We set out from real, active men, and on the basis of their real life-process we demonstrate the development of the ideological reflexes and echoes of this life-process. The phantoms formed in the human brain are also, necessarily, sublimates of their material life-process, which is empirically verifiable and bound to material premises. Morality, religion, metaphysics, all the rest of ideology and their corresponding forms of consciousness, thus no longer retain the semblance of independence. They have no history, no development; but men, developing their material production and their material intercourse, alter, along with this their real existence, their thinking and the products of their thinking. Life is not determined by consciousness, but consciousness by life. http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1845/german-ideology/ch01a.htm#a2
The ideas of the ruling class are in every epoch the ruling ideas, i.e. the class which is the ruling material force of society, is at the same time its ruling intellectual force. The class which has the means of material production at its disposal, has control at the same time over the means of mental production, so that thereby, generally speaking, the ideas of those who lack the means of mental production are subject to it. The ruling ideas are nothing more than the ideal expression of the dominant material relationships, the dominant material relationships grasped as ideas; hence of the relationships which make the one class the ruling one, therefore, the ideas of its dominance. The individuals composing the ruling class possess among other things consciousness, and therefore think. Insofar, therefore, as they rule as a class and determine the extent and compass of an epoch, it is self-evident that they do this in its whole range, hence among other things rule also as thinkers, as producers of ideas, and regulate the production and distribution of the ideas of their age: thus their ideas are the ruling ideas of the epoch. http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1845/german-ideology/ch01b.htm#b3...
Imperialism and Ideological Bigotry
by Lil Joe
The ruling classes are the dominate economic classes of a kingdom or nation and empire whose members are in possession of the Society's productive forces. According to the level of development of those productive forces are a given division of labor that constitute relations of production constituent of the dominate mode of production and form of appropriation of the labor of the direct non-possessing toiling classes.
But, it is not possible for these ruling classes, which are the minority of property owning classes, to exploit the propertyless toiling classes without backing by bureaucratic-military States. The most powerful, economically dominate class is the most powerful, politically dominate class. The bureaucratic military State is an instrument of political domination by special bodies of armed men, with prisons, &c., at their disposal.
But this is not sufficient. The masses of the working and toiling classes of these societies must believe the existing mode of production and appropriation is natural and that the State which dominates them is legitimate: they must accept the authority of the class that own the productive forces and the State which protect and serve these appropriating classes have the right to do so. This is where the ideologists of the ruling classes come in.
The division of labour, which we already saw above as one of the chief forces of history up till now, manifests itself also in the ruling class as the division of mental and material labour, so that inside this class one part appears as the thinkers of the class (its active, conceptive ideologists, who make the perfecting of the illusion of the class about itself their chief source of livelihood), while the others’ attitude to these ideas and illusions is more passive and receptive, because they are in reality the active members of this class and have less time to make up illusions and ideas about themselves. http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1845/german-ideology/ch01b.htm#b3
The problem is that since the ideas of the ruling class about itself are the dominate ideas of the culture that these ideas - illusions - are accepted and by socialization and education internalized by individual members of the working classes and toiling masses whose labor is appropriated by the ruling classes, as is the authority of the State accepted by those working casses and toiling masses which are oppressed by it.
In the ancient and feudal economies and states the ruling classes &/or priestly castes and government bureaucrats were alone educated and the masses deliberately kept illiterate slaves, peasants or proletarians. In those ancient and feudal economic based politics and religion &or philosophy debates and polemics concerning the nature of economy and the structure and function of the State and rights of aristocrats &or citizens was discussed only among the ruling class intelligentsia and its educated politicians and priests. There was no need to justify themselves to dehumanized obedient slaves and ignorant serfs or poor peasants.
However, the capitalist mode of production has advanced science and industrial technology to the level of needing an educated working class and bourgeois democratic revolutions which made the capitalists politically as well as economically dominate brought the proletariat into the political arena and part of the ideological struggles.
Thus, philosophers such as Hobbes, Locke, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Helvetius, Burke and others needed to present the legitimacy of the State's authority on the basis of reason that would appeal to the educated and politically active workers: the ideology of equality before the law is the illusiory premise based as it is upon the myth of there having had been an original 'social contract' that authorized and legitimized the original political States. The truth is that it was economic interests of the possessing classes which formed the original States, including the Constitutional Republics.
Modern bourgeois democracies are ideologically predicated upon and therefore must preserve the myth of citizenship and civil rights of all - "equality before the law" - notwithstanding "one man's fine is another man's time": the rich man, poor man, beggar man thief are equal before the law: e.g. 'thou shalt not steal'. This law applies to millionaires who own the means of production and distribution just as much as it does to the working class and unemployed homeless.
