Archive for the ‘War’ Category

Metamorphosis

December 1, 2012

It is amazing how the alchemy of power can turn a garden variety human into a monster– devoid of any feelings his  Kafkaesque counterpart might have had!

It is more amazing how perfectly normal,  law-abiding, family loving, church going humans accept the morphed monster amongst them, overlook the monstrosity face, and even be awed with its atrocity.

Truman nuked a few million civilians, but he was idolized as a freedom loving, tough leader. The claim to fame of JFK was that he almost got the whole human species extinct in his showdown with the Soviets. Ariel Sharon, a prime minister of Israel, ordered the Sabra and Shatila massacre of Palestinian civilians  during the invasion of Lebanon circa 1982. He was hailed “a man of peace” by W. Bush.  Two US presidents ordered the blockades of two foreign countries and inflicted heavy suffering on its civilian population, and so they magically became freedom and human rights champions!

Our current president has a “kill list”. New names are added to this list every Tuesday morning. A lot of innocent people die in the process.  People cheer him on or, at best, they look the other way. Our friends across the pond even awarded him the “Nobel Peace Prize”!

Amazing indeed, isn’t it? No shortage of excuses befalls the good-natured, western folks.

God bless  Lafontaine who figured it out way back in the middle ages:

La raison de plus fort est toujours la meilleure

ekwaysan

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Men of the cloth have no clothes

July 23, 2012

Men of the cloth.

They know things. They can always tell us what is good and what is evil.

Go to church, pray, love your neighbor, have faith even when you can’t understand, and accept what you can not change.

They tell  us to pray so God can guide us to make the decisions He’d like us to make no matter how difficult they may be.

Well, until they themselves really have to take a stand that would make a difference, that is.

A few days ago, men of the cloth representing the Presbyterian church failed to  divest from companies such as Caterpillar, Motorola, etc… that make equipments that aid  occupation  (form of apartheid, really) of the WEST Bank and Gaza?

Granted, the vote was close (333-331). But why even was it so close? How could 333 men of the cloth, who supposedly fight for social justice and preach against abetting evil, vote for investing in companies that raze innocent people’s homes?

If these pillars of virtues can’t even bring themselves to stand against occupations (a term the U.N. uses, by the way, not just me) and speak truth to power, then why are they relevant at all?

Every thing they have been telling us (well, at least about things that really matter) seems like a lie.

The men of the cloth have no clothes.

ekwaysan

Chaplains: Analgesic for the evils in a soul?

July 1, 2012

What is a military chaplain job’s description?

I have always wondered about that. It all used to look oxymoronic to me. Until I read that PTSD is on the rise among soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, that is.

It is tough to be a soldier. Soldiers, like the rest of us, have conscience and moral codes. Unlike the rest of us though, they’re trained, and often ordered, to sniff the life out of others. The problem is,  with the frequency of our needless wars increasing,  those “Others” begin to look like “Us” and soldiers may have hard time doing what they had been trained to do.

Enter military chaplains.

Is it part of a chaplain’s job to comfort helpless soldiers when they’re ordered to wake up families at night and interrogate the terrorized population? Does a chaplain tell soldiers, contra the Ten commandments, it is ok to shoot to kill people when they don’t even know why and who it is they’re killing? Does the chaplain absolve soldiers’ of their sins when innocent kids are killed as a result of their actions?  Does a chaplain also adopt the military term “collateral damage” to justify killing innocent folks?

It is like chaplains mostly  heal the devil in a soldier’s injured soul so he/she can go on and fight for another day.

Is this the Christian thing to do then?

ekwaysan

The “Kill List” and a nation’s soul

June 8, 2012

Our latest product is a “Kill List”.

Unless  you have been aboard Venus transiting across the sun  the past  week, you probably have heard of  the “kill list”. This is a list of people  our Nobel Peace Prize winner president approves to be killed weekly via drones. He is the jury, the judge, and the executioner.

After bombing a certain target, the president does not stop there. Rather he authorizes the bombings of the rescuers whom ever they happened to be. He even authorizes the bombings of funerals!

Unless these drones are firing M & M’s, a significant number of civilians must have been killed. Independent sources  have borne this obvious conclusion out.

However, since he cares about innocent people being killed, the Nobel Peace Prize winner and self-proclaimed devoted Christian  has come up with an ingenious way to prevent killing civilians. He redefines what a civilian means: Any male of combatant age near a strike zone; never mind rescuers or funerals!

The news outlets have been overwhelmingly praising Obama’s effort since a New York times article exposed it last week.

