The United States of Atrocity

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ikosmos ikosmos's picture

Russian President Vladimir V. Putin wrote:
"It seems that NATO countries, and especially the United States, have developed a peculiar understanding of security which is fundamentally different from our view. The Americans are obsessed with the idea of securing absolute invulnerability for themselves, which, incidentally, is a utopia, for both technological and geopolitical reasons. But that is exactly where the root of the problem lies…. Absolute invulnerability for one nation would mean absolute vulnerability for everybody else."-

The glowing city on a hill. Nuclear glow that is, Texas ICBMs, movie stars, swimming pools,...

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

Former President Jimmy Carter is correct. The US is no longer a democracy.

But this year is also the 50th anniversary of US-sponsored horrors in Indonesia. (see next post)

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

"The Look of Silence": Will New Film Force U.S. to Acknowledge Role in 1965 Indonesian Genocide?

WARNING: THE FOLLOWING DEALS WITH GENOCIDE AND MAY NOT BE SUITABLE FOR ALL BABBLERS.

"October 1st marks the 50th anniversary of the beginning of the 1965 genocide in Indonesia. Participant media and human rights groups are circulating petitions calling for the United States to declassify and release its CIA, its military, its government, its corporate records about the killings in Indonesia and to acknowledge the U.S. role in the genocide."

Quote:
... for a man who’s only trying to have forgiveness with his neighbors, it’s a sign of the extent to which Indonesia is not a democracy. A democracy, of course, requires rule of law. And the most powerful in Indonesia are not subject to the same laws as the weakest—as the weakest. And in that sense—and if there’s no rule of law, it’s not a democracy. We have the same problem, of course, here in the United States, maybe to a slightly lesser extent, that you don’t—and not only—not only that, the fact that—at the same—because of this lack of rule of law, you have a shadow state built around the military of oligarchs, of gangsters, of paramilitaries, who—and intelligence services, formally above the law. The military is immune to civilian law. If a military commander were to order the massacre of a whole village, he could not be put on trial in civilian courts. It would be—the military would have to convene its own tribunal for him, which means the military is beyond the law.

    AMY GOODMAN: Which brings me to—back to the perpetrator, one of them, the one that Adi confronts, saying that "I am a product of the United States." Talk more, for those who are not familiar with the history of Indonesia, the modern history of Indonesia, back to the ’60s, what the U.S. role was.

    JOSHUA OPPENHEIMER: The United States provided aid, weapons, money to the military so that they could carry out this genocide. They may have been involved with masterminding or conspiring to create the events that were used as a trigger for the genocide, the excuse for the genocide, which was the murder of six army generals by other members of the armed forces.....

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We know—what we already know is damning enough. We know that, for example, embassy officials were compiling lists of thousands of names of public—of public figures in Indonesia—U.S. Embassy officials—and handing these to the army and saying, "Kill everybody on these lists and check off the names as you go, and give the lists back to us when you’re done....

... This wasn’t intelligence. This was incitement. This was saying—the United States saying, "Kill everybody. We want this new regime to stick. Kill every possible opponent." The U.S. also provided the radios, deliberately, that allowed the—for the purpose of the military coordinating the massacres across the vast archipelago of 17,000 islands that Indonesia is....

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And in The Look of Silence, we also see an NBC News report that celebrates the genocide, more or less, right afterwards. And we see, most chillingly, that Goodyear, a major multinational corporation, is on the rubber plantations, where they’re harvesting the latex for our tires and our condoms. Goodyear is using slave labor drawn from death camps to harvest their rubber. This is, of course, what German corporations did on the periphery of Auschwitz a mere 20 years earlier. But here it’s being broadcast on American TV and celebrated as good news, as a victory for freedom and democracy....

 "... Indonesia when we shot the film, and it’s maybe starting to change as a result of the film, but still in Indonesia, the government teaches the students, [underline]teaches children, that the genocide was heroic, something to be—was the heroic extermination of the Indonesian left, and that the victims were sort of monstrous and deserved what they got, and the perpetrators were heroes...[/underline]."

