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Will anyone fall on their sword for the sake of the US?

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posted on Oct, 22 2006 @ 06:35 PM
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I see a lot written on this forum about honour, duty and sacrifice. Most of it concerns the idea of "dying for our freedoms", and most of it concerns the reality of "dying for oil" or for other natural resources.

There's a very interesting article by Daniel Ellsberg called The Next War and in it he makes the point that had he published the secret documents to which he had access in 1964, the US might never have gone into Vietnam.

For those who don't know, Ellsberg, in 1971, leaked to the press the documents which became known as "The Pentagon Papers" and was indicted as a result. He now admits that it's possible that had he leaked the documents to which he had access in 1964, he might have saved thousands of American and millions of Vietnamese and Cambodian lives.


My own failure to act, in time, to that effect in 1964 was pointed out to me by Wayne Morse thirty-five years ago. Morse had been one of only two U.S. senators to vote against the Tonkin Gulf resolution on August 7, 1964. He had believed, correctly, that President Lyndon Johnson would treat the resolution as a congressional declaration of war. His colleagues, however, accepted White House assurances that the president sought “no wider war” and had no intention of expanding hostilities without further consulting them. They believed that they were simply expressing bipartisan support for U.S. air attacks on North Vietnam three days earlier, which the president and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara had told them were in “retaliation” for the “unequivocal,” “unprovoked” attack by North Vietnamese torpedo boats on U.S. destroyers “on routine patrol” in “international waters.”

Each of the assurances above had been false, a conscious lie. That they were lies, though, had only been revealed to the public seven years later with the publication of the Pentagon Papers, several thousand pages of top-secret documents on U.S. decision-making in Vietnam that I had released to the press. The very first installment, published by the New York Times on June 13, 1971, had proven the official account of the Tonkin Gulf episode to be a deliberate deception.


Now, at a time when the US is already bogged down in an unwinnable war in Iraq and has effectively destroyed that country as a workable entity for the immediate future, ideologues within the Administration are bringing the US to the brink of war with Iran: detailed plans, constantly updated, exist for striking specific targets there, and there has been considerable debate about the use of nuclear weapons.

Ellsberg argues that someone within the Administration, right now, could leak documents that would reveal the situation, and could conceivably prevent another immensely costly mistake from a country addicted to warfare.

To do so would risk prosecution, and would certainly result in the loss of job and likely of reputation, as there would be no shortage of bloggers willing to denigrate the perpetrator of such an act.

I wonder if there's anyone in the White House with the wit, spine and principle to see that this must be done, and to do it? I suspect not, but I'd love to be proven wrong. The consequences, at least in the short-to-medium term, would be severe.

The other aspect, of course, is the parlous state of the US media, which is basically an uncritical mouthpiece for the administration on so many issues. Where should someone take these documents, were there someone in the White House who actually had some brain and backbone, and the access to get these papers and release them? How would the media treat them?




posted on Oct, 22 2006 @ 07:43 PM
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The other aspect, of course, is the parlous state of the US media, which is basically an uncritical mouthpiece for the administration on so many issues.


That was a Joke right?

The Radically Left Wing Media a Mouth Piece for the Administration!!!


That is truly rich..


Thanks I needed that.

Semper



posted on Oct, 22 2006 @ 07:50 PM
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I hope Olbermann get the truth out! Olbermann is a real man, proud of his country, a real patriot.



posted on Oct, 23 2006 @ 03:33 AM
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Rich, the problem is not one of leaking out the info, or the media printing the story, the problem is the attitude of the American people, just from comments on ATS there seem to be those who are blindly patriotic that they would follow Bush to hell if he told them to do so and those who seem so apathetic and indifferent to world affairs. Couple that to the fact that most Americans dont travel outside of the USA, education is not the best in the world and for many the view of the world and current affairs is from a Fox news perspective.

I'm sure there will be a small number of well educated people who know whats going on and what Bush and co are up to but have they the means to influence the masses, I dont really know. But the awakening has to start somehow so it may be a good idea to leak whats really going on and hopefully American's can save their country before it goes down the pan and will prevent millions from an early death.



posted on Oct, 23 2006 @ 03:41 AM
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Originally posted by magicmushroom
Rich, the problem is not one of leaking out the info, or the media printing the story, the problem is the attitude of the American people, just from comments on ATS there seem to be those who are blindly patriotic that they would follow Bush to hell if he told them to do so and those who seem so apathetic and indifferent to world affairs. Couple that to the fact that most Americans dont travel outside of the USA, education is not the best in the world and for many the view of the world and current affairs is from a Fox news perspective.


that has got to be the most ignorant and stereotypical thing I have ever read.

Americans travel outside the US all the damn time.... and Fox news, while one of the leading news sources, is not the end all,say all in the american news media.

I wonder how many of you have actually been to the United States?

