy, desperate, Iraqi blackamoors fiendishly ambush our heroine's unit. With a defiant sneer, she sets her jaw resolutely towards the foe; her M-16 barks out repeated rebukes, sending scores of the enemy to their eternal rendezvous with Allah'or Shaitan. Heaps of Iraqi dead surround her position. In the final, desperate moments of the struggle, during which her leg and arm are broken, her ammunition exhausted, she takes them on at a ratio of ten to one, hand to hand, seizing her useless weapon by the barrel and swinging it, Davy Crockett style, at her tormenters. Captured, she is spirited off to a Moorish crag, in the dungeon of which she is to be broken on the rack'or worse. At the moment when all hope has evaporated and the torturer's leering, sinister face inches closer to her pure and fair one'hark! The glorious, welcome sound of American munitions exploding! It is a daring commando rescue raid, starring U.S. Navy SEALs. A John-Waynesque platoon leader appears at the head of the stairs, silhouetted in blazing white light, guttering torch in one hand, M-16 with banana clip in the other. 'Unhand that maiden, you accursed wretch,' he roars, 'Don't you know that is U.S. Government property?''that line of country. Am I exaggerating here? A little, perhaps'but only a little. The original story, remarkable for its paucity of actual fact, was written so as to lead the reader to infer a narrative along the lines set forth above. They even styled her a 'female Rambo,' while the front page featured a full-page, four-color cut of the ing'nue on her stretcher, along with the 180-point scare-head, JESSICA TORTURED.
Much later, news trickling in from the land of the fugacious Weapons of Mass Destruction began to form a radically different picture. Testimony of Iraqi liberate's involved in the case revealed that she was not held captive by Iraqi forces, but was cared for by Iraqi medical personnel in a hospital. The same even went so far as to send her in an ambulance to a nearby American unit, saying in effect, 'Beg pardon, but we have this little girl of yours; she's hurt, but we've patched her up; do you want her back?' The Yankee reply was, characteristically, a burst of automatic weapons fire'they were not about to pass up a heaven-sent opportunity to stage a glamorous commando raid for the cameras. Impeded by a locked door at the hospital during the now-famous raid, and spurning a proffered key, the American heroes preferred to break the door down, Waco style: It would play better back home.
Until recently, the Pentagon apparently had preferred to remain silent about the incident. All one had to go on was the sensational copy of the so-called 'embedded journalists,' who are manifestly not journalists at all, but press agents. Significantly, the Lynch family has also declined to shed any light on the matter, likely under admonishment of their Federal handlers.
The glamorous version of the story having passed into American lore and thus served its purpose, the heretofore tight-lipped Pentagon has now made an about-face, claiming, in a U.S. Army report, that the firefight story, or that la Lynch had fired her weapon at all, and the manner in which she received her injuries, were all journalistic fabrications! That, in fact, the vehicle in which she was riding lost its way and collided with another, injuring the hapless private. Soldiers of the ambushing Iraqi patrol subsequently discovered, fished out, and deposited her in said nearby hospital. According to one Pentagon official in a statement to a major D.C. area newspaper, Private Lynch's survival was due solely to the care she received at the hands of these Iraqi hospital personnel. (The alleged torture was pure buncombe.) Worse yet, the heroics attributed to her were actually those of an Army hash slinger, one Sergeant Donald Walters, who was obliging enough to get killed in action and make his rendezvous with destiny on the cutting room floor. Finally turned over to the SEAL unit, which however, wouldn't touch her until they had gone through their silly Hollywood antics, the star-crossed young private was loaded aboard a military transport bound for occupied Germany, and, ultimately, deathless fame and assured fortune in God's Promised Land, the U.S. of A.
Truth is most often mundane rather than glamorous or romantic, as observed the late film director Alfred Hitchcock, who said that good drama was a recreation of everyday life, but 'with the boring bits taken out.' Unfortunately, when one takes the boring bits out of the Lynchian tragedy, nothing is left save highly refutable U.S. propaganda fustian. It is instructive, however, to read between the lines into the workings of the collective mind of the society that sent Miss Lynch to her ordeal.
