Posts Tagged war criminals
The way we deal with war criminals in this country is not only giving them high-paying faculty positions at prestigious universities, but also inviting them to colleges to speak at Commencements while paying them $35,000 (which is the low range here).
Condoleezza Rice is one such war criminal and Rutgers University, or to be more precise, Rutgers’ board of governors, is the entity that voted on having this “honored” war criminal over for an inspirational talk at their Commencement, if you were considering a career as a war criminal that is.
Luckily, the students at Rutgers have the integrity their board of directors is clearly missing, because they have been protesting her appearance, saying they wanted nothing to do with her war-mongering, treasonous ass stating that she may not bother showing up at all.
Rice, who really seems to believe that staging a fraudulent war, lying to the American people, being a supporter and architect of the murder and torture of hundreds of thousands of innocent people – on both sides – for oil as well as the destruction of our economy, constitutes “serving her country” and something of an honor (I guess denial is another thing bitch has in common with war criminals). So she decided not to show up at all, stating that while she was “honored” to “serve” her country, she decided not to be at Rutgers so as to not detract from the spirit of the commencement ceremony. (I guess she figured that compared to the bundle she made off of the Iraq war, $35,000 was chump change she could easily forgo).
Good riddance, I say.
Case in point, the stink everyone is raising over Rolling Stone’s cover featuring the Boston Marathon bomber suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Not content with simply not buying Rolling Stone’s latest issue, one man is actually calling for the magazine to be burned in public. How so very 1933 Hitler of him.
This strong, and frankly misplaced reaction of people is so random. I mean we had George W. Bush on the cover of many magazines before and Dick Cheney and those are war criminals who have more blood on their hands than the Boston marathon bombers could ever have. I mean let’s be real here. And no one ever protested that. No, they even voted the crooks back into office. How many lives have they destoryed, directly or indirectly, as a result of their policies – domestic and otherwise? People are so easily swayed by titles and appearances. I mean shit, even Obama got the Nobel Peace Prize and he is still using drones that kill more innocent people than the bad guys.
There is overt violence, in the form of what the Tsarnaev brothers did, and then there is covert, structural violence, which is what Bush did with his two wars and atrocities under fraudulent premises, not to mention his devastating domestic policies that have lead to “too big to fail” and the meltdown with millions of people losing their jobs, livelihoods, retirements, futures and houses while the ones who helped destroy them were escorted out with fat bail out checks paid by the very tax payers they spit on.
Bush and the military industrial complex that line Congresses pockets lead us to wars that cost a lot of innocent people their lives. But no one sees that. Instead people are offended at a cover photo and want to burn it. Where is the rhyme and logic behind that?
Priorities people. This nation got none. Everyone hates the cover…no one reads the article, how very….American.
CIA nominee John Brennan said during Senate confirmation hearings that the U.S. had no evidence of drone strike collateral killings.
Noor Behram, a Pakistani photojournalist who lives in North Waziristan, has a different story to tell. He has been documenting the human cost of U.S. drone policy for several years stating that he “wants people to know” what the weapons have wrought. The photographer provided photos to documentary filmmaker Robert Greenwald in Pakistan doing research and interviews for his forthcoming documentary, “UNMANNED: America’s Drone Wars,” in the fall 2012.
I am always stunned to see the extent to which people seriously seem to think that engaging in war does not carry with itself a real human cost – drones or not. So to be clear: war always has a human cost and that cost is, more often than not, carried by innocent people. You know, that term “collateral damage” that everyone likes to throw around to casually dismiss or minimize the real human cost associated with war; a term that trivializes the devastation wrought by war as something that just unfortunately happens and cannot be controlled, like a hiccup, and thus is not all that important. This, however, is an assertion that is deeply problematic at best, not to mention untrue.
To be bombed in your sleep is not American, nor can such attacks be casually dismissed as “collateral damage” as if they were irrelevant or unavoidable, because they are relevant and avoidable.
Civilian casualties are central to the debate over the use of drones, because public support hinges on the false belief that the weapons kill with surgical precision. If the public were aware of the human toll of the policy, opposition would be widespread. Or would they?
Even sadder than the Obama administration lying about the human cost of drones and seeking to set a precedent for an authority no administration should ever have, is the public perception and support of drones as the following survey’s indicate:
It is certainly interesting that George W. Bush did get the bad rep as a war criminal (which he is) when up-stand guy Obama’s administration currently takes the position that it can essentially disappear U.S. citizens, not ever being under any legal obligation to admit, even after the deed is done, that it has assassinated anyone. The policy remains secret in most aspects, involves no judicial review, has resulted in
There may be extraordinary occasions when killing a citizen is permissible, but it should never be acceptable for the government to refuse to acknowledge such an act. How can call ourselves a free nation and a free peoples if our government has the power to kill us in secret and not be accountable to anyone? And how can a sovereign authority be accountable to the people if the sovereign can refuse to own up to its actions?
Finally, one of the most important aspects of this issue is that when you send in drones instead of manned aircraft and machines to carry out your wars, you – as the entity executing the plan and also as the public – are getting a very distorted and unrealistic picture of war and its consequences. In fact, you don’t feel the consequences.
