Tuesday, November 11, 2008

BE AFRAID, BE VERY AFRAID

BE AFRAID, BE VERY AFRAID: Today’s another calendar day set aside for jingoistic saber-rattling, a pre-holiday-season chance for old soldiers to justify their participation in wars-past and promote wars-future.

Our views on the subject haven’t done anything but become more objectionable to many since we stated them on Memorial Day when we wrote:

People are honoring those who took the lives of others for no reason other than that they were young and stupid and were told to do so by demented old men who sought to plunder, rape and pillage...

In our lifetime every war in which our country has engaged has been an invasive, imperialistic debacle waged at the behest of profiteers and in the name of raw power.

And the one thing they have in common is that when we all “wake up” afterward we are left with a generation of cripples- both physical and mental- and a bunch of tombstones.

Every dead soldier died in vain. There never was a noble cause or even a valid one. The soldiers died protecting nothing but greed and avarice.

Few remember that Veteran’s Day was originally Armistice Day- a celebration of peace as a concept after the “war to end all wars”. Instead it has morphed into another celebration of needless violence born of paranoid, nonsensical ranting by ex-soldiers who want everyone to be as fearfully xenophobic as they are.

And one particular Kaua`i ex-marine’s rant recently made us wonder how a person like this could call themselves not only a christain “pastor” but head our police commission.

In a piece entitled “Protecting Paradise” published in “Homeland Security Today” in October, Tom Iannucci exhibits the kind of racist fear mongering we see often on the mainland but rarely on Kaua`i.

After describing the “paradise” of Kauai, Iannucci- whose ridicule of those opposing his call a for militaristic buildup of our local constabulary drew fire earlier this year – wastes little time in asking

“What would you do if a small, well-armed group of, let’s say, Filipino Islamic fundamentalists launched an attack on your island?”

calling the scenario

quite possible given the spread of Islamists throughout the Pacific region. Extremists could easily plant themselves in Hawaii’s local communities..

What would it be like for Kauai if a small group of moderately armed Islamists or extremists conducted a coordinated attack against something like a cruise ship, major resort, National Guard facility or tourist location? It would be like any other place and our officers would simply respond the way they were trained to. It made more sense to prepare them to face the possible challenges effectively, utilizing proven tactics and maneuvers that our military has perfected over the last few years.

He goes on to say the “attraction (of) this type of training was the need in today’s military to deal with Islamist insurgents while also being mindful of the civilian population.” before expounding on why we need to spend all sorts of resources we don’t have training our police officers to fight his holy war for him and presumably the islamophobic crusaders in his congregation.

But why ask why? A “christian nation” is what many of those who wage war these days are fighting for. The very fact that the president-elect had to deny so vehemently any wisp of a schooling in the muslim set of fairy tales instead of the judeo-christian fables tells us more than we really want to know about the reasons 21st century Americans feel the need to bomb the latest sets of brown people into oblivion.

Iannucci merely reflects much of what is objectionable about western American culture.

There’s a reason why there was an uproar about the Obama’s statement regarding “clinging to their guns and bibles”. It struck a chord because for a brief moment many on the mainland saw themselves as they appear to be.

With the detailing of the importation and injection of that kind mindset of bigotry and hate into our local culture and institutions, we can’t help but understand a little better why many here fear and sometimes even loath those who spread the American message of irrational alarm that perpetuates a militarism that diminishes us all.

2 comments:

Katy Rose said...

I guess you didn't get the latest memo from Pete Antonson in the letters to the editor yesterday - you're not supposed to criticize the military on Veteran's Day! Gosh, how many other days are we to pretend we honor the military?

Last I checked, it's the same military that mowed down the Indians, to add to your list.

Unfortunately, most people still believe the US military is primarily engaged in "defense" and humanitarian missions, instead of acting in the service of the elite to wipe out any threat to their capital accumulation.

I am not a pacifist and I believe in defense - but I don't believe in defending capital at the expense of poor peoples' liberation.

I look at the military as an institution with an institutional function. When I criticize it, it is not the same as criticizing individual people who function within that institution - that's another question entirely. People who try to get me to be quiet in the name of "the troops" need to understand this distinction.

hale.nanakai said...

So fucking right on....I am very afraid of the gun-toting Bible thumpers...