Archive for Israel

The Goat!

Posted in On Foreign Affairs, On War and Peace in the Mid East!, Playthell on politics with tags , , , on March 30, 2013 by playthell
Image: U.S. President Obama smiles while he addresses students at the Jerusalem Convention Center in Jerusalem
Greatest Of All Times

Barack Obama In Israel

As is the case with so many essays published at Commentaries On The Times, the present essay came to me serendipitously, like a revelation from on high.  I had just finished watching a video of President Obama’s speech before students and other selected quest in Israel, and marveling at his political skills as he wooed and won the audience; who gave him repeated and boisterous standing ovations.

I got the feeling that I was watching the most gifted politician in American history.  Then I heard a guest on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, discussing his new book about forgotten US Presidents who had left their mark on American civilization, and was confirmed in that feeling.

When he was asked if he thought President Obama would be remembered, the author quickly pointed out that Barack Obama will be remembered if only because he is the first African/American President.  But then he went on to enumerate the President’s monumental achievements – saving the world economy from ruin, rescuing the US auto-industry, the Affordable Health Care Act, The Lilly Ledbetter Act, Icing Osama bin Laden, etc – and assured us they will never be forgotten.

As Erhardt talked I kept thinking about the President’s speech, and how Bibi Netanyahu was getting a dose of what the reactionary Republicans have been getting at the hands of this highly intelligent, profoundly humane, visionary, virtuoso at the art of politics.

For just as in America, Barack was winning the intelligent youths of Israel and touching the heart strings of all Israeli’s who dream of a peaceful future with their Arab neighbors.  It was not long before Bibi, Barack’s former antagonist, assumed a lips to posterior posture and maintained it for the balance of the President’s visit.  Politics does indeed make strange bedfellows.

Barack and Bibi in Israel
Barack and Bibi
Watch the hands: Who’s Listening to whom?

Taking a trip to Israel was viewed as an act akin to walking unarmed into a lion’s den by many astute observers from all over the American political spectrum. The right wing Republican infotainment complex was so certain the trip would be a disaster for the President that FOX NEWS – the flagship media shill of the Grand Obstructionist Party- was running advertisements for an upcoming program exposing President Obama’s hatred for Israel, hosted by that greasy headed numbskull charlatan Sean Hannity.  Unfortunately for them, the ad debuted just as the President was being addressed as “Dear Barack” by Israeli in a ceremony where he was conferred Israel’s highest civilian award…no other American President has received this honor.

 Israel Honors Barack

Barack being Honored in Israel

Simon Perez Places ….Medal on President Obama

Although such a reception would have been newsworthy during the best of times in the US Israeli relationship, it was especially remarkable now.  Just a couple of months ago Prime Minister Netanyahu brazenly attempted to interfere in the US presidential election by showing an open preference for his old Boston business partner Mitt Romney.  But when Obama won reelection it almost finished Netanyahu’s political career.

Among the most important duties of any Israeli Prime minister is to manage and maintain good relations with the US, without whose largess Israel’s security is compromised, and Netanyahu’s disrespectful treatment of President Obama had imperiled that critical relationship.  It almost cost Netanyahu the last election a few weeks ago. And this blunder was followed by the recent attempt to block the President’s nomination of former Republican Senator and decorated combat veteran Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense, led by the US Israel Lobby, an appointment that is now a fait accompli.

The speeches Barack Obama presented on his Mid-East sojourn were models of political acumen; they were designed to advance his goal of working out a solution to the intractable Israeli/Palestinian conflict.  And this is the basis upon which they must be judged, not one’s pet ideological peeves.  And the nit picking of academic historians, though accurate in factual detail, may well-represent a cure that is worse than the disease, in that it will sacrifice today’s progress on the altar of yesterday’s truths.

Of course thoughtful people who are familiar with the facts about the Middle-East will disagree with the substance of some of the President’s assertions, and others will question the symbolism of some of his acts – like placing a stone from the monument honoring Dr. Martian Luther King on the tomb of Theodore Hertzel, the founder of Modern Zionism; who was a racial nationalist and thus was far more like Minister Farrakhan than Reverend King, although pro-Zionist Jews will be quick to deny this fact.

