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pillBOX ARCHIVE 5/iii
Document extract:
NOTES made
28-30th MARCH 2003


Friday 28th

---rereading all these notes for first time.
You realise that if you didn’t take notes it would be so much CHAFF…
… the goalposts changed three times a day and more…
‘Moment of truth’ my arse…

7.00 Channel 4 News:

2nd market
55 dead?
7 o clock evening

Basrah : Iraqis [allegedly] firing on own people…
BUT: “…has to be said the army has made a series of claims in last few days which turned out to lack substance.”

ALSO: government in fast backpedal retreat from ‘execution’ claims.

Only a week, BUT --- this feeling --- nothing is quite going according to plan. Neither hearts+minds. Nor collapse of Iraqi troops. Bad weather --- difficult to identify troops… uncooperative civilians - who still remember being encouraged to rebel back in last war – and then being ABANDONED completely and utterly by US…

If the US has seriously underestimated Iraqi troops… isn't this a consistent trait? America ALWAYS doing this militarily? (I.e., if they had to rely on tactics, on ‘military intelligence’ alone and not zillions dollars worth of impossibly advanced war tech – they would be screwed, like in Vietnam…*) And Britain too – in all things. We even seen it in sport/football – we consider things WON before they begin… just Because We’re Britain! And we bloody invented ALL THIS - which, in the case of fucked up arbitrarily map-drawn asian/middle east ‘states’… WE DID.

(*Wish I could find Guardian article I clipped out last year. Dispute in ranks of US military. They had staged a dummy run war-game. And - a bit like that dodgy Frasier-guy movie about submarines! – it was the might of the new hawks and their zillion dollar war-tech, against some canny old retired colonel and a few dopeheads in rubber dinghys… and THE LATTER WON! Easily & enormously!)

{
through the keyhole:
who lives in a bunker like this?!
}
John Dee biog: useless at playing the system. Court system. Patronage. Politics. Always dedicating his books to the wrong {obscure or dead!} people. . .
“Yep. I know that feeling.”
{
“The Establishment’s invisible powers. . .”
QUOTE frm – get this! - Mohammed al Fayed . . .
Sounding strangely like JOHN DEE, in fact. . .


Sat 29th

· First suicide bombing

· Another "friendly fire" death

… at which point you notice the phrase itself - ‘friendly fire’ - and how suddenly odd and inappropriate it seems.

Also… this uncanny feeling persists and intensifies: life as normal even tho this could be in both figurative and very real sense – the apocalypse, or the beginning thereof [?]
Because if Saddam DOES have weapons of mass destruction… and he is driven into a corner and looks like he might lose face… might he not use them?

It feels DARKER already.

“And they will be allowed to grieve in their own way.”
Allowed? ALLOWED?

11.55
At last an actual interesting NON press office snippet…: grumblings from Brit troops on ground about Americans. How it bodes for future.
Port: brits wanted it returned to Iraqis as goodwill grace note. Americans insisting on it being A COMMERCIAL AMERICAN OPERATION.

Serious divisions between us/uk… plans for running Iraq’s largest port at Umm Qsar. Brit army want it run by local Iraqis as model for the future reconstruction… but earlier this week the Bush administration handed the $4.8m contract to the private Stevedoring Services of America [SSA]… the Seattle based firm has clashed with workers across three continents and faced accusations of being union busters. [Surprise surprise!]
The Seattle based co has business interests at 150 sites around the world includng [get this!] VIETNAM, India, CHILE and Panama.
Its president, Jon Hemingway, has given political donations [donnes] to Republican candidates.
A contract has also gone to the U.S. engineering firm Kellogg Brown and Root – part of Halliburton, the company once headed by US vice president Dick Cheney [to put out oil well fires and repair oil facilities]

NIGHT

Hawkish right wing commentator on Rumsfeld claim that Syria is arming Iraq: “…that there seems to be evidence at least in his mind…”
IN HIS MIND? SEEMS?

Cowboys indians morality for an area as complex as the M.E.

“He [S.H.] has the potential like Hitler to enflame the world into a global conflict..” Oh oh – here we go… preparing the ground for – maybe – difficulties up ahead. Maybe even lack of weapons?

Muslims turning to fight US.

Us, Me, I…

Shadow of Vietnam?
Maybe it’s time to unearth, contrast and compare?

