In 1967, Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. faced a painful dilemma. How could he tell oppressed young blacks and police to shun violence on the streets of our country, but rather to behave nonviolently, when the entire country watched state-sanctioned violence in Vietnam on evening TV?
It can be argued that America started out as a country founded on the avoidance of war. First Presidents Washington, Adams, Jefferson and Madison all fought tooth and nail to keep us out of Europe’s mindless, ruinous world wars. The USA broke away from England because King George III wanted the Colonies to pay for the “Seven Years War” (the first true World War) known in North America as “The French and Indian War”.
War is always bad for everyone who comes in contact with it. The Father of the US Constitution, James Madison said:
“In time of actual war, great discretionary powers are constantly given to the Executive Magistrate. Constant apprehension of War, has the same tendency to render the head too large for the body. A standing military force, with an overgrown Executive will not long be safe companions to liberty. The means of defense against foreign danger, have been always the instruments of tyranny at home. Among the Romans it was a standing maxim to excite a war, whenever a revolt was apprehended. Throughout all Europe, the armies kept up under the pretext of defending, have enslaved the people.”
“Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few. In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors, and emoluments is multiplied; and all the means of seducing the minds, are added to those of subduing the force, of the people. The same malignant aspect in republicanism may be traced in the inequality of fortunes, and the opportunities of fraud, growing out of a state of war, and in the degeneracy of manners and of morals engendered by both. No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.” - James Madison, Father of the US Constitution.
Dr. King was a force to be reckoned with.
Nonetheless, there certainly ARE voices that speak about the organic connection between war abroad and violence erupting on American Streets. In fact, in the C.D. forum, myself and several others talk about this ALL the time.
The problem is the corporate media which is itself in service to the Military Machine. Therefore, it is not interested in promoting–no less allowing–voices that make this connection.
Here and there an adage or voice goes viral. But that doesn’t change the fact that the mainstream media is intended as a key facet of the 4th Estate and therefore, the megaphone of THE people–not their 1% corporate and military masters.
It’s interesting how widely circulated narratives ask the wrong questions:
Why aren’t “we” winning wars… rather than why does the MIC require war, as constant, in order to justify the types of monies it claims annually from the U.S. treasury and therefore, taxpayers.
Why do “they” hate us… rather than WHO was actually responsible for the False Flag that gave rise to already planned wars.
Now there are voices calling out asking why there aren’t more voices for peace or one luminous voice that will take on the role of Dr. King.
The problem is there are MANY voices that call out for peace but they are not given visibility or platforms. They are MADE to appear invisible.
Now, if what Ray McGovern is really asking is why isn’t anyone within the Established Media speaking out about this, he might wish to consider the fates of Jeffery Sterling, Chelsea Manning, Paul Wellstone, Edward Snowden, Julian Assange, and anyone else who DARED to challenge the Make-War State, its widespread surveillance enterprises, and any other components of its false rationales for its own brutality, a force that indeed is spreading.
The War On Terror as many realize is all about spreading terror. And with U.S. military forces already setting the precedent that they (under Obama’s theoretical direction) can murder–in cold blood–with impunity much like so many U.S. police officers… who can really claim that they are safe?
“First they came for…”
In 1983, I watched the made for television film, The Day After.
- I wrote the article below and sent it to virtually all of the world leaders at the time, including ours. I sent a copy to my, then Congresswoman Barbara Boxer, who read it on the floor of the House on Hiroshima Day, 1984.
- Apparently, nobody was listening.
