(July 28, 2008)
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America's Cranial Posterior Syndrome: Gilles d'Aymery's What's Your Breaking Point?
To the Editor:
My Breaking Point:
If you want to see a REAL difference in the ways and direction this country influences the world at large, then vote a candidate that you can conscientiously support. I'm tired of the bickering amongst a divided, distracted, and diverted populace. The present corporate strategy seems to be, "Let the people argue, we'll do what we want while they're distracted." Our government professes belief in freedom, democracy, a responsible and responsive constituency as well as a government, and I see no evidence of that. The lack of meaningful participation by the populace shows in the acts of leadership, both parties, the reactionary behavior by this administration, and the lukewarm non-binding behavior by the democratically controlled, (ha, ha), Congress. We as a people, should display a society that believes in and promotes fairness and justice in this country as an example for other governments to emulate. Let us throw the corporate minions out of THE PEOPLES' GOVERNMENT, and return POWER to the PEOPLE. After all, isn't the definition of democracy a government of, by, and for THE PEOPLE?
Just my thoughts of what we've forgotten, what we've neglected.
Blue Lake, California, USA - July 14, 2008
Abolish the Federal Government and the Military: Lee Iacocca's Had Enough?
To the Editor:
Lee's patriotism is nice, but he still doesn't get it. The system is precisely set up to "throw the bums out" without any real change manifesting itself. The best immediate thing that people in this country could do is refuse to vote for ANYBODY running for federal office, especially for Fascist-in-Chief. A vote for anybody in D.C. is a hammer pounding in the last nails in the coffin of this country. It's way past time for everybody to realize that they don't need ANY of these "leaders."
Regardless of what anybody thinks of Ron Paul, it should have been obvious to anybody watching these gasfests called "debates" that he was systemically marginalized in every imaginable way, and at every available opportunity, even by his own party. The only thing missing was the "airbrushing" of him out of photos, a la USSR. Of course, this was inevitable, given that he was the only candidate for the Globalists on Parade who wasn't an out-and-out fundamentalist warmonger with an Israeli bar code stamped on his ass.
I'm not going to waste my time writing a novella about what the idiots in this country need to do to take their country back. If they haven't figured it by now, it's not likely that they ever will, much less have the guts to do anything about it.
In any event, either the federal government dies, or this country WILL die. Short of violent rebellion, the only hope is for the 50 states to secede from this union made in Hell, or else to, under Article V of the Constitution, demand and convene a convention at which amendments will be proposed and passed abolishing the federal government and the military. Talk about freedom accomplished!
Bozeman, Montana, USA - July 26, 2008
Democracy Now! and George Soros: Michael Barker's The Soros Media "Empire"
To the Editor:
Very interesting and comprehensive article but it passes over the one major leftist program in the U.S. -- Democracy Now! -- without a comment one way or the other. I think most American readers and listeners would like to know if there are any links from DN! to Mr. Soros. Or, did I miss something in the article?
Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA - July 14, 2008
Indirect Rebuttal to Stephen Zunes's letter on Michael Barker's Sharp Reflection Warranted: Nonviolence in the Service of Imperialism
Ed. In "A war waiting to happen" (Asia Times, July 16, 2008), F William Engdahl, the author of A Century of War: Anglo-American Oil Politics and the New World Order, writes:
Just as Moscow refuses to recognize the sovereignty of Kosovo, so Washington refuses to admit the sovereignty of Abkhazia. In May, a senior US State Department delegation was in Abkhazia, meeting with local non-governmental organizations (NGOs) there as well as the president. In the past, from Serbia to Georgia to Ukraine, Washington intelligence agencies have used NGOs, including the George Soros-financed Open Society foundations, the US Congress-financed National Endowment for Democracy, the Central Intelligence Agency-linked Freedom House and Gene Sharp's misleadingly-named Albert Einstein Institution to steer a wave of regime changes which became known as "color revolutions."The full article can be read at http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Central_Asia/JG16Ag01.html
Who knows, perhaps Stephen Zunes has yet to do his homework more attentively. He may also want to peruse the words of Richard Roper that follow this short editorial note.
Boonville, California, USA - July 24, 2008
Direct Rebuttal to Stephen Zunes's letter on Michael Barker's Sharp Reflection Warranted: Nonviolence in the Service of Imperialism
To the Editor:
I am appalled that letters should be published supporting something like the incongruously named Albert Einstein Institution -- okay, it's not the editor's fault, but I strongly feel that Stephen Zunes's letter (Swans, July 14, 2008, in response to Michael Barker's excellent article) should not be left unanswered.
