Saturday, July 28, 2007

Barack Obama and Genocide

Americans say they want the truth from their candidates, but it's precisely the truth that they can't handle.

Because what they really want is platitudes and mythology. My fellow Americans cling to the past image of our once-great country: the non-aggressing leader and savior of the free world. We had a creditable claim to that mantle until Bush and Cheney cast it aside on March 20, 2003. Bush said he was going to spend his political capital but, by invading Iraq, he squandered our previously vast American moral and diplomatic resources.

The truth is that we live - still - in a world which has walls and limits: psychological, physical, economic, and geopolitical limits. When we squander our resources in the short term, the shadows of our limits lengthen for us in the long run.

I missed the Senator's statement on Friday, until this morning when I noticed it plastered all over the pro-war echelons of the Internet. I haven't found the unadulterated version of his statement, and believe me, there are plenty of adulterated and altered versions smeared against the walls of the blogosphere. But my reaction to what has been said against the Senator was so strong and overwhelming, I'll just have to go with what I have. In the standardized headline, the Senator says:
Don't stay in Iraq over genocide.

Well, look, if that’s the criteria by which we are making decisions on the deployment of U.S. forces, then by that argument you would have 300,000 troops in the Congo right now — where millions have been slaughtered as a consequence of ethnic strife — which we haven’t done.

We would be deploying unilaterally and occupying the Sudan, which we haven’t done. Those of us who care about Darfur don’t think it would be a good idea.

There’s no doubt there are risks of increased bloodshed in Iraq without a continuing U.S. presence there.

It is my assessment that those risks are even greater if we continue to occupy Iraq and serve as a magnet for not only terrorist activity but also irresponsible behavior by Iraqi factions.

We have not lost a military battle in Iraq. So when people say if we leave, we will lose, they’re asking the wrong question. We cannot achieve a stable Iraq with a military. We could be fighting there for the next decade.
Now, as far as that goes, I'd have to say the Senator has nailed the truth upon an oak that will not fall. My only worry is that Obama's handlers will 'advise' him to back off, clarify or refine, this statement.

Speaking as a small-d democrat as well as an American capital-N Nationalist, I have always felt that nations rightfully go to war when they have to; when they are attacked, not when they feel, imagine, fantasize, or wish they might be attacked. Had not Bush and Cheney so wantonly, recklessly and thoroughly whacked off our wad in Iraq, then all of Obamas' critics' sensibilities about Darfur (and their other holocausts past and future), would not ring so hollow. But, thanks to those two fools, any possibilities of our contributing to the collective security of others is as about as plausible as drawing to an inside straight.

Iraq is broken. But we don't own it. Bush and Cheney, who lied and stampeded our wounded post-911 country into this invasion - they own it. The longer this occupation lasts, the more the damage Bush and Cheney have caused is compounded.

7 Moderated Comments:

Blogger Jolly Roger said...

There is no goodwill left towards the US.

We will pay for that soon enough, when our Beijing and Riyadh bankers snap shut their purses. I figure that day is coming sooner rather than later.

Heckuva job, Chimpy.

7/28/2007 07:26:00 PM  
Blogger J.C. said...

They can snap shut their purses all they want, we still have the lions share of the worlds resources, and thats what counts in this game.

We do have the good will of the Israelis though don`t we.
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has confirmed that the United States is planning a significant increase in military and defence aid to Israel.
The package would reportedly amount to more than $30bn (£14.8bn) over the next 10 years.
Mr Olmert described it as an important element for the security of Israel.
Washington is reportedly preparing a package of major arms sales to Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states because of concerns over Iran's nuclear programme.
US defence aid to Israel currently stands at $2.4bn a year - the new package would amount to a 25% increase.
Mr Olmert said the aid had been agreed at a meeting with US President George W Bush in Washington last month.
---- As far as Obama he is just another punk politician, with the same intellectual jumping off point as Bush.
---- Is having the good will of Israel good for North America ?

7/29/2007 05:59:00 AM  
Blogger Bob Keller said...

vigilante.... You know I love to read all my favorite blogs on a relaxing Sunday morning with a hot Starbuck's mocha (or two).

So I'm sure you guessed when I read your "headline" this morning the hair would stand up on the back of my neck and I'd be poised for attack!!!!

Ahhh..... but in reading your whole essay there is little or nothing on which we disagree. You are so right, Bush really did squander both our resources and our moral authority with his unwarranted and counter-productive invasion of Iraq.

Barack overstated his position and his handlers should pull him back a notch. Bill Clinton admits the "worst mistake of my Presidency" was his failure to intervene in Rwanda.

But I'll cut Obama some slack. He was trying to make a point (your point, actually).

So, instead of launching any arrows, I'll thank you for once again bringing the topic of Darfur to your journal. The more we can bring the topic of Darfur and Sudan to the attention of the American public, the closer we will get to real and realistic solutions to the problem.

the Wizard.......

P.S. Let's hope with the election of a new President in 2008 we can begin to restore America's honor on the world stage. It's going to take time.

7/29/2007 06:57:00 AM  
Blogger Vigilante said...

Wizard, Mercurial and Nimble one, I think of you as a member of my hard-core gang of three I look towards on a slow news days (or on days when I'm slow). I am remiss not to have credited you for elevating Senator Obama's statement to the level of importance it deserves. I do so now.

Roger is right, as usual.

And Skip triples when he asks,

We do have the good will of the Israelis though, don`t we?
. . . .Is having the good will of Israel good [enough] for North America?

He would still be on 3rd base if he hadn't tried stretching it out for an inside-the-park homer by dissing my homie, the Senator. But, against my better judgment, I am challenging Skip to name a better alternative candidate than Obama for president. Let's see if he can do that in 125 words or less (what I allowed my self in this reply), and without mentioning his fervor for Technocracy and/or trashing our constitution!

But let us not digress too much. The point of this thread is the substance and importance of Senator Obama's comments.

7/29/2007 08:31:00 AM  
Blogger TomCat said...

Vig, this is an excellent piece. The problem in Iraq is that Bush and Cheney broke it, and we don't have enough troops to undo the damage militarily.

7/29/2007 11:30:00 AM  
Blogger J.C. said...

Just a reminder that the whole 'war' is a fabrication to get at and control oil, and bolster up our nut case friends, the Israelis. Saddam who was in the employ of the C.I.A. originally and 'turned' would still be in power if he had not decided to switch out of selling oil in dollars.

Technocracy is waiting for the present system to break down. When we have destroyed x amount of resources, and our existence is threatened, Technocracy is the next most probable system to insure survival, and humanitarian freedom.
May as well change the term limits and re-elect Bush. 6 of 1 or half dozen of the other. All these 'candidates' are out of 'Confessions of an Economic Hitman' mold.

7/29/2007 01:35:00 PM  
Blogger Kentucky Rain said...

Ditto to what Wizard said. I couldn't agree more.

8/01/2007 06:02:00 AM  

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