Or conversely as Anatole France put it:
"The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread" (from The Red Lily, 1894)
Such law is obviously written in the interest of the property owning classes by the political representatives of the property owning classes. So were &/or are the Constitution of the United States, and the Indian Removal Act, the Fugitive Slave Act, the Missouri Compromise, the Homestead Act, the Dred Scot decision, the Alien and Sedition Act, the Taft-Hartley Act, the Rap Brown Act ...
In the modern capitalist modes of production and appropriations to which corresponds bourgeois nation states, the States are not able to just abduct workers into the army or navy the way the ancient regimes abducted slaves and the feudal barons abducted serfs and shanghied vagabonds. The workers, even if they are drafted into the army, navy or air force must believe the State has the right to do so.
This duping of members of the working class is achieved by the socialization of individuals in the illusion that the nation's State is not an instrument of class domination that is there to repress them as workers, but that it is a national institution to protect these workers as citizens. George Bush for instance didn't tell the masses of American workers that they were being sent to Iraq to dominate the oil producing regions of Middle Asia and North Africa on behalf of US capitalists interests in making money, but that the invasion and colonial occupation of Iraq was a 'war against terror' that was needed to 'protect Americans' from Saddam Hussein, who ostensibly had 'weapons of mass destruction'.
It is also interesting that this is exactly what US imperialism &/or with NATO claim is their 'mission' in Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia! US imperialism's politicians, together with print and electronic media propagandist's perfected Orwellian NewSpeak drenched gullible American workers to internalise doublethink patriotism: the imperialists' vicious invasion and bloody occupation of Afghanistan, Iraq and Somalia are not invasions and occupations - according American politicians and print and electronic media propagandists but is according to them also for the good of the Iraqis and Afghan women 'Operation Iraqi Freedom' and 'Operation Enduring Freedom' in Iraq and Afghanistan respectively, and to 'defend the Somali government from Islamists' in Somalia.
The dominate classes are the political powers in whose interests wars are fought. Imperialist powers as Conquerors always operate in the economic and corresponding political interests of the economically dominate class of the imperial center but have euphemisms and ideologically noble platitudes to justify military domination and political domination in their respective conquered territorial provinces, suzerains, colonies or neo-colonies.
One kingdom or empire conquers another for economic reasons, and are able to do so because the conquerors have more deadly weapons or and military efficiency. Upper Egypt conquered Lower Egypt because it had military superiority and was motivated to do so because its ruling classes wanted to extend their control into the lush and productive agriculture of the Delta. The Assyrians, the Mesopotamians, and others did so for the same reasons.
The Macedonians conquered North African and Asian kingdoms and empires the civilizations of these 'barbarians' were not only never in question but even recognized as ancient and advanced. Differences of peoples and cultures were not categorized as superior to inferior 'races'. What made a kingdom or an empire attractive for invasion was its riches and relative lack of fortification. Plunder was its own justification.
The Greek armies of Alexander never thought of themselves as 'introducing' civilization to the Egyptians, Syrians, Persians and Indians. Neither did the Romans make such stupid claims, even as they conquered Carthage and the Greeks, as well as displaced them in Asia and Africa. The practical Romans justified their empire as bringing peace to the world, PaxRomana through Roman armed forced 'law and order': the protection of wealth and trade.
The ancient kingdoms, republican polis and empires was economically based on slavery. Slaves were not regarded as human beings but living tools possessed by citizens and excluded from citizenship in the polis.
In his Politics, Aristotle said that Men are rational animals but that slaves, and women as well, were incapable of reason ("deliberative thinking", judgment) and so are less than "human." Aristotle called slaves "animate tools," capable only of understanding commands in order to obey. I call this class prejudices articulated in ruling class political epistemology. In Physics Aristotle approvingly says: "That is why the poets say: 'It is correct that Greeks rule Barbarians'; for by nature what is barbarian and what is slave are the same." Yet, in ancient Greece, and also Rome "barbarians" were not a "racial" category. Slaves in Greece and Rome came from Europe and Asia, as well as Africa. And among the "free Greeks," Greek and Roman citizens included free men that originated from Africa and Asia as well as native born free men. Members of the Greek polis and Empire as in Rome and its Empire were a variety. http://www.nathanielturner.com/sharifinterviewsliljoe.htm
The Arabs, however, like the 'People of the Book' - i.e. the Israelite tribes of the Bible conquering Canaan: the Arabs qua "Ismealites" of the Qu'ran politically and ideologically used the Bible to justify their wars of conquest. The ruling classes through their prophet and priests presented it as Yahweh/Allah sanctioned if not commanded: to conquer the 'gentile'/ or 'infidel' and to subject them to slaughter or slavery.
