Presidents’ Body Counts by Al Carroll Part 2

Bill Clinton

Clinton not only didn’t try to stop the Rwandan genocide, he pushed for the UN to withdraw and denied a genocide was happening. Clinton could have saved 300,000 to 600,000 lives if he’d sent just 5,000 US troops to intervene.

Right-wing terrorists murdered at least 288 people from 1995 to 2012 and attempted to assassinate Clinton, George W. Bush, and Obama. Clinton’s mishandling of the Branch Davidians, Randy Weaver, and the Republic of Texas militia led to more recruitment for right-wing terrorists.

On the plus side, Clinton delayed North Korea from developing nuclear weapons for a decade. He also sent troops into Somalia, saving 100,000 lives. However, Clinton withdrew as the civil war continued, resulting in 1,500 to 3,000 deaths.

Gerald Ford

Indonesia invaded East Timor in 1975 and committed genocide there until 1999, resulting in 90,000 to 300,000 deaths. Gerald Ford supplied arms to Indonesia and supported it. (Jimmy Carter continued selling weapons to Indonesia and covered up Ford’s actions. Clinton also supported Indonesia before cutting off support.)

Harry S Truman

During World War II, German and Japanese civilians were targeted, resulting in 305,000 German civilians and 500,000 Japanese civilians dead. 40,000 French and 25,000 Poles were also accidentally killed by Allied bombing that deliberately targeted civilians. Britain and the US bombing was done on a much greater scale than German or Japanese civilian bombing. 9 out of 10 cities with the highest death tolls during World War II were victims of Allied bombing. US troops in the Pacific Theater executed POWs, mutilated enemy dead, massacred civilians, and collected body parts as trophies.

Truman was a member of the KKK with a documented hatred of blacks, Jews, and especially Asians. Nuking Hiroshima and Nagasaki resulted in 200,000 to 220,000 immediate deaths and 370,000 severe long term injuries or early deaths. The bombing was unnecessary. A blockade would have worked better to end the war and the bomb didn’t make Japan surrender anyway. Japan surrendered when Soviets conquered more Japanese territory in 5 weeks than America did in 4 years.

Truman also started the Cold War. Truman’s Marshall Plan sent $13 billion in aid to Western Europe to stop Communism and made an enemy of the USSR. The Cold War includes: the Greek Civil War 1946-49 which killed at least 150,000; the Korean War which killed at least 2.5 million; the massacre of Indonesian dissidents in 1965-66 which killed 500,000 to 1 million; the US-Vietnamese War which killed 1-3 million; the Cambodian genocides which killed 1.7 to 2.2 million; and two Central American civil wars and the Guatemalan genocide which killed at least 325,000. There was an average of 180,000 deaths a year between 1950-1989, over 7 million deaths altogether. There were nearly 20 nuclear standoffs during the Cold War as well.

William McKinley

Immediately after the Spanish-American War, McKinley ordered the conquest of the Filipino people the US was supposedly there to liberate from the Spanish. 200,000 to 1.4 million civilians died. US troops also tortured rebels and civilians including using water boarding for the first time. They put Filipinos into concentration camps called “zones of protection”. The Philippines remained under US control until 1946. McKinley also ordered the conquest of Guam, Puerto Rico, and Samoa.

George W. Bush

Nearly everyone agrees Iraq was an unnecessary war and a complete failure. Afghanistan is more disputed. Up to 1 million Iraqi civilian deaths, 110,000 Iraqi combat deaths, 6,800 Americans, 1,500 other coalition deaths, 2,600 mercenary deaths. Unknown number of Afghan deaths. Even though Iraq clearly had nothing to do with 9-11, didn’t have weapons of mass destruction, and didn’t want America to liberate them, Bush attacked anyway. He even publicly admitted he didn’t care about finding Bin Laden. The cost of the wars was $4 trillion. Bush also ordered torture. Because he had trouble getting enough troops, Bush hired unruly mercenaries. One drunken Blackwater mercenary killed the bodyguard of Iraq’s vice president.

1,836 to 3,500 died during Hurricane Katrina due to the incompetence of Bush. Despite Louisiana being far more damaged by the hurricane, three quarters of federal funds went to Mississippi. Bush punished Louisiana because the governor criticized him and rewarded Mississippi because the governor praised him. Bush also hired Michael Brown to head FEMA despite him not being qualified simply because he was the friend of a friend. Hurricane Sandy, a more powerful storm hitting a more populated area (New York and New Jersey) only had 109 casualties because competent people were in charge that time.

Bush was also responsible for at least 108 torture deaths, most of them falsely accused of terrorism. 92% of Guantanamo prisoners were not terrorists. Most were local residents or refugees. Some were aid workers or missionaries. Five were British citizens. The torture also didn’t save any lives or prevent any attacks. Suspects being tortured said anything they could think of to stop the torture, giving lots of false intelligence which diverted resources to try to stop imaginary attacks. However, Obama didn’t prosecute Bush for his war crimes.

On the other hand, Bush saved hundreds of thousands to millions of lives through anti-AIDS programs in Africa. (Later, Obama expanded the program, helping 4 times as many people.) Due to his Christian ideology, the program wasn’t perfect. It emphasized abstinence, which evidence shows doesn’t work, and it also provided circumcisions even though condoms are much better at reducing the spread of AIDS and are cheaper than circumcisions. Gays, prostitutes, and IV drug users were often left out. It didn’t have a needle exchange program even though they’re effective. The program could have been much better, but it did save lives.

