WAR AND DOMESTIC PEACE January 31, 2012Posted by wmmbb in Human Rights, Humankind/Planet Earth, Terrorism Issues.
”We must be prepared to make the same heroic sacrifices for the cause of peace that we make ungrudgingly for the cause of war. There is no task that is more important or closer to my heart.”
What was true for Albert Einstein (quote via Metta Center) might be equally true for each of us for which it might be the only practical path to follow.
The case to withdraw the Australian military involvement from Afghanistan is on its’ face overwhelming, and is in fact what is planned in 2014.
Of course there will be some exceptions to that made by the lead imperialists, the Military Industrial Complex based in the United States, as has happened in Iraq, such as leaving behind mercenaries, a extravagantly expensive embassy, and claiming the right to violate the air space by flying drones.
The behavior of the US occupation in Iraq was disgraceful. We witnessed the savagery and presumably criminality, for which there have been no indictments, as if war crimes can be discounted:
The comments made by the unindicted murderers bears reflection. Imagine bringing children to a city. The laws of war apply or they do not.
And the lack of accountability for the money from the Iraqi Treasury amounts to possible theft on a grand scale. Josh Levs reports for CNN:
The U.S. Defense Department cannot account for about $2 billion it was given to cover Iraq-related expenses and is not providing Iraq with a complete list of U.S.-funded reconstruction projects, according to two new government audits.
The reports come from the office of the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction.
The Iraqi government in 2004 gave the Department of Defense access to about $3 billion to pay bills for certain contracts, and the department can only show what happened to about a third of that, the inspector general says in an audit published Friday.
The problem with the alliance, if it can be so described, is that one party sets the agenda and the morality of actions. Things are made extremely difficult when any military is engaged in an occupation, has entered into a civil war, paradoxically it would seem in the case of both Iraq and Afghanistan on the side of Iran.
As the Israelis have discovered that you can create mass imprisonment, but nonetheless the opponents are not devoid of human intelligence and genius, and they find ways of fighting back. For example,Juan Cole notes:
In the 2006 Lebanon War, Hizbullah and its backers (Iran and Syria) cracked Israeli communications encryption and so knew everything the Israeli army planned to do as soon as the orders were radioed. Hizbullah used micro-war techniques, including small rockets, the emplacements of which could not be easily found and destroyed, to force 1/4 of Israelis from their homes. Toward the end of the war Hizbullah was threatening to hit toxic gas storage areas in Haifa and it wasn’t clear that the Dimona nuclear facility was safe. Tiny Hizbullah, with only about 5,000 fighters, drawn from a religious group with only about 1.5 million members in Lebanon, is a harbinger of things to come. Arabs and Muslims are no longer push-overs, and will become less so over time.
Then the recourse is to invent a fictional nuclear existential threat with the prospect of mass murder at a larger scale. Violence begets violence.
Tom Engelhardt describes some of the phantasmagorical context:
Imagine that, in late 2007, Iran’s ruling mullahs and their military advisors had decided to upgrade already significant covert activities against Washington, including cross-border operations, and so launched an intensification of its secret campaign to “destabilize” the country’s leadership — call it a covert war if you will — funded by hundreds of millions of dollars of oil money; that they (or their allies) supported armed oppositional groups hostile to Washington; that they flew advanced robot drones on surveillance missions in the country’s airspace; that they imposed ever escalating sanctions, which over the years caused increased suffering among the American people, in order to force Washington to dismantle its nuclear arsenal and give up the nuclear program (military and peaceful) that it had been pursuing since 1943; that they and an ally developed and launched a computer worm meant to destroy American centrifuges and introduced sabotaged parts into its nuclear supply chain; that they encouraged American nuclear scientists to defect; that one of their allies launched an assassination program against American nuclear scientists and engineers, killing five of them on the streets of American cities; that they launched a global campaign to force the world not to buy key American products, including Hollywood movies, iPhones, iPods, and iPads, and weaponry of any sort by essentially embargoing American banking transactions.
Imagine as well that an embattled American president declared the Gulf of Mexico to be off-limits to Iranian aircraft carriers and threatened any entering its waters with dire consequences. In response, the Iranians promptly sent their aircraft carrier, the Mossadegh, and its battle group of accompanying ships directly into Gulf waters not far from Florida and then stationed a second carrier, the Khomeini, and its task force in the nearby Caribbean as support. (Okay, the Iranians don’t have aircraft carriers, but just for a moment, suspend disbelief.)
And these things, not the full story, true enough in the parallel universe are swallowed whole as if they were Mother’s pills, without any condemnation in the mass media, as Tom Engelhardt notes of immorality.
Where that may be is over there, and they are “unpeople”. We are taught to fear “blowback”, but not to call the reaction by that name, even though the term was coined by the CIA. Occupation is invidious, and the Israeli lessons and experience are not irrelevant. Again paradoxically the Iranian Government learnt from the Israelis how to deal by violence with nonviolent demonstrators.
The same methods of policing are perhaps now in evidence in the US. Here are two current examples. Firstly from Oakland ( video via Truthdig):
And secondly there is this incident from McPherson Square in Washington DC (Click on the link for the full screen video):
Whether there is cause and effect, the underlying principle is the same. We should be careful about the full implications of foreign engagements, of going along for the ride so as not to rock the boat.
The Telegraph reports:
British troops are being trained in riot control tactics amid fears that violence and looting will return to Britain’s streets this summer.
- ‘War in Iran would mean WWIII’ – RT (rt.com)
- Nuclear Free Middle East: Desirable, Necessary, and Impossible (richardfalk.wordpress.com)
- Ira Chernus: New York Times Hypes Israeli Attack On Iran (huffingtonpost.com)
- Law and Disorder Radio has an interview with Tariq Ali with other reports.