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News ::
The Stars & Stripes: Killing for the Flag
18 Mar 2002
Modified: 19 Mar 2002
The U.S. is the only nation-state to have been condemned by the World
Court
for international terrorism. The U.S. vetoed a UN Security Council
resolution calling on governments to observe international law.
cover2002.gif
The U.S. is the only nation-state to have been condemned by the World Court for international terrorism. The U.S. vetoed a UN Security Council resolution calling on governments to observe international law.
Alternative Press Review
Vol 7, No.1/Spring 2002
www.altpr.org

http://www.altpr.org/apr16/editorial.html
The Stars & Stripes: Killing for the Flag

The U.S. is the only nation-state to have been condemned by the World
Court
for international terrorism. The U.S. vetoed a UN Security Council
resolution calling on governments to observe international law. After
deliberately targeting the civilian public health infrastructure, the U.S.
military imposes a continuing economic blockade on Iraq which has directly
resulted in the deaths of hundreds upon hundreds of thousands of children.
The U.S. government is the primary financier and arms supplier for the
decades-long Israeli war against the entire Palestinian people. The U.S.
armed forces and U.S. organized and/or financed ally or proxy forces have
killed millions upon millions of civilians since the end of World War II.
This is the not-so-hidden meaning of the Stars and Stripes as the vast
majority of people around the world understand it.

Now the U.S. government has begun what it bills as an open-ended "War
on
Terrorism," which conveniently ignores the fact that in the late Twentieth
Century and the beginning of the Twenty-first Century it is the United
States of America that, by its own definition, is the most prolific
terrorist force in the world. While at the same time U.S. leaders are
choosing to target whichever individuals, organizations, regimes and/or
nation-states--among the wide array of opponents of U.S. policies--are
deemed
most convenient this week, leaving the rest for next week, next year or
the
next decade. This is, of course, a recipe for perpetual war, which is as
well understood by President Bush and the other architects of the "New
World
Order," as it was by the architects of a similar project of world empire
that was proudly proclaimed the Third Reich, under a flag with a similarly
not-so-hidden meaning.

Perpetual war serves a number of purposes for the present
administration.
It is under wartime conditions that the U.S. state will, at least
initially,
face the least resistance as it finishes the now over two century-long
process of gutting the Bill of Rights and voiding the inconvenient parts
of
the U.S. Constitution. It is under conditions of war that the campaign to
defeat the anti-globalization movement can be fought with increasingly
militant and dirty tactics. It is under wartime conditions that all
opponents of U.S. policies anywhere in the world, including within the
U.S.
itself, can be most easily labeled "terrorist," at the same time that the
mass media can be most easily mobilized as a total propaganda machine. And
it is under conditions of war that the arms production, oil production and
military technology corporations that funded President Bush's election by
the Supreme Court will be most handsomely rewarded without too many
questions ever being asked. And best of all, wartime conditions lend
themselves to the easy mobilization of xenophobic, politically
reactionary,
flag-waving patriotism. The kind where a complete and utter absence of
popular intelligence is made up for by the cathartic release of long
pent-up
anger at being forced to live under frustrating conditions in an
alienating
world with no real hope for any beneficial social change in sight.

However, while conditions of perpetual war may be fortuitous for the
fortunes of the current regime and its backers right now, there is little
reason to believe that the game won't end a lot earlier than they think.
In
fact, there are already clouds on the horizon that will only grow more
threatening: the unhappy reactions of regimes the world over that are
disquieted by an American rogue state increasingly out of control, the
pleas
of would-be allies that will continue to be destabilized by their
bullying,
rapacious "friend," the glaring failure to derail the anti-globalization
movement around the world (with only a partial exception within the U.S.
itself, where it has been slowed more effectively), the meltdown of the
Argentinean economy under the conditions imposed by the IMF (with the
threat
of others always looming), the failure of the current Israeli strategy of
an
accelerating campaign of war crimes, and the growing wave of international
opinion condemning the American project of empire-which the massive,
ongoing
covert and overt propaganda war has so-far failed to dent. Waving a
hundred
million flags all around the country won't make these problems for empire
go
away.

And even within the U.S., it's only a matter of time before the
population
tires of a war without any foreseeable resolution against enemies that
must
be continually manufactured. The longer the war on terrorism continues,
the
less enthusiastic will be the flag-waving and cheering for more bombing
campaigns, the mass starvation now in full-swing in Afghanistan, and the
continuing delays and frustrations demanded for internal security. Even
with
the full complicity of the mainstream U.S. media in its efforts to promote
perpetual war, dissatisfaction and dissension will once again arise, until
even the biggest, most impressive American flags fail to cover up all the
crimes against innocent men, women and children throughout the world
required to keep the empire of American capitalism growing.

Jason McQuinn
Chuck Munson
Tom Wheeler

*******************************
Alternative Press Review - www.altpr.org
Your Guide Beyond the Mainstream
PO Box 4710 - Arlington, VA 22204
See also:
http://www.altpr.org/
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Comments

MIndless flag waving
18 Mar 2002
is running out of steam. However, being the top arms merchant and war profiteer in the world America cannot afford peace. That would destroy our economy.

Americans get most of their limited foreign affairs info from a right-wing, racist, anti-Arab/Muslim mainstream media, and they will gladly lead the way into the next new war.

The infamous Saddam baby killing lie was manufactured in 1991, by American and Kuwaiti warmongers. What new incident will be created to get the brainless flagg wavers going again?
On the brainless Flag waving
19 Mar 2002
How is war good for the economy? When people go to war, things and people are destroyed. Things that once had value are reduced to rubble, or scraps of metal. Furthermore, tax revenues are used to "tool up" that could have been used for better, more useful things, things that have inherent value instead of things that destroy value. To say that the economy cannot afford peace doesn't make any sense.

War destroys wealth and the economy depends on wealth.