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...and Adi, in many ways, responded to that, the unbearable sense that his children were being stigmatized for their own family’s oppression—something that we know all too well in this country, with our own—with our unresolved histories of—the unresolved wounds of race and the Native American genocide. We are—this should not be seen as something unfamiliar to us. And, of course, American—insofar as this is America’s genocide, too, this is also part of our history. If America is an empire, what goes on in the far-flung corners of America has everything to do with our life at home and the consumer economy that we perhaps are at least told we should be enjoying at home. So, this is about all of us, too....


swallow swallow's picture

One of the century's greatest and least-known crimes, indeed. The USA was the lead foreign supporter of the Suharto coup, and needs to come to terms with that its role in that genocide. The murderous Suharto dictatorship also received support from the Soviet Union, which had provided most of the Indonesian army's weapons in the years leading up to the mass killings of PKI (Indonesian Communist Party) and other leftists.

Later, Soviet-supplied napalm was dropped from American-supplied bombers over East Timor. Truly a case of both sides in the Cold War collaborating to suppress dissent and to murder the innocent.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

6079_Smith_W wrote:

And this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NKkRDMil0bw

You're right VOTD. THanks!

..i ran across a piece the other day that made me look at neoliberism in a different way. i posted it in another thread. what it argued is that neoliberalism is not external..coming after us. it is the definition of how we are captured. this scene is an exact visual of neoliberalism and how we are captured. so i see.

lagatta

I know very few babblers except for those who are really right wing who would deny genocide, whether in Indonesia or against First Peoples in the Canadian state or elsewhere in the Americas. But indeed, there are some who would deny Soviet involvement, or indeed genocides under Stalinism. That is why I'm against this sort of campism, and the crap about "Michael Moore is an American after all" (I'm not a fan of his except for his first, brilliant film, but don't like targeting people on the basis of their nationality, which isn't their choice).

Actually, I know several people, both Indonesian and Dutch, who have revealed a lot about that late colonial horror.

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

swallow wrote:
The murderous Suharto dictatorship also received support from the Soviet Union, which had provided most of the Indonesian army's weapons in the years leading up to the mass killings of PKI (Indonesian Communist Party) and other leftists.

Evidence? The Soviets had relations with Sukarno, and Indonesia generally, since 1950, (ie, Stalin was still alive) and then things dropped off precipitously with Suharto. If you're saying that the Suharto regime used weapons supplied to Sukarno then this claim is misleading.

Quote:
Later, Soviet-supplied napalm was dropped from American-supplied bombers over East Timor. Truly a case of both sides in the Cold War collaborating to suppress dissent and to murder the innocent.

again, some evidence or a reference would be helpful.

6079_Smith_W

lagatta wrote:

and the crap about "Michael Moore is an American after all"

Sorry lagatta. It was meant tongue in cheek, as a comment on the fact the entire purpose of this thread is targetting based on nationality.

But it is kind of funny how that style of playing on emotions pervades a lot of American media, even that which leans toward the progressive.

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

One of America's iconic images.

 

6079_Smith_W

Back to Errol Morris's fine documentary, they did far more damage on a nightly basis with their incendiary bombs than they did with that new technology.

In short, a fair indictment, but hardly exclusive to the Americans.

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

That was quite the Deserrt Storm that hit.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

As if once wasn't enough.

 

voice of the damned

kropotkin1951 wrote:

That was quite the Deserrt Storm that hit.

Thank God Canads stayed out of THAT war!

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Of course it was worth it for the people since now they live in peace and harmony without a dictator ruling over them.

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

I know I know everyone does it.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Every other country intefers like the US. Its not really any different.

"WASHINGTON, March 9 (Reuters) - The United States declared Venezuela a national security threat on Monday and ordered sanctions against seven officials from the oil-rich country in the worst bilateral diplomatic dispute since socialist President Nicolas Maduro took office in 2013.

