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Noam Chomsky speaks in Arlington May 20th (english)
04 Jun 2003
He gave us a real challenge to change the government, and to override the propaganda press by speaking truth to the people. Noam Chomsky as usual gave us a lot of ammunition, as well as the charm to use it with.
Our Jeremiah, our Cassandra, Noam Chomsky, ignored by the Boston media, spoke to a packed house last night in Arlington, Ma. They opened the windows so those outside could lean in and hear. We came from all over New England to hear the truth about what is a frightening take-over of our government by the power-mad Bush administration, taking us into a 44 trillion debt in order quite consciously .. to rape our social services . Yesterday, the White House virtually admitted it: Ari Fleischer conceded the accuracy of the forecast and said that Social Security and Medicare will have to be ‘reformed’ because of the ‘crushing debt’ – “reform” is a euphemism for “destroy”. While preaching “No child shall go untaught”, millions are cut from educational funding and teachers are laid off.

As is with most plans destined for failure, this one arises from ignorance and greed. The Bush mob, re-runs from the Reagan/Bush I years that plunged us into deficit spending, are back again with a far more dangerous agenda. So confident are they of the complicity and gullibility of the American public, they have proclaimed what heretofore was a covert policy, discussed only among themselves, to the world. While speaking of ‘bringing democracy to Iraq’, they make quite certain the Iraqis will NOT govern themselves, using all the rationalizations colonial empires have made in the past: “They’re not ready.” “They need help setting up the infrastructure”, which we just conveniently destroyed. “They need help with the technology of getting the most from their oil fields”, thus ensuring perpetual control over their oil supplies.

The doctrine, the Imperial Grand Strategy, verbalized by the Bush administration last Fall, is that of ‘preemptive’ war.. ‘Preemptive’ war is a legitimate concept that refers to that narrow window in which a country might, for example, direct missiles onto CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES. In that time, the U.S. could quite ‘justly’ destroy both the missiles and the bases that sent them. This was the concept behind M.A.D., which prevented both the USSR and the U.S. from unleashing nuclear forces that would destroy the world. Now, our government is simply MAD. The slaughter in Iraq was not a ‘pre-emptive’ war. Although the TV media brainwashed 60% of the undereducated American people into believing that Saddam Hussein had something to do with 9/11, --- that some of those terrorists were Iraqis---, the CIA has stated that those beliefs are not so.

The Bush Imperial Grand Strategy should rightly be called ‘preventive’ war, in which the failure to find Weapons of Mass Destruction is beside the point. Because no weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq, the principle has been expanded. If the Bush mob thinks that a country even has the ‘capability’ for creating WMDs, they are justified in invading/destroying that country. This is a concept the Mafia understands and implements well.

By creating fear in the people of the mightiest nation of the world-- keeping those Orange and yellow alerts flashing like traffic lights-- Bush, obeying Goering’s dictate, will lead the Bubble People anywhere. The bubble is that framework of denial of the evil we are gulled into committing, under the guise of ‘patriotism’, enhanced by the numbness created by the bread and circuses of the TV drivel and consumerism ( our other responsibility, “Go shopping”). Karl Rove, Bush’s chief campaign strategist has said that by making National Security the centerpiece of the Republican campaign, the people will forget about lack of medical insurance, failing pensions, worthlessness of their 401Ks and the lack of jobs. (With the Democrats rolling over, this should be easy.)

Fear is the dominant emotion that-- kept high through media manipulation-- will overcome anxiety about the economy. There are several precedents for this: Reagan kept the anxiety going by warning us of the danger from Nicaragua, “a 400 mile march from Brownsville, Texas.” Manipulating the public with the fear that a Communist landing field was being built in Grenada, 24,000 troops were sent in to conquer a handful of airport contractors. 8000 Medals of Honor were given out, and “We Stood Tall”. When the aura lifted and the American public realized that they had been duped, Reagan came in second to Nixon as the most despised of all presidents, current propaganda to the contrary. . Same old, same old, but the stakes are higher now. There is no one to stop the Juggernaut, seemingly.

Through this imperialistic doctrine, Bush can name anyone he pleases , who have the ‘ability’ and ‘intention’ of developing WMD, as targets for U.S. aggression. Obviously, as we have just seen in the case of Iraq, this ability need be only in the eyes of the beholder. Under that description, Canton High School with its science labs, could be so accused. Through this ruse, using the shell game of “Who’se not GOT the WMDs?” but “Who COULD make the WMDs?”, the Bush administration can keep the world under its control, and the American people as duped accomplices.

A doctrine is no good without a test case: Iraq. We saw that beginning last Fall, as the drumbeat of propaganda began beating, with Bush administration lackeys saying, “A tinpot dictator is mocking us”, which has been conceded in retrospect. They pretended Iraq was an imminent threat to our security. This is, known as ‘dissing’ to street gangs and cause enough for a ‘rumble’. Yes, Saddam Hussein did terrible things to his people”….but the TV drumbeaters carefully fail to mention that it was our government that set this man in power, that financed his gassing of the Kurds, his suppression of the uprising in 1991. That’s when those graves of the thousands they are conveniently ‘discovering’ were filled. Where is the publicity on the thousands of graves we have filled? Our government implicitly gave permission for Hussein to send his planes and armed helicopters into northern Iraq to wipe out those who wanted freedom from his oppression, as we were flying surveillance daily and could easily have stopped it. The Reagan administration in 1988 overrode Congress when it tried to speak out against the gross violation of human rights in Iraq at the time.