**_THERE MUST BE NO “DAY”_** by Stephen M. Osborn Where does one begin, in responding to The Day After? For me, it can have many beginnings. I remember, as a seven or eight year old boy, looking with awe at the Bikini battered ships at the Bremerton Navy Yard. Then, I grew up in the cold war rhetoric of the late forties and fifties. * In 1956, as a young navy man, I was at the thermonuclear tests at Bikini, code named Operation Redwing. The first bomb exploded was, we were told, a twenty megaton thermonuclear device, to be detonated at an altitude of twenty thousand feet. Our observation point was to be aboard ship at a distance of thirty miles from ground zero. That is a long way; about, as far as the doctor was from Kansas City when the first bomb went off in the movie [The Day After, 1983, TV]. It is not far enough. * Most of the crew was ranged on deck, wearing blast goggles and facing aft, away from the blast. I was not on deck as there were not enough goggles to go around. Instead, I picked a spot in a passageway, about thirty feet forward of a light well. Any light coming in would have to come from the direction away from the blast, down about a twenty foot well, then penetrate the passageway. I had my back to the well. During the final countdown, I wrapped both arms across my eyes, one over the other. I could hear the voice on the ship’s intercom; 5...4...3...2...1...ZERO. * Suddenly, I could see light, right through my arms! The heat was intense, as though I had my back to an opened furnace door. The silence was deafening. After what seemed like minutes, but was probably a few seconds, the light began to fade. As it grew dark, I eased one arm away from the other and the light was back, but again fading. When it was gone, I moved my other arm. The light through my clenched eyelids was painful, but it continued to fade and I gradually opened my eyes and began backing toward the light well. As the light continued to decrease, it finally got to the point where I could squint up the light well at the sky. The light was brilliant, the sky an intense blue. I climbed out of the well and peeked forward around the shelter of the conning tower, directly at the cloud and the, now fading, fireball. * My first impression was of a weird beauty. The cloud was sharply defined, like a thunderhead, and had a fluorescent; amethyst colored glow, which tinged toward a dark red. It is impossible to communicate the scale of the cloud. We were thirty miles away, yet the feeling was similar to when one stands beneath a huge redwood, watching the trunk taper away above you, to be surmounted by a crown of spreading branches far overhead. At thirty miles, it was as though we were right at the base of the cloud looking up, rather than out, at it. * We stood there in silence, looking at the cloud and quietly commenting on the colors. On the right side, close to the cloud, we could see two bright, stationary lights. They were visible for a short while, then they faded. * Over two minutes had passed, then the voice on the intercom began the countdown for the shock wave. 5...4...3...2...1...Zero. The pressure wave at that distance was not violent; there was an increase of about one atmosphere, enough to make your ears pop; the sound was a long low rumble lasting about thirty seconds. * The sun began to rise, lighting the outside of the cloud and overpowering the internal glow. The cloud was identifiable for much of the day, with the. top being slowly torn to rags by the jet stream. * We steamed back to the atoll, rather sobered by the experience. We were quite curious about the mysterious lights we saw beside the cloud. About a week or so after the shot, I was speaking to one of the scientists that had been aboard. He said they also had been puzzled by the appearance of the lights. They finally concluded that what we saw were two bright stars, essentially as we would have seen them from outer space. Apparently, the heat of the explosion was so great that it literally burned away the atmosphere around the fireball. As soon as the temperature dropped sufficiently, the air collapsed back around the envelope, the starlight was attenuated and they disappeared. * We spent, if memory serves, about six months at Bikini. Every so often, we would steam out. for a shot. Frequently, we would go out, muster on deck in the pre-dawn, the countdown would proceed, then, “The shot for today has been canceled,” and we would steam back to the anchorage to try again the next morning. This might go on for ten days or more before they would finally set it off.. * Once, the wind shifted after a shot and we were battened below in the stifling heat while the ship tried to run from under the fallout. Personnel that had to go topside were decontaminated and their clothes were taken for disposal. After a couple of days, we headed for Kwajalein, some four hundred miles away, until it was “safe” to return to the atoll. * Following one, either underwater or surface burst, the cleanup crews told of fish falling out of the coconut palms. The swimming float that had been anchored with huge concrete blocks in the lagoon was found floating at sea. Two of the blocks were found in the middle of the island. * The final shot of the series found us eighteen miles from ground zero. The heat was incredible; though this was a much smaller bomb, possibly a tactical warhead. The shockwave jolted the whole ship backwards several inches. It felt as though my whole body was struck by a sledge hammer. The sound was one sharp crack, as though a rifle or firecracker was fired off next to my ear. * After a few days spent dismantling the establishment on Nan Island, Bikini Atoll, we steamed for home. * In later years, I had nightmares of the bombs going off, where I would be standing, crying, realizing that some SOB had finally pushed the button and it was the end of all things. I would wake up covered with sweat, pulse racing and face wet with tears. Gradually, that dream receded, until I saw the rockets blasting out of their silos in The Day After. I was sitting with my arm around my son’s shoulder. Suddenly, I began to shake and my