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Beyond Chron
October 20, 2006

Copyright © 2006 Marc Norton

It was Bruce Willis who famously said "All I see are dead people."

But George Bush doesn't see them, or at least not a lot of them. Commenting on a report from a prestigious medical journal, The Lancet, that more than 650,000 Iraqis have died in the wake of the U.S. invasion, Bush says he just doesn't believe it.

"I do know that a lot of innocent people have died, and that troubles me and it grieves me." He says he'll stick by the figure of 30,000 dead given to him by "General Casey" and unnamed "Iraqi officials."

As horrific as the war in Iraq is, Iraqis aren't the only ones on the planet who are dying. According to the United Nation's World Food Program, every five seconds a child dies because that child is hungry.

We are not talking about war here, just everyday starvation. Children neglected by the warmongers in Washington and the finance capitalists on Wall Street. Children who could be saved, if it wasn't for the fact that food goes primarily to those who can buy it, not to those who need it. Does that "trouble" and "grieve" Bush?

One child dead from hunger every five seconds. That's twelve dead children every minute. That's 720 dead children every hour. That's 17,280 dead children every day.

The United Nations estimates that 25,000 people die every day from hunger and poverty. Obviously, a lot of them are children.

These are real numbers, and real dead people, whether Bush sees them or not. Whether Bush mobilizes the forces of the empire to feed them, or not. Whether we do anything to end the grotesque system that kills them, or not.

On September 11, 2001, five years ago, 3,000 people died. That changed everything, right?

Yesterday, 25,000 people died from hunger and poverty. It's as if sixteen planes flew into giant skyscrapers the size of the World Trade Center buildings, mostly full of children, killing everyone inside.

That changed everything, right?

Probably not, because it happened again today, and will happen again tomorrow, and again, and again, and again.

If 25,000 people die every day from hunger and poverty, that means over 9 million die every year -- 6 million of them children.

That's one-and-a-half Holocausts every year. No gas, no deliberate murder. Just deliberate neglect.

Since 9/11, five years ago, 45 million people have died from hunger, poverty and neglect.

George Bush, who pays no attention to the United Nations unless they can be scared into agreeing with him, probably would find the United Nations World Food Program statistics "not credible," just like he views The Lancet report on dead Iraqis.

But all I see are dead people. And an economic and political system that puts profits before people, dead or alive.

Basta ya.

[Trivia note: This article begins by quoting Bruce Willis saying "All I see are dead people." Several readers have objected that it was the kid, Cole, in Sixth Sense who said
"I See Dead People," not Willis, who played the boy's psychologist. True enough.
However, I was not quoting Willis in Sixth Sense, but in 12 Monkeys, where he played
a time traveler who came back from the future after five billion people had died from a
man-made biological plague. Two thumbs up.]


See also:

The Lancet Study Puts a Number on Iraqi War Deaths
SFGate, by Eugene Robinson - October 16, 2006

Dubya Tries to Count Iraqi Civilian Death
SFGate, by Mark Morford - October 18, 2006

Interview with Lance epidemiologist Les Roberts
Z Magazine, by Ari Paul - January 2007

The Secret Air Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan: Unreported Casualties
Z Magazine, by Jeff Nygaard - June 2007

...and then get a move on.