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Fw: [nadervt] Warning: The present condition of the U.S.

Oct 02, 2001 05:16 PM
by Pendragon

In September, over 6,000 Americans were lost
when the biggest and best funded military in world history was defeated by a
handful of guerillas armed mainly with knives.

In normal circumstances there would be talk of courts martial (as there was
in the case of Pearl Harbor) and impeachment (as there was during the
Vietnam War). Instead we have been conned into waving the flag on behalf of
an establishment that has shamefully failed the country through a
combination of arrogance, greed, stupidity, unpreparedness, carelessness,
and corruption.

Consider, for example, the fact that we are now getting lessons on
patriotism from politicians and journalists who spent the past decade
tossing American sovereignty down the drain in the name of "free trade."
Consider that our military, alienating the restless in scores of country,
turned out to be a cause of our troubles rather than of their elimination.
Consider an intelligence establishment that help train the guerillas who
have now turned on us. Consider the politicians who undermined our safety to
please the oil and defense industries or who endangered our lives in order
to support Israel and gain the campaign rewards that followed. Consider a
foreign policy intelligentsia that could not tell the difference between
realpolitik and realstupid.

This is not cause for unity, flag-waving and loyalty to the latest political
puppet of a decadent elite that has led us into such a crisis. It is cause
for shock and anger, for citizen inquiries and investigations into the
questions the think tanks, Congress and the media refuse to ask, and for a
Solidarity-type movement in which Americans who love their land, the freedom
they once possessed, and the decency to which they aspire come together not
just to bring peace in a war-mad moment but to cause a transformation in how
power is exercised.

I was asked the other day what I would do if I were president. I declined
the hypothesis because, I said, the only way that would happen would be if
the Green Party had come to power, which would mean that America would have
already have been acting in a far different manner than it is today and thus
the attacks would have been far less like even to have occurred. I might
have added that it was a little late to be seeking the advice of those who
have repeatedly sought a different course and who, in return, have been
scorned, kept off the ballot, not invited to debates, and blacked out of the

Further, the American establishment, despite its shameful and disastrous
failure, refuses even now to listen to other than itself. Check this out by
counting how many minutes on mainstream TV or inches in your paper are
devoted to non-military, non-violent solutions to our problem.

Of course, the establishment would have you believe that the guerillas
sprung from the global forest like the Big Bad Wolf going after Little Red
Riding Hood. It relies heavily on the American faith that bad things have
only two sources: accident or someone else's evil. The idea, such as was
imbedded for centuries in maritime law, that a collision often involves
divided fault, is alien to us save in a few instances such as when an abused
spouse shoots her husband. Yet we must now face our proportional
responsibility not only in the name of honesty but in the name of survival.
Nations can not well endure on such a diet of denial as ours.

The question of what one should do at this moment is clouded by another
truth: there may actually be no adequate defense against that which we fear.
To believe that we will be safe if we only ban, search, and spy on enough
things, and jail enough people on enough specious grounds, is a path towards
madness. Like the individual suffering from agoraphobia, we will become
prisoners in our own rooms.

The possibility of no available defense is frightening until one realizes
that we live happily with it every day in other contexts. For example, no
husband and wife adequately protects themselves from being murdered by each
other or by their children. Yet, most do not sleep in bulletproof vests nor
pat the kids down each time they walk in the house. That's because we have
found other ways of assuring the safety in these relationships based on
means beyond those used by the military and police. Similarly, despite the
often heated nature of labor negotiations, I have never heard of a mediator
going into the conference room fully armed.

To define the possible solutions to this crisis as only those of war and
security is to admit defeat, for it is on this level that we are most
vulnerable. Yet these appear to be virtually the sole tools our
establishment understands. Thus not only has it brought unprecedented shame
and danger to this land, it proposes with unbridled hubris to compound its
errors by more of the same.

The rest of us, whether out of moral sense or pragmatic grasp, must no
longer enable such madness but tell those who have failed and betrayed us
that they may not, must not, damage further our lives, our fortunes, and
our sacred honor. SAM SMITH

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