U.S. President Barack Obama signed and issued the executive order, which senior administration officials said did not target Venezuela's energy sector or broader economy. But the move stokes tensions between Washington and Caracas just as U.S. relations with Cuba, a longtime U.S. foe in Latin America and key ally to Venezuela, are set to be normalized.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro denounced the sanctions as an attempt to topple his government. At the end of a thundering two-hour speech, Maduro said he would seek decree powers to counter the "imperialist" threat, and appointed one of the sanctioned officials as the new interior minister."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/03/09/obama-venezuela_n_6831890.html

 

voice of the damned

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I know I know everyone does it.

Well, in the case of Desert Storm, they(or at least the western world) pretty much did.

But I will grant Canada didn't have much to do with the torture of the guy in that photo. Wish we could say the same about Maher Arar.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

The people of Libya are also thankful for the US/NATO intervention on their behalf.

 

http://abcnews.go.com/International/isis-shows-off-images-libyan-fighter...

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

voice of the damned wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I know I know everyone does it.

 

 

Well, in the case of Desert Storm, they(or at least the western world) pretty much did.

 

But I will grant Canada didn't have much to do with the torture of the guy in that photo. Wish we could say the same about Maher Arar.

Canada has reverted to being the provincial hinterland of the most brutal Empire on the planet. Of course it used to be Britain but luckily for our ruling class they have managed to find another imperium to hitch their star too. I prefer to lay the blame on the perpetrator not the flunky. 

NDPP

voice of the damned wrote:
kropotkin1951 wrote:

That was quite the Deserrt Storm that hit.

 

Thank God Canads stayed out of THAT war!

 

"How easy it is to make people believe a lie, and how hard it is to undo that work again! - Mark Twain

Canada's Secret War in Iraq

http://www.globalresearch.ca/canada-s-secret-war-in-iraq/8110

 

voice of the damned

kropotkin1951 wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I know I know everyone does it.

 

 

Well, in the case of Desert Storm, they(or at least the western world) pretty much did.

 

But I will grant Canada didn't have much to do with the torture of the guy in that photo. Wish we could say the same about Maher Arar.

Canada has reverted to being the provincial hinterland of the most brutal Empire on the planet. Of course it used to be Britain but luckily for our ruling class they have managed to find another imperium to hitch their star too. I prefer to lay the blame on the perpetrator not the flunky. 

That's kind of like an Italian saying "Hey, we only shipped a few Jews off to the camps during World War II, the Nazis sent way more, and we were basically just going along with them." That's certainly true, but I don't think anyone would buy it as an exculpation of Fascist Italy's moral position during the war.

voice of the damned

NDPP wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:
kropotkin1951 wrote:

That was quite the Deserrt Storm that hit.

 

Thank God Canads stayed out of THAT war!

 

"How easy it is to make people believe a lie, and how hard it is to undo that work again! - Mark Twain

Canada's Secret War in Iraq

http://www.globalresearch.ca/canada-s-secret-war-in-iraq/8110

 

Just for the record, I was being sarcastic. I KNOW Canada was involved in that war.

NDPP

I thought so...but lots don't,  so thanks for the set-up VOTD.

swallow swallow's picture

ikosmos wrote:

swallow wrote:
The murderous Suharto dictatorship also received support from the Soviet Union, which had provided most of the Indonesian army's weapons in the years leading up to the mass killings of PKI (Indonesian Communist Party) and other leftists.

Evidence? The Soviets had relations with Sukarno, and Indonesia generally, since 1950, (ie, Stalin was still alive) and then things dropped off precipitously with Suharto. If you're saying that the Suharto regime used weapons supplied to Sukarno then this claim is misleading.

Of course it's what I'm saying. It is, literally, what I said. Until 1965, the USSR was by far Indonesia's leading arms supplier. There's an irony that the weapons used to kill the PKI were in many cases Soviet-supplied and the Soviet supply of arms to the Indonesian military is part of what made it powerful internally and emboldened it to attack the PKI. But the PKI was pro-China in the Sino-Soviet split, so the Soviet Union had little interest in supporting pro-China Indonesian communists. 