It is a part of and associated with "Non-Violent Warfare," a theory of the US power-elite to "Destabilish" (technical term of the power-elite) countries and overthrow their government and open association with the US covert operations operators.
The idea is that this can be achieved without violent covert operations and coups -- those pesky liberals find out and object to the US government being involved, creating some mild outcry that may even lead to Congressional inquiries as it has in the past. So we come up with organising "'peaceful' protest" movements that will place a pro-American/EU government in power. There's a long list of countries where this has succeeded or has been tried on -- Yugoslavia, the Ukraine, Belarus, Georgia, etc., etc.
But this asks the most serious questions about all those people who signed the open letter Stephen Zunes referred to, and exactly where its signatories do stand.
From the open letter:
During the past year and a half, Dr. Sharp and the Albert Einstein Institution have been subjected to a series of false accusations by a number of foreign governments of receiving guidance and financial support from the Bush administration, working with the CIA, and engaging in activities designed to promote U.S. imperialism. These and other groundless charges have also appeared in a series of articles which have been posted in recent months on a number of progressive web sites and elsewhere as if they were true.Unfortunately this is made by governments -- if you read the text carefully -- and unhappily its materials have been translated into the languages and distributed for the use of these movements.
Another quote from the Open Letter:
The United States is no more responsible for the recent nonviolent liberal democratic revolutions in Eastern Europe than the Soviet Union was responsible for earlier armed leftist revolutions in Central America.Er, um .... actually it was.
Let's look further at the Open Letter:
Unlike a military coup or other U.S.-backed efforts at "regime change," it is virtually impossible for any nonviolent insurrection to succeed when the movement's leadership and agenda does not have the backing of the majority of the population. The popular nonviolent uprisings which led to the overthrow of corrupt and undemocratic regimes in Serbia, Georgia and Ukraine earlier this decade -- like similar movements which ousted U.S.-backed dictatorships in the Philippines, Chile, Mali, Bolivia, and other countries in previous decades -- were a result of independent actions by the people of those nations struggling for their rights. As a result, neither Gene Sharp nor any other foreign individual, organization or government deserves the credit or the blame for their victories.But they were. In Britain, so outrageous were the circumstances of the coup in the Ukraine that they lost control of key sections of the Liberal press. An amazing article appeared in the Guardian, "I was a cold war bagman," blasting these activities apart. It is significant that those people refer to the Yugoslav, Georgian and Ukrainian as "corrupt and undemocratic" regimes in spite of corrupt and undemocratic American client regimes being installed by the coups, which demonstrates a breathtaking disregard for public opinion and democracy.
One other point, the whole basis of the "Non-Violent Warfare" theory is that it is undemocratic and built around organising a noisy and elitist minority movement that seize power whilst the "silent majority" (remember that expression?) remain neutralised.
Three doctrines of said theory:
1) It is about seizing and retaining power.
2) Since the police may shoo the demonstrators away and these techniques cannot succeed if the government forces act to "restore" order, pressure must be asserted by Western governments and international bodies to prevent the government acting. Remember Bill Clinton's antics at the time of the Yugoslav coup?
3) Your agents within the elite and government of that country must similarly exert pressure on the government not to act.
However, it poses the most serious questions about Chomsky who had for years visited Yugoslavia to help fund and support Praxis and the anarchist movement, but fell silent when the subject of the country was being destroyed by the U.S. and its allies came up.
This is a fairly typical open letter by this group of people.
I would suggest the point has been reached when a counter open letter to this column should be organised by Swans readers and contributors.
Yours sincerely, Richard Roper
Sheffield, UK - July 14, 2008
P.S. Just another point... Again, from that letter:
Nonviolent struggle has historically been the weapon of the poor and disenfranchised through which they can gain an advantage over powerful and wealthy elites whose capacity to use violence against them is usually far superior. It is therefore ironic that some of those who view themselves as champions of oppressed peoples mischaracterize these popular nonviolent movements simply as tools of U.S. imperialism and global capital.Unfortunately it is now the weapon of the US power-elite and policymakers in their goals to achieve world domination and overthrow governments that stand in their way. It's an integral part of their political and psychological warfare programmes, which have been a core activity of their aggressive foreign policy for many years. These are not popular democratic movements nor are they non-violent since they are under the control of US intelligence services and their front organisations. Philip Agee has been explaining this for many years.
It again poses the question where Chomsky, Zinn, Zunes, et al. actually stand. At the moment, unless they change their position, they stand with the forces of reaction, imperialism, and drive for global domination. This is another typical example of Chomsky's statements that he used when the assault on Yugoslavia was raging.
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