It comes as no surprise that many of the President’s critics on the left were cynical about the trip altogether.  In an article titled “Why Obama’s Israel Trip is One Big Mistake” published on  Slate.Com,  Janine Zachariah scoffs at the President’s attempt to win over the Israeli’s and assures us: “If Obama wants to talk about drafting ultra-Orthodox Jews into the Israel Defense Forces or the price of apartments in Tel Aviv, he’ll find an audience. Those relatively marginal issues are what dominated Israel’s recent election, not the future with the Palestinians.” 

As usual, the hysterics on the left are wrong in their snarky critiques of the President.  Ms. Zachariah presents a laundry list of charges against Israel, which in her opinion nullifies any reason the President may have for visiting the Jewish nation.  Yet she offers no explanation as to how Barack will be able to address these complex issues without winning over substantial portions of the Israeli and American electorates.

It is as if the left yearns for a dictator who can issue a directive and the machinery of state act upon it the way the Catholic bureaucracy responds to an encyclical from the Pope, or the Chinese Communist Party carried out to the dictums of Chairman Mao without opposition.

But this is the USA, and we have a divided government in which the power of the executive is checked by the countervailing power of the legislature.  Hence the President will need the cooperation of Congress in order to successfully address the complex issues outlined by Ms. Zachariah, and he won’t get it if the Israel Lobby can successfully paint him as an enemy of Israel.

However, as is characteristic of the President’s critics on the left, Ms. Zachariah does not take the political opposition into account.  And as I have pointed out ad nauseum: That’s why the American left is confined to the status of a national debating society throwing verbal spitballs from the sidelines of American politics.  They are not even in the game where real power is exercised.

However as President of the United States Barack Obama is in the arena grappling with these monumental problems, trying to make deals that will further his objectives of peace and justice in the Middle East.  Which means his tactics must accommodate political reality, the commentariat can say whatever they want.  And even if he does not succeed he will have done no worse than all the American presidents before him.  But let’s not count him out just yet; for Barack is no ordinary politician.

The President’s political gifts were prominently on display during his Israeli Sojourn.  He beguiled the Israeli’s with his infectious charm, sun shine smile and moving eloquence.  And, Contrary to Ms. Zachariah’s prediction, he did talk about the future of the Palestinian people, in fact he called for the birth of a Palestinian State…and he was greeted with tumultuous applause. After effusive praise of Israel’s virtues and the history of Jewish suffering, the President told the audience:

There is no question that Israel has faced Palestinian factions who turned to terror, and leaders who missed historic opportunities. That is why security must be at the center of any agreement. And there is no question that the only path to peace is through negotiation. That is why, despite the criticism we’ve received, the United States will oppose unilateral efforts to bypass negotiations through the United Nations.

But the Palestinian people’s right to self-determination and justice must also be recognized. Put yourself in their shoes – look at the world through their eyes. It is not fair that a Palestinian child cannot grow up in a state of her own, and lives with the presence of a foreign army that controls the movements of her parents every single day. It is not just when settler violence against Palestinians goes unpunished. It is not right to prevent Palestinians from farming their lands; to restrict a student’s ability to move around the West Bank; or to displace Palestinian families from their home. Neither occupation nor expulsion is the answer. Just as Israelis built a state in their homeland, Palestinians have a right to be a free people in their own land.”

The reaction of Haaretz, Israel’s leading newspaper, is a measure of the way Israeli’s responded to the President’s speech.

“For Barack Obama to come to Jerusalem, and speak to Israeli students and talk persuasively of the possibility of a secure and peaceful future, for him to do that and garner a roaring ovation of approval, he would have to have given one hell of a speech. He did.  This was the speech that these young Israelis not only needed but wanted to hear. A speech that radically redefined centrism in Israel, bringing it down to extraordinary common denominators in directions Israelis have learned to think of as diametrically opposed.  He spoke of security and peace as inextricably and necessarily linked, not a narrow choice between options, but a conscious choice for both.  They roared.”