BBC2
American citizens interviewed about Iraq: specifically WHY the US is there at all.
UNBELIEVABLE. And we’re not talking dumb trailer trash here [so to speak], but nice middle class ladies.

Lady One: “They did it. HE did it. Saddam.”
She honestly thinks it turns out this is why US is there: because Iraq – not figuratively, not even in terms of contributions or encouragement, but LITERALLY – “did” 9/11.
And she’s not alone.

Her friend isn't so sure.
“No it wasn’t him dear…”
“Is there a difference?”
[. . .]
“We need to be vindicated.”

What you need, lady, is to be EDUCATED. The whole ‘couldn’t find Iraq on a childrens map’ lot of you. (But no one in the US media it seems is exactly going to dissaude them from their views…)

“You have to show those people you’re capable of greater violence then they are.”

Footage in bars. Booze flushed people grinning – IGNORANT – “I feel like each one of ours – 100 of theirs…”


The woman who thought it was Saddam – her name: Erica WAYBRIGHT. Pynchon ring about it. . .

Because we’re Anglo – level headed, sceptical, pragmatic, and these days fundamentally faithless or at best tepid… - I don’t think we take it seriously. We don’t REALLY believe that THEY really believe. BUT THEY DO, you know. George Bush and his gang, Pat Robertson et al – they believe in the LITERAL truth of the Bible. Still. Today. In 2003. They do: they BELIEVE. In the Book of Revelations. In homosex as unnatural. Etc etc etc. That they are God’s chosen people.

All the WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION THEY WONT LET ANYONE ELSE HOLD.
Thus = this Iraqi War it’s like, what we’ll do first is, we’ll send in Inspectors AND TAKE ALL THEIR USEFUL WEAPONS AWAY FROM ‘EM.
Then we’ll start a fight with ‘em.
Barroom coward bully tactics.
‘Come on out and fight ya lilly livered Ay-rabs!’
‘But sirs – you have great big arsenal of guns, and we have nothing.’
‘Hah! Typical twisty Ay-rab logic!’

[Oh god… a different life. A time like this. Less education, less opportunities. I can just see it: me: pissed off assassin or terrorist. Easy. Not that far a leap as it stands. At times like this, in a refugee camp, your family slaughtered, no future – what you gonna do? A close reading of Foucault footnotes? I don’t THINK so. . .]

Can’t watch 24 any more. (Can only just watch CSI.). I just don’t feel comfortable with the way the US has no qualms about INSTANTLY REPACKAGING its tragedies as slick career-saving entertainment.

And let’s not FORGET: that incredible obscene overkill of the media around the Washington sniper. To the point that it interfered with – and prolonged – the spree.

It’s like: America loves to show and probe its awful wounds in public. As tho the showing and probing somehow redeemed the fact that the awful wounding took place to begin with. As tho’ TV programmes which express liberal doubt about [lack of] gun control somehow excuse all the deaths & accidents & etc. . .
The way U.S. repackages – now, at lightning speed - without reflection - EVEN [or especially] its FLAWs, its psychoses, its… DEATH KULTURE.
It makes me edgy about watching anything to do with crime, guns, death. . .
(And surely if Crime Scene Investigation really were as good and thorough and ethical as Gil Grissom and co make it seem, there would be NO – ZERO – miscarriages of justice in USA!)


SUNDAY 30th

Reading The Medieval World
+ levi strauss book; on Marcel Mauss and ‘The Gift’ [le don!]

Article in guardian mag about Vietnam. . . shame heaped upon shame.

That pigfucker Kissinger [who also pops up in that Robert Evans auto biog I just read!]
And you think… well, OK, it is “natural” – at least according to Kapital's ad hoc “logic” that such “successful, driven, powerful BUSINESS men” should attain to positions in government. [Look now at Rumsfeld et al. The crossover between hi business and hi power.] As opposed to feckless takes-a-decade-to-make-a-decision 'intellectual' flakes like the Pill Box constituency, say. . .

But is it?

The ‘profit’ war has taken over from the holy war or the nationalism war [territory for prides sake. First GOD, then land/image, now the unholy profit margin. Ever downward – in idealist terms - to quiz show bottom basement. Will you fight for this bar b q set, this car and this hi fi system? Or . . .this billion dollar uk-us fighter plane development contract? Good till 2054, boys. . .]

