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".. not in our son's name."

 
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The world has been in ferment since September 11, but why weren't there
similar outcries at earlier atrocities?
John Pilger
Thursday October 4, 2001
The Guardian
This week saw the end of an exhibition I helped put on at the Barbican
in London, devoted to photo-journalism that makes sense of terrible
events. Brilliant, subversive pictures from Vietnam show the systematic
rape of a country with weapons designed to spread terror. The exhibition
ranged from Hiroshima to two final, haunting images of sisters, aged 10
and 12, their bodies engraved in the rubble of the Iraqi city of Basra,
where American missiles destroyed their street two years ago: part of a
current Anglo-American bombing campaign that is almost never reported.
Since the outrages in America on September 11, the exhibition has been
packed, mostly with young people. Many accused the media and politicians
of misrepresenting public opinion and of obscuring the reasons behind
the fanaticism of the attackers. For them, the most telling pictures are
of "unworthy victims". Let me explain. The 6,000 people who died in
America on September 11 are worthy victims: that is, they are worthy of
our honour and a relentless pursuit of justice, which is right. In
contrast, the 6,000 people who die every month in Iraq, the victims of a
medieval siege devised and imposed by Washington and Whitehall, are,
like the little sisters bombed to death in their sleep in Basra,
unworthy victims - unworthy of even acknowledgement in the "civilised"
west.
Ten years ago, when 200,000 Iraqis died during and immediately after the
slaughter known as the Gulf war, the scale of this massacre was never
allowed to enter public consciousness in the west. Many were buried
alive at night by armoured American snowploughs and murdered while
retreating. Colin Powell, then US military chief, who 22 years earlier
was assigned to cover up the My Lai massacre in Vietnam and is currently
being elevated to hero status in the western media, said: "It's really
not numbers I'm terribly interested in."
An American letter writer to the Guardian last week, in admonishing the
writer Arundhati Roy for producing a "laundry list" of American terror
around the world, revealed how the blinkered think. The lives of
millions of people extinguished as a consequence of American policies,
be they Iraqis or Palestinians, Timorese or Congolese, belong not in our
living memory, but on a "list". Apply that dismissive abstraction to the
Holocaust, and imagine the profanity.
The job of disassociating the September 11 atrocities from the source of
half a century of American crusades, economic wars and homicidal
adventures, is understandably urgent. For Bush and Blair to "wage war
against terrorism", assaulting countries, killing innocents and creating
famine, international law must be set aside and a monomania must take
over politics and the "free" media. Fortunately public opinion is not
yet fully Murdochised and is already uneasy and suspicious; 60% oppose
massive bombing, says an Observer poll. And the more Blair, our little
Lord Palmerston, opens his mouth on the subject the more suspicions will
grow and the crusaders' contortions of intellect and morality will show.
When Blair tells David Frost that his war plans are aimed at "the people
who gave [the terrorists] the weapons", can he mean we are about to
attack America? For it was mostly America that destroyed a moderate
regime in Afghanistan and created a fanatical one.
On the day of the twin towers attack, an arms fair, selling weapons of
terror to assorted tyrants and human rights abusers, opened in London's
Docklands with the backing of the Blair government. Now Bush and Blair
have created what the UN calls "the world's worst humanitarian crisis",
with up to 7m people facing starvation. The initial American reaction
was to demand that Pakistan stop supplying food to the starving who, of
course, fail to qualify as worthy victims.
The bombing intelligentsia (the New Humanitarians, as Edward Herman
calls them) are doing their bit, blaming September 11 on "an evil hatred
of modernity" and something called "apocalyptic nihilism". There are no
reasons why; the Barbican pictures are fake. Aside from a few "errors",
Anglo-American actions are redeemed, and those who produce the "laundry
list" of a blood-soaked historical record are "anti American", which
apparently is similar to the "anti-semitism" of those who dare to point
out the atrocious activities of the Israeli state.
Phyllis and Orlando Rodriguez lost their son Greg in the World Trade
Centre. They said this: "We read enough of the news to sense that our
government is heading in the direction of violent revenge, with the
prospect of sons, daughters, parents, friends in distant lands dying,
suffering, and nursing further grievances against us. It is not the way
to go... not in our son's name."
 
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I see zulfiqar raza is back.
 
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I bet he doesn't even take a breath between paragraphs.
 
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Originally posted by Michael Ernest:
I bet he doesn't even take a breath between paragraphs.


