Wednesday, November 12, 2003

Historians Dispute Analogies to Germany, Japan, with Iraq

The Bush administration has continually compared the situation of post war Iraq with that of Germany and Japan under occupation after WW II. At one point, administration spokesmen even alleged that US troops in Germany had faced attacks by "Werewolves," or, former SS men. This allegation is unfounded. No US troops were killed by Werewolves in post-War Germany, and they assassinated maybe one mayor, though I understand that is controversial.

Likewise, the administration of Japan was by old New Dealers who strengthed trade unions and democratized. The major projects of the Bush administration in Iraq have been to dissolve existing unions, to completely throw open the country to unregulated investment (which could easily turn speculative and predatory), and to install a regressive flat tax that will favor the emergence of super-rich robber barons.

--Juan Cole

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