More importantly, you do not experience the human cost of war, which is one of the biggest consequences of and deterrents to war, because you are so removed from your action.
Sending in a machine to carry out the terrible deed of murdering people for a political cause creates awful detachment to the deed. Or why else do people think the press is not allowed to photograph all the body-bags filled with the remains of soldiers being returned. After all, the visual presentation of those countless bags being delivered back to our shores was one of the reasons helping end the Vietnam war.
The government is fully aware that people putting a human face to war will most likely result in them not wanting to support the war.
Similarly, sending in anonymous, unmanned drones to carry out war removes the human from the equation and makes the act very mechanic, efficient and most importantly it turns those people into nothing but dots in on a game board.
When you are not having anything at stake here and the cost of war, by humans, is carried by the “enemy” only and not you, you will have no respect for the act. There will also not be anything holding you back from engaging in more of the same because hey, there is no real cost in it for you. You are not using any people, the collateral damage isn’t on your end.
There is Nothing Worse than Being Psychologically Removed From This Horrific Act of War and Killing
There is nothing worse than the act just becoming far removed from its consequences because there is, literally, no one sitting at the other end witnessing the maimed and torn bodies as a result of the fall out from an attack. The more you are removed from your actions, the more you are removed from the consequences of those actions and thus the less likely to actually care about your actions.
That is why guns in civilian hands, in the debate on gun control, are so problematic because by pulling the trigger from afar one is removed from the act of killing; from the psychological involvement associated with killing. Because remember, having to actually get hands-on with someone you are going to kill requires more psychological involvement and commitment than just standing far away and pulling the trigger.
Finally, while the war on terrorism is legitimate, collateral damage as a fall out and to this extent is not. Our actions should not match, in cruelty and inhumanity, that of terrorists – who also do not have any regard for human life and probably view those they kill as collateral damage. Just like Obama and his war criminal-in-the-making Brennan.
No matter how you look at it, the Obama administration is setting a precedent for an authority no administration should ever have, and the use of drones specifically takes the human out of the equation turning war and killing, and with it its victims, into targets on a game board rather than real human beings – innocent civilians – who are being murdered.
Maybe war is a necessary evil but we should never get to the point of trivializing its consequences, or worse, not recognizing its consequences, while sitting in some building miles away programming our avatars to carry out the act while we quietly sit back in our offices sipping our coffees or eating our lunches.
Unabomber Ted Kaczynski graduated from Harvard in 1962 with a degree in Mathematics. Harvard had invited all alums, including Kaczynski, to update their directory and so he listed his occupation as “prisoner” in the alumni directory and said his awards are “Eight life sentences, issued by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California, 1998.”
Harvard went ahead and published the information but the alumni association quickly regretted that decision and later apologized for it.
A stupid move when considering that Mitt Romney is an alum whose information, I promise you, won’t be deleted off the alumni directory.
Now before anyone jumps my throat because of the comparison let me elaborate: there are two kinds of violence in the world: overt violence and covert violence.
The Unabomber engaged in overt violence, directly costing the lives of three people and injusring 23 others.
Mitt Romney, on the other hand, has for decades engaged in covert violence – through hostile take overs that have left countless people jobless with all the perils and consequences following such layoffs, including the loss of health insurance and thus ones health. I believe the latter can lead to death. Much like it did with Kaczynski’s victims.
Yet we send the former to jail and call him a psycho, we honor and decorate the latter as the American Dream in the flesh and have him run for the highest office in the country.
The Unabomber killed three people but how many people have suffered, and died, at the hands of Romney’s policies first as the governor of Massachusetts and of course for decades as CEO of Bain Capital?
An ad by Priorities USA Action last week featured former employee Loris Huffman, who was laid off after Bain Capital drove her place of employment – office supplies plant Ampad – into bankruptcy. Huffman – who had worked at the company for 34 years before Romney’s actions left her with no health care insurance – stated that she thought that she was going to retire from there since she only had about two and a half years to go. “I was suddenly 60 years old. I had no health care and that’s scary. When Mitt Romney did that, he — he made — he made me sick“, Huffman stated in the ad.
And this is just one person speaking out. Imagine how many thousands of people had similar fates due to the actions of Mitt Romney as the head of Bain Capital. That does not even include his actions as governor of Mass; actions that were so irresponsible that they resulted in the state he was running to rank 47 in job creation.
How many people and families have suffered and lost their livelihood and health care, and with it health and maybe even life, as a direct consequence of Mitt Romney’s policies?
Yet he is a revered man and the Unabomber a psycho whose existence Harvard refuses to even acknowledge.
Two things to learn from this story:
1) Our priorities as a nation and as a peoples are skewed. We are easily impressed and swayed by outward appearances and labels and rarely look underneath to truly comprehend the nature and essence of what we see and what is presented to us. Overt violence is condemned – and rightly so – but covert violence is wrapped in euphemisms, masking its true consequences, thus often going unnoticed.
2) Ted Kaczynski has a sense of humor.