You can read any book on the Indonesian army's history to get this story spelled out in great detail. Harold Crouch, The Army and Politics in Indonesia, is the classic source in English. 

On the "excellent" relations between the USSR and Suharto's Indonesia - nowhere near the complicity of the USA, Ausrtralia, Canada, Japan, etc, but still good relations including aid - check out Funu: The Unfinished Saga of East Timor By José Ramos-Horta, which is available full-text on google books. A more academic source that makes similar points is ASEAN-Russia Relations edited by Gennady Chufrin, Mark Honh, Teo Kah Beng, also on google books.

The overall point? The USA was the number one member of "the international community" aiding and abetting this genocide, but others played a role and they included the USSR, rather ironically, to a much lesser extent than Western countries. International guilt is shared, not unique to Washington only. Without Soviet backing and arms in the late Sukarno years, the Indonesian army would never have had the capacity to carry out the genocides it did. The USA bears most of the guilt, but it's shared by all the powerful states to varying degrees. 

(As an aside, Stalin actually did not support Sukarno's Indonesia (possibly because Sukarno smashed a PKI rebellion in 1948, causing Stalin's government to denounce Sukarno as an imperialist - see Ruth McVey's article The Soviet View of the Indonesian Revolution for details, if you like). Soviet aid to Sukarno's Indonesia started under Krushchev once Zhdanov's "two camps" doctrine was replaced by Krushchev's support of Third World nationalism later in the 1950s.)

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Quote:
Later, Soviet-supplied napalm was dropped from American-supplied bombers over East Timor. Truly a case of both sides in the Cold War collaborating to suppress dissent and to murder the innocent.

again, some evidence or a reference would be helpful.

It's in Chega! the report of the Timorese truth commission, which cites video evidence. The simplest online source is probably at http://hass.unsw.adfa.edu.au/timor_companion/invasion_and_conventional_w...

It's also in such sources as The Independence of East Timor: Multi-dimensional Perspectives--... By Clinton Fernandes, again available on google books. On the same platform, there's also Modern Genocide: The Definitive Resource and Document Collection edited by Paul R. Bartrop, Steven Leonard Jacobs. You can google Timor opalm Soviet for much more. The facts are denied, at this point, only by the Indonesian government. The Russian government has not denied that the USSR provided opalm to Indonesia. 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

voice of the damned wrote:

That's kind of like an Italian saying "Hey, we only shipped a few Jews off to the camps during World War II, the Nazis sent way more, and we were basically just going along with them." That's certainly true, but I don't think anyone would buy it as an exculpation of Fascist Italy's moral position during the war.

I think the German people are responsible for Hitler's war crimes the same way that the American people are responsible for their countries war crimes. Canada has seen a series of PM's who are in the grand tradition of Quissling. The people of Norway are not responsible for German war crimes although they were responsible for the culture that gave them Harper (sic) as a leader.

The US is the great evil in this world and the vast majority of the American people cheeer on their brutal military and beligerant politicians.

6079_Smith_W

I'm sure the Brits are happy the heats off them now that someone else gets to play the boogeyman.

NDPP

Atomic Message: Hiroshima, Nagasaki Nuke Survivors Recall Horrors 70 Years On (and doco)

http://www.rt.com/news/311608-hiroshima-nagasaki-nuclear-anniversary/

"Blackened bodies, mothers who couldn't recognize their charred children and those still alive screaming with pain - these are horrific details the survivors of nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki recall ahead of the 70th anniversary of the tragedy.

The US was the first nation to use nuclear weapons against an enemy target when they dropped atomic bombs on Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of WWII on August 6, and 9, 1945.

As of August, 2014, the memorials in Hiroshima and Nagasaki list the names of more than 450,000 people who died in the tragedy..."

voice of the damned

delete

voice of the damned

kropotkin1951 wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:

That's kind of like an Italian saying "Hey, we only shipped a few Jews off to the camps during World War II, the Nazis sent way more, and we were basically just going along with them." That's certainly true, but I don't think anyone would buy it as an exculpation of Fascist Italy's moral position during the war.

