US Armed Forces Day Pride in the Mass-Murder of Millions
While many Americans and their supporters will listen to the “Presidential Proclamation — Armed Forces Day, 2012” with pride, others around the world will perceive President Obama’s voice as a cruel and ruthless voice for brutality and destruction. America will view history from the perspective of the victor, even rationalizing its wars, and defining them as ‘essential’ for peace and development.
Over a billion people have been put under attack by a selfish set of empires, USA and Europe- both seeking control over resources and using the most absurd of pretexts to gain access to them. At first, it was the colonial enterprise. When that concluded, the empires found more subtle forms of exploitation and invasion. The neo-liberal operations were and are no less in intensity or destruction.
Obama’s speech will remind his listeners about the dauntless courage and dedication of the men in uniform, the people of Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Lebanon, Dominican Republic, Panama, Grenada, Iraq, Libya, and the numerous dictatorships that were fuelled and sustained by the US and its allies will evaluate the loot, plunder, and cold blooded murders of the people who resisted the imperial designs. Obama is a callous and unfeeling politician whose only aim is to be a twice-elected President. His elite credentials betray his race – a category which millions foolishly thought would make him the President who would champion the cause of justice around the world. In the end he has proven that he is like most politicians- a glutton for power and the kind for whom principles are negotiable at the drop of a hat.
What would Obama have to say of the millions who perilously and heroically fought to guard their homelands from bombing, invasion and occupation by the world’s superpower using devastating weapons of mass destruction?
An international tribunal last week ended an extensive investigation and trial into the torture allegations brought against the Bush administration. They had no choice to do their part given that the International Court of justice in The Hague refused to receive the charges made against the criminals. It concluded that Bush and his team of Addington, Yoo, Haynes, Bybee, Gonzales, Rumsfeld, Cheney) are guilty of war crimes.
Most Americans heard nothing about this despite considerable international media coverage notably in the Middle East and Asia. The Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Tribunal’s guilty verdict is largely symbolic. It cannot enforce either extradition for prosecution. It just might move the case one step closer to being tried in The Hague.
If one were to go back to 1945, there will be abundant evidence to indict nearly every US President and their allies. If America is today a rich nation that wealth has been obtained through corporate greed and the war machine has been its instrument. Dollar diplomacy has been the foundation of US policy. When the diplomacy does not work, jungle law is then brought into play. Guns, swords, uniforms, stealth fighters, drones, uranium depleted uranium shells, and the threat of a nuclear arsenal are brought into play.
In 1992, the Bush Administration embarked upon a military adventure that was not purely about Iraq and Afghanistan. 9/11 was a huge pretext. The wars on Afghanistan and Iraq were part of a broader military agenda- an agenda which was launched at the end of the Cold War. The post Cold War period was defined by numerous US covert intelligence operations within the former Soviet Union, which were instrumental in triggering civil wars in several of the former republics including Chechnya (within the Russian Federation), Georgia and Azerbaijan. In the latter, these covert operations were launched with a view to securing strategic control over oil and gas pipeline corridors. That has almost always been about the ability to control strategic resources- oil being the chief of them.
It is also well worth bearing in mind that US military and intelligence operations in the post Cold War era have coincided with the “free market reforms” imposed under IMF guidance in Eastern Europe, the former Soviet Union and the Balkans, which resulted in the destabilization of national economies and the impoverishment of millions of people.
The World Bank sponsored privatization programmes in these countries enabled Western capital to acquire ownership and gain control of a large share of the economy of the former Eastern block countries. Western corporations, through financial manipulation and corrupt political practices support the deployment of America’s war machine so as to widen America’s economic sphere of influence.
War and Globalization go hand in hand. Militarization supports the conquest of new economic frontiers and the worldwide imposition of “free market” system. Michel Chossudovsky argues that “the US military and security apparatus endorses and supports dominant economic and financial interests – i.e. the build-up, as well as the exercise, of military might enforces “free trade”. He christens the Pentagon as an “arm of Wall Street” Even NATO coordinates its military operations with the World Bank and the IMF’s policy interventions, and vice versa.
USA and western ambitions – in collusion with capitalist interests in the global South- are not going to alter their strategy at any time voluntarily. The powerful never part with power voluntarily. They do so only under pressure. One must view the “Occupy Movement” in this light- a challenge to Wall Street and the kind of mechanisms it sets into motion around the world. Unless and until people on the streets feel the disaffection until it hurts and gain the conviction that people do not have to suffer the degradation of leading lives dictated by neo-liberal regimes ruled and created by the capitalist classes, nothing will change. It is urgent for people to develop a common and collective understanding on how the New World Order destroys and impoverishes. Also, seeing the link between economics and war, it is as important as Michel Chossudovsky argues that “the antiwar and anti-globalisation movements … be integrated into a single worldwide movement”.
Arundati Roy poignantly says: “The only thing worth globalizing is dissent”. Indeed, the globalization of justice struggles and the peace movement is fundamental. It requires a scale of solidarity and internationalism that is unparalleled. Michel Chossudovsky states how the current “global economic system feeds on social divisiveness between and within countries”. He then goes on to call for unity of purpose and worldwide coordination among diverse groups and social movements is crucial.
The peace that Obama and his co-power mongers seek is the peace of the graveyard. It is time for ‘we the people’ to organize ourselves in a new collective of movements for justice that will bring about an authentic peace – and that will not come unless is concerted, bold, and decisive action at all levels.
This is not anymore a choice- it is an obligation for people in struggles to abandon their individual struggles because it will only feed the potential of the ruling classes to dominate, control, and divide. Each struggle is inter-linked. We need to analyze the linkages and forge a new unity for justice through a fusion of the various struggles.
See attached article that shows the hollowness and arrogance of the Obama statement on the occasion of US Armed Forces Day.