The Thread title is the title of this lengthy article from alternet.
I have been reading Jeremy Scahill's "Dirty Wars", and have grown increasingly disgusted and enraged over what I am finding out about the war machine
that is in the hands of the U.S. Executive Branch.
This article makes me literally feel sick to my stomach. I was 10 years old when the riots broke out in my college home-town over the Vietnam
debacle. I was too young, and too 'sheltered' to know much about it, but I could see that something was wrong. A few years later, as I got into
high school, I was part of conversations with veterans who had come back, totally messed up.
Nowadays, veterans are committing suicide by the thousands. TENS of thousands of civilians' lives have been destroyed just in Syria. But if you look
at things over the last 50 years (my lifetime), and add it all up, what I'm just now "learning" has been going on ever since I was born.
Totalitarian regimes go to great lengths—strict censorship, prison for those violating it—to cover up their leaders' crimes. But in America,
the information is available. All that is needed to keep America’s secret is to simply ignore it.
Americans keep this secret because facing it openly would upend our most basic understandings about our nation and its leaders. A serious public
discussion of it would reveal, for example, that we cannot trust Executive Branch leaders’ human decency, words, or judgment. And more troubling,
acknowledging it would mean admitting to ourselves that we have been misleading our own children, that our silence has robbed them of the truth of
their history and made it more likely that future leaders will continue to commit acts that stain the very soul of America.
It is a matter of indisputable fact that the U.S. Executive Branch has over the past 50 years been responsible for bombing, shooting, burning alive
with napalm, blowing up with cluster bombs, burying alive with 500-pound bombs, leveling homes and villages, torturing, assassinating and
incarcerating without evidence more innocent civilians in more nations over a longer period of time than any other government on earth today.
It is also undeniable that it has committed countless acts, as no less an authority than U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry noted in regard to
Vietnam, which have been "contrary to the laws of the Geneva Convention, and... ordered as established policies from the top down," and that "the men
who ordered this are war criminals."
YES. They ARE CRIMINALS. And not ONE of them has lifted a finger to impart this destruction, this wholesale slaughter. No, all they do is tell their
Number Two - "make it so."
And MILLIONS of lives end, or are destroyed as soldiers do their bidding. It's LONG PAST TIME for this to stop. EVERY LIVING PRESIDENT, past or
current, should be held accountable for these atrocities. I do no blame the soldiers, I BLAME THE LEADERSHIP.
The rationalizations by which even decent human beings allow themselves to ignore their leaders’ mass murder, e.g. that “these things always
happen in war,” or “it’s the other side’s fault,” are just that: rationalizations that allow us to avoid our secret shame. Human
civilization, through its body of international law, has defined which acts are both immoral and illegal even in times of war. And a citizen’s first
responsibility is to oppose his or her own government’s crimes, not those of others.
Although America's media, intellectual, political and economic elites turn their heads pretending they just don't see U.S. leaders' responsibility for
mass murder, dozens of dedicated and honorable scholars and activists led by Noam Chomsky have spent years of their lives meticulously documenting it.
Read these two again:
Human civilization, through its body of international law, has defined which acts are both immoral and illegal even in times of war.
And a citizen’s first responsibility is to oppose his or her own government’s crimes, not those of others.
Well, as I've said before, they can yank my identity, obliterate my citizenship, send me into exile, put me on a list, surveil everything I say, turn
me into a cripple, lobotomize me, take away my birthday, and stamp "NO DESSERT" on my forehead, BUT I WON'T SHUT UP about this.
Some members here have asserted that Snowden, Manning, Drake, and others are "traitors". They talk about 'working within the law', but our LEADERS do
NOT work within the laws - not domestic or international. They are the new Mafia. Ruthless, psychopathic, murderous barbarians who should be locked
Readers wishing to flesh out the overview below are directed to five important recent books:
Kill Anything That Moves, by Nick Turse, about Vietnam;
Dirty Wars (and a film), by Jeremy Scahill, about Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia;
The Deaths of Others, by John Tirman, covering Korea, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan ;
The Untold History of the U.S. by Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick (and a 10-part Showtime documentary)
discussing U.S. policy from World War II to the present;
and Drone Warfare by Medea Benjamin.
Flyboys, by James Bradley, also offers invaluable information on U.S. aerial mass murder of civilians in World War II, as does
The Korean War: A History by Bruce Cumings on U.S. Executive massacres of civilians in Korea.
Such careful work has been supplemented by numerous reports from such organizations as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.
So, what can we do? Shall we take to the streets like the Egyptians? Should military personnel simply STOP TAKING ORDERS, and refuse to kill people?
Should drone pilots walk off the job?
Should we all stop paying taxes?
I am disgusted, embarrassed, ashamed, and LIVID about these atrocities and the 'machine' that keeps us all churning our hamster wheels while this
hideous devasation of our own species continues.
I can only read Scahill's book a little at a time, it is so upsetting. I, too, was 'sheltered' by my parents - we did not discuss wars or politics
openly when I was growing up. As the article states, we MUST STOP pretending this didn't happen and isn't happening.
My kids ARE aware of it, and I'm glad of that. But this opens up a whole new world of youth uprising potential. Kids nowadays know 1000% more about
the world at large than my generation did - due to the internet. My generation WILL die off within a few decades, leaving this world in the hands of
those to come.
Snowden for President. IMPEACH Obama, IMPRISON all of his cronies and cabinet members, shut down congress (useless bastards), Wall Street, the Fed,
and BRING ALL AMERICANS BACK HOME.
I'll never be Noam Chomsky, though I admire him as another hero.
What is going on in the human world today is naked insanity and untold evil. Not from Satan, not under the banner of God, it is HUMAN INSANITY, and
it MUST BE STOPPED. I'm TIRED of feeling POWERLESS.
EDIT: I got so upset I forgot the link: www.alternet.org...
edit on 2-7-2013 by
wildtimes because: (no reason given)