Read this ‘we are doomed to live like animals’ screed from Anti-War. It is a complete lie of course and this ‘Norman Solomon’ needs to shit or get off of the pot. War is not inevitable, and neither is the so called ‘Warfare State’. Its imagination-less people like him that create, support and bolster the ‘Warfare State’ by their negativity, self-centeredness and lack of vision.
Let’s Face It: The Warfare State Is Part of Us
by Norman Solomon
There is no ‘us’. It is YOU that accepts the ‘Warfare State’, it is YOU that is defeated and resigned to murdering other people, not US.
The USA’s military spending is now close to $2 billion a day. This fall, the country will begin its seventh year of continuous war, with no end in sight. On the horizon is the very real threat of a massive air assault on Iran. And few in Congress seem willing or able to articulate a rejection of the warfare state.
First of all, it is two billion a day of YOUR MONEY (or at least money from China that YOU will have to pay back). This fundamental misunderstanding about how war is funded and waged is a key reason why your illegitimate government is able to get away with waging it. YOU are the people who cannot see the wood for the trees; YOU are the people who fund this insanity, and you are the key to stopping it.
There can be no attack on Iran without money to do it. If you continue to pay for it, it will happen. You are personally responsible for this, and this article, by not focussing on the permanent solution to this problem is actually a call for the war that you claim that you do not want.
While the Bush-Cheney administration is the most dangerous of our lifetimes – and ousting Republicans from the White House is imperative – such truths are apt to smooth the way for progressive evasions. We hear that “the people must take back the government,” but how can “the people” take back what they never really had? And when rhetoric calls for “returning to a foreign policy based on human rights and democracy,” we’re encouraged to be nostalgic for good old days that never existed.
Actually, it is your generation that is the most dangerous in the lifetime of the republic. Your singular failure to assert yourself, protect your rights and stand up for the truth with action is the cause of all our problems, and this article is another pimple on the acne scarred face of your generation; it is the symptom of your failure, your lack of will and guts. Americans have always owned their government and to say this is not the case is just a lie. The ‘good old days’ that you talk about did exist, it is your failure to understand this that is the problem. Even if they never did exist, that time is an ideal that you should be striving for, and that actually, you have the power to achieve. It will not come to pass however, on the back of cowardice, retreat and ingrained weakness.
The warfare state didn’t suddenly arrive in 2001, and it won’t disappear when the current lunatic in the Oval Office moves on.
This is another lie. If the ‘current lunatic’, your lunatic, the one you deserve, is replaced by a sane man, then sanity will flow from the Oval office. That is a fact, wether you accept it or not.
Born 50 years before George W. Bush became president, I have always lived in a warfare state. Each man in the Oval Office has presided over an arsenal of weapons designed to destroy human life en masse. In recent decades, our self-proclaimed protectors have been able – and willing – to destroy all of humanity.
And of course, all time began when you were born, and there was nothing before that.
We’ve accommodated ourselves to this insanity. And I do mean “we” – including those of us who fret aloud that the impact of our peace-loving wisdom is circumscribed because our voices don’t carry much farther than the choir. We may carry around an inflated sense of our own resistance to a system that is poised to incinerate and irradiate the planet.
There is no ‘we’ in this instance. There are many people whose actions (or inactions) make a difference, and if people like you only followed, our problems would be over. As for an inflated sense of importance, each drop of rain in a downpour does its part in creating a landslide. Each one is as important as the next, and all of them, together can cause great devastation or crops to grow. Your imagination is broken. You have no grasp of scale. You have no concept of your place in that country and its singular importance. This is why you fail.
Maybe it’s too unpleasant to acknowledge that we’ve been living in a warfare state for so long. And maybe it’s even more unpleasant to acknowledge that the warfare state is not just “out there.” It’s also internalized; at least to the extent that we pass up countless opportunities to resist it.
It is not in any way internalized, and not everyone passes up opportunities to resist it. Two million people marched in London to resist it. They and the millions of others who are against this insanity are not defeated; they simply do not have the correct tactic to hand. Once they discover the correct, twenty-first century tactic to defeat the ‘Warfare State’ then it will all be over. You are not helping with your corrosive negativity which offers nothing but a belly ache.
Like millions of other young Americans, I grew into awakening as the Vietnam War escalated. Slogans like “make love, not war” – and, a bit later, “the personal is political” – really spoke to us. But over the decades we generally learned, or relearned, to compartmentalize: as if personal and national histories weren’t interwoven in our pasts, presents and futures.
What you should have learned and what many people today have learned is that your failure is the greatest instruction that we could receive. It means that we will not and should not repeat your mistakes and failures. It means specifically that Demonstrations are pointless and the other things that we have been talking about on BLOGDIAL for years.
One day in 1969, a biologist named George Wald, who had won a Nobel Prize, visited the Massachusetts Institute of Technology – the biggest military contractor in academia – and gave a speech. “Our government has become preoccupied with death,” he said, “with the business of killing and being killed.”
