27 December 2008

Thank You!

Thank You!

Imagine that the troops are actually doing the work that they are popularly claimed to be doing (though not without reasonable controversy) - that is, protecting us from irrational terrorists, (the "bad guys,") whom are bent upon destruction of our way of life (we're the "good guys!") Assuming that's the case, then hell yeah - thanks for protecting us.

But then again, what if it's not so simple—not so clear. What if the truth is something different than that reality as presented so often in mainstream media. What if the troops are actually protecting US access to global mineral resources? What if the troops are actually enabling the execution of a foreign policy of dominance? Should we still thank them if it turns out that they aren't protecting us? What if the truth is that they are actually protecting the interests of oil companies, war contractors, and the likes of Halliburton, et al.?

The reality on the ground—the truth as I see it, is that the USA is pursuing a foreign policy of dominance. That's to say that the goal of the US government is to enable domination of the global economy by US and Western, and other associated interests.

It can also be rightly stated and understood that the US attack on Iraq was unprovoked. And even though the attack of Afghanistan was (arguably) provoked by the 9/11 attacks, it also doesn't mean that the attack was justified (either by law or by legitimate defensive strategy.)

The greatest crime is a foreign policy of dominance as it seeks to employ the means of violence, militarism and aggression in order to accomplish it's oppressive ends. This dominance policy is a foreign policy of might makes right, and it would be absolutely intolerable if it was being practiced against "us" rather than by "us." (''Us" in quotes because of my desire to separate myself from the dreadfully wrong foreign policy of my government.)

The above sign is a sticker as it was seen on the front door of a restaurant in Northern Wisconsin (where, perhaps coincidentally, my long beard received plenty of stares.)

So, Thank You. Thank you to those soldiers who refuse to serve in illegal and immoral imperial wars of aggression. You're the real heroes. You're the ones who dutifully uphold your oath of service, your oath to the constitution.

To those troops who serve either willingly or unwillingly, I am so sad. And I am sorry that you have been thrust into this horrible position. I will continue to work to hold our government accountable so that the military is not used to further aggressive and intrusive foreign policy agendas.

More resources:

Courage to Resist

Thankyou Lt. Ehren Watada

Free the Shministim (Israel's Young Conscientious Objectors)

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans Against the War


  1. About as far as I can go is to say thanks to the men and women who are doing what each thinks is in the best interests of the country, planet and world. Of course, what I think and you think those best interests are is not the same as what most of them think!!!

    I lay the blame, not at their feet, but at the feet of our institutional and government leaders who, through brainwashing and manipulation, have convinced these average citizens that violence and destruction are in anyone's best interests.

  2. We have rulers in this country who are engaged in the most un-neighborly of behaviors. These people are like the characters Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. The Wilderness Frontier of the American West has been projected upon the world, where these people strive to exhibit absolute power, in whatever form (including military and nuclear weapons) in order to exact their toll of domination.

    It's a cruel and wrongheaded doctrine.

    I agree with you 100% in placing the blame at the feet of policy makers and policy implementers, primarily those in Congress and the White House — but also those who lobby for the interests of the military industrial media neo-liberal "growth at seemingly whatever cost" economic complex.

    Many if not most soldiers are not too blame - except insofar as they are aware of these problems and choose to toe the line. Understandably, it is not comfortable to speak out of turn, or to speak against a military machine of which one is part. There's a lot of peer pressure in the military, pressure to look out for your "buddies."

    Maybe what we need most to work on is recreating the myth. The myth that "we" are the good guys is worn out, worn thin, lacking in the substance of truth. The truth, and the truth-based myth that we can work to instill amongst the American populous (yes it would be easier if we owned a national television network), is that our government is behaving badly. It is acting in the interests, not of the people, but of the nations biggest businesses and most powerful industries (including military and extraction industries.)

    We need to get business out of government. The business of America can no longer be business. The business of America must be changed to be restoration, preservation, reconciliation, making apologies, making amends, for the tremendous and grievous assaults on the common welfare of humanity and the planet!

    Thanks for commenting!

  3. Berd,

    While you & I (many others too) agree on the more sustainable and peaceful direction to go, it is so difficult to recreate the myth. The powers that be rule the airwaves, so to speak. Our voices are like that of a mouse in a gigantic forest.

    That is not to say that we should not continue to speak, but we must realize at the outset that few people will hear us and even fewer will understand us.

  4. I believe that if we can effect real change on at least some level, even if only within ourselves, then there is real potential for that change to spread. Personally, I think there are many people who hunger for the truth, so that once it becomes available, there is potential for truth to become viral - so that people may refuse to accept anything less than the truth.