July 31, 2008

It's Murder, Folks

The war in Afghanistan is wrong and bound to spread to Pakistan and beyond, if the United States does not re-think its strategy in the so-called “war on terror.” Obviously the strategy is to concentrate in one area as many Islamic fighters as possible in order to kill them in what is plainly a war of attrition. (Kill enough and they will give up.) The ascending numbers of the dead and wounded are the last thing on the mind of the controlled news media, but a look at the number of bombing sorties (the ones they disclose) indicates they’re higher than all present estimates. Whole villages have been blown off the map and tallies of the dead and wounded are falsified or non-existent. How do we know this? It’s all been done before. They always lie about the numbers of people they kill along with the numbers of our own dead. The Pentagon hid 10,000 dead from Vietnam and only admitted it 30 years later, on page 13 of the NY Times. Nobody seems to have noticed. There is nothing new here.

It’s unfortunate and ironic that the present generation of war protesters has to learn over again what we learned during the Vietnam atrocity. War is a monstrosity, and monsters behind masks of generosity and “national security” “set the triggers to fire/then step back and watch as the death count gets higher.” (Dylan) You cannot believe anything they say because they are liars. Vietnam was a perfect example of the ferocity of the United States in war, when it comes to killing people and calling it something else: 6.5 million dead over the whole of Indochina; 3.5 million Vietnamese, one million Laotians (half the population,) and 2.5 million murdered Cambodians as a result of Richard Nixon’s and Henry Kissinger’s secret bombing campaign, which destroyed traditional Cambodian society and opened the door for the murderous child-hordes of Pol Pot, which terrorized the country, until the Vietnamese army put a stop to it.

Former Defense Secretary Robert Strange McNamara admitted to this sum, after meeting with former Vietnamese communist leaders in Havana. Yes, that’s right, he agreed. Six-point-five million dead, and that’s not counting the wounded, the permanently crippled, and the psychologically-damaged, most of whom were only “collateral damage’ to politicians and cold-hearted Pentagon managers who crap this doublespeak and invent misleading jargon to explain the outright immoral and illegal murder of civilians and the illegal, aggressive invasion of another country. Vietnam, according to Eisenhower was “about Japan,” and had to do partly with protecting the Japanese economy’s access to resources; and “standing tall” as a matter of U.S. “prestige,” convincing communists and other nations that might strike an independent course defying our will how low we will go to have our way. That made the Vietnamese only pawns in the game, even as Washington warmongers were bemoaning the loss of a “democracy” they claimed to be exporting to South Vietnam. The whole world was watching, and Vietnam did more to lower our “prestige” than any event after WW II.

That war and the present ones all are violations of a whole array of international laws concerning invasions and warfare that the United States and its Allies signed long before and after WW II, codifying them with solemn treaties (like the Hague Conventions and the U.N. Charter,) which, according to the United States Constitution, are defined as having “the force of law.” A President who defies or even misinterprets the Constitution is violating his Oath of Office to uphold it, an impeachable offense. The Bush government and likely the next government too is fighting tooth-and-nail for exemption from recent international laws accepted by a majority of nations governing prosecution of war criminals. We have enough war criminals in our governments, past and present, to keep the International War Crimes Court working 24 hours a day for 10 years at its present pace. Presidents, the Defense and State Departments, large sectors of the federal bureaucracy and Congress as well, are liable to be hauled up on charges similar to and equally atrocious as those levied against Nazis and Japanese fascists. Being lawyers privy to secret information, they know it. The Bush faction of the War Party consisting of both Republicans and Democrats now is punishing and threatening to punish any nation or trading partner by reducing trade, raising tariffs, and cutting aid, if they fail to exempt United States troops and commanders from having to obey the law.

How could any person in the United States be guilty of a war crime? We alone are the hope of the world, the harbinger of progress, the fount of all justice, the inventor of everything useful, the best at everything, and the only innocent people on the planet. When and if we make one, it’s an “innocent mistake,” but when the other guy does it the "mistake" was deliberate, malevolent and evil. McNamara admitted to war crimes in his book, “In Retrospect,” writing that he and other “whiz kids” could have been charged with war crimes, if the United States had lost WW II. Mac helped plan the firebombing raid that roasted a million people in Tokyo without regard for their age, sex or military value. By his own admission, he planned devastating (and illegal) chemical warfare attacks.

There is no Statute of Limitations on war crimes, and no person, however high or low, is exempt from prosecution. That’s the law. When the plutonium bomb exploded over Nagasaki, the United States incinerated the largest concentration of Christians in Japan and American war prisoners, too. When it fried Hiroshima, it cooked thousands of oldsters and kids who had been sent there for safety, because we hadn’t bombed Hiroshima like the other cities, needing an undamaged target in order to evaluate the full effect of the bomb. None of this and more of none of this is covered by high school history books and probably not by many college texts, either. American citizens are denied the full truth, just as Germans and Japanese still are denied full knowledge of the atrocities their governments and troops committed. Why undermine national “morale?” Let them keep believing that America (Japan, Germany, etc.) doesn’t do that kind of stuff. It’s always the other guy, and if we did something bad, well, he did it first. Like Jack Nicholson’s character said in “A Few Good Men: “YOU CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH!”

But an open-eyed look at the known facts reveals the awful truth: our ancestors mass-murdered at least 30 and possibly 50 million Indians (genocide,) enslaved millions of Africans and murdered and denied them basic human and civil rights for 400 years (genocide.) Apologies from the House of Representatives to Indians and blacks are nice but they don’t make it. In our own time the United States government has casually slaughtered millions as a matter of policy (and tradition) with ample support from the American people, who paid for it with only a little grousing, because, after all, people were making money in a booming war economy.

Dissuade yourself that the passage of time has lessened the severity of the crimes or softened their consequences or that people and nations have forgotten. Neither time nor reparations enable civilized people to ignore or belittle these past or present atrocities. Neither has legal precedent been established for engaging in more such criminality. But by and large and despite a worsening (war) economy, the American people are enthusiastic about the coming escalation of the Afghanistan War of Vengeance into Pakistan. In fact the war in Pakistan is already underway. CIA drones and U.S. jets have been bombing and strafing northwestern parts of the country for weeks and possibly months.

Turn your eyes eastward past Iraq and down into Africa and you will see the U.S. military and CIA active in Somalia—which it wrecked with help from the Soviet Union—bombing and killing and providing “intelligence” to Ethiopian (Christian) proxies whom we pay to keep the (majority) Muslims from taking political (and economic) power and restoring order in their own nation, as they had effectively done until recently, when the U.S. decided Muslims shouldn’t be in charge in their own country, because, for one thing, we don't like the way they treat women. That’s “democracy” as we know it today.

None of it is calculated to make these people our friends. It looks like a war of Christians against Muslims—a “holy war.” In fact, it seems calculated to make more of them our enemies. Doesn’t it seem that way to you? What better way to keep the engine of profitable military production humming than churning out an inexhaustible supply of “terrorists,” who replace their dead fighter-martyrs as fast as we can kill their relatives, producing a war without end. Sometimes I think that a gang of traitors bound and determined to bring our country down could not do worse than the criminals ruling Washington for the past 50 years. It’s the War Party, consisting of Democrats and Republicans working together, which is doing this and leading us by the nose to the slaughterhouse. You can’t keep justifying it as "self-defense" or “national interests.” Another fiction and as illegal as cocaine is any act of "preventive war."

It’s murder, folks. It’s illogical, immoral and against the law.

“Boy, can Uncle Sam make orphans.
Boy, can Uncle Sam make orphans.
Boy, can Uncle Sam make widows,
Easy as toast.”

The Fugs

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