The article went on to point out that the Israeli college students President Obama was speaking to were different from American students in important ways.

“This was not the student crowd that Obama is used to. These students are Israelis. This is a crowd that is world-weary, hair-trigger volatile. They have come by it honestly. In comparison to their American counterparts, they are, by and large, older by several years – some would say, several lifetimes. They enter college after years in the military, often followed by the escape-valve rehab of a marathon trek to remote continents.

They know a snow job when they hear it. And the rare times when someone makes a sincere and enormous effort to understand them, to see things from their point of view, and to bring them a message that no leader in Israel has managed to bring them, they know that too.”

The praise for President Obama becomes ever more effusive, and ends with this observation “This is not the same country after this speech. Four years from now, when he hands back the White House, Barack Obama should consider a change of direction, even a change of venue. Let him run here. It’s about time we knew again what a real leader was like.”

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Of all the reasons given for the affinity between the USA and Israel, one of the major reasons is never mentioned: their mutual origins as colonial settler states.  Perhaps this is because of the fundamental character of these societies: which is the massive land theft and displacement of the indigenous populations by force and the establishment of a racial caste system in which the invaders become the ruling elite.  This is true whether we are talking about the creation of the USA by Englishmen in the 18th century; the Republic of Liberia by Afro-Americans in the 19th century; or the state Israel in the 20th century. 

However if we simply changed the word “Arabs” to “Indians” this observation on the founding of Israel by  the great Zionist warrior, Moshe Dayan – in a 1969 speech in Haifa, quoted from quoted in Ha’aretz, April 4, 1969, could well have been made by an American statesman.

“We came here to a country that was populated by Arabs and we are building here a Hebrew, a Jewish state; instead of the Arab villages, Jewish villages were established. You even do not know the names of those villages, and I do not blame you because these villages no longer exist. There is not a single-Jewish settlement that was not established in the place of a former Arab Village.” ­

The similarities between the Israeli and American experience with nation building can be easily seen in the fact that American cities from Chicago Illinois, to Tecumseh Michigan, to Chicopee Massachusetts are named after the Indian villages that once resided upon this land before it was stolen by white invaders from Europe.

President Obama was no more candid in his discussion of the founding of Israel than any of the US presidents who have preceded him.  And the reason is simple: it contradicts the Master Narrative, i.e. the national myth of their civilization…hence neither Israeli nor American Leaders are anxious to discuss the real story of their nation’s founding.

Phillip Weiss, an American Jewish journalist, published an article titled It’s Time for the Media to Talk about Zionism on the World News Daily Information Clearing House, a website that bills itself as offering “News you won’t find on CNN or Fox News.”  Mr. Weiss excoriated the major American media for its lack of objective reporting and candid commentary on the state of Israel and its policies toward the Palestinians.  In this criticism he is joined by a host of brilliant Jewish critics of Israel and the one sided reportage on the question of Palestinian rights and national aspirations.

Don’t ask don’t tell is the rule regarding the crimes against the indigenous peoples that were essential to the founding of America and Israel.  But unlike Native Americans, the seizure of Palestinian lands occurred in the Middle of the 20th century, when genocidal invasions were unacceptable; largely as a result of the furor over the Jewish holocaust in Germany.   The Palestinians are 20th century victims of land hungry settler/colonialists, and they have been waging a protracted war against Israel for over half a century.

Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians is also the root cause of their problems with Iran.  And President Obama’s position on Iran will not help the situation.  While he is resisting Netanyahu’s blatant attempt to persuade him to commit the US to a military conflict with the Persian nation, he has nevertheless adopted the Israeli view of the threat to the national security of the US and Israel, which is more propaganda than truth, more fiction than fact.