Medieval Catholic Christians and Muslims were proselytizers wanting to save the souls of the pagans, heathens and infidels. This figured into their ideological justification for conquests. Consequently, like the Arab and then the Ottoman empires used Islam and converting the Infidel to justify wars of conquest and domination so in the 15th-16th centuries the European 'age of exploration' was transformed into an age of colonization and the slave trade the European imperialists also justified colonization and slavery as a proselytizing - bringing the heathens to Christ by conquest and subjection.
In consequence of the Renaissance, and more particularly the Enlightenment the European capitalists no longer justified their interests by religion but European scientific and technological civilization's 'supremacy' vis-a-v-s 'savage' tribes in America and Africa, and Asiatic 'barbarians'. Whereas denigrating conquered peoples as gentiles, infidels, heathens and 'pagans' were ideologies with religious justifications for man's inhumanity to man the denigration of conquered peoples as savages and barbarians to justify man's inhumanity to man used 'historical' and ideological [pseudo-scientific] anthropological categories in uni-directional 'cultural evolution' from savagery through barbarism achieving civilization' by 'Semitic and Aryans' in the Fertile Crescent and its supposed subsequent 'diffusion' outward throughout the world.
Eurocentric religion and racialism resulting from imperialism became imperialist ideological influenced 19th century historiorgraphy and distorted versions of cultural anthropology. The division of early human societies as evolving to perfection beginning at the lower 'stage' of 'savagery', through 'barbarism' to 'civilization' is rejected by contemporary anthropology and archeology which investigates different modes of production and corresponding modes of appropriation as different but not 'superior' or 'inferior', based not on 'stages' of human social perfection but on functionalist principles.
Only a racist historiography would consider hunters-gatherers 'savages', herders and horticulturalists 'barbarians' and even pastoralists and agriculturalists 'civilized' by aesthetic and political standards. The Roman culture is more defined by its mass participation in wars and the sadistic spectacle of the Colosseum than the individuals who sculpted marble statues. The Roman legions killed a million 'barbarians' in Gaul's conquest by Caesar, but they never used the excuse of 'spreading civilization'. Neither did they have any compunction to lie about proselytizing the Greco-Roman religion.
This was changed when the Roman Empire adopted Christianity as the State religion and ideological justification for wars and suppression of resistence.
The Roman State was now to be absolved of the execution of Jesus and the blame to be placed on the Jews rather than Pilot. Pilot 'washed his hands', and in contrast to actual history asked the Jewish mob what he should do. Now it is presented that he was forced by a Jewish mob to 'crucify him!'. This is contrary to the Roman legal system.
This version of the arrest, trial and execution of Jesus is consistent with the ideological appropriation of Christianity by the Roman State, but it is in contrast to Mosiac and Roman legal procedures.
The Mosaic Legal System
When Jethro, the priest of Midian, Moses' father in law, heard of all that God had done for Moses, and for Israel his people, and that the LORD had brought Israel out of Egypt.
2Then Jethro, Moses' father in law, took Zipporah, Moses' wife, after he had sent her back, 3And her two sons; of which the name of the one was Gershom; for he said, I have been an alien in a strange land: 4And the name of the other was Eliezer; for the God of my father, said he, was mine help, and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh:
5And Jethro, Moses' father in law, came with his sons and his wife unto Moses into the wilderness, where he encamped at the mount of God: 6And he said unto Moses, I thy father in law Jethro am come unto thee, and thy wife, and her two sons with her.
7And Moses went out to meet his father in law, and did obeisance, and kissed him; and they asked each other of their welfare; and they came into the tent. 8And Moses told his father in law all that the LORD had done unto Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for Israel's sake, and all the travail that had come upon them by the way, and how the LORD delivered them.
9And Jethro rejoiced for all the goodness which the LORD had done to Israel, whom he had delivered out of the hand of the Egyptians. 10And Jethro said, Blessed be the LORD, who hath delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of Pharaoh, who hath delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians. 11Now I know that the LORD is greater than all gods: for in the thing wherein they dealt proudly he was above them. 12And Jethro, Moses' father in law, took a burnt offering and sacrifices for God: and Aaron came, and all the elders of Israel, to eat bread with Moses' father in law before God.
13And it came to pass on the morrow, that Moses sat to judge the people: and the people stood by Moses from the morning unto the evening. 14And when Moses' father in law saw all that he did to the people, he said, What is this thing that thou doest to the people? why sittest thou thyself alone, and all the people stand by thee from morning unto even?