I think the German people are responsible for Hitler's war crimes the same way that the American people are responsible for their countries war crimes. Canada has seen a series of PM's who are in the grand tradition of Quissling. The people of Norway are not responsible for German war crimes although they were responsible for the culture that gave them Harper (sic) as a leader.

The US is the great evil in this world and the vast majority of the American people cheeer on their brutal military and beligerant politicians.

But, if Canadans continue to elect these  collaborationist Prime Ministers, knowing that they have commited the country to the evils of the American Empire, doesn't that make those voters responsible for Canada's involvemement in those crimes, just as surely as any American running around yelling "USA USA"?

And Qusiling as a person is actually not the best example for a comparison to Canada, because he came to power via a coup d'etat. Had the Norwegian people voted him into office, knowing that he was pro-Nazi and knowing what the Nazis were all about, then, yes, I would hold those Norwegians responsible for their nation's collaboration.

 

 

 

Slumberjack

voice of the damned wrote:

But I will grant Canada didn't have much to do with the torture of the guy in that photo. Wish we could say the same about Maher Arar.

Still, I seem to recall Chretien wished them all the best in their endeavors.

Noops

voice of the damned wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:

That's kind of like an Italian saying "Hey, we only shipped a few Jews off to the camps during World War II, the Nazis sent way more, and we were basically just going along with them." That's certainly true, but I don't think anyone would buy it as an exculpation of Fascist Italy's moral position during the war.

But, if Canadans continue to elect these  collaborationist Prime Ministers, knowing that they have commited the country to the evils of the American Empire, doesn't that make those voters responsible for Canada's involvemement in those crimes, just as surely as any American running around yelling "USA USA"?

Well I won't be voting Harper in the upcoming election foremost for his U.S. ass-kissing.

But can you tell me who I should vote for to be absolutely confident I won't become a voter "responsible for Canada's involvemement in those crimes," (the future crimes that is) ?

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
But can you tell me who I should vote for to be absolutely confident I won't become a voter "responsible for Canada's involvemement in those crimes," (the future crimes that is) ?

Consider the CPC, or the CPC-ML, or the Marijuana Party.  Chances are vanishingly small that they -- or you by extension -- will be responsible for future crimes, or future anything.

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

When even US scholars are echoing Alperwitz's 1960s view, you know that the lid has come off another repulsive lie emanating from the modern Barad-dur in Washington. The bombing of the civilians in Hiroshima may be the most horrific single war crime in the history of the world. And the US Empire remains ... unrepentant and unpunished

The Bomb Didn't Beat Japan .. Stalin Did.

 

 

6079_Smith_W

Yes, he's an amazing guy, that Stalin. Did pretty much everything, it seems.

Though as your article (and other historians) point out, the only thing that made Hiroshima and Nagasaki significant was the technology. In terms of destruction and loss of life it didn't stand out from the bombing that was happening every night.

Of course the prospect of a second front was the final straw; that's why the Americans reached an agreement with Stalin to that effect several years before. As for how important that prospect (and very short campaign) was, I'm not sure the years of war which preceded it were just a case of the western Allies softening them up so Joe could come along and do the real work.

There is also the theory that those bombs were meant more as a message to Stalin, since all sides were trying to build them. Not that it did much good, since that war flared up again five years later, and is still a cease fire in the Korean peninsula.

voice of the damned

Noops wrote:
voice of the damned wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:

That's kind of like an Italian saying "Hey, we only shipped a few Jews off to the camps during World War II, the Nazis sent way more, and we were basically just going along with them." That's certainly true, but I don't think anyone would buy it as an exculpation of Fascist Italy's moral position during the war.

But, if Canadans continue to elect these  collaborationist Prime Ministers, knowing that they have commited the country to the evils of the American Empire, doesn't that make those voters responsible for Canada's involvemement in those crimes, just as surely as any American running around yelling "USA USA"?