When I consider Israel’s security, I also think about a people who have a living memory of the Holocaust, faced with the prospect of a nuclear-armed Iranian government that has called for Israel’s destruction. It’s no wonder Israelis view this as an existential threat. But this is not simply a challenge for Israel – it is a danger for the entire world, including the United States. It would raise the risk of nuclear terrorism, undermine the non-proliferation regime, spark an arms race in a volatile region, and embolden a government that has shown no respect for the rights of its own people or the responsibilities of nations.

That is why America has built a coalition to increase the cost to Iran of failing to meet their obligations. The Iranian government is now under more pressure than ever before, and that pressure is increasing. It is isolated. Its economy is in a dire condition. Its leadership is divided. And its position – in the region, and the world – has only grown weaker.

First of all, Iran has not grown weaker because the misguided American attack on Iraq has empowered the Shiites, which is a de-facto extension of the power and influence of Iran in the region and would make a war with Iran infinitely more difficult than the Iraq war, in which the US deployed troops for ten years at a cost of two trillion dollars!  It was the greatest foreign policy blunder in American history…an attack on Iran will prove worse!

If the Iraq war was folly, an American war with Iran initiated by Israel would be an exercise in self-mutilation: a disaster for US relations in the region, and on the home front because it would wreck the US economy. Furthermore the President’s contention that Iran acquiring an atomic bomb “would raise the risk of nuclear terrorism, undermine the non-proliferation regime,” is dishonest hyperbole that will not advance the goal of peace in the Middle East – since everybody knows that Israel has a formidable nuclear arsenal yet refuses to even sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and thus do not allow inspections on its soil.

This attitude will result in a permanent state of hostility with their Muslim neighbors, which has caused Israel to become a garrison state, ever vigilant at the possibility of violence. And it shall remain so as long as the question of Palestinian sovereignty is unresolved.  Hence it is the possibility of peace offered by President Obama that inspired the most fervent hope and tumultuous applause

 

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Playthell G. Benjamin
Harlem, New York
March 30, 2013

 

The World According to Bibi

Posted in On Foreign Affairs, Playthell on politics with tags , , , on October 2, 2012 by playthell

Bibi and the Bomb

 On Israel, America and the Arrogance of Power

The pressure to attack Iran was racheted up to fever pitch when Bibi Netanyahu, the Israeli Prime Minister, spoke before the United Nations General Assembly yesterday.  In one of the most hypocritical speeches ever presented at the UN, and there have been many, Bibi, who presides over the only nuclear armed nation in the Middle East, presented the case for a military assault on Iran to prevent them from acquiring an atomic bomb.

He argued that “The most urgent challenge facing this body is to prevent the tyrants of Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Are the member states of the United Nations up to that challenge? Will the international community confront a despotism that terrorizes its own people as they bravely stand up for freedom?”  There was not the slightest hint of irony in Bibi’s plea for the liberty of Iranians, even while he stands on the neck of the Palestinian people…and stomp their dreams in the dust.

He painted aghastlyportrait of what would happen should Iran acquire such a weapon, declaring it would endanger the peace of the entire world!  It is a claim that I regard as dangerous hysterical hyperbole, designed to put President Obama on the spot and force him closer to the Israeli position on Iran.

Yet Bibi’s case against Iran was masterfully constructed and eloquently argued overall.  The first part of the speech skillfully painted a convincing portrait of the Islamic fanatics who rule Iran as madmen who are fully capable of launching an atomic attack against Israel.  In light of some of the things they have said on the record, Netanyahu had plenty of examples he could point to: beginning with Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s denial of the holocaust.

Netanyahu’s response to Ahmadinejad’s claim that the Holocaust is a lie was devastating, because most of the people in the world regard the charge as scurrilous and anyone who mouths it a demented moral cripple – this writer included.  The Israeli Prime Minister’s description of the basic character, history and aims of the fanaticism that fuels the Global Islamic Jihad was also fundamentally true:

“Wherever they can, they impose a backward regimented society where women, minorities, gays or anyone not deemed to be a true believer is brutally subjugated.” He declared. “The struggle against this fanaticism does not pit faith against faith nor civilization against civilization. It pits civilization against barbarism, the 21st century against the 9th century…”

The Prime Minister’s claim for Israel as a valuable contributor to the advance of science and technology that benefits all humanity was equally true. But Netanyahu’s oration soon degenerated into self-serving propaganda and hyperbolic attacks on the Palestinians, and even the United Nations itself.