15And Moses said unto his father in law, Because the people come unto me to enquire of God: 16When they have a matter, they come unto me; and I judge between one and another, and I do make them know the statutes of God, and his laws.
17And Moses' father in law said unto him, The thing that thou doest is not good. 18Thou wilt surely wear away, both thou, and this people that is with thee: for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone. 19Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee counsel, and God shall be with thee: Be thou for the people to God-ward, that thou mayest bring the causes unto God:
20And thou shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt shew them the way wherein they must walk, and the work that they must do.
21Moreover thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens:
22And let them judge the people at all seasons: and it shall be, that every great matter they shall bring unto thee, but every small matter they shall judge: so shall it be easier for thyself, and they shall bear the burden with thee. 23If thou shalt do this thing, and God command thee so, then thou shalt be able to endure, and all this people shall also go to their place in peace.
24So Moses hearkened to the voice of his father in law, and did all that he had said. 25And Moses chose able men out of all Israel, and made them heads over the people, rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens. 26And they judged the people at all seasons: the hard causes they brought unto Moses, but every small matter they judged themselves.
The Roman Legal System
Praetors as judges
Roman court cases fell into the two broad categories of civil or criminal trials. The involvement of a Praetor in either was as follows.
In an actio, which was civil, the Praetor could either issue an interdictum (interdict) forbidding some circumstance or appoint a iudex (judge). Proceedings before the praetor were technically said to be in iure. After they were handed over to the iudex, they were no longer in iure before the Praetor. The iudicium of the iudex was binding. The word interdict usually refers to an ecclesiastical penalty in the Roman Catholic Church. ...
The Praetors also presided at the Quaestiones perpetuae (which were criminal proceedings), so-called because they were of certain types, with a Praetor being assigned to one type on a permanent basis. The Praetors appointed judges who acted as jurors in voting for guilt or innocence. The verdict was either acquittal or condemnation.
These quaestiones looked into crimina publica, "crimes against the public", such as were worthy of the attention of a Praetor. The penalty on conviction was usually death, but sometimes other severe penalties were used. In the late Republic the public crimes were Repetundae, Ambitus, Majestas, and Peculatus, which, when there were six Praetors, were assigned to four out of the number. Sulla added to these Quaestiones those of Falsum, De Sicariis et Veneficis, and De Parricidis and for this purpose he added two or according to some accounts four praetors. Lucius Cornelius Sulla Felix
The Praetor when he administered justice sat on a sella Curulis in a Tribunal, which was that part of the Court which was appropriated to the Praetor and his assessors and friends, and is opposed to the Subsellia, or part occupied by the Judices, and others who were present. But the Praetor could do many ministerial acts out of court, or as it was expressed e plano, or ex aequo loco, which terms are opposed to e tribunali or ex superiore loco: for instance, he could in certain cases give validity to the act of manumission when he was out-of-doors, as on his road to the bath or to the theatre. A tribunal is a generic term for any body acting judicially, whether or not it is called a tribunal in its title. ... Manumission is the act of freeing a slave, done at the will of the owner. ...
Later Roman era
By the time of the permanent division of the Roman Empire in 395, Praetors' responsibilities had been reduced to a purely municipal role. Their sole duty was to manage the spending of money on the exhibition of games or on public works. However with the decline of the other traditional Roman offices such as that of tribune the Praetorship remained an important portal through which aristocrats could gain access to either the Western or Eastern Senates. The Praetorship was a costly position to hold as Praetors were expected to possess a treasury from which they could draw funds for their municipal duties. There is known to have been 8 Praetors in the Eastern Empire who shared the financial burden between them. http://www.statemaster.com/encyclopedia/Praetor
Rebellion has always been considered interruption of 'domestic tranquility' - illegal and revolutionary activity a crime. In this regard it was by the State and according to its laws and procedures that Jesus was arrested, tried and executed as a criminal.
Jesus may have been brought by Temple police before the Sanhedrin and turned over to king Herod. From there he was passed from the king to the Roman provincial governor. The point is that these were political bodies, not civil or criminal courts. Jesus was condemned by the Roman State, tortured by Roman troops and then executed by those troops: all in a single night. It was obviously a political trial and in the interest of the Roman Empire to do so.
Christianity nevertheless as it arose among the peasants of Galilee and spread among the proletariat of Jerusalem had revolutionary elements against all official repression that with it spread among the proletarians and slaves throughout Judea and into the Roman Empire. These Christians rejected the corruption and politics of 'this world', and refused to bow to and to worship the Emperor, and to serve in the imperial army.