Andrew Johnson

75 to 112 million Europeans intentionally spread disease amongst Native Americans with infected blankets and by poisoning wells. The US government paid people to kill buffalo, reducing the population from hundreds of millions of buffalo to less than a thousand by 1900. Starvation made natives more likely to die of diseases. Andrew Johnson and Rutherford B. Hayes failed to stop this act of the army.

50,000 died during Reconstruction in the 5 years after the Civil War. Blacks, Mexicans, and anti-racist whites were murdered by white supremacists. The Confederate Secret Service also killed 2,000 Americans bombing over 200 ships and assassinated Lincoln. Johnson was the most racist president in US history, a drunk, petty man, the last president to be a slave holder. As a congressman, he took away free blacks right to vote in Tennessee.

One of Johnson’s first acts as president was to pardon almost all the Confederate traitors. He allowed states to take the vote away from blacks and fired blacks working for the post office. He vetoed the first civil rights bill. He often gave speeches while drunk and compared himself to Christ. Congress was eventually able to override his vetoes, but he tried to delay the 14th amendment as long as possible. He did nothing to stop the lynchings and rapes of black people by white terrorists. He fired US generals who tried to enforce the law and took land away from blacks and gave it to former slave owners. He even tried to form his own army to intimidate Republicans (who were the liberal party at the time). Johnson was almost removed from office. Impeachment was only one vote short because he bribed senators.

Teddy Roosevelt

Roosevelt was a bored rich man who liked playing soldier. He invaded Latin America several times to collect business debts: Panama in 1903, Honduras in 1903, 1905, and 1907; the Dominican Republic in 1903; Mexico in 1905; Cuba in 1906; and Nicaragua in 1907.

Building the Panama Canal also caused over 5,600 deaths from disease and riots protesting US control of the canal. While white workers lived in posh areas with drained swamps sprayed with insecticide, non-white workers lived in tents and died of malaria at ten times the rate.

Woodrow Wilson

During the anti-German hysteria of World War I, 6,000 were falsely imprisoned. German-Americans were lynched, lost their jobs, and had their property seized by the government.

Wilson also invaded Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Haiti, Mexico, and Panama. (Harding continued occupations begun by Wilson. Coolidge invaded Honduras and continued occupations begun by Wilson. Hoover invaded El Salvador and continued occupations begun by Wilson.)

Dwight Eisenhower

Truman and Eisenhower both ordered H bomb tests on Pacific Islands that killed people with radiation. Eisenhower invaded Guatemala, Panama, and Cuba.

John Tyler

John Tyler expanded slavery and committed treason by joining the Confederacy during the Civil War. He pushed to make Texas a slave state and opposed the Missouri Compromise because he believed slavery should be legal everywhere.

Franklin Pierce

Franklin Pierce tried to buy Cuba to expand slavery and wanted to take it by force when Spain wouldn’t sell. The Kansas-Nebraska Act ended a previous compromise on slavery. He did little to stop violence in Kansas and appointed a pro-slavery governor even though the majority was antislavery. He was so unpopular, he didn’t run for a second term and was the first president to need bodyguards.

James Madison

The War of 1812 began when America invaded Canada, resulting in 15,000 to 24,000 deaths. Jefferson had avoided war with Britain, but Madison was too weak to prevent Congress from voting to declare war. He only needed to get three congressmen to change their votes, but he was too timid and uncharismatic. The US troops were unregulated militia. They looted and burned York, Ontario. The British burned Washington DC down in retaliation. US troops outnumbered British, but were poorly disciplined, often fleeing battle at the first shot fired. The War of 1812 was the most devastating defeat in US history, but got painted as a victory.

John F. Kennedy

3,562 Cubans were killed by terrorists based in the US who were first organized by Kennedy and sometimes supported by the US government. There were over two dozen bombings in Miami each year in 1967 and 1968. From 1975 to 1983, there were 119 bombings by anti-Castro organizations. Orlando Bosch, who murdered 73 civilians in an airline bombing, was pardoned by George H. W. Bush.

Thomas Jefferson

Slaves in Haiti successfully revolted against France, and also successfully repelled invasions by Britain and Spain. Jefferson not only turned a blind eye to France’s genocide, but also worked with France to keep Haiti isolated, ensuring its long history of poverty. 170,000 died which was 40% of the island. As Washington’s Secretary of State, Jefferson sent weapons and money to oppose the Haitian revolution.

Jefferson had previously been opposed to slavery, banning the US from importing more slaves and banning it from several new states, saving 3,300 to 9,000 lives a year. However, after a journalist revealed that Jefferson had taken a slave as his mistress, he became in favor of slavery and wrote increasingly racist things.

Jefferson was a bit of a mixed bag, doing both good and bad things. He avoided wars with Britain and France, saving perhaps 20,000 lives. During the Napoleonic Wars, the British Navy impressed foreign sailors into their military and even fired upon and boarded US ships. Some Americans called for war even though the British military was far superior to the US at the time. Jefferson wisely didn’t go to war. John Adams began the Quasi War, a cold war with France, that Jefferson defused and even ended on good enough terms for the Louisiana Purchase. 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s