“The jury is still out on the United Nations,” he said, “and recent signs are not encouraging. Rather than condemning the terrorists and their Iranian patrons, some here have condemned their victims.”

This expression of doubt about UN intentions was intended as a smack in the face for the UN having commissioned the Goldstone Report, which accused Israel and Hamas of committing war crimes in the 2009 Gaza War, and for calling Zionism a racist ideology in an earlier General Assembly resolution.

The Goldstone Report on the Gaza Strip presented the official findings of a group of international experts who were dispatched by the UN Human Rights Commission to investigate violations of International Human Rights Laws, and International Humanitarian Laws after the Gaza War of 2009. A former South African judge with broad experience investigating war crimes Richard Goldstone, who served as a prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunals for Yugoslavia and Rwanda – headed the commission of inquiry and their findings were widely recognized as valid.

But Israel refused to recognize the commission’s findings or abide by its recommendations.  And almost four years later Bibi had this to say about the report.

Yet faced with such a clear case of aggressor and victim, who did the UN Human Rights Council decide to condemn? Israel. A democracy legitimately defending itself against terror is morally hanged, drawn and quartered, and given an unfair trial to boot.  By these twisted standards, the UN Human Rights Council would have dragged Roosevelt and Churchill to the dock as war criminals. What a perversion of truth. What a perversion of justice.”

Well, I don’t know about Roosevelt or Churchill, but President Harry Truman, the only leader in world history who ordered an atomic attack on another country, would have been an excellent candidate for a war crimes tribunal. The evidence strongly suggests the atomic bombing of Japan was a planned attack against a civilian population; therein lies the crime.

The diligent researcher can find abundant evidence that the decision to drop the atomic bomb on Japan was an arbitrary choice; it was not essential to victory over Japan as we have been told by apologists whose objective is to cover up a horrendous war crime.

The fact is that while Japan had a massive army of 5 million men, spread throughout Asia, with 2 million committed to the defense of the Japanese homeland, and 5,000 Kamikaze suicide pilots ready to crash their planes into US ships, Japan was in the final stages of collapse.

There was already an invasion plan in which the Russians would play a major role, that dramatically reduced the cost to the US in blood and treasure.   It was a widely shared belief among the war planners that Japan could be defeated without the bomb.

Dr. Leo Szilard,  a Hungarian born nuclear physicist who had set in motion the effort to build the bomb by writing a letter to President Roosevelt – co-signed by Dr. Albert Einstein, the world’s most famous physicist – expressed this view. As did many scientists who contributed to the effort to build the world’s first atomic bomb.

The creation of the “Manhattan Project” – code name for the secret US government program that created the atomic bomb – was inspired by the arguments made by Szilard and Einstein that convinced President Roosevelt that Nazi scientist were well on the way to making an atomic weapon.

The horror of such a possibility certainly justifies the American decision to develop a crash program to beat Hitler to the bomb. The Manhattan Project employed 120,000 people and cost 2 billion dollars, and they succeeded in producing the first atom bomb.

This was a great achievement in scientific research, technical mastery and organizational/management.  The  should be enough on its own to refute the silly rightwing dogma introduced by that “charming dunce” Ronald Reagan – in the former Defense Secretary Clarke Clifford’s coinage – who told us that government could do nothing right, even as he sought to head our government.  However by the time the Atomic bomb became a reality, with the successful detonation at Alamogordo, New Mexico, on July 16, 1945, the Nazi’s had surrendered several months earlier on May 7.  So the war in Europe was over.