Well I won't be voting Harper in the upcoming election foremost for his U.S. ass-kissing. But can you tell me who I should vote for to be absolutely confident I won't become a voter "responsible for Canada's involvemement in those crimes," (the future crimes that is) ?

<p></p>

But an American voter could say the same thing, snce no party with a chance of winning is running on an anti-war platform there either. My original reply was to Kropotkin, who was blaming Americans, as a whole, for supporting their country's foreign policy. I'm saying you could make the same attack on Canadians, as a whole, since they are chooosing to vote for governments that go along with what the American government does.

 

 

 

    

 

Slumberjack

Then it seems that the way to lessen one's association with the various war platforms, since absolute disassociation is impossible for anyone paying taxes [there being no outside], is to not vote.  It's about what one is doing while on the inside that counts.  Voting simply means you agree to be counted in amongst the big blob of direct enablers, since all things that transpire after an election are made possible by way of the vote.  Make no mistake about it, there will be other military interventions in the next mandate where Canada will participate.  The question of whether to vote or not corresponds to where one stands on these matters.  It should be a question that answers itself upon reflection.

6079_Smith_W

Sorry, but that sounds like every other rationalization from people who have some pet cause that they think absolves them of responsibility.

Except that not voting, like running off to the bush and getting off the grid, or any other way of pretending that it has nothing to do with you, is just a little bit more of a delusion than those who think actively working for the cause absolves privilege and responsibility.

There is no disconnecting, and while some in the non-voting camp might be fooling themselves, to the rest of us it is just as much tunnel vision as those who make more conventional excuses.

... and yeah, I know you mean partial absolution, but frankly the connection is such a tangent as to be completely meaningless. You still enjoy the good food, security and other top-of-the-world benefits that the evil empire buys, just like the rest of us. And not voting has nothing to do with it.

 

 

 

swallow swallow's picture

ikosmos wrote:

When even US scholars are echoing Alperwitz's 1960s view

Since Gar Alperovitz is himself a US scholar, you might more accurately say that non-Americans are finally echoing him. 

American citizen dissent from US government policy: a proud tradition for centuries. 

swallow swallow's picture

[url=http://www.thehistoryreader.com/modern-history/much-stalin-know/]How much did Stalin know about Hiroshima bombing plan?[/url]

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

voice of the damned wrote:

But an American voter could say the same thing, snce no party with a chance of winning is running on an anti-war platform there either. My original reply was to Kropotkin, who was blaming Americans, as a whole, for supporting their country's foreign policy. I'm saying you could make the same attack on Canadians, as a whole, since they are chooosing to vote for governments that go along with what the American government does.

The support for war and attacking other countries is driven by the American people's belief that the USA is Exceptional and as the Shining Light on the Hill they must guide/rule everyone else.  I do not believe that is the Canadian ethos.  My understanding of history is that the culture of people in imperial heartlands is always different than the culture of their vassels states.

Empires cannot expand and dominate without the backing of the majority of their people and the compliance of nearly everyone else.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Noops wrote:

Well I won't be voting Harper in the upcoming election foremost for his U.S. ass-kissing. But can you tell me who I should vote for to be absolutely confident I won't become a voter "responsible for Canada's involvemement in those crimes," (the future crimes that is) ?

That is the problem for me as well.  I was saved having to think about that for most of the last two decades because living in Burnaby I got to send first Svend and then Bill to Ottawa.  I trusted them to speak truth to power and to consistently advocate for peace and against international aggression.

I now live in a riding where the Cons and NDP have traded the seat back and forth over the last four elections. I will vote for the NDP candidate because he is the best of the bad choices available to me. Getting rid of a racist, knuckle dragging, ex-Reform Party MP is enough reason for me to hold my nose and vote for imperial light.

voice of the damned

kropotkin1951 wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:

But an American voter could say the same thing, snce no party with a chance of winning is running on an anti-war platform there either. My original reply was to Kropotkin, who was blaming Americans, as a whole, for supporting their country's foreign policy. I'm saying you could make the same attack on Canadians, as a whole, since they are chooosing to vote for governments that go along with what the American government does.

