Pride goeth before the fall, we are told in the Bible. Unfortunately pride and arrogance are the lynchpins of our foreign policy. From the refusal to end the 17 year war on Afghanistan to the ever-growing military budgets to a new Joint Chiefs Chairman who promises to destroy our “enemies,” it is an excess pride and arrogance among the US foreign policy and political establishment more than anything else that is undermining our national security. More in today’s Ron Paul Liberty Report:
Did President Trump really have no idea that a top Chinese businesswoman and member of the country’s political elite was going to be arrested in Canada just as the US president was having dinner with Chinese leader Xi Jinping? If so, did the neocons surrounding him knowingly keep him in the dark? The implications of this arrest are incalculable, as the Huawei CFO, Weng Wanzhou faces 30 years in US prison for allegedly violating US sanctions on Iran! What to expect? Tune in to today’s Ron Paul Liberty Report:
Back in 1992, when I was thinking about what to write my dissertation on, I put together a statement of intent and a bibliography. My statement was titled, “Economic Mobilization and National Strategies in Great Britain and France during the Great War.” As it turns out, I decided not to pursue a military subject, turning instead to science and religion, an area I examined when I pursued my master’s degree. I was reminded of all this as I looked through old documents this weekend in pursuit of references for a friend.
Anyway, here’s my statement from 1992 about World War I as a killing machine:
The Great War was a struggle waged by modern industrial juggernauts. The Western Front witnessed organized destruction on a scale heretofore thought impossible. Staggered by the costs of modern war, all combatants mobilized their economies, with varying degrees of success.
A State Department official restated that the administration very much wants to continue backing the Saudi coalition war on Yemen:
“There are pressures in our system … to either withdraw from the conflict or discontinue our support of the coalition, which we are strongly opposed to on the administration side,” said Timothy Lenderking, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Arabian Gulf Affairs.
“We do believe that the support for the coalition is necessary. It sends a wrong message if we discontinue our support,” he told a security forum in the United Arab Emirates.
While Pentagon officials tell members of the Senate one thing, other administration officials tell members of the Saudi coalition something else. According to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs’ testimony last week, the U.S. isn’t a participant in the war and doesn’t support any side, but the administration is quick to reassure an audience in the UAE that the US won’t “withdraw from the conflict” (acknowledging that we are a party to the conflict) and won’t “discontinue our support” (admitting that we are very much on one side). Administration officials tell a dishonest story to Congress to discourage opposition to the war, but when they need to reassure regional clients that US support isn’t going anywhere they drop the pretense of being uninvolved. It is no wonder that members of Congress have grown tired of the administration’s two-faced Yemen policy.
Here is Karen Kwiatowski’s acceptance speech for the 2018 Sam Adams Award at a ceremony in Washington on Saturday night, preceded by the citation, that was read by former CIA analyst Ray McGovern.
Citation: Karen Kwiatkowski
Know all ye by these presents that Karen Kwiatkowski is hereby honored with the traditional Sam Adams Corner-Brightener Candlestick Holder, in symbolic recognition of her courage in shining light into dark places.
“If you see something, say something,” we so often hear. Karen Kwiatkowski took that saying to heart.
She saw her Pentagon superiors acting as eager accomplices to the Cheney/Bush administration’s deceit in launching a war of aggression on Iraq. And she said something – and helped Knight Ridder reporters Warren Strobel and Jonathan Landay see beneath the official lies and get the sordid story right before the war.
Karen’s courage brings to mind the clarion call of Rabbi Abraham Heschel against the perpetrators of an earlier war – Vietnam. “Few are guilty,” he said, “but all are responsible. Indifference to evil is more insidious than evil itself.” Karen would not be indifferent to evil.
Ed Snowden, Sam Adams awardee in 2013, noted that we tend to ignore some degree of evil in our daily life, but, as Ed put it, “We also have a breaking point and when people find that, they act.” As did Karen. As did 16 of Karen’s predecessors honored with this award.
In late November 2018, Noam Chomsky, the world-renowned public intellectual, remarked that “humanity faces two imminent existential threats: environmental catastrophe and nuclear war.”
Curiously, although a widespread environmental movement has developed to save the planet from accelerating climate change, no counterpart has emerged to take on the rising danger of nuclear disaster. Indeed, this danger – exemplified by the collapse of arms control and disarmament agreements, vast nuclear “modernization” programs by the United States and other nuclear powers, and reckless threats of nuclear war – has stirred remarkably little public protest and even less public debate during the recent U.S. midterm elections.
Of course, there are peace and disarmament organizations that challenge the nuclear menace. But they are fairly small and pursue their own, separate antinuclear campaigns. Such campaigns – ranging from cutting funding for a new nuclear weapon, to opposing the Trump administration’s destruction of yet another disarmament treaty, to condemning its threats of nuclear war – are certainly praiseworthy. But they have not galvanized a massive public uprising against the overarching danger of nuclear annihilation.
In these circumstances, what is missing is a strategy that peace organizations and activists can rally around to rouse the public from its torpor and shift the agenda of the nuclear powers from nuclear confrontation to a nuclear weapons-free world.