That preoccupation has fluctuated, but in essence it has persisted. While speaking of a far-off war and a nuclear arsenal certain to remain in place after the war’s end, Wald pointed out: “We are under repeated pressure to accept things that are presented to us as settled – decisions that have been made.”
Today, in similar ways, our government is preoccupied and we are pressurized. The grisly commerce of killing thrives on aggressive war and on the perverse realpolitik of “national security” that brandishes the Pentagon’s weaponry against the world. At least tacitly, we accept so much that threatens to destroy anything and everything.
Only you accept this, there is no ‘we’ that accepts this. Stop pulling decent people into your personal nightmare of failure and despair.
We do not accept ‘the perverse realpolitik of “national security” ‘ we understand that this world view is totally false and engineered. We understand how governments are doing it, and how they are financing it. We understand what must be done to undo it.
WE are not like YOU.
As it happened, for reasons both “personal” and “political” – more accurately, for reasons indistinguishable between the two – my own life fell apart and began to reassemble itself during the same season of 1969 when George Wald gave his speech, which he called “A Generation in Search of a Future.”
Political and personal histories are usually kept separate – in how we’re taught, how we speak and even how we think. But I’ve become very skeptical of the categories. They may not be much more than illusions we’ve been conned into going through the motions of believing.
Learn to use the backspace key.
We actually live in concentric spheres, and “politics” suffuses households as well as what Martin Luther King Jr. called “The World House.” Under that heading, he wrote in 1967: “When scientific power outruns moral power, we end up with guided missiles and misguided men. When we foolishly minimize the internal of our lives and maximize the external, we sign the warrant for our own day of doom. Our hope for creative living in this world house that we have inherited lies in our ability to re-establish the moral ends of our lives in personal character and social justice. Without this spiritual and moral reawakening we shall destroy ourselves in the misuse of our own instruments.”
The facts of the matter are that on the one hand, there are an astonishingly small number of people who are responsible for our problems, an on the other, since we are responsible for allowing it all to happen, a huge number of people who are equally responsible. But I digress. The people who commission the making of weapons and who make the policy are very small in number, and they can be controlled and their power destroyed very easily. This is a fact. The first step is to define the problem and then design a solution. This article doesn’t do this. It doesn’t even give us the benefit of your precious experience from the 1960’s which would be invaluable to us so we do not end up like you.
This article doesn’t help, doesn’t educate, offers no solutions, no analysis and so it is literally pointless. At a time when we have, by your own words, an insane man in the Oval Office, this is not the time for pointless writing on AntiWar.
While trying to understand the essence of what so many Americans have witnessed over the last half century, I worked on a book (titled Made Love, Got War) that sifts through the last 50 years of the warfare state… and, in the process, through my own life. I haven’t learned as much as I would have liked, but some patterns emerged – persistent and pervasive since the middle of the 20th century.
Your logic is flawed. You are unable to put together the pieces to this puzzle because you have not defined the problem the way that weapons designers and scientists define problems. Once you do that, you can take it all to pieces with a few simple actions. None of this is going to be found in your navel.
The warfare state doesn’t come and go. It can’t be defeated on Election Day. Like it or not, it’s at the core of the United States – and it has infiltrated our very being.
Almost correct, save the nonsense about ‘our very being’. You are partially right that it cannot be defeated on Election Day, and you are completely correct that it is at the core of the USA. What you fail to offer is a way to ‘destroy the core‘.
What we’ve tolerated has become part of us.
What we accept, however reluctantly, seeps inward.
In the long run, passivity can easily ratify even what we may condemn. And meanwhile, in the words of Thomas Merton, “It is the sane ones, the well-adapted ones, who can without qualms and without nausea aim the missiles and press the buttons that will initiate the great festival of destruction that they, the sane ones, have prepared.”
Meaningless, especially to people being murdered as bombs are dropping from YOUR government.
The triumph of the warfare state degrades and suppresses us all. Even before the weapons perform as guaranteed.
What ‘The triumph of the warfare state’ ACTUALLY DOES is cause bridges to spontaneously collapse, causes your rights to be destroyed, causes you to be hated in the world, and causes MASS MURDER.
If you are not willing to address this problem, you should not be wasting electrons and time with stories on AntiWar that are nothing more than shoe gazing garbage.
AntiWar needs to tighten up its editorial policy…if it really exists to put an end to war. Its name however, might give a clue to its real function, to be anti-war it exists because this situation exists; it is not there to stop it, but thrives because of it. People are starving for the solution, the way out of this. They are desperate to be shown the light switch. AntiWar and StopWar drip feed them dead matches masquerading as light. Neither of these people really want to put a permanent end to the war machine. If they did, their actions would be completely different; they would actually be proposing and taking effective actions.
This has been another post tipping point post, typed out at an astonishing pace….