With Germany and Italy defeated the last of the Axis powers still at war was the “Empire of the Rising Sun” in Japan.  And there is evidence that Truman wanted to teach these little brown devils a lesson they could never forget, as well as cutting the Russians out of any role in the Far East while also deterring Russian ambitions in postwar Europe.

Beyond the racist attitudes toward the Japanese – which is well documented by Afro-American historian Dr. Gerald Horne in his brilliant revisionist text on the war to control the Pacific region, Race War – these were objectives that looked beyond the defeat of Japan and began to envision the shape of the post war world order.

Recalling the decision to drop the atom bomb on Japan four years later, in 1949, Dr. Szilard says:

“The question of whether the bomb should be used in the war against Japan came up for discussion. Mr. Byrnes did not argue that it was necessary to use the bomb against the cities of Japan in order to win the war. He knew at that time, as the rest of the Government knew, that Japan was essentially defeated and that we could win the War in another six months.

At that time Mr. Byrnes was much concerned about the spreading of Russian influence in Europe. . . . Mr. Byrnes’ concern about Russia I fully shared, but his view that our possessing and demonstrating the bomb would make Russia more manageable in Europe I was not able to share. Indeed I could hardly imagine any premise more false and disastrous upon which to base our policy, and I was dismayed when a few weeks later I learned that he was to be our Secretary of State.”

 There are many examples of a similar doubt and apprehension among the small band of scientists, politicians and military men who were involved with development and use of the atomic bomb.  Consider, for instance, this passage from the Memoirs of General H. H. Arnold, Commander of the American Army Air Force in the Second World War (1949)

The surrender of Japan was not entirely the result of the two atomic bombs. We had hit some 60 Japanese cities with our regular H. E. (High Explosive) and incendiary bomb$ and, as a result of our raids, about 241,000 people had been killed, 313,000 wounded, and about 2,333,000 homes destroyed. Our B-29’s had destroyed most of the Japanese industries and, with the laying of mines, which prevented the arrival of incoming cargoes of critical items, had made it impossible for Japan to carryon a large-scale war. . . . Accordingly, it always appeared to us that, atomic bomb or no atomic bomb, the Japanese were already on the verge of collapse.”

 The point of all this historical reflection is to remind us that the US is the last nation that has the moral authority to lecture other nations on the evils of nuclear weapons, since it is self-evident that it is a lesson we have yet to learn.  As I write, the US has tens of thousands of nuclear weapons in our arsenal.  They are deployed on tripartite launch systems on land, air and sea.  And these doomsday weapons can be delivered anywhere in the world with pin point accuracy within minutes.  It is impossible to defend against, and has the capacity to destroy all life on earth within a half hour from now!

Yet we have Mitt Romney, the Republican candidate for commander-In-Chief of this doomsday arsenal, crying about the American military not being strong enough.  It is no wonder that Mitt and Bibi are old friends and business partners, both suffer from the same delusions that they can impose their will on other nations with persistent threats and prolific use of military force.  It is an arrogance characteristic of those drunk with power.

Hence it seems reasonable to the Israeli Prime Minister that while he accuses the Iranians, the ancient land of Persia, of deceiving inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency about their intention to build a nuclear weapon in violation of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, while they steadfastly refuse to sign the treaty at all!

In fact, like the US, the Israeli’s refuse to allow any nuclear weapons inspections on their soil.  And they refuse to even say whether they possess nuclear weapons…although scientists who worked in their nuclear weapons program have testified to their existence.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad: Iranian Prime Minister

 

A Looney Tune who occasionally hits the Mark

Hence, like a broken clock that is right twice every day, the Iranian Prime Minister was right when he made the following points in his speech to the United Nations:

Unilateralism, application of double standards, and imposition of wars, instability and occupations to ensure economic interests, and expand dominance over sensitive centers of the world have turned to be the order of the day.  Arms race and intimidation by nuclear weapons and weapons of mass-destruction by the hegemonic powers have become prevalent: Testing new generations of ultra-modern weaponry and the pledge to disclose these armaments on due time is now being used as a new language of threat against nations to coerce them into accepting a new era of hegemony.

