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The Dark Side of America

By Timothy V. Gatto

03 February, 2013

I’ve been staying out of most world events as of late, preferring to watch things unfold silently as there are so many that seem to have all of the answers. I don’t claim to have any answers, but I sure do have a lot of questions. There is a good chance that many of you have the same questions that I have. Sometimes, the questions are more important than the answers. In this 21st Century, there are so many of our leaders that will give us the answers to any questions we ask, they just aren't the right answers. In fact, they lie continuously.

One question I have is why do we support a collection of fundamentalist Islamic States like Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain and the UAE with their Wahhabi and Salafi militant Muslim sects? According to the “official” 9/11 explanation, all of the hijackers came from Saudi Arabia and were members of the extremist Wahhabi Muslim sect. Just like the majority of al-Qaeda.

In the recent fighting in Syria, the so-called “rebels” are made up of mostly non-Syrian Salafi and Wahhabi extremists. They also have support from Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE and other nations that make up the Gulf Cooperation Council with help from Turkey, United Kingdom, Israel and France. Why put extremists in a country that was ruled by a moderate Alawite?

The so-called civil war in Mali is presumably being caused by forces loyal to al-Qaeda; in fact, they gave it the name al-Qaeda in the Maghreb (AQIM). French forces have responded to this “threat” by sending in 3,500 ground troops courtesy of the United States Military Airlift Command. Mali, which used to be a French Colony, has always had trouble with the Tuareg tribe in the north of that country. Former Libyan leader Mohamar Gadhafi employed many of these people in his army. When we engineered the “Libyan Spring” the Tuareg’s fled the country because they lost their employment and because “freedom fighters” were executing anyone of color at the time. They left with storehouses of arms and ammunition, a perfect beginning to finally wrest Northern Mali away from the rest of the country, something they have been trying to do for hundreds of years. Why is this an American interest? Why are we involved transporting French troops? Who gave authorization for our military to use our tax dollars to transport these French troops?

We saw what the blow-back led to in Libya. Not only was our Envoy and three other Americans killed and our compound burned out, but the country is separated into different fiefdoms with various strongholds led by different sects. Who is telling us the truth about what is going on over there? From the reports I’m reading about the insurrection in Mali from Global Research and others, this is an imperialist expansion for resources by the French.

The rest of Africa is just as perplexing. We have American military officers embedded with almost every army in every country on the continent. The continent is rich in mineral and metal deposits as well as oil and natural gas. Didn't we learn from the debacle in Iraq that we just can’t go in and grab resources? Wouldn't it have been cheaper to buy the oil?

Speaking of Iraq, American’s still don’t understand that this was an illegal and immoral war. John “Bomb Bomb Iran” McCain grilled Chuck Hagel about his opposition to the surge. Hagel told them it resulted in needless American deaths. I’m surprised he didn't bring up the fact that at about the same time the surge was “working”, the Sunni’s started getting paid not to fight the Americans. Maybe it was just a coincidence (if you believe in coincidences). It’s really amazing that so many people in the U.S. never read the Downing Street Memo or realize that Bush and company planned on invading Iraq way before 9/11. Ignorance is bliss, so they say. Ignorance is frustrating, especially when it’s willful ignorance or should I say feigned ignorance.

There are a lot of supposedly ignorant Americans. Either they are ignorant or they just don’t have the backbone or the wherewithal to question authority in any shape or manner anymore. Seems to me that one of the greatest generations this nation ever witnessed was the one that took to the streets and protested the senseless death and carnage we rained down on Southeast Asia. While many in that generation forgot the effectiveness of grassroots protests and organization, the U.S. Government never forgot the lessons of that era. It dawned on them much too late in that war that the media was the message. Since then, they have incrementally gained total control of the American media.

The people in politics and the media like to call it “spin”. That’s another way to say propaganda without offending anyone’s sensibilities. They call torture “enhanced interrogation”. They call those who fight against Western domination and imperialism “insurgents”. When they resort to violence against out interests they are called “terrorists”. When they act on our behalf they are called “freedom fighters”. The government is very good at what they do.

Now that France has claimed victory in Mali, what will they do next? Will they keep a contingent of French Forces in that country to keep the peace? Will French firms move in and exploit the mineral and petroleum reserves there? What do you think?

Our peace-loving ally Israel reportedly bombed a Syrian facility outside of Damascus Wednesday. It was ostensibly done to stop Syria from transferring biological or nerve agent munitions to Hezbollah. With Syria fighting for its very survival, why would they start shipping their weapons out of the country? Does that make any sense? Yet, that was the reason given by the Israeli’s for the attack. They are also reportedly deathly afraid that these weapons will fall into the jihadist’s rebels hands.

