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Whistling Past the Graveyard (of Empires)


#1

Whistling Past the Graveyard (of Empires)

Tom Engelhardt

If you’re in the mood, would you consider taking a walk with me and, while we’re at it, thinking a little about America’s wars? Nothing particularly ambitious, mind you, just — if you’re up for it — a stroll to the corner.


#2

Tom Engelhardt always does the heavy lifting. Bitter truth mixed w a wry humor that provokes sadness.


#4

This crap from the generals and their subordinates reminds me of the PR that they resorted to during the Vietnam War. Back then we were fighting the Commie Menace in SE Asia so they wouldn’t take over and end up attacking Santa Barbara in their sampans. They called it the “Domino Theory” and we were fed the line that if Vietnam fell all the other countries of that region would, too. They used phrases to describe our claimed “progress” in that war like “there is chaff in the wind” and “light at the end of the tunnel”. Of course, it was all bullshit and we ended up withdrawing from Vietnam with our tail between our legs and in disgrace after an estimated 3 million SE Asians died. Rather than sampans crossing the Pacific and attacking Santa Barbara, Vietnam was reunited and eventually became a trading partner to the United States. Our foreign policy is often a brutal disgrace. I recommend that people read a book about how the U.S. uses coercion to attain the “interests” that run its policies called “Confessions of an Economic Hit Man” by John Perkins. I also recommend any of the books about the U.S. and its militarism and empire from the late Chalmers Johnson.


#5

Excellent reading recommendations. Excellent comment as well. The US Military exists for Offense, not Defense! They, and those who profit from war, have been inventing “enemies” and “threats” in order to justify their actions ever since the end of World War II. For the first time in our history, we never really reverted back to a peacetime, downsized military. To insure a continuing series of conflicts, they very adeptly and intentionally used a variety of sophisticated techniques to ensure that the Public would always be afraid
of the “enemy” du jour. The “enemy” is whoever they say it is. This is not World War II! We don’t have real enemies in that sense. Today’s so-called enemies are largely our enemies to the extent that we make them so! And on and on it goes. “Victory” is not the point! Peace is not the goal!

They lie. They exaggerate. They misinform and mislead. They manipulate. It’s what they do. The business of the USA is War, the products to make war and the institutional structures and systems that support permanent War.