In the seventh year of his administration, George W. Bush has gained notoriety as perhaps the most hypocritical president in U.S. history. He did nothing to repair that sorry reputation in dedicating the “Victims of Communism” memorial in Washington, June 12. “The sheer numbers of those killed in communism’s name are staggering,” Bush intoned piously, adding that “as many as 10 million innocents perished at the hands of communism, helping make the 20th century the deadliest in human history.”

In delivering his tirade, Bush hid what really made the 20th century the “deadliest” in history: imperialist monopoly capitalism, which plunged humanity into two bloody world wars. Hitler fascism, sponsored by the wealthiest German banks and corporations, green-lighted by some of our own capitalists, unleashed a drive to conquer the world and exterminate Communists, Jews, Poles, Russians, Gypsies and other peoples.

The Soviet Union sacrificed over 20 million, including over a million members of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, in what they called “The Great Patriotic War” defending the USSR, and humanity, from the fascist invaders. Communists were in the vanguard of the antifascist fight throughout the world, starting in Spain, where thousands of volunteers died defending the Spanish Republic from Franco fascism

Unfortunately, too many people take it on faith that communism — not capitalism — committed the crimes of the century. And why not? After all, lies are fed daily, from schools to TV, that communism is the same as fascism. That is the Big Lie that the Cold War capitalists pushed and Bush and his corporate buddies push today. Why? Because anti-communism divides and weakens the movements for workers’ rights and social progress.

In Iraq, as in Vietnam and elsewhere over the past half century, it is the anti-communists in Washington, not the communists, who killed millions in imperial wars.

Anti-communism is the last refuge of scoundrels. Bush’s remarks are a desperate Big Lie by a warmonger whose policies have led to nothing but death and destruction. In fact, the humanist, democratic ideals of Marxism pose the most profound challenge to the reactionary politics of terrorism and fear that George W. Bush has done so much to promote.