“Israel has publicly warned that it would take military action to prevent the Syrian regime's chemical weapons falling into the hands of Hezbollah in Lebanon or "global jihadists" fighting inside Syria. Israeli military intelligence is said to be monitoring the area round the clock via satellite for possible convoys carrying weapons.” Guardian 30 Jan 2013

So why was the attack described as an attack on a convoy by the media in the U.S.? This situation makes Russia nervous about the Israeli attack.

"If this information is confirmed, then we are dealing with unprovoked attacks on targets on the territory of a sovereign country, which blatantly violates the UN charter and is unacceptable, no matter the motives to justify it," the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement on Thursday.’ Guardian 31 Jan 2013

Meanwhile, Israel has suffered a defeat in the UN where a United Nations Commission has declared that the settlements in the West Bank are illegal and that the approximately 500,000 Jewish settlers should leave or face possible war crimes charges. Where was the coverage of that little tidbit in the U.S. Press?

In Saudi Arabia there is more bad news for the American military planners. It seems that a Shia protester and two teenagers were killed. The killings have sparked an uprising of the oppressed minority.

The killing of Mr. Labad and the two teenagers marks an escalation in Saudi Arabia's worst civil unrest in years. The sectarian uprising in the kingdom's oil heartland has been an often overlooked front in the wave of revolts remaking the Middle East. But it has become increasingly violent, and the implications for the region are vast at a time when Saudi Arabia and Iran are jockeying hard for supremacy. Independent 02 Feb 2013

The Saudi Government is blaming the protests on instigation coming from Iran. The protesters vehemently deny any connection to that nation. One must wonder what the result would be if Saudi Arabia exploded with sectarian protests? With each passing month it seems that the partnership between the Saudi’s and the U.S. is getting closer. The situation that is occurring in Syria today is being played out with many of the same players that were involved in the Libyan fiasco. What kind of blow-back can we expect to see if we were to wake one morning to find Saudi Arabia awash in rebellion?

I could go on. The situation in Afghanistan is a dismal quagmire. One thing is certain however, it will be many years after we leave before we will ever be welcome there. Venezuela is another diplomatic fiasco. It seems that America has done everything possible to alienate that nation.

Why is it that the United States believes that the only way to gain allies is by military power? With all of the technological knowledge we possess and the huge economy we still have, why must diplomacy emanate from the barrel of a gun? The State Department has to be one of the most dysfunctional elements of our government. Don’t they realize that even with all of the information gathering services at their employ, their track record is horrendous? Maybe the time is right to resort to one of the most effective diplomatic tools ever conceived…goodwill.

Instead of demonizing Iran, what if we befriended them? After all, it was the United States that used Iraq to fight a proxy war with them leading to hundreds of thousands of dead on both sides. Do Americans even realize that Tehran has 11 functioning synagogues, many of them with Hebrew schools? It has two kosher restaurants, and a Jewish hospital, an old-age home and a cemetery. There is a Jewish representative in the Iranian parliament. There is a Jewish library with 20,000 titles, its reading room decorated with a photograph of the Ayatollah Khomeini. Why demonize a nation that hasn't fought an offensive war in long time? The Iranian people according to many visitors, still have a high regard for the American people, our government however… not so much. With so much to gain by having an ally in the area where Iran is located, we have so much to gain and not much to lose. Why don’t we pursue better relations?

We seem to be hell-bent on alienating the rest of the planet. When Obama went to Europe before he was elected for his first term, thousands came out in Germany to hear him speak. They thought that the United States would turn its back on the warlike policies of the Bush Administration and become an honest broker for peace. They must be sorely disappointed by now. Obama may speak in a kinder, gentler way, but he carries the American military as his basic bargaining chip. If anything, he has delved even deeper in to the darker side of the human psyche. What’s the pay off?

Why are we just accepting the blunders our foreign policies bring? Is there a reason behind the seeming madness that has crept into our government? The American people have not benefited from a hostile America. We have almost become inured to endless war. Our government lies to us and the media swears to it, even though most of us can see for ourselves that what they are telling us just doesn't add up. We have lost many of our civil liberties in the name of this “war on terror”. We’re going broke paying for our military. We have alienated Russia, China, Iran, Venezuela, Egypt, and Syria along with half of the world. We have so-called “allies” that would stab us in the back if it benefited them. Why?

I could go on but I won’t. The things I mentioned, the questions I have asked should make people wonder where we are heading. It’s time that the media threw off the self-imposed shackles it wears and to start asking the hard questions that need answers. It’s time for Americans to demand some kind of accountability from the government. Many Americans believe that the government knows best… it doesn't. Their plans are flawed and that puts us all at risk.

Tim Gatto is former Chairman of the Liberal Party of America, Tim is a retired Army Sergeant. He currently lives in South Carolina. He is the author of "Complicity to Contempt" and "Kimchee Days" available at Oliver Arts and Open Press. Tim Gatto's new book "Contempt to Outrage" will be available soon from Oliver Arts and Open




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