Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Progressives. Obama, and War: a must-read

Visit Justin Raimondo and take in his entire piece on how the fact that it is now a Democratic administration prosecuting America's foreign wars, the Progressive anti-war movement is somehow ... split.

A snippet (but please read the whole thing):

As President Barack Obama launches a military effort that promises to dwarf the Bush administration’s Iraqi adventure in scope and intensity, the "progressive" community is rallying around their commander in chief as obediently and reflexively as the neocon-dominated GOP did when we invaded Iraq. As John Stauber points out over at the Center for Media and Democracy Web site, the takeover of the antiwar movement by the Obamaites is nearly complete. He cites as a prime but not sole example:

"MoveOn built its list by organizing vigils and ads for peace and by then supporting Obama for president; today it operates as a full-time cheerleader supporting Obama’s policy agenda. Some of us saw this unfolding years ago. Others are probably shocked watching their peace candidate escalating a war and sounding so much like the previous administration in his rationale for doing so."...

I am truly at a loss to describe, in suitably pungent terms, the contempt in which I hold the "progressive" wing of the War Party, which is now enjoying its moment in the sun. These people have no principles: it’s all about power at the court of King Obama, and these court policy wonks are good for nothing but apologias for the king’s wars.

There are two dynamics in play here: one is that there are Progressives (I think of Dana Garrett in the local sphere) who have consistently be open about their support for certain forms of military interventionism in what they consider a good cause. I don't agree with Dana on this, but he is certainly not a hypocrite: his position hasn't changed since Obama was elected President.

But there are all sorts of other self-styled liberals and progressives throughout Delaware and the nation who have barely uttered a peep about the continuation and expansion of Bushco policies of military interventionism.

If pressed, they will occasionally cop to being disappointed in this or that decision, and will then say that the new administration needs more time to develop before we start criticizing.

Horse nuggies.

You may not personally know people being shot at in Iraq or Afghanistan, but I certainly do. I trained some of them. They signed up to defend the country, and they knew the risks.

But it is our responsibility to treat them like citizens who happen to be soldiers and not as disposable pawns in the great game of empire.

I will not be silent while they continue to fight and die for an unnecessary war.

I just wish I could also hear all those progressives and liberals who raised hell about Iraq start subjecting Afghanistan to the same sort of scrutiny.

Holding. My. Breath. Turning. Blue.


d.eris said...

From the very beginning the anti-war movement was organized by groups like ANSWER and UFPJ, and received no support from elected Democrats, I certainly don't remember Democratic party leaders at any of the rallies and demonstrations, and with good reason, most of them supported the wars. So it is not surprising that Democrats are no longer interested in supporting the movement, since their goal has already been reached: namely, co-opting that movement's message and momentum for their own electoral gain.

But the anti-war movement nonetheless continues apace. Just last Saturday there was a large anti-war rally and march in NYC (a few thousand strong) and in a few other cities across the country, organized again by UFPJ and the International action center, among others. Ironically, this happened to be going on at the very same time the discussion of "whither the anti-war movement" seems to have gotten its legs.

kavips said...

Iraq was pointless.

Afghanistan even more so..

Iraq could have been domesticated if it had not been conquered during an incompetent Republican administration..\

I could have even done better..

Afghanistan has never been conquered... It has at best, only been contained...Every power that has attempted to domesticate it, has failed.

The British, were probably the most successful at pacifying the Afghans, but their policy recognized continous fighting on the fringe was a necessity to keep the central areas at near permanent peace...

It was just a cost of their involvement.

Anonymous said...

Journalist Philip Weiss on the Neoconservative agenda:

"In terms of their politics, they were almost all Democrats and then as soon as the Democratic party suggested that it wasn't going to have a strong military, Norman Podhoretz and Irving Kristol, the grandfathers of this movement, they went Republican. Why? Because they said, back in the 70's, a strong American military is needed to protect Israel."

Download an mp3 of Phil saying the above here (9:45 minutes in) - 07/12/2008 - 03/18/2009

Watch the BBC documentary "The War Party", (part 1 of 5)

Check out Phil's articles:
Ferment Over the Israel Lobby - The Nation
Shiksa countries are for practice
Blogging about Israel and Jewish identity

Read Phil's blog on the Neocons, AIPAC, Israel/Palestine @