How is it an *********CENSORED FOR MY OWN LEGAL GOOD********* fuck like Kissinger has largely managed to so massage his image in States & elsewhere that he is ‘respected’ – that he was the only one to come out of watergate/vietnam quagmire with that twinkly-gravitas imago (and business rollodex) intact? Ditto his VERY odd sex symbology. V. odd.
Actually, a moment’s reflection, and, phrased like that, the Q/ seems to answer itself, no, really, doesn't it, for the more sophisticated sex in the charity circle woman? What, hun? You strafed 1400 women and children today with skin-stripping chemicals and even now as we sip our Gimlets they are screaming in inconceivable agony?
Let's go to bed. . .

But I always kinda had an unfeasible and inexplicable wrong-headed and doubtless queasily Oedipal soft spot for both G Gordon Liddy and my man Ollie North. (I even kicked off Vital Signs with a quote from the latter. Tho' now, I must admit, that action gives me sleepless nights wondering exactly where MY HEAD WAS AT, then. You think I have a bunker mentality NOW? Sheesh. . .you have NO idea. . .)

{
Reading book about QUANTAM COMPUTERs
Massive complex etc. I read on with mounting awe and respect, and fascination.
Until 23 or so pages in – the Q/ suddenly posed itself: what for?
And do you know what these mdoels of mathematical beauty & precision are being bit drilled and mega micro bought and paid for?
For what?
TO… STAGE… NU-CLEAR… EXPLOSIONS.
Because the ever zealous USofA cannot just ignite its noo bombs where it will any more… it has to STAGE them, as simulacra, in these big boys.
So go theorise that, Baudrillard baby.

Just when you think you can’t get more dejected than you already were, along comes shit like this, doesn’t it always? You try and improve your mind, pursue idealistic Science instead of your usual wild + crazy spheres, and what do you get staring back at you? Doc-tor fucking Faustus times a strangelovian infinity plus. (Or, rather, potentially, the big minus.)

As always, US exemptionism again: we can forge ahead, you fellas… but you, you-all stay behind. American Power & Leadership Inc., in other words, has become so innured to its own civilian population’s blind faith & complaissance & see-no-evil compliance, that it now expects all the nations of the world to behave in a self same manner! Doesn’t expect a single solitary soul to raise a hand in objection while the US stocks up and stocks up and builds up and betters its massive arsenal, while it BANS anyone it doesn’t like from having the self same arsenal.

Where does this trail lead?

They all lead back, ultimately, to Los Alamos, surely…

And who is still the only country to have used nuclear weapons in a real-time situ? That’s right.

Can you imagine a threatened toppled cornered Saddam actually using a nuclear device? Of course you can. Taking away not just his country & people, 1,000s of American/UK troops, giving a finger/signal, but also, taking away resources, oil, + ensuring that there won’t be US reconstruction/exploitation?
The ultimate suicide bombing, unless the BushBlairCorporation know something they haven't told us yet? That he DOESN’T have functioning nukes?
Which would make a HELL of a lot more sense… given their blase brazen rush-ahead confidence. . .no?

Haven’t watched ANY war news today.
Not sure that it’s “battle [coverage] fatigue” so much as LIE fatigue. Euphemism fatigue.

+Besides, far more interesting ‘bits’ to be found buried in the newspapers; such as the fact that Richard Perle is a serving member on the board of The Jerusalem Post
This detail in re claims published there this week – but doubted everywhere else – that a chemical weapons factory had finally been located. Let's keep an eye out for this, eh?

I wrote this before reading about Perle’s resignation – or better say, quasi-resignation, since he “retains a role” . . . which could after all mean anything, i.e. still on the board or ‘in the loop’ as they say on West Wing and 24. . . in fact the whole thing is very 24-esque. His nickname: prince of darkness.
And the currrent row was sparked by his work for one of the few UK companies that stand to profit from the Iraq war: the amazingly and spookily named Autonomy Corp.
You couldn’t make this stuff up, could you? (No wonder Pynchon had all those lean years.) And the Autonomy Corp . . . it's not merely 24-esque, but rather has a full blown ring of The Parallax View about it, nein?

Our friends at the Autonomy Corp. manufacture advanced computer eavesdropping systems for intelligence agencies around the world. Aaagrh! I got the FEAR!

posted by Ian 5/14/2003 07:21:00 PM

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