On this Fourth of July morning, the Palm Beach Post out-jingos the other two midsize metropolitan dailies with a big package (it took up a full two-thirds of the front page) titled The Mounting Cost of Freedom. By William M. Hartnett, it begins this way:
"On this 230th anniversary of America's independence, two grim milestones serve as a reminder that the freedom celebrated today by the many has been earned by the sacrifices of the few: The military death toll in the Iraq war topped 2,500 three weeks ago."
Stop lying, goddammit. Just stop lying. I'm sick of it. The war in Iraq doesn't have two shits to do with our freedom. Anybody that tells you that it does is either a fool or a political operative. Iraq is a geopolitical war based on our "interests" -- clue: they're in the ground and all black and runny -- in the Middle East and it was ginned up on a concoction of presidential deceit.
The Mounting Cost of Iraq would have been one way to put it. The Mounting Cost of Empire. The Mounting Cost of Bush. The Mounting Cost of War would have been sufficient. There are a lot of titles. Just don't tell us it's about "freedom."
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Honor the soldiers who have been killed. They deserve monuments and plenty of newspaper space. They deserve our undying respect. But they don't deserve a sick charade -- or a Fourth of July parade, for that matter -- based on lies.