Sunday, September 14, 2014

War by any other name is still war - and the beat goes on





"Even today, after the second failure of another world war, perhaps one can speak of a third war, one fought piecemeal, with crimes, massacres, destruction...
War is madness. ... War ruins everything, even the bonds between brothers. War is irrational; its only plan is to bring destruction: It seeks to grow by destroying."

Pope Francis, September 12, 2014, 
Mass at the Italian Military Memorial of Redipuglia


War is good for the business of slaughter and, since the Neo-Cons took over Washington, DC, business is booming...literally.

This year, the US government is spending $1 Trillion on the big business of war - of course we must use it. That's the way of government budgets - if it goes unused, they don't get to carry it over to the next year, so they use it and ask for more.


War hawks from the "Chicken" kind (those who alluded service through the deferment plan, eg, Cheney, Mitch McConnell, John Cornyn et al)  to the delusional kind (John "jet jockey" McCain, Peter King) to the pompous, fear-mongering and lying kind (Lindsey Graham never once saw the world outside his US based office while in the military though he claims to be a "war veteran") love to screech about putting boots on the ground, sending young men and women into slaughter, as they dance for their masters, the MIC.

Now we are embarking on the latest chapter of the perpetual war (so named "the War on Terror").  After having created what we deem to be "terrorists" in Muslim nations,  we are told by the MIC echo machine, that it is imperative we take it on; bring "terrorists" to "justice" (because we do such a grand job of Justice - think GTMO, drone murder, and Bush's "payback" for WTC).


Isaac Newton's 3rd law of motion - For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

ISIS like Al Qaeda, like al Shabaab, like the Mujaheddin (before them), is just the latest incarnation of the evil responding to the evil done in our name.  Every time the US inserts itself into another nation's affairs, people take exception.  When people take exception, there is blowback.  The harder we push, the worse the blowback.

When we support oppressors we become part of the oppression.  When those who are oppressed rise up against their oppressors, they include everyone seen supporting their oppressor as the oppressor.  In Pakistan, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Yemen, Somalia, Kenya, and everywhere violence against America has taken place, we have been a part of the perceived oppressor.




The Rise of Islamophobia - Exceptionalist arrogance and stupidity has a new mask

The US, in its exceptionalist hubris, refused to recognize any potential for attack on the "homeland."  Our government (and a significant percentage of the ignorant, arrogant populace) truly believes in our "god given" supremacy as a nation (The stupidity burns).  We have continued to insert ourselves into everyone else's business as if we were the planet's Salvation Army and the universal chosen deity.  Covertly and overtly, we pry, push, punish, pay off, and preponderate.

The US is now perceived as the world's ultimate bully, spreading our British Empire-like imperialism as far as we can under the guise of "spreading democracy."  Is it any wonder that the US is now considered the biggest threat to world peace of any nation?

We have focused heavily on the Middle East - their oil, their size and their people having the audacity to live atop our oil and land.  From Morocco to Iran to Libya to Iraq to Yemen to Syria to Afghanistan, they are all viewed as other lands in need of "democracy."  

US suborns tyranny in the Middle East - we started during the World War years, setting our sites on the land lost by France and England.  We supported oligarchs and kleptocrats over any potential form of democratic rule. We inserted ourselves in Iran, and through covert ops, installed an oligarch, the Shah - all because of their oil;  we inserted ourselves in Iraq - first selling arms and chemical weapons to our good friend, Saddam then declaring war 2 times when he used them, over throwing his family, leaving civil war and genocide in our wake - oil again; we inserted ourselves into Afghanistan by supplying the Islamic extremists (the Mujaheddin that soon morphed into al Qaeda led by a member of the House of Saud) in order to beat back the crumbling USSR then, again, to assure a kleptocratic druglord was made leader; we inserted ourselves into Pakistan supporting the dictator that murdered the duly elected president, becoming a tyrant who ruled by criminality and oppression; we inserted ourselves into Saudi Arabia, supporting an oligarchical family (The House of Saud) that has little care for his nation and people other than the money he can steal from them = all because of their oil; we inserted ourselves into Libya - paying off the crazed Quadaffi and supporting his tyranny (The CIA even renditioned and tortured his opposition); we inserted ourselves in Egypt, supporting another dictator tyrant who denied basic human rights and assisted us in torture.

After 9/11, the drums of war beat in the hearts and minds of over 70% of the nation and nearly every member of Congress.  Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld and their echoing parrots used "Islam" as the new found "other" to create a fear and loathing in the people; a demand for vengeance by a warring nation.   They even coined a new term for it. "Islamofascism", claiming that al Qaeda, Saddam Hussein and the Taliban were Islamofascists.  They set the tone by ,manipulating and just plain making up the evidence in order to peak the rage and fear of the nation - stomping on the rights of Muslims around the nation and promoting outright hostility towards an entire religion - Islamophobic rage had taken over the mainstream.

The Neo-Cons, already firmly entrenched in the WH and cabinet, were being appointed to federal posts around the country, issuing warrants for searches, spying on the people and lying to Congress.  We, as a nation, were manipulated into believing Saddam Hussein was responsible for the attack on WTC and the Pentagon - our bloodlust oozed from the pores of nearly every man,. woman and child with the exception of about 25% of us who saw the hate-mongering and not-so "noble" lies for what they were.

