Bloodthirsty Americans – OpEd
What can one say about people who continue to support war criminals among their elected representatives? It is easy to blame the presidents and the Congress and the media for endless war and rising body counts around the world. They are indeed responsible for promoting mass killing as an acceptable, indeed beneficial means of living among the world’s people.
It is true that Americans have far less input into their government’s decisions than they seem to think. They play a very small role in choosing elected officials, including the president. The power of money means that rich people and corporations call the shots to a greater extent than citizens of a so-called democracy are willing to admit.
But the people do still have the right to their own opinions. We can proclaim what we do and do not like. When the president feeds a story to the New York Times which proclaims that he gladly accepts responsibility for killing people, he believes that said story will increase his support among voters.
That is what Barack Obama did last week. His advisers sat down with New York Times reporters in order to tell the world that he decides who will live and who will be blown to bits by drones in Afghanistan or Pakistan or Somalia. The Obama marketing juggernaut knows that the killer president image can only be helpful in a country so certain of its right to be violent.
The anniversary of his assassination of Osama bin Laden was celebrated and turned into an argument for a second Obama term in office. Nor was the gloating limited to the president and his campaign team. His supporters were also beside themselves as they made the case for the killer president, using his navy seal hit as one more reason to love Barack Obama.
Condemnation should not just be directed towards Barack Obama and his henchmen and women, but at the American people too. Americans love to make war and revel in their nation’s military superiority. Politicians surmise, correctly, that being on the side of war is a surer path to victory than working for peace.
To be sure, there is better fundraising to be had for the hawk than for the dove, but there is also a visceral level of support for invasion, occupation and drone strikes. The oldest and strongest form of propaganda in this country is the belief that white America has the right to dominate everyone else on the earth, and as president Obama functions as the whitest man in the country. The siren song of Manifest Destiny outlived the 19th century and is still alive now in the 21st. It has been called many things, anti-communism during the Cold War, and the war against terror now, but it all amounts to the same thing.
We are told to fear the communist, or militant Islam, or whatever the enemy du jour happens to be. The end result is the same from a people who are convinced of their own goodness and paradoxically their right to have their violent way in the world. It is never very difficult to get support for killing and maiming among people who think themselves morally superior.
If anything Americans are morally inferior to people in the rest of the world. Barack Obama was certain that news of his personal “kill list” would benefit his chances of being re-elected, and he was not wrong.
He solved the problems presented by Guantanamo by not taking any prisoners at all. He just kills people and any innocent bystander is labeled as a militant, all so that the president can look good and the people in his country can feel good. According to the well orchestrated story, the president even invokes theological theories of just war, as he pours over a “nominations” list of those marked for death.
These revelations did not cause outrage or inspire people to take to the streets. It was left to the usual suspects who are truly progressive and proudly leftist to point out the evil inherent in a president who thinks he should be judge, jury and executioner.
It seems that our president is a totally amoral psychopath, and the revelation of his condition has not hurt his popularity. Apparently the president governs psychopaths too, because too few of them will say or do anything to oppose his commitment to breaking the law, violating the Constitution, and the word of the god he claims to believe in.
The evil is not limited to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, but can be found on Main Street U.S.A. just as easily. Obama is giving most Americans exactly what they want, a world living in fear of them.