What is a giddy young teenage girl doing in army fatigues, wandering around in the middle of the military rape of a defenseless Third World country in the first place, one might justifiably ask? In the United States , young people are inculcated from an early age with the idea that an individual's sole purpose in life is to have a Job, preferably, a Good Job, with one of the major corporations that serve the State that calls itself 'The United States of America.' Unfortunately, even in that utopian State, there are not enough Good Jobs to go around, and must therefore be rationed on the basis of one's having undergone the process of State indoctrination euphemistically called 'higher education,' as provided (for a price) by the various State licensed and controlled colleges and universities. The concept of a free society where an individual is allowed to make his way in a world of abundance according to his own ability is painted as anarchic and frightening. The problem of the proletarian and petit-bourgeoisie masses, which comprise most of American society, is how to ensure its sucklings will have access to the coveted Jobs, given the high cost of tuition. Here the State steps in and saves the day'solving (as usual) a problem it itself created. If young Johnny or Jane will but carry a rifle for the State in one of its military branches, the State will in return arrange for his or her education in one of the State-approved institutions'all paid for out of the State's cornucopia of stolen wealth. Hence the phenomenon of the 'college-money mercenary.' As anyone who has been through U.S. military basic and advanced training (this reporter has, but is not proud of the fact) realizes, armed services recruiting propaganda notwithstanding, the primary role of the enlisted soldier is to carry a rifle, and to absorb bullets and shrapnel with his body. These poor kids are in effect inveigled into a game of Russian Roulette where, if they lose, they must run a gauntlet of bullets and shrapnel, and if they 'win,' are shackled to a corporate treadmill for life, with television sets, air conditioners, automobiles, and the various other worthless trappings of State-promoted mindless materialism dangled before them as incentive to keep going until they are of no further use to the State's economic machine. Such is the value of youth in the United States of America .
Before the war began, as part of the U.S. propaganda blitzkrieg, a senator from one of the southern states, we'll call him Senator Claghorne to spare him the embarrassment of recognizing himself, said on one of the Sunday morning television political forums that the Iraqi people, after having been 'liberated' (conquered) by U.S. forces, would 'know freedom as Americans know it.' This Orwellian doublespeak might be interpreted to mean that their society would be transformed into the kind of which Private Lynch is a product'a society in which freedom is slavery, war is peace, mendacity is truth; where the rule of law is replaced by the law of the jungle; where human ingenuity is reduced to spying on one another on behalf of the State; where human values are reduced to the lowest common denominator of television, blue jeans, ball caps, Coca-Cola, 'hip-hop' culture, and McDonald's gut-bombs; and yes, where nubile young women are valued no more than gun fodder, to be dressed in neuterizing uniforms and sent into the meat-grinder of war. The North American ruling class intends this society they have created as a model for a 'New World Order,' to be imposed upon the rest of the nations of the world by a process of deception, if possible; by force, if necessary, until the whole world 'knows 'freedom' as Americans know it.'
Given that a civilized society, in the Western lexicon, is one that is reduced to order, rule, and government, and reclaimed from savage life and manners, it is not hard to see that among individuals comprising a society, it is its women whose interests are predominately served by civilization. Its men, in return for posterity provided by women, by channeling their natural instincts to subdue their environment, provide the necessary conditions of liberty and stability. One of the institutions created for this purpose is military, which is the collective effort of men applying the principle of division of labor to the task of maintaining these conditions. It is plain, then, that when a recidivistic society exploits its young women as soldiers; the whole raison d'etre of its military is nullified. Show me a nation that treats its womenfolk in an ignominious way, and I'll show you an inevitably ignominious nation. Observe the irony, then, of the United States ' superior attitude toward the various Arab and Asian states over the supposed inferior status of their women, when its own are reduced to mere factors of production, or, in the case of its female 'soldiers,' even less. The American concept of 'order' is inverted order, requiring men's minds to be changed to suit it, through the imposition of chaos, terror, and force. Mesmerized by statism, the people of the United States have become so degraded as to approach the level of the pre-Columbian Mesoamerican civilizations that declined to the savagery of human sacrifice and finally cannibalism, before vanishing into the nacht und nebel of history. Willingly, even eagerly, they offer up their sons and daughters to be sacrificed on the altar of 'security' in order to please the bloodthirsty false-god of the State. The leviathan of the United States , drunk with power, maddened by the taste of blood, its helpless masses in tow, has been loosed upon the face of the earth, marauding and trampling, snapping blindly right and left like a rabid animal at anything it perceives as a threat to its continued existence; which is to say: practically everything. It is now therefore the task of all decent, intelligent, peace-loving'in short, all civilized'persons to defend themselves against the threat of a monstrous world tyranny, made, according to Sir Winston Churchill, 'darker and perhaps more protracted by the lights of perverted science.'
This is the lesson of the story from the cutting room floor'the story of poor Jessica Lynch.