The original poster didn't write this. The source is http://www.johnpilger.com/iraq

[This message has been edited by Shama Khan (edited October 08, 2001).]
 
Anonymous
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Shama Khan
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I would agree that pacifism is a loser attribute.
However, I had always thought that the people who demonstrated against the Vietnam war were speaking out against killing of innocent civilians I don't necessarily see that as pacifistic.
I agree that the group that caused havoc in the World Trade Center should be brought to justice. Forgiveness would be so dumb. But at the same time killing more innocent people in the process of catching the criminals is being revengeful in a mindless way.
I am afraid that eliminating the symptom is not going to eliminate the disease which has been fermenting for at least 50 years if not more. We, as responsible Americans, should try to find the origins and causes of the disease in a most impartial manner. The worst thing we can do is dismiss these symptoms and disease by bombing it away because then it'll only come back with another face.
Shama
[This message has been edited by Shama Khan (edited October 08, 2001).]
 
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Originally posted by Adam Horovitz:
http://www.msnbc.com/news/634264.asp http://www.msnbc.com/news/637394.asp


Thank you, Adam!
Originally posted by "http://www.msnbc.com/news/634264.asp":
"Do the pacifists wish to live in a United States that has been defeated by Osama bin Laden or Saddam Hussein? Do they wish to live in a United States that has been defeated by any foreign force? Do they wish to live under an occupying power? Do they wish to live under, say, the laws of the Taliban or the Baath Party of Iraq?
These questions, you may say, rest on an absurd premise: Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein cannot ever hope to defeat and occupy the United States. Yes, but that is true only because the United States maintains and employs an armed force sufficient to defeat those who would defeat it. If the United States did as the pacifists wish - if it eschewed war even when attacked - it would, at some point, be conquered by a foreign regime. What stops this from happening is that the government and generally the people of the United States do not heed the wishes of the pacifists.
...
The anti-warriors must know that their position is a luxury made affordable only by the sure bet that no one in authority will ever accede to their position."

Gee, that's exactly what communists told us in the USSR! "We, comunists, are peaceful as sheeps, we want all the best for all people in the world, but you know -those capitalists will defeat and occupy us the next morning we stop producing new tanks and bombs"
I am crying in a touch of nostalgia...
Disclaimer: please, consider my emotional reaction above as a support for neither pacifism nor militarism. The truth, as usual, is somewhere between. All the problem is proportions...
 
Jason Menard
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Originally posted by Shama Khan:
I would agree that pacifism is a loser attribute.
However, I had always thought that the people who demonstrated against the Vietnam war were speaking out against killing of innocent civilians I don't necessarily see that as pacifistic.


I had always thought that the Vietnam demonstrators were basically cowards who were afriaid for their own well-being if they were to get drafted. That and the fact that protesting was a trendy thing to do among college students (still is).
 
Anonymous
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Quote:
"Gee, that's exactly what communists told us in the USSR! "We, comunists, are peaceful as sheeps, we want all the best for all people in the world, but you know -those capitalists will defeat and occupy us the next morning we stop producing new tanks and bombs"
That is a silly response. When communists where saying that in russia and our government was saying virtually the same thing here you might be able to argue that there was no real threat and that it was just government propaganada.
Nearly 6000 people were just killed by terrorists in one shot. It is no longer a potential threat. It is a reality.
 
Mapraputa Is
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Let's read again.
"If the United States did as the pacifists wish - if it eschewed war even when attacked - it would, at some point, be conquered by a foreign regime. What stops this from happening is that the government and generally the people of the United States do not heed the wishes of the pacifists."
If it is true for the USA, I cannot see why the same reasons are considered propaganda for the USSR. For example, in 1945 the USA dropped atomic bombs on Japan. Even American politics admit that it was made partly to demonstrate hm... something to the USSR. So you think communists had no reasons to say "if the USSR did as the pacifists wish ... it would, at some point, be conquered by a foreign regime"? There was no real threat and that it was just government propaganda?
What I tried to highlight, that in both cases the threat of being conquered (not just attacked) was slightly exaggerated. And I did not even say that it's a bad thing. Some people are really good in watching out for potential threats and spreading panic timely - let they do it. Some other people are amazingly good at staying calm and loving their enemies without any good reason - God bless them. I only do not like when one group attacks another - because properly executed attacks are yet another group's mission.

[This message has been edited by Mapraputa Is (edited October 09, 2001).]
 
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