couple of interesting tidbits appear on the "new this week" section
on the website of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee:
Action! Urge Bush to Approve $200 Million to Israel
A $29 billion homeland
security bill that recently passed in Congress with strong bi-partisan support
includes $200 million in anti-terror aid for Israel. These funds would provide
vital additional resources to help Israel fight its war on terror and protect
its population from future conflicts in the region. Since Israel's allocation
was added to the bill by congressional appropriators, President Bush must designate
the $200 million for Israel as an 'emergency' in order for Israel to receive the
funding. Urge President Bush to approve the 'emergency' designation of the money
for Israel's war on terror."
Emergency! Quite the loaded word to use, given the current "2 Weeks to Judaism"
program being used to convert and import converts to said faith from the Andean
mountains. One imagines that if there were such an "emergency" worthy
of our President's notice in a foreign country, said foreign government would
do what is logical in wartime and curtail immigration rather than encourage new
folks to move in and settle the land of those who had been on it for centuries.
One wonders if those proselytizing are up front at all about what goes on
the checkpoints, the bombs dropped on residences from US made aircraft, the complete
perversion of Yahweh's message in the service of geopolitical objectives.
But I digress. No one wants to discuss God except for the so-called "congressional
appropriators", a gaggle of rubberstampers who occasionally shuffle out of
their chambers en masse to expound their solidarity for one linkage of God and
the destruction of his creation or another. And speaking of rubber stamps, another
item from the website of America's Pro-Israel lobby
a vote of 95-3, the Senate last week passed the fiscal year 2003 Defense Appropriations
bill, which provides substantial funding for U.S.-Israel strategic cooperation.
The Arrow Missile Defense Program received $80 million above the administration's
request for a total of $146 million. Additional funding includes the following:
$23.5 million for the Mobile Tactical High Energy Laser (MTHEL); $64.9 million
for the Litening II Targeting Pod; $35 million for Bradley Reactive Armor Tiles;
$22 million for the Hunter Unmanned Aerial Vehicle; and $20 million for the Improved
Tactical Air-Launched Decoy (ITALD). Learn more about these defense programs by
visiting our interactive strategic showroom."
Leaving aside the absurdity of a phrase like "interactive strategic showroom",
I'd like to focus on one other aspect of this vote. Ninety-five to three. That's
the kind of result that used to be disparaged in the US press when it would pop
out of some rogue state's parliament. Of course, back when middle-class folks
read and mothers stayed home to raise their children, folks in the "mainstream"
may have questioned numbers like that, as they would've questioned the inhumanity
of some of the phrases that come out of the White House to justify their use and
dealing of "weapons of mass destruction."
in the United States would we accept wars being given names as glib as those given
to mixed drinks in an ersatz Irish theme bar. Take your pick of either of these
euphemisms being bandied about on the cable channels, describing a US floorshow
in Iraq: "Afghan Redux", which suggests an earthily intoxicating blend
of subdued flavors and "Desert Storm Lite", a Kahluaesque concoction
that gets you crunked up but not at the expense of your girlish figure.
"Infinite Justice" has come and gone, way back in the rearview mirror
as we mutely watch the military-industrial complex and the relevant lobbies and
moral compasses "game plan" the war on Iraq. Meanwhile, there are those
among us who accept formulations like "We have to hunt down every terrorist
to prove how much we love freedom" as evidence of serious thought from the
self-styled born-again Christian who quotes Black Sabbath lyrics in moments of
levity. The leader of the free world.
Elementary logic suggests that if people should be punished for transgressions
against others that can be proven, then the burden of proof rests with the party
who accepts the burden of imposition of his moral code. The US Government, who
proclaims its moral superiority with every propaganda instrument available to
it, enjoys the benefits of imposing its moral code but rejects the burden of proof
of its claims. We speak of invading Iraq as almost an afterthought, under the
pretext of the possibility that Iraq may someday possess weapons of mass destruction.
The underlying claim is that a nation's sovereignty is at the will of the United
States government, which makes one feel swell if he somehow accepts people like
Richard Perle and John Negroponte as products of a vibrant representative democracy.
there apparently are people who accept those very claims, and others besides.
The State Department's contention that Iraq didn't in fact "gas its own people"
in 1988 was taken seriously during the Herbert Walker era but is now remembered
solely by members of the lunatic fringe like Jude Wanniski. The constant reshuffling
of historical facts in favor of the present policy makes us understand that the
phrase "The End of History" was actually prescriptive, intended to create
a population with no idea of what their representatives are doing on their behalf.
Why is it so important to go into Iraq to install Ahmed Chalabi or someone of
his unctuous ilk as leader? The answer to that question seems obvious, if one
examines the relationship between Israel and Iraq in the same context as that
of others historically where a weaker state accepted protection from the US, which
sought to counteract the growth of a regional power and to consolidate its global
domination. Given the extent to which the US Government has socialized the costs
of Israel's existence, we should be able to understand who benefits from the dehumanization
of Palestinians and the lurid, unsubstantiated "details" about Iraqi
atrocities. The people who benefit are those who deal in death and its implements,
and we can choose to deal with that question honestly only when we understand
that Israel's use to the US is like that of any other "cop on the beat",
intended to counteract any pretensions toward actual national sovereignty in the
region. The destruction of Iraq, the turmoil on the "Arab Street", the
desolation of a people held in lockdown and exile for generations; all these are
part of the "game plan" for a cycle of plunder, where the plunderers
are too gutless even to call the process by anything close to its proper name.