The support for war and attacking other countries is driven by the American people's belief that the USA is Exceptional and as the Shining Light on the Hill they must guide/rule everyone else.  I do not believe that is the Canadian ethos. 

So, what is the Canadian Ethos then? Because, during the Cold War, for example, I recall a LOT of Canadians, everyone from my PhysEd teacher to Pierre Trudeau himself, saying stuff like "We must support NATO in order to thwart Soviet aggression." Granted, that's not quite the same thing as believing your country to be the Shnining City On The Hill, but then, simply because the rationale for imperaism differs from country to country, does not mean that the rationale is not sincerely believed by the majority of the population.

Or is it the case that Canadians who support imperialism have all been indoctrinated against their better instincts, whereas the Yanks who support it are all expressing their true moral nature?

voice of the damned

Oh, and if it is rather the case that the Canadian Ethos is inherently anti-imperialist, how have the supposed Quislings managed to win all those elections, going back at least to the Boer War?

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

In my opinion, the Canadian ethos, if one exists, is that of a loyal imperial colony, originally part of the British empire, and more recently part of the U.S. empire. When I was a child, in the 1950s, we were just making the transition. My school books still had a lot of stuff about the British Commonwealth, to which the empire had been reduced, but we were all watching American tv shows. The cold war was used quite effectively to condition Canadians to believe that their only safety lay in the protection of the benevolent leader of the "free world", our neighbour and great friend, the U.S.A. Most Canadians still don't question that.

voice of the damned

Michael Moriarity wrote:

In my opinion, the Canadian ethos, if one exists, is that of a loyal imperial colony, originally part of the British empire, and more recently part of the U.S. empire. When I was a child, in the 1950s, we were just making the transition. My school books still had a lot of stuff about the British Commonwealth, to which the empire had been reduced, but we were all watching American tv shows. The cold war was used quite effectively to condition Canadians to believe that their only safety lay in the protection of the benevolent leader of the "free world", our neighbour and great friend, the U.S.A. Most Canadians still don't question that.

That's a plausible analysis. But it seems to me that you could just as easily say that Americans themselves have been "conditioned" to believe that they are the "benevolent leader of the free world". No one is actually born believing a political ideology.

The only way out of a broad moral equivalency, it seems to me, is by saying that Americans are acting selfishly in pursuing imperial policies(because imperialism benefits them), whereas Canadians aren't(because imperialism only benefits Americans, not Candadians). I'm not gonna get into all the details here, but I personally don't find it very tenable to argue that Canada(including its citizenry) in no way shape or form benefits from its status as a first-world nation with imperial connections.

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

I agree with you, votd. My point was not to deny that Canadians are willing participants in the actions of their current imperial masters, but to assert that they are.

voice of the damned

Michael Moriarity wrote:

I agree with you, votd. My point was not to deny that Canadians are willing participants in the actions of their current imperial masters, but to assert that they are.

Ah, okay. Gotcha.

Noops

voice of the damned wrote:

My original reply was to Kropotkin, who was blaming Americans, as a whole, for supporting their country's foreign policy. I'm saying you could make the same attack on Canadians, as a whole, since they are chooosing to vote for governments that go along with what the American government does.

And I am repeating my original question, incorporating your last thoughts; who should I vote for to be confident I will NOT be "chooosing to vote for governments that go along with what the American government does" ?

Noops

Slumberjack wrote:

Then it seems that the way to lessen one's association with the various war platforms, since absolute disassociation is impossible for anyone paying taxes [there being no outside], is to not vote. 

What 6079_Smith_W said.

Also, not voting might make a statement of protest, but it does little to effect my desirable change; for there will always be others who salivate at the chance to vote in their 'idol'.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
And I am repeating my original question, incorporating your last thoughts; who should I vote for to be confident I will NOT be "chooosing to vote for governments that go along with what the American government does" ?

Any thoughts on my answer to your question in post #232?

You can probably add the Greens to that list.

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