eyes filled with tears. Each time another took off, it got worse. I knew what was going to happen, I had been there! * Since the program, it has been continually on my mind. Watching that reptilian Buckley, “Megadeath” Scowcroft and Kissinger sit there, speaking in Orwellian doublethink, explaining that more is less and death is peacekeeping, made me wonder how long these aging, frustrated cowboys are going to be allowed to determine how much youth and innocence is to die for this “ism” or that one, Weisel, Sagan, even McNamara, made sense. This is one fragile green and blue planet. * Buckley and company brought to mind the lectures we got from some Bircher neighbors, when taking our children trick-or-treating. We shouldn’t trick-or-treat for UNICEF because UNICEF gave milk to “commie babies!” * There are no “commie babies” or “free world babies.” There are just babies and children and youths and adults, all with their hopes and dreams. The man in the street in Moscow, London, Paris or Athens is no different from the one in New York or in Mill Valley. We are all frightened and we all simply wish to be left in peace. The Russian and the European may want it more, because they have been overrun by war at least twice this century. They know what war on the home front means, something no American has suffered on the mainland since the civil war. * Every man, woman and child on this planet must let his government and political leaders know that nuclear terror must cease. It is no longer a viable option, if it ever was. The odds of a mistake are far too great and there is no way to retrieve the error, once an attack/counter-attack has been launched. * By virtue of our alleged intelligence, we have assumed stewardship of this planet and all of the creatures upon it. We have shown great callousness and ignorance in the exploitation of earth’s natural resources, the casual dumping of toxic wastes and the wholesale slaughter of entire species. With wisdom and patience, some of these blunders can be retrieved, but with the development of nuclear technology, we have met our destroyer, one way or the other, if we do not call a halt to it. We cannot dispose of spent fuel and refining waste in a safe manner. The cancer and birth deformation rate has risen enormously since we began using it, there is no defense against nuclear attack or terrorism and there have been few signs of sanity or good judgement among those entrusted to do our thinking for us. Papers discussing an acceptable number of megadeaths in a nuclear exchange are not of strategic value, they are obscene, a visible manifestation of insanity and immorality. * Mankind has always had a tendency for its technology to outstrip its moral growth, It is time we begin to slow down the technical race and begin to think, not of what is expedient, or will show the greatest short-term profit, but what will benefit the planet and ourselves in the long run. What kind of agriculture will leave the land fertile and productive for a thousand years and more? What processes can be used that will leave only biodegradable wastes? Does society’s existence depend on an endless flow of gadgets and novelties, designed to fall apart almost immediately? Must everything be designed to wear out in two or three years? Is it possible to recycle our mineral resources rather than continually mining more and allowing worn out products to decay, or simply rust in storage? Can’t we produce crops and see that they are distributed, rather than stored to rot? Why don’t we make a major effort to harness and use wind and solar energy for power and make a greater effort to reduce energy needs? * Let us pledge to make a start by informing all world leaders that nuclear war is out. The people of this planet will take no more of fear and terror! * Then, with this as a starting point, let us, as stewards of a fragile planet, begin the process of healing and growing, individually and as a species, to the point where all of this will seem an horrible, impossible nightmare. A lesson to be forever remembered, but never repeated. It is up to us. -30- 1840 words Note: Read on the floor of the House of Representatives by Barbara Boxer on Hiroshima Day 1984
- I would suggest that, for those who wish to understand, watch the British movie Threads. It is much more realistic than The Day After, and it goes on to explore the nuclear winter and the struggle to survive.
Indeed! All we see is war, all we hear is about more war, we send our sons and daughters into war. We have a war on this, a war on that, and wars in many countries. The U.S. has a history of racism and violence, coupled with a war mentality. How the hell can we ignore that aspect and hope to solve the problems we all see daily? Violence begats violence. When the violence finally reaches the establishment then it’s OMG how could his happen? It’s going to be at their front door if they don’t wake up. This just can’t go on without escalating into a full scale revolution. Bernie tried it politically and they laughed at him. Those that can’t hear must feel.
Your prose is very moving.
Why do you think you escaped any Cancer or body deterioration from those exposures? Were you given anything medically–to serve as offset?
Also, for 9 years I have spent a lot of my time trying to show that this condition–of militarism–is not inborn to human beings. It is conditioned. It is also not the product of some universal “we,” but rather, the world according to military dominators and those who require their muscle in order to maintain their personal riches and positions of high status.
Do you honestly think if Indigenous people ran the world that bombs would be what they would produce?
Do you think that women, of the Jill Stein sort, would make this type of investment a key priority?
Since the days of Patriarchs when small family elites ruled the masses, what has come into existence has largely been based on THEIR designs and designations.
Blacks had NO voice during the long painful eras of slavery. And women only got to vote 100 years ago. Even the inception of this nation allotted Voice only to white males with property.