Continued threat … to resort to military action against our great nation is a clear example of this bitter reality.A state of mistrust has cast its shadow on the international relations, whilst there is no trusted or just authority to help resolve world conflicts…No one feels secure or safe even those who have stockpiled thousands of atomic bombs and other arms in their arsenals.”
In view of these undeniable realities the highlight of Netanyahu’s presentation, a show and tell about nuclear weapons production, has been ridiculed as both a cartoonish performance and a shameless display of hypocrisy.  Bibi held up a chart with a symbolic drawing of a nuclear bomb, which has been derisively dubbed “Bibi’s bomb,” and sparked one American late night comic to suggest that if the Israeli Prime Minister really wants to know what a nuclear bomb looks like he should just go down in his basement and look at a real one!

Tracing the progress of Iran’s atomic program Bibi drew a red line, and dramatically declared if the Iranians are allowed to proceed beyond that point the international community would not be able to stop them from building an atomic bomb.  Hence they would be justified in attacking Iran to stop it!

This was a transparent attempt to build support in the United States for an American backed attack on Iran.  But Bibi’s dramatic demonstration quickly became the object of a wicked comic skit by the political satirist Steve Colbert, and the real thing would be hilarious if it were not so dangerous!

The sad and frightening truth is that nobody is even willing to talk about the real solution to this man made dilemma – where the means of our destruction from mankind’s folly is within our power to end, but nobody wants to willingly surrender what they imagine to be the security and hegemonic advantage possession of nuclear arsenals provide.

But as one who at 19 years old held a Top Secret Security Clearance and was stationed on a Strategic Air Command base with enough nuclear weapons to destroy the planet, I made up my mind about what to do with nuclear weapons over half a century ago.  Schmoozing with people who were sworn to blow up the planet upon orders from the High command – at the pinnacle of which was General Curtis Lemay, whose nickname among his military colleagues was “The Mad Bomber”- I was privy to our nuclear war plans.

After viewing the official strategic Air command’s secret films of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki Japan, the only people ever subjected to attack by an atomic weapon, I have been convinced that the very possession of nuclear weapons is a crime against humanity!  I have felt this way for over half a century!

Yet even as I write, instead of leading the fight to rid the world of these doomsday weapons, which our nation introduced into the world and remain the only nation to use them against another people – the US is engaging in open diplomatic hostilities toward Iran, and waging a covert war in conjunction with Israel with the objective of maintain Israel’s nuclear monopoly over the Mid-East region by preventing Iran from acquiring a single nuclear weapon.  This is short sighted folly and I believe, ultimately self-defeating.

The covert action against Iran includes assassinating five Iranian nuclear scientists, and disrupting their computers with virus attacks. Contrary to popular belief in this country, this aggression against Iran on behalf of Israel – a country where we already have a tragic history of meddling in their internal affairs – only strengthens the regime they are intended to overthrow.

And given the size and technological development of Iran, the Israeli’s know they can’t overthrow the regime alone.  That’s why they are trying to lure America into joining Israel in an all-out attack on Iran.  I am certain that this would be an even bigger blunder than the attack on Iraq, and far more costly.  It would stifle our economic recovery and reduce many people to desperation as the Republicans simultaneously shred the safety net as they spend money to destroy life rather than enhance life.

This is where the red line must be drawn, and President Obama must resist Bibi’s attempt to push the US into yet another war in the Islamic world….even at the expense of inciting the wrath of the all-powerful Israel Lobby, and even while his opponent Mitt Romney – a soulless, amoral, lying, unpatriotic opportunist – is accusing him of “throwing Israel under the Bus; blatantly interfering with the Presidents attempts to conduct foreign policy in the best interest of the nation, for no more exalted purpose than gaining a political advantage!  If this is not treason…it ought to be.

Honoring an Iranian Nuclear Scientist

 

The Iranians Honor a Martyr

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