No one wanted to listen to Barbara Lee; No one wanted to listen to Joe Wilson (even after Cheney and Co outed CIA operative Valerie Plame, destroying her cover and the cover of well placed operatives in Iran, Iraq and other nations); no one wanted to pay attention to the Downing Street Memo or the evidence proving the Bush White House was lying to America, the UK and the UN.  The fix was in - the nation was now fully neo-conned; Hate crimes targeting anyone in a turban, mosques, and Muslim communities sky-rocketed; the people wanted vengeance.  Islamophobia became the latest face of willful ignorance, fear and hate.




Perpetual War by any other name 

Today. we still won't find many listening to Barbara Lee; or Bernie Sanders or former assistant to Colin Powell, Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, or even General David Patreus...





What we have is an MSM hell-bent on parroting the latest calls for war; sensationalizing the deaths of two American journalists (the question of whether or not at least one of the journalists was already dead before his video was made by ISIS is still unanswered ); and avoiding interviews with or coverage of anyone who might not be calling for war while promoting the war hawks screeching for retribution.

We have a nation ignoring the lessons of Bush's War on Iraq and the "War on Terror" as we march into manipulated fear and loathing once again. As of last week, clearly half or more of the nation now "fears" that we are not safe from a terrorist act in the US and according to the latest CNN poll, 71% fear that we have ISIS terrorist cells in the US.

We have the latest neo-con president already using airstrikes; discussing the potential of working with war criminals and tyrants to build a “coalition of the willing” to help “degrade and destroy” ISIS; increasing the number of "boots on the ground" to "assist in training" and "protecting Americans" in Iraq.


There can be no doubt that the president spoke untruths. The strategy he unveiled simply cannot be American leadership at its best. After trillions of dollars spent on the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and against “terrorism” worldwide, with whole countries laid waste, hundreds of thousands dead, thousands of U.S. soldiers with permanent traumatic injuries — after all this, another U.S. secretary of state is going from one authoritarian state to the next to build a new “coalition of the willing” to help “degrade and destroy” the monster that together we helped create.

We have already tried Obama’s “new” strategy, and it has already failed. The U.S. simply cannot defeat an ever-expanding terrorist movement by strengthening ties with corrupt, brutal and authoritarian regimes, which for decades, thanks to U.S. support, have been oppressing their citizens while enriching themselves beyond measure. If American leadership were truly about “freedom, justice and dignity,” partnering with such regimes would be a nonstarter, not a cornerstone of U.S. strategy.

No dignity, no peace

Who are the partners Obama referred to in his speech that will belong to the U.S. coalition? They are:

  • Egypt, whose government is responsible for one of the greatest massacres of civilian protesters of the last century and continues to imprison and torture thousands of protesters, tighten control over civil society and even deny prominent activists the basic decency of visiting their dying parents. Cairo is engaged in all this while the White House announces the restoration of military aid and mendaciously denies knowledge of a well-publicized hunger strike when pressed by reporters.
  • Jordan, whose human rights record is similarly risible. Its people lack freedom, justice and dignity, and there is little chance they’ll get it under its authoritarian system, which has been supported by the U.S. for decades.
  • Saudi Arabia, the designated training ground for the so-called moderate opposition, whose government is perhaps the world’s most undemocratic, brutal, repressive and corrupt, and for decades the font from which militantly conservative, chauvinistic and violent Islamism has spread around the globe. It is a country where rich women are not permitted to drive and poor migrant women and men are routinely beheaded publicly and then crucified. Consider further that Obama chose the eve of the 13th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks to entrust Saudi Arabia — home to 15 of the 19 hijackers, the unrepentant architects of one of the most violent forms of religious expression since the Middle Ages and the single most important counterrevolutionary force in the Arab world — with the training of “moderate” Syrian opposition forces.
  • Turkey, a major NATO ally, which has been uniquely culpable in the spread of the various Al-Qaeda offshoots in Syria and Iraq, allowing its border to become a trafficking zone not only for weapons and fighters but also for oil from Syrian wells and refineries now under the control of IS militants. Without Turkish collaboration at the highest levels, the IS would be little more than Al-Qaeda’s and Al-Shabab’s slightly crazier cousin.

These are Obama’s partners, his “coalition of the willing,” which Secretary of State John Kerry hopes will help control borders and cut off terrorist financing. One would be hard pressed to find a group of countries less dedicated to freedom, justice and dignity. Obama is a very smart man and knows these facts, as evidenced in his famous “New Beginnings” speech in Cairo in 2009, in which he honestly discussed the impact of European colonialism, American imperialism and Arab authoritarianism. Sadly, that speech marked the first and last time he focused on democracy promotion as a goal of U.S. policy. How can there be peace, justice and dignity without democracy?

The president that declared he would end the perpetual war is expanding the perpetual war.  He has no intention of letting it end - The "War on Terror" is now his and he is pushing us forward into a protracted commitment against an idea.  ISIS is not the issue - It is just the latest incarnation of an idea taking hold across the Middle East and other Muslim nations.... blowback for our partnership in oppression.

Throwing money, bombs and boots on the ground, expanding the death grip of the MIC and covorting with criminal kleptocrats, oligarchs and tyrants will only create more anger and blowback, spreading the seeds of unrest and extremism, that actually can lead to the self-fulfilling prophesy that "they" are a threat to the US.

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