So this idea that the HUMAN RACE as a whole has created this mess is a flawed argument. The process that negates Sanders’ real chance at running this nation presents a good example. Established Powers simply won’t have it; and they use the illusion of elections merely to create the already decided upon (by them) outcome.
In the run-up to war against Iraq (on the basis of what many people then, and now, understand as a horrific False Flag) NO voices of peace were allowed on television. It was interviews with generals after generals.
One of the things Dr. Steven Greer points out in his efforts at “Disclosure” is this idea that since adjuncts of the MIC have covered up visits from our space brothers and sisters (since Roswell), the only contact these entities have with human beings is largely through that of the military.
The military’s entire mindset operates on a Fighting Principle. It is 100% identified with war, weapons, and how to start, maintain, and sustain conflicts.
This ilk is NOT a fair indication of humanity’s diversity or its panoply of interests. Therefore, Dr. Greer argues that without the body of humanity understanding this connection, or learning about the fossil fuel free technologies that HAVE been liberated (through reverse-engineering of downed spacecraft), those positioned to decide our planet’s fate are limited to a very small pool of individuals.
THAT is the problem of our times.
It is not a problem that can be defined by American voters as is the MEME oft’ repeated on this site. Nor is it an alleged expression of Human Nature.
Very real Dominant human-baboons have CONTROLLED the economies of nations along with their governments and used their power and clout to limit human expression by channeling far too much of our collective resources into war, killing machines, and soldiering.
When people unquestioningly take what’s true for the warrior (what the brillliant author, Riane Eisler defines as “The Dominator Culture”) and applies it to the entire human family, they do a GROSS disservice. This is another means of wiping out the voice, experience, and learned knowledge of those MILLIONS, even BILLIONS who deviate from the War Program.
What is true for the dominant few is NO reflection of humanity at large.
It’s about training, programming, conditioning, and a range of carrots and sticks that include religious teachings, limited political options, the requirements of earning enough capital to sustain mundane needs for self and family, media memes, and dominant culture’s use of social configurations to lock in conformity to its preferred metrics (and values).
Men who choose to take part in the military have more to answer for than citizens who oppose war.
Another thing I have sought to convey in this forum is that life is FAR more complex than black or white, either-or frames. There is a hierarchy of power and a related hierarchy of responsibilities.
Those at the bottom have FAR less to answer for than those who made the decisions and continue to make the decisions by shutting ALL other (dissenting) voices out.
Why is the outrageous prehistoric idiocy which is warfare still tolerated?
It is the most brutal, stupid, insane activity of man and it is still accepted as a means of settling differences among nations.
That there is not a strong anti-war movement in the US speaks ill of its citizens.
Warfare should be #1 on the list of things that need changing in the US, given the daily killing and maiming its government and military are responsible for and executes without public outcry and with impunity.
The UN, whose job it is to prevent such military activity, is unfortunately presently controlled by the US and its minions, and so is powerless to stop it (though stopping warfare is the primary reason for its existence).
Until justice is restored to UN activity and the US is restrained, the US and its minions will probably continue their carnage in the quest for world domination, unless the US citizenry decides to shut it down.
thanks for posting the quote - from a long ago time when we had honest politicians. (we do have a few today, but very few)
Those “honest politicians” from long ago owned other humans while writing of liberty.
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I got very sick. I was only eighteen years old and I was scared to death. They didn’t tell us much about radiation exposure. I had no energy. I got sick to my stomach, every time I ran a comb through my hair it would come out in clumps. My gums bled. .
- After a while, I began to recover and the symptoms subsided.
- For years after that, I got leukocyte problems every once in a while. Each time I thought, “This might be the big one,” but I recovered. I had prostate cancer, but survived.
- I put in a quarter century in the Fire Service, so I have been exposed to just about everything nasty you can think of and my bones and joints are pretty much a train wreck. I have two bionic knees, but I manage to keep on truckin’.
- Maybe I’m just too stubborn to quit because I want, somehow, to leave the world a little better than I found it. That has turned into a real uphill battle, but I keep trying.
Yes. It’s important for the world to have witnesses. I feel the same way about the people who managed to survive the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
After a violent quake, flood, tsunami, storm, etc. when survivors see loved ones washed (or burned) away, it forces upon them a moral reckoning. “Why was I saved?”
This is a good thing.