I am not offering here a political critique of the drones attacks on civilians. I am just wondering whether we have our eyes open wide enough to look within. Are we any better than those we are killing in this manner? Bin Laden and his network of terror did not graduate from Al-Azhar, Al-Najaf, or Qom, the elite Islamic theological  schools. He graduated from Madrasas in caves and remote camps. He and his organization are not main stream. Far from it, they are theological pariahs.

By contrast, our Nobel Peace Prize  winner president, went to Harvard; Bush went to Yale (and they’re both devoted Christians!). Our elites that have been waging this war are the products of our elite institutions, secular and otherwise. And we, the people, have been complicit and silent at best, if not flat-out cheering them on.

What does approving of killing civilian rescuers and bombing funerals  say about our own values and principles? Our soul and identity? Our  faith? Our culture and set of beliefs?

If you are one of those individuals who nurtures a conscience,  I wish you luck wrestling with your morality before you cast a vote this coming november.

Our conscience really  needs to be shaken to the core.

ekwaysan

We’re committed to justice

March 15, 2012

I love it how puritan we think we are. This is from the NYT editorial on Tuesday, 3.13.12

“According to American and Afghan officials, [the] soldier shot the civilians execution-style, including nine children, after methodically breaking into three separate houses in a district of Kandahar Province. After killing the civilians, he set some of their bodies on fire.”

The editorial recommends:

“The Pentagon investigation of a soldier’s bloody rampage in Afghanistan must be swift and thorough so that Afghans can see that America is committed to justice.”

America is committed to justice indeed.  This is the kind of justice the New York Times is talking about:

“A US marine accused over the killing of 24 Iraqi civilians in the city of Haditha was demoted to the rank of private but will serve no time behind bars, a military spokesman has said”.

Or perhaps this kind of justice:

War crimes good, exposing them bad               
While military and political leaders accused of war crimes sleep soundly, one alleged whistleblower languishes in jail.”

For all the horrible crimes  we committed over the course of these never-ending wars we’re waging and  are still committing (the ones we know about, that is), no one has received more than slap on the wrist, if anything at all.

Even here at home,  bankers and investors who swindled ordinary folks out of their homes, retirement accounts, and brought the world economy down to its knees; none of those knaves have been even charge of any crime let alone convicted of one. If anything, their pay check just got fatter.

It is not surprising that establishment media outlets brag about how great our justice system is, when they know better. The fact that they get away with such blatant lies is.

ekwaysan

We love them to death!

March 11, 2012

Civilians get killed. Life happens!  But it looks like before you start protesting, you’ve got to ask yourself: Who did the killing? Is it  Us or ThemThat makes all the difference.

We in the West care about civilians, no doubt! Did you see how animated and worked up Senator McCain was a couple of days ago during a senate hearing grilling  the secretary of defense Leon Panetta? “When are we going to start bombing” (alright I am rephrasing; but that is the gist of it). Feigning concern: “They’re killing civilians”. Oh, No! That is the same senator calling to bomb Iran now and who called for Iraq bombing a few years ago.

Yes! we love civilians.

In fact, we love them so much that the UN,  NATO, US Congress and media  justify the  bombing in Iraq,  Libya, and soon perhaps Syria and Iran, mostly by saying: They’re killing their own civilians.

commendable indeed!

Only there is one minor problem. We, ourselves,  have been killing civilians  over there consistently, like clockwork,   for the past 10 years. Here is a link to an example. There are  hundred others if you care to check.

“Lawmaker: Marines killed Iraqis ‘in cold blood’ ” 

Continuing this tradition, here is an item today:

US soldier ‘kills 15 Afghan civilians’

And that is not to mention the drone killings on an almost daily basis.

Is it really the civilians being killed whom the UN, NATO, congress and the subservient US media are concerned about or who is doing the killing? I haven’t heard a call to bomb NATO, the UN, or Congress, for that matter!

ekwaysan

Tracking Image

Stressed hunters!

March 5, 2012

Another day, another act from the theater of the absurd, a.k.a the U.S. media.

Drones operators are feeling stressed, our media reports!

The brave operators of the drones, killers in the skies, while sitting in the comfort of their chairs in Nevada or Colorado, are showing high stress levels.

Not so the civilians who are being killed on screens, even children, half-way around the world, in front of these operators, by these operators. These civilians are stress-free now. In fact, they’re comfortably dead.  Even the mourners and the rescuers of the drones victims are not spared!

