October 16, 2006
reported by BBC News , a forthcoming study in the
academic peer review journal Lancet estimates the extra number
of people killed because of the aggression-occupation of Iraq at
655,000 -- up from a previous Lancet study that estimated
100,000 deaths since the US-UK attacked Iraq.  All
the killing has its origin in US-UK government lies. Weapons of mass
destruction were just a pretext as acknowledged by Ziocon Paul
Wolfowitz in a Vanity Fair interview, and the invasion was a
foregone matter as revealed by the Downing Street Memos.
There is an ongoing genocide in Iraq.
What else can over 600,000 killings be deemed but genocide? A price
"worth it"?  George W. Bush, who some consider the
elected president of the United States, labeled the killings in Darfur
as genocide over a year ago.  But, in totality and
proportionally, the number of deaths in Sudan pale in comparison to
the number of deaths in Iraq. Sudan with a population of 41,236,378
(July 2006, CIA Factbook estimate) is purported by some sources to
have incurred 200,000 deaths from "fighting, famine and disease."
 Using the figure cited in the latest Lancet
to-be-published study, Iraq with a population of 26,783,383 (July
2006, CIA Factbook estimate) has a far greater extraordinary fatality
rate covering approximately the same period of time.
The genocide in Iraq is perpetrated by
US imperialist interests. Despite the large number of body bags
returning to the US (at best a lowball figure, as who can really trust
the number of US troop fatalities reported given the mendacity and
secrecy of the Bush administration -- not to forget the complicity of
the Democratic Party?), the corporate media continues to pump out the
outrageous disinformation and propaganda supporting societal
destruction and murder. The media is an ensanguined partner in
Why the media pumps out the
disinformation is understandable: it is effective in swaying much of
the public to the "national interest" -- i.e., the interests of
The duped support imperialism
A 10 October e-mailing from
Censored exemplifies the effectiveness of disinformation through a
unique methodology for gathering and analyzing polling data. The data
collected and analyzed by the firm Retro Poll reveals a connection
between people’s ignorance and the opinions they hold. Not
surprisingly, misinformation or disinformation appears to affect
Retro Poll’s methodology asks both
factual and opinion questions and compares the opinion responses on
accurate and inaccurate understanding.
In a recent Retro Poll phone survey, 151
Americans in 40 states were contacted. Among the results were that
only 53 (35%) knew that none of the 19 al Qaeda members alleged to be
directly involved in the 9-11 attack were Iraqis; about the purported
connection between Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden, 23% said there
were no ties while 28% didn’t know; only 44% knew the International
Red Cross has charged the US with systematic torture at Guantanamo;
only 40% knew of the "extraordinary rendition" of prisoners by the US
to countries that torture.
86% of people who think Saddam and Al
Qaeda worked together agreed that prisoners held at Guantanamo without
trials must all be guilty simply for being picked up, while two thirds
(67%) of those who knew the truth about Saddam and Al Qaeda reject
blanket assumptions about prisoners’ guilt. Three quarters (75%) of
those who have not heard about the "renditions" in which prisoners
have been secretly transferred between nations say they think that all
the prisoners at Guantanamo are guilty, compared to just 39% of those
who did answer the rendition question accurately. Statistically such
differences were highly unlikely to occur by chance (far less than
"But the important point," stressed Dr.
Marc Sapir, executive director of Retro Poll, "is how strongly these
opinion differences are linked to bad information in our surveys."
Most of the bad information came from TV sources; about half of the TV
viewers cited Fox or CNN as their source.
Safir warned, "What people think they
know -- if it is consistently wrong -- can endanger our nation in a
world environment of war, crisis and US dominance."
Giving credit where it is due
The BBC News noted that the Lancet
findings are "vigorously disputed by supporters of the war in Iraq,
including US President George W Bush." Bush described the methodology
of the discredited researchers as "pretty well discredited." One
cannot help wondering about how thoroughly discredited a warring
president must be who justified an invasion based on phantom WMD,
leading to the untimely killing of so many people, who described the
mission as accomplished but whose troops remains mired in the death
and mayhem that engulfs Iraq.
With his credibility in tatters, Bush
still uttered: "Six-hundred thousand or whatever they guessed at is
just ... it’s not credible."
The BBC News mentioned that the 655,000
figure has a built-in "survivor bias." A bias toward underreporting
deaths is reasoned to exist for slain resistance fighter, infant
mortality, and the fact of completely annihilated families.
The corporate media abysmally covered
the Iraqi civilian fatalities first study published in the Lancet.
It is expected that the corporate media will once again focus on the
inexpert politicians’ opinions as to what constitutes proper
methodology. The effectiveness of such corporate media reporting will
depend on the public continuing to trust a media steeped in a
There is, after all, another media that
is not beholden to profit nor the spilling of blood to obtain greater
Co-Editor of Dissident Voice, lives on the outskirts of Seoul
in southern Korea. He can be reached at:
rise’ in Iraqi death tolls," BBC News, 11 October 2006.
 Les Roberts, Riyadh Lafta, Richard Garfield, Jamal Khudhairi,
Gilbert Burnham, "Mortality
before and after the 2003 invasion of Iraq: cluster sample survey,
Lancet, 29 October 2004.
Downing Street Memos. "But the intelligence and facts were
being fixed around the policy."
 In 1996, then US ambassador to the United Nations, Madeleine
Albright, gave the infamous necrophilic reply that the murder of a
half-million Iraqi children was a price "worth it" in a 60 Minutes
 Jim VandeHei, "In
Break With U.N., Bush Calls Sudan Killings Genocide,"
Washington Post, 2 June 2005.
Obasanjo Warns of 'Near-Genocide’ in Darfur," allAfrica.com,
11 October 2006. About genocide in Darfur, Nigeria’s president
Olusegun Obasanjo finds Bush to be hasty.