Saturday, April 09, 2011

Enemies Unknown

[col. writ. 3/26/11] (c) '11 Mumia Abu-Jamal

It is a measure of how powerful the U.S. military is, and how poor the media is,
that the nation wages war against peoples and countries it knows nothing about.
All it apparently takes is a media campaign, calling someone a 'monster', a
'thug', or the clincher, a Hitler, and bombers begin hitting the skies.
It does it, gets chastened or beaten, vows not to do it again, and of course,
does it again -- and again.
When U.S. forces struck Vietnam (after a lie about an attack in the Gulf of
Tonkin), it did so almost as an afterthought; to assist a beaten European ally
(France), and in support of what scholars and analysts called 'the domino
theory', as if, if Vietnam 'fell', all of Asia would quickly tumble -- like
This theory, like many such ones in support of Imperial wars, was false. Decades
later, one of the war's foremost hawks, Defense Secretary Robert Strange
McNamara, would admit that American leaders knew next to nothing about Vietnam,
its language, history or culture, and that such ignorance made victory virtually
Then Somalia. Then Iraq.
Now Libya. How many of us know that much of the internal war is driven by tribal
conflicts? That one of the major eastern tribes, the Senussi, lost power and
influence when King Idris was overthrown in 1969 by the Free Officers Movement,
of which Col. Kaddafi was a part? That many of them don't want democracy but the
old kingdom restored?
That many flew flags of the House of Idris -- a western puppet like Farouk of
Egypt or the Shah of Iran -- during initial rebellions?
Does it seem strange that western so-called democracies are fighting on the side
of kings?
Oh -- and backwards, poor Libya. Did you know that Libya has the highest per
capita GOP in Africa -- even higher than South Africa?? Or that it had one of the
highest literacy rates in the Arab world? (Almost 20% higher than Egypt?)
I didn't either. I read it (in a relatively obscure British journal). And to
check it out, I looked it up.
We don't know, because it's not in the interest of the corporate forces which
owns and utilizes the media, or for us to know.
10 years after the Afghanistan war started, and 8 years after the Iraq war began,
and we haven't learned a damned thing.
--(c) '11 maj

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