I wouldn call it blind patriotism.



posted on Oct, 23 2006 @ 04:45 AM
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Well, I have been to the US and lived and worked there for a time. I got the hell out a) because the currency isn't worth a damn and because b) the attitudes and political ignorance of many of the people (not all by any means, but certainly the majority) was starting to really do my . in. There is a lot of blind patriotism in the US, which is hardly surprising since people are conditioned from birth to follow blindly whoever waves the flag in their face.



posted on Oct, 23 2006 @ 05:20 AM
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Xpile, Can you read, I said most Americans dont travel outside of the US, 75% of Americans dont own a passport thats 225 milion people, American levels of education are below European ones. those are facts its not America bashing, my statements are correct if you wish to believe them or not thats your choice but it does not change the facts. Also there are blind patriots I've spoken to many of them and again if you read my post correctly instead of emotionally Isaid there are different groups of people. I do not need to go to the states to see what is going on any more than I need to go to Iraq to know there's a war going on.

Ignorant and stereotyping, no just a realist and a person who speaks the truth.



posted on Oct, 30 2006 @ 01:26 AM
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He wasn't being ignorant.

I live in Canada, and travel to the US quite often.
I am absolutely baffled by the amount of people I meet down there who have no clue about the outside world... most of the questions are wether Canada has electricity... or wether it's allways winter...
... I know there's not supposed to be a stupid question, but these are really stupid questions, and I would be ashamed to find Canadians as ignorant of the outside world as most of the Americans I meet are.

Their education system really is falling apart. The public school system down there is lacking horribly.

One of my friends son's math books were out on the table from my last visit.
The cover clearly read "Advanced Calculus", and all I could find inside were very simple Algebra euquations. Certainly not Calculus.

And yes, alot of the news sources down there are in fact very bias. Sure, there are some networks down there that are bias in the other direction, but I'm hard pressed to find any ACTUAL news down there. Most of it is just crap about the latest (Republican/Democratic/pop-star) scandal. I'm always sure to bring my shortwave so I can listen to the BBC and CBC to keep updated as to what is actually going on in the world.

And yes, I too see alot of blind patriotism towards the government. Patriotism belongs with the country, not the government. What I mean by that is, you can love your country all you want, but don't dare call someone a traitor / un-american because they disagree with the government in power.

As Canadians, for the most part, we are allways loyal to the Country, but we won't hesitate to oppose the government, should they screw up or do something we disagree with. It's what keeps them in line... it's the whole point to democracy, and keeping a country free... and it's the one thing that ALOT of americans have forgotten all too willingly.


All in all, I narrow it down to the political parties not having enough competition. The two party system the US has seriously needs to be re-shapen. And the only way that would happen, is if the citizens dropped their undying loyalty to the two parties, and started taking the independant parties seriously.



posted on Oct, 30 2006 @ 03:04 AM
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All in all, I narrow it down to the political parties not having enough competition. The two party system the US has seriously needs to be re-shapen. And the only way that would happen, is if the citizens dropped their undying loyalty to the two parties, and started taking the independant parties seriously.


So you think up here in Canada it's better? Liberal VS Conservative? Bilderberg member VS Bilderberg member? The 3 leaders in the race for the Liberal party . are former Bilderberg member, a group who works for corporate interests, Harper also is a former invitee.



posted on Nov, 1 2006 @ 03:13 PM
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Actually yes... we still have more choice than the US.

And for the most part, I've noticed most Canadians don't hold loyalty to one party, their decision sways as the party's reputation and goals do... Most Americans I meet would never chose another party, regardless of what theirs has done, or intends to do.



posted on Nov, 1 2006 @ 04:20 PM
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Vitchilo - I take your point about the Bilderbergers.

Tony Blair was approved by the group before he was elected. Five years ago I'd have been extremely skeptical about the BG, but then I read that they'd ok'd Angela Merckel to be the next German premier. I ran it by a friend in Germany and he pooh-poohed it, saying she never had a chance... and yet, (after some judicious fiddling with the results), lo and behold she got in.

It seems that in the UK David Cameron is our next PM - that's the word from Bilderberg-watchers. I shall be interested to see how it goes.

But I do think the political culture in the US sucks even more than in the UK or Canada (a country of which I'm very fond and with which I have a more than passing acquaintance). Discussion of substantive issues is very rare, and, where it exists, superficial. Journalism is by and large supine and uncritical of the government line. I notice that Simplefortis thinks his media are radically left wing. I have an experiment for him, whether he has the wit to try it I doubt, but I'll put it here nonetheless.

Try getting a range of newspapers and counting the number of times the phrase "government sources say" (or similar) comes up. Un-named sources, which are never contradicted, are the life's blood of the oxygen thieves that masquerade as US journalists. Here's the experiment. Count the number of times that phrase comes up in each newspaper, and count the number of times that the assertion made by these un-named sources is independently verified. Further, count the number of times that the un-named source is contradicted.

You will find that these un-named sources are regarded as an infallible source of truth on almost every occasion. This is not journalism, this is government PR at work.

And I couldn't believe how crawl-arse the interviewers are in the states. No-one gets a grilling the way British interviewers dish it out to government representatives. They take their duties as members of the Fourth Estate relatively seriously. There's a great quotation from, I think, Richard Dimbleby (a journo of the old school) who said, "There are really two schools of interviewer. There's the Jimmy Young (think Larry King) gosh-I'm-so-lucky-to-be-talking-to-this-VIP school, and then there's the school I'm from, and when we're interviewing someone, the question going through our minds is, 'what is it the lying bastard is lying to me about this time?' "

I think that a healthy democracy (if it really exists anywhere) is much better served by this attitude than by the softball questions served up by the likes of Larry King.




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