Same hypocrisy is seen in Bush’s ‘vision’. Don’t listen to his words to find out his ‘vision’. (Yes, It’s the ‘vision thing’, again.) Look at his actions. As he welcomed home the troops in the first shot of the presidential campaign on the deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln, he was also busy cutting $25 Billion from Veterans’ Benefits, etc., etc.

There are three requirements in becoming ‘the object of our detections’: 1) the country must be defenseless. Gulf War I saw to that, destroying Iraq’s defense and their economy, with the help of the sanctions and the inspections. Not even the countries adjoining Iraq were afraid of it, Iran and Kuwait. Iraq’s expenditures for defense were 1/3 those of Kuwait.

2) The country must be IMPORTANT: Iraq holds oil and water supplies for the entire MidEast. A few dams built here and there over the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, and, voila, any country downstream is held hostage. It is not for naught that Iraq (Mesopotamia) was the birthplace of civilization.

3) The country’s rulers must be ‘bad’ or made to appear so. Saddam Hussein, whom we made powerful, fit the description. He was our boy, until he ‘disobeyed the U.S. government’ and invaded Kuwait. It is a gross violation of the U.N. Charter to affect ‘regime change’ in another country. Yet, ironically, one of Bush’s excuses for invading Iraq was to enforce the U.N. resolution against Iraq for having weapons of mass destruction. So the U.S. government ignores portions of International Law, (which are by our Constitution an extension of our laws, and therefore to be obeyed) and enforces others.

Thankfully, there are three problems with the further implementation of this Doctrine: the Mideast, Europe and Asia.
Mideast: The Israel/Palestine conflict. The region will remain in constant foment until the Israel/Palestine conflict is resolved. Bush is taking credit for the plan for two states, but there has been international consensus for the 2 state solution for years. You were never allowed to see the maps for a former two state solution drawn up by the U.S. and Israel, which Arafat refused to sign. Why? It broke the West Bank into four cantons, separated, disconnected and gave Israel almost all the Jerusalem area, which has grown considerably. A look at the maps would have shown anyone of reasonable intelligence why it was a non-starter.

Europe: will Europe be content to be subordinated to the U.S. or go on its own path? The reason France and Germany is being so vilified by the Bush lackeys is that, unlike the U.S. and Britain, their governments DO represent the will of the people. Kissinger, at a Year of Europe celebration in 1973 told the European nations: “You must understand Europe has regional responsibility within the framework of order maintained by the U.S. “ The induced hysteria against France and Germany is out of fear that Europe will not be content with its subordinate role.

Asia: One reason North Korea is in the ‘Axis of Evil’ is that NorthEast Asia could move on their own to independence. Left hanging was the question of “What if South and North Korea WANT to reunite, independent of the U.S.?” And now we come back full circle to “Why was it so important for the Bush/Cheney junta to control the oil supplies of Iraq? Because in so doing, they can control the energy sources for those Asian countries which have no oil resources of their own.

Chomsky does not believe that we are ‘taking time to reload’ (ref. Doonesbury) for Iran. It also fails the 3rd requirement: their current rulers are not perceived as ‘evil’. But the U.S. is reported by US academic specialists that the Isareli air force, based in Turkey, is flying reconnaissance at the Iranian borders, and the U.S. is supporting separatist movements in the north. More importantly, however, Iran is NOT yet defenseless.

The Bush revisionist—not Conservative-- administration (it is an insult to true Conservatives to call them such) has sent a clear message to the world, “Fear us. Obey our edicts, or we, unfettered by any sense of honor to any treaty we’ve ever signed, will take steps to punish you.” The other message, seemingly ignored by the Bush administration is this, “Arm yourselves with whatever deterrent force you can muster (Nuclear weapons, anyone?) We only go after the defenseless.” The result of this will be, as terrorism experts in our country have stated, a GREATER, not lesser , chance of other 9/11s. Does this matter to the Bush administration? Hardly. The more terrorism we have here, the more excuse for robbing us of even more of our freedoms.

They are now working on an “Inference” principle. If you by your actions of dissidence, civil disobedience or protest or your membership in an organization can be ‘inferred’ to be a terrorist, so are you. Result? You can be stripped of your citizenship and deported.

As this Doctrine of “Preventive/Pre-emptive ” War is enforced by the Bush administration, it sets a precedent for the world. As it becomes the norm, we cannot but expect other countries to follow suit. I envision our cannon fodder troops storming into hundreds of small countries with napalm, DU bombs and dogs to sniff out WMDs, thus inciting even more terrorism. Just as our forefathers rose up against the barbarous acts of the British soldiers they had to quarter, the outrageous acts of the occupying British governors, enforcing that other King George’s edicts, so will the Iraqis, the Afghanis, the ……fill in the blanks.

Duck and cover? Duct tape and plastic sheeting? I suggest you find yourself a cave and burrow deep within it. Take a generator and the following movies so you’ll know what we ‘shoulda’ done: “Brazil”, “1984”, “On the Beach”, “7 Days in May”, “Dr. Strangelove” and anything on Hitler. Oh, yes, don’t forget the Startrek episode, in which our world is eliminated from consideration of membership in the Confederation of Planets: “So long as you consider war an option in settling your disputes, you will never be civilized and worthy of membership.”

Chomsky, in as rich an address as I have ever heard, detailed much more about the Israeli/Palestine history, and the gutting of the U.N.’s power by US veto or absence, so hear him soon before this great voice of America’s conscience is stilled forever.
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