War, Kill, Lie -- It’s the American Way

By libbyliberal

Wouldn’t it be lovely if a new year’s resolution for 2011 for the U.S. would be to end war?


Sometimes I am startled by the reflection in the mirror in the ladies’ restroom at work of my black armband that I started wearing a year and a half ago with a first, very deep breath, assuming I would be called on often to explain it. It would afford opportunities to share my moral outrage at the international and civil lawless conduct of my government.

I forget I have it on now. In all that time only two people have inquired about it. Some haven’t, undoubtedly assuming I am mourning a more personal loss. Others know the reason, office gossip being what it is, but see it more as a sign of my taking-politics-way-too-seriously eccentricity -- the workplace inappropriate for such a discussion.

Their affinity to political correctness. My affinity to calling out moral incorrectness. Massive amoral U.S. policy madness. Thank God cyber-communities such as this one, and IRL communities like the Green Party and The World Can’t Wait offer me fellowship with those with more awakened and outraged consciences. 

When I first donned the black armband, during what must have been the “bargaining” stage of my five stages of grief post Obama’s election -- he just wasn’t responding to the war and torture horrors FAST enough I told myself, but would get there -- I thought my reasons to wear it would be short-lived. Habeas corpus of course would be restored. How could it not be? I mean it had been established as a human right in England since the 1300’s, hadn't it? Insane “pre-emptive military aggression” rationales would no longer prevail. I didn’t realize that for Obama, the U.S. Congress, the Pentagon, and the corporate media REALITY AND HUMANITY would remain “off the table” no matter what vast numbers of the citizenry presumed.

Obama, the magician President who used the spirit of Martin Luther King to get elected and thereafter ruled with the agenda of Dick Cheney. The magic comes in his getting so many people not to mind. Getting so many people to rationalize we are safer and more moral with him at the helm than with those war-mongering Republicans. Denial -- not just a river in Egypt -- a country pretending it is a democracy.

The incredible fact is there is NO national conversation about the insanity of the wars and black ops operations and illegal detentions and Wikileaks revealed deceptions, blatant and massive violations of the Geneva Conventions, along with the insanity of massively-debilitating US military budgets being passed UNDISCUSSED AND UNCHALLENGED by a supposedly two-party Congressional system that Nader warned years ago had been thoroughly pimped out by the corporations.

The Military Industrial, and now, “Security” Complex is a monster, with a terrible in-motion inertia -- killing killing, killing -- lying, lying, lying. Sucking up our tax dollars for evil. Stealing, maiming, killing and ALWAYS LYING. Creating poverty in America and the likely chance of our being attacked a la 9/11 again and again due to our unjustified war-like aggressions that the stupor of American exceptionalism among many of the citizenry and a callous, obsequious corporate media and sociopathic and/or cowardly “let’s not be called soft on terrorism” ambition-over-honor politicians enable, enable, enable.

Fred Branfman writes:

"Both the Wikileaks Iraqi and Afghan War Logs, in short, have revealed that the entire U.S. Executive is a "vast lying machine", as journalist David Halberstam described the U.S. military in his affadavit for the CBS vs. Westmoreland trial. It must be understood that “truth” vs. “lies” is not even an operational category within the Executive Branch or military. The purpose of communicating with the public is not to provide them with truthful information but rather to advance “the mission”. People who communicate with the public obtain their jobs and are promoted on the basis of their ability to mislead, deceive, “spin” and lie. There is no recorded case where Executive Branch officials have been rewarded for telling the truth to the American people, and many where they have been punished or lost their jobs for doing so. And nothing so epitomizes the degradation of democracy in America that the fact the public expects Executive Branch officials to lie to them, and that mass media journalists even betray their profession by defending Executive secrecy and excoriating those who reveal their lies like Julian Assange.

“It is thus impossible to overstate the importance of the Wikileaks documentation of these lies to the American people. When a journalist reports a U.S. government misdeed, government officials automatically deny it and many Americans are unsure whom to believe. But Wikileaks has revealed official government documents that prove U.S. leaders’ lying and commission of crimes of war. The fact that the U.S. has covered up its mass murder of civilians, and that this is contributing to its losing the war, is thus no longer open to serious question. ...”

As you read these words countless Afghan and Pakistani villagers are huddling in their homes, terrorized by U.S. war-making, as General Petraeus's brutal offensive into southern Afghanistan, met by an increase in the Taliban's resort to roadside bombs and assassination, has caused the Red Cross to issue an unusual alarm saying that conditions are at their worst for Afghan civilians in 30 years, i.e. as bad as during the Russian invasion. A Canadian press report indicates that Kandahar's main hospital is overflowing with civilian casualties, and that "on some days, the floor is red with blood".

If we can free our minds of a lifetime of official propaganda identifying the U.S. Executive with the American people, the evidence is overwhelming that in foreign and military policy the U.S. Executive Branch is an undemocratic institution that does not represent its own citizens. It operates largely independent of Congress, the Judiciary or a mass media which has largely become an arm of Executive power, broadcasting its lies far more often than it exposes them.

A few months before President Obama's December 2009 decision to send 30,000 more U.S. troops to Afghanistan, for example, only 24% of Americans wanted to send more and 43% wanted to decrease the number. Their wishes were ignored, as are the opinions of Americans today who, by a margin of 63 to 32, oppose U.S. war-making in Afghanistan. And, Bob Woodward’s Obama’s Wars revealed, even the President is largely a figurehead when it comes to Executive war-making. Woodward documents how the military thwarted Obama’s clear desire to begin a major pullout from Afghanistan in the summer of 2011. Last month, Obama was humiliated by being forced to endorse a hypothetical 2014 pullout date.

These Wikileaks documents thus raise the most fundamental question citizens can ask themselves: to what extent to citizens of a democracy owe their allegiance to autocratic leaders who obtain the consent of their citizens through massive duplicity? And to what extent can they trust either their judgement or their decency?

But that is a long-term question. The key question now is whether Americans can hear the sound of suffering their leaders are causing abroad, as at this very moment innocent men, women and children are being murdered and maimed in what the Red Cross describes as the greatest civilian carnage since the Russians invaded 30 years ago.

Main Afghanistan & Pakistan War, Kill, Lie -- It’s the American Way


World Can't Wait mobilizes people living in the United States to stand up and stop war on the world, repression and torture carried out by the US government. We take action, regardless of which political party holds power, to expose the crimes of our government, from war crimes to systematic mass incarceration, and to put humanity and the planet first.