There are powerful astrological cycles that not only influence, they essentially recycle the Themes of Time. These themes are quite recognizable. Currently, there are 3 of 5 outer planetary cycles that directly mirror the l930s and I keep collecting empirical data that backs up this form of cosmic concordance.
I’ve also noticed that traits seem to skip a generation. For instance, if my parents identified with the materialism of capitalist culture, my generation rebelled largely against that. My own children seem to once again identify with these constructs–having been born into Reagan’s era when children were actually TOLD to inform on their parents if they used drugs.
But my grandchildren seem to be connecting more with Nature as the great source of enduring riches.
I hope this observation proves true because it’s clear to me that after my generation dies off (anyone born between l943-l955), those who came later have largely been conditioned to 30 years of anti-government Reagan-Thatcherism, added to the deregulation frenzy that set corporations FREE to poison the world.
Back in the 1950s, TVS were introduced to our homes. I was thinking about the INNOCENCE of those shows: Leave it to Beaver, Father Knows Best, My Favorite Martian and even detective shows were LOW on shooting and KILL scenes, and much more relegated to showing the importance of law, order, and justice being served.
Compare that with what’s on TV today: So much fortuitous violence, the good guys brandishing weapons with adoration, the glorification of force, once again turning women into sex objects sometimes traded among men.
I got my best writing job 20 years ago when I submitted a freelance piece based on the role film played in swaying the collective consciousness. I termed it a magic mirror through which humanity saw itself; and if that mirror reflected violence, then violence came to pass. Therefore, what’s put INTO the mirror holds such a powerful influence over any society that it behooves the entire society (from elites on down the line) to be mindful of WHAT it portrays there.
I’m glad that you survived to BE a witness.
When the last hippie dies and the last peace activist along with her, what will the children of tomorrow come to understand as their collective reality?
(Will the Internet HOLD the witness of time?)
POWERFUL. EMOTIONAL. PEACEFUL, as in the final sleep. Thanks.
You might argue that the US was founded on the desire to avoid war. I would disagree.
What those “founding fathers” may have written to paper is not what they practiced in fact. Not only did the use the Revolution to push white settlers to expand to the West which the British had closed to them ( this followed by Militias to “defend peaceful settlers from the savages”) , but they soon engaged in a multitude of wars that followed in a never ending stream , one after the other.
That they may not have all been against what were recognized as Nation States at the time, does not mean they were not wars.
War is the lifeblood of the banksters who from abroad control U.S. currency. The very same bankers have funded both sides of conflicts . There is zero accountability when money is spent on ‘defense’ as evidenced by the Pentagon’s refusal to yield the amount of money wasted every year.
Born in 1937. I remember both before the war and WW-II.
- We weren’t aware of the enormous profits made by a few during the war, but we all pulled together. We all had victory gardens, we all recycled, we had rationing of almost everything. We all wanted to see the end of the Nazis, the Fascists, and Tojo. At the end of WW-II, we thought that had happened.
- Nobody realized that parts of the government and military proceeded to import it over here, to start it yet again in the name of power and profit for the few.
- Apparently the wheel continues to turn.
Speaking truth to power in matters of faith, peace, justice, Dr. King always inspires. I keep a copy of his speech, “Beyond Vietnam” / Declaration of Independence from the War in Vietnam, nearby for ready access. I obtained it years ago from Fellowship of Reconciliation.
“Are there no prophets left?”
Senator Bernie Sanders comes closest to that role, in his indictments and his egalitarian politics. He started taking off in popularity, then the establishment Democrats used every trick to derail him. He’d likely have suffered the same fate as Dr. King if he’d overwhelmed HRC. We won’t see his likes again for generations, if ever.
Today, 2 Facebook friends circulated the RFK speech from Indianapolis, April 4, 1968, the evening of Dr. King’s assassination. 63 days later, Bobby was murdered in the same manner.
It was very nice meeting you in Dubuque on September 24, Ray. Yes, you are being read, around the country and the world! Thanks for sharing your wisdom.
Just a note of thanks, Siouxrose, for your thoughtful and concerned comments in today’s forum. Genuine interest in fellow member, minitrue.
You’ve watched this site like a hawk since the forum started in 2003. Don’t always agree with you, but I appreciate your participation. And hawks for me are a sign of good luck.
The rare occasion I have a question about the forum or participant(s), I seek you out, and you have answered. And I do remember a mild scolding years ago (2008) in my pro-Obama comment as wc652, and you were right then! Some days it’s a rough playground, but I do appreciate it.
Thank you for posting the link to this very important and enlightening article!