I can’t begin to imagine the terror under which the residents on the receiving end are living. Can you imagine what it feels like to be under the threat of a borg-like killer watching your every move  from the sky, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 364 days (and a quarter!) a year? 

That there are actually living, breathing human beings behind the screens of “our brave drones operators” is irrelevant.

I guess looking at the other side of the story is not a job at which our “free and independent”  media is good. Propagandizing and  stenography for the Pentagon? Now that  is a job it excels at.

ekwaysan

The trillon dollar lesson

December 24, 2011

It never ceases to amaze me how inflated  Man’s ego can be.

In the very entertaining  movie  ” The War of the Roses”, we’re treated to a feuding couple  going through divorce. The two parties become consumed with hate and vengeance. Each spouse wants to teach the other a lesson.  It all ends in self-destruction.

This comes to mind every time I recall the real reason Dick Cheney and George Bush took this nation to war with Iraq; a country  they knew  had nothing to do with Al Qaeda and had no WMD . “We have to hit the heart of the Muslim World to teach them a lesson”, Cheney convinced a clueless Bush.

Listen to one of the most influential foreign policy “experts” on the Middle East justifying the worthiness of that war too.

Was it really worth it? Or was it a self-destructive big ego war? Over 4500 soldiers dead and 30,000 injured; over trillion dollars spent and counting; over 500,000 dead Iraqis; millions more displaced. And the economy is teetering thanks, in no small measure, to that war.

I have no problem making the perpetrators pay for their crimes. But that was not it.

Over what exactly? To teach “Them” a lesson?

Is that lesson even worth the life of one soldier not coming back to his family on Christmas? Let alone all the economic  suffering the nation has endured  the last 4 years.

Just like the Roses, we have  become so consumed with hate and vengeance  that we have been  willing to self-destruct in the process .

I marvel at how we have become so numb that we don’t even see this “bullies mentality” for what it is.

ekwaysan

Ideologue David Brooks wags the dog

October 23, 2011

Does David Brooks know something we don’t about an impending war with Iran? Is he just suggesting one?

It certainly feels that way.

In his weekly analysis for PBS this Friday, David Brooks, the ideologue who argued vehemently for the urgent invasion of Iraq, laid out in sketchy prints the grounds for an attack on Iran ever so subtly. The fact that all of his arguments for the war in Iraq were discredited did not deter the self-proclaimed pure moralist in the least. Nor did it deter PBS, or the NYT for that matter, from continuously providing him with the pulpit to propagate lies necessary for his ideological agenda.

In his signature sneaky way, he suggested Iran is a rogue state that not only the neocons view as very dangerous, but also the whole Western world.

Now combine this with his claim, in that same PBS segment, of the relevancy of foreign policy in deciding presidential elections, a view he himself used not to believe in. Add to that his assertion that “somehow the middle east is going to come back in September or October next year”. Now consider the fact that Obama’s reelection prospects  are looking dimmer and dimmer, and a picture starts to emerge.

I hope I am wrong but it feels like a “wag-the-dog” scenario is being promoted here.

ekwaysan

 

A New Age God

September 11, 2011

How could we not doubt the very foundations of our Western culture?

I’ll spare you an exercise in walking down memory lane to the horror of WWI, WWII and before.

When astonishingly smart people from amazingly accomplished Western civilizations get herded to one war after another at the snap of a finger from the likes of G. W. Bush and Obama without so much as a meaningful objection, there is something fundamentally wrong in the basic principles of the culture. 

When the world is dominated by self-glorifying righteous elites that cannibalize the weak and grant free pass to the poweful, there is something eerily wrong in this world.

A world guided by the  bottom line  and self-interest, whose elite class’s only job is to justify the whims of its governments and powerful factions,  no matter how unjust, is not progressing for the better.

How valuable is war in the eyes of the “civilized Nations”?

Extremely so! More so than it was for our stone age ancestors.

So valuable that it was fought on credit by the USA and its allies for the first time in history!

So valuable that, in no small measures, it plunged the USA and almost the whole world in devastating economic hardships for the past four years, and we’re still embracing it.

It is more valuable than healing the sick, feeding the hungry,  educating the young.

It is more valuable than giving honest people the dignity of a decent job.

Most egregiously, it is more valuable than the millions of innocent lives lost at the altar of this new age God of ours.

This God for which  we obediently go hungry , kill and impoverish ourselves.

How could we look at such civilizations, their colossal technological achievements not withstanding, and be proud of ourselves?

More importantly, how could we not doubt the very basic foundations of our culture?

ekwaysan