Bailey83221 (bailey83221) wrote,

History of lies that galvanized Americans to go to war


[The book Weapons of Mass Deception explains a story] which, more than any other, consolidated public and congressional approval for the 1991 Gulf war. We recall the horrifying stories, incessantly repeated, of babies in Kuwaiti hospitals ripped out of their incubators and left to die while the Iraqis shipped the incubators back to Baghdad - 312 babies, we were told.

The story was brought to public attention by Nayirah, a 15-year-old 'nurse' who, it turned out later, was the daughter of the Kuwaiti ambassador to the US and a member of the Kuwaiti royal family. Nayirah had been tutored and rehearsed by the Hill & Knowlton PR agency (which in turn received $14 million from the American government for their work in promoting the war). Her story was entirely discredited within weeks but by then its purpose had been served: it had created an outraged and emotional mindset within America which overwhelmed rational discussion.

--Lessons in How to Lie About Iraq August 17, 2003 by the Observer/UK

The movie "Live from Baghdad" shows "Nayirah" testifying before congress, but the movie fails to discredit "Nayirah" nor does it mention that the story was a fraud.

Also in the build up of the Gulf War, the US intellegence commitee sent out reports that Saddam was amassing forces on the Iraq-Saudi Arabi border. This was a fraud.


"Last night I announced to the American people that the North Vietnamese regime had conducted further deliberate attacks against U.S. naval vessels operating in international waters, and I had therefore directed air action against gunboats and supporting facilities used in these hostile operations. . . . Our purpose is peace. We have no military, political, or territorial ambitions in the area."

Lyndon Johnson, message to Congress, August 5, 1964, before Congress passed the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution.
(There was no Gulf of Tonkin attack)

-- NPR audio: Cronkite: Gulf of Tonkin's Phantom Attack


The American military was attempting to draw Filipino fire with provocative actions on hotly disputed mesa outside of Manila in 1899. General Otis chose to interpret local firing, mostly by eager American volunteers, as a full scale enemy offensive when in fact the only advance that evening had been made by his own troops. There were no serious causalities in the initial encounters on the Tonkin [in Vietnam] or the Philippine mesa, real or manufactured, so the American military could have chosen to interpret both episodes as minor incidents in the sobering light of the following day. Clearly American officers wanted to escalate the fighting for which they were well prepared. (Page 268) A series of orders and maneuvers by Otis during the final three weeks of peace [in the occupation of the Philippines], indicate that Otis may have planned and provoked the war. (Page 59) Otis continued to look for the appropriate sensitive spot to provoke his war. (Page 59-60) February 4, 1899 was the ideal day to begin the war, as the leading officers in the Philippine Army were scheduled to attend a formal celebration in Malolos, followed by a lavish ball that would go on until early hours of the next day. By his own admission, Otis raised the not only instructing [his men to take the disputed post] but to order his sentries to fire on any intruders. Early in the evening [two privates] were approached by four Filipino soldiers, now believed to be drunk and unarmed, [the American soldiers killed all four] For the next six hours, overeager volunteers unleashed fusillade after fusillade at the Filipino positions, long after darkness prevented them from seeing what they were firing at. General Macarthur [later] confessed that his troops did the first firing [which began the war]. Three regular officers who had been on the scene made it clear that not only did the American volunteers fire first, but they also did most of the shooting, as relatively few shoots were returned by the Filipinos. (Page 60-61)

--Benevolent Assimilation: The American Conquest of the Philippines, 1899-1903

Weapons of Mass Destruction (More later)


Sinking of ocean linear by German U-boat destined for England. The government lied that the ocean linear did not have weapons on the ship. (More later)


There was an outbreak of popular rebellions in Cuba and Philippines against Spanish rule...William Randolph Hearst's [owner of the New York Herald], Joseph Pulitzer and other publishers gave great play to the uprising in Cuba...

In one incident Hearst sent the noted artist Frederic Remington to Cuba to provide sketches for American newspaper readers of the revolution. When the disillusioned Remington wired Hearst "Everything quiet. No trouble here. There will be no war. I wish to return." Hearst shot back the notorious reply, "Please remain. You furnish the pictures and I will furnish the war."

...In October 1897 Theodore Roosevelt, at that time Assistant Secretary of the Navy in the administration of President William McKinley, sent a wire to American Admiral George Dewey in the far east advising him to prepare for an attack on the Spanish fleet in the Philippines pending developments in Cuba.

When the Battleship Maine arrived in Havana, Cuba on January 25 1898, ostensibly as a gesture of goodwill, relations between Spain and the United States were already under severe strain.

Then, on February 15, just as the Maine prepared to leave Havana, a huge explosion tore apart the ship. Two officers and 266 enlisted men out of the 354-man crew died. The Spanish helped rescue the survivors and expressed shock at the tragedy.

To this day no one knows for sure what caused the explosion. The Spanish certainly had no motive for provoking a war given the huge military and industrial preponderance of the United States.

Without one shred of evidence the American press assumed the Spanish were to blame. When Hearst heard the news of the explosion he declared, "This means war." The New York Journal carried a headline reading, "The War Ship Maine Was Split In Two By An Enemy's Secret Infernal Machine." The front page carried a drawing of the ship riding atop mines and showed wires leading to a Spanish fort guarding the harbor.

A commission hastily assembled by the United States concluded that a mine had indeed destroyed the ship. The assumption, though not explicitly stated, was that the Spanish were responsible.

The slogan "Remember the Maine" became the battle cry of US militarists. The United States issued a series of ultimatums, demanding that Spain virtually cede sovereignty over Cuba. Despite the fact that Spain capitulated to most American demands, McKinley asked for and received authorization for the use of military force from Congress. On April 23 Congress adopted a resolution declaring that a state of war existed with Spain.

Within months the Spanish were defeated. The United States obtained virtually all of Spain's remaining colonies, including Cuba and the Philippines, Guam and Puerto Rico. The United States next turned its military against its supposed allies, the Philippine insurrectionists. After crushing the Philippine revolutionary movement the United States established a brutal colonial administration to rival the Spaniards.

--The press and US militarism -- a lesson from history

Even more wars later...
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