Sunday, December 06, 2009


major theme of Said’s writings. In the big constellation, Enlightenment/Rationalism/Liberalism/Democratic Values, a missing word and concept that should be understood to accompany the others is Imperialism.
"the unipolar moment," which started in 1989 with the end of Soviet Communism
other stopping points on the way to unchallenged U.S. hegemony.
"settler colonialism" that cleared North America of its indigenous peoples.
"We focus laser-like on the crimes of enemies, but crucially we make sure never to look at ourselves."
we might admit the imperative of dismantling a much larger wall "snaking its way through Palestinian territory." The right name for it is: the Annexation Wall. Its purpose is to take over valuable land and water resources;
Israel’s leading authorities recognized this early on as a violation of international law.
None of it would have been possible without
the United States as "its partner in crime."

On November 16, 1989, shortly after the Berlin Wall came down, there occurred an event of great importance in Latin America: the killing of six prominent Jesuit priests in El Salvador.
the order was given by authorities in El Salvador; and given the proximity of American advisers to that government at the time, it is hard to imagine the order being carried through without American knowledge and consent.
a larger design
pursued by the School of the Americas and other arms of U.S. policy–to suppress the Liberation Theology
in the wake of Vatican II. All this was happening in 1989, while the West was celebrating the dismantling of the Berlin Wall. It is still happening and we are still celebrating.
The U.S. ambassador in Honduras recently congratulated that country
in an election where both candidates were selected by Honduran business interests.
difficult fully to understand the Obama administration’s embrace of the de facto coup in Honduras.

the U.S. has separated itself from all of Latin America and from most of Europe as well, by our "brazen contempt" for real democracy.
Latin America was thus the proving ground for the first U.S. tests
the unipolar world.
invasion of Panama in December 1989.
was punished for "dragging his feet in support of Reagan’s terrorist wars in Nicaragua."
the most recent Western attempt to create an international legal and moral institution for protection of human rights: the so-called Responsibility to Protect framework, developed in December 2001 (R2P for short).
there is always a question how impartially the standards are applied.
As soon as the norms were in place, a provision was voted to offer "subsequent authority,"
missions already undertaken. This was meant to cover the NATO bombing of Serbia retroactively
no appeal to R2P can be made by "protected persons"
this cuts out any apppeal by inhabitants of Gaza, who in the terms of this framework are "protected" by Israel.

Similarly, no appeal was possible under the R2P norms to protest the deaths that followed Clinton’s sanctions against Iraq.
1989: what to do with NATO?
The only logical response
was: to close down NATO. Instead, under Clinton the organization expanded eastward,
Recall Gaddis: "expansion is the path to security."
The use of violence goes hand in hand with the unilateral commitment to the opening of new and profitable markets.
double standard
response to the International Atomic Energy Agency’s call for Israel to join the Nonproliferation Treaty.
U.S. voted against
when the call
the U.S. assured Israel
double standard
why he supported Mubarak who is an authoritarian leader.
replied, "I tend not to use labels for folks."
a caricature
"investment theory of party competition," outlined by Thomas Ferguson. The heads of the important banks and the brokerage houses preferred Obama to McCain. He would accomplish what they wanted more smoothly. They got what they paid for.

In the longer run, it is hard to see that Obama’s policies will improve the social conditions of black Americans; probably the reverse.
on Israel/Palestine
John Kerry
Kerry said: now for the first time, we have a partner we can negotiate with.
the proof
during the Gaza assault, there had been no unruly protests on the West Bank. Dissent was successfully controlled.
Effective surveillance by Palestinian forces trained and advised by Keith Dayton,
the general heading the American Task Force in Palestine. Dayton’s presence is an acknowledged fact, though the content of the training is unknown. Unacknowledged are CIA advisers in Palestine whose actions we know nothing about.
Obama at West Point
the world supported us when we first attacked Afghanistan.
how you define the world
If it includes the people of the world…"– then the reverse of supportive unanimity was indicated by a world Gallup Poll at the end of 2001, which predictably got little play in the American press.

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