For these reasons, like it's founder, Jesus, the early Christians were regarded as seditious and prosecuted by the State, especial the sects based in Rome itself. Yet they grew, and began to attract to its ranks individuals from ruling class families and the political elite. Constintine's ostensible 'conversion' was politically motivated. The bishops who joined him were wealthy and educated in contrast to the poor illiterate initial recruits who were the original Christians of the Apostolic Churches.
The doctrines of this new Christian community had to be revised and the Roman State was now to be absolved of the execution of Jesus. The blame was to be placed on the Jews rather than Pilate was representative of the Roman Imperial State in Palestine. The new doctrine now claimed that it was the Sanhedrin who saught the death of Jesus for religious reasons, rather than the Roman State for political reasons of sedition. Pilate was now presented as a victim of a Jewish mob mentality manipulated by the Sanhedrin rather than the vicious represive against of the Roman State. http://www.grace4u.org/newtest/history/nth_2.htm
Pilate is said to have 'washed his hands' of the affair, thus absolving himself - i.e. the Roman Empire - of any guilt associated with the execution of this innocent man. Contrary to actual Roman law and procedure Pilate, a Roman provential govorner whose job includes repression of rebellion and sedition is said to have asked the Jewish mob what he should do. Now it is presented that it was the Jews who forced the Roman State to 'crucify him!'.
Why didn't the Jews themselves execute Jesus? Ostensibly because the Jews lacked authority to execute prisoners guilty of capital crimes under terms of the Roman occupation. But this is contradicted by the fact that the religious leaders did have the authority to stone women for adultery, but Jesus intervened on her behalf; and Paul himself was responsible for the stoning of Stephen and other Christians for 'blasphemy'. How was it that Paul had the authority to kill Stephen but the Sanhedrin itself lacked the authority to kill Jesus?
By Constintine's political conversion to Christianity and his selection of bishops whose ideology served his political project, Christianity was appropriated from the slaves and proletarians and its doctrine revised by the Council of Nicea from a religion of liberation into a religion of domination. The bishops appointed by Constintine promoted a version of Christianity that served the interests of the ruling classes of the Roman Empire, which was later ideologically refined by Agustine, Thomas Aquinas and so on.
Constintine and the bishops, and subsequently Agustine, Aquinas and Oliver Cromwell presented to the exploited and politically repressed masses the ideological interpretation of the Bible - the Old Testament, the selected Gospels and the New Testament - a doctrine of obedience to the owning/ ruling class and submission to the State.
The State was presented as an instrument of God and consequently that it is the duty of slaves to obey their masters and submit to the authority of the State. Now representing the appropriating classes and the State, the priests as ideological representatives of the ruling classes taught the toiling and exploited classes to 'turn the other cheek' and 'love your enemy'.
Consequently, as Marx observed, this version of 'Christianity' is put at the service of the ruling classes to manipulate the toiling classes:
The social principles of Christianity declare all the vile acts of the oppressors against the oppressed to be either a just punishment for original sin and other sins, or trials which the Lord, in his infinite wisdom, ordains for the redeemed. The social principles of Christianity preach cowardice, self-contempt, abasement, submissiveness and humbleness, in short, all the qualities of the rabble, and the proletariat, which will not permit itself to be treated as rabble, needs its courage, its self-confidence, its pride and its sense of independence even more than its bread. The social principles of Christianity are sneaking and hypocritical, and the proletariat is revolutionary. ...
The people, or, to replace this broad and vague expression by a definite one, the proletariat, has quite another way of reasoning than the gentlemen of the ecclesiastical ministry permit themselves to imagine. http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1847/09/12.htm
At the same time politicians and theologians representing the ruling class, the State and imperialism, concerning their own activity dismissed the Gospel and its teachings to instead appropriate the violent kings of the Old Testament to justify the the State's violence and as an ideological prop for imperialism and war. Working class Christians are taught to be submissive to the appropriating classes and violent in opposition to the enemies of these ruling classes - they fight not their enemy, but the enemy of their enemy.
Empire is justified by the Old Testament, Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Saul, David, Josiah and the other kings of Israel and Judah were violent warriors, conquerers. These politicians and theologians representing the ruling class, the State and imperialism justify the violent kings of the Old Testament to justify the the State's violence and as an ideological prop for imperialism and war.
The Carologian Empire of the Franks provided transition from the slave based Roman Empire of the West to Western Europe's feudal economies based on serfdom and corvee labor appropriation by feudal lords and monarchs. The world-market, including the trans-Atlantic trade, of which the African slave trade would be part and parcel evolved centuries later based on technological changes and scientific know how produced on the basis of cooperation, manufacture and industry capitalist commodity production by wage labor.
The world market is what enabled capitalism to rise to global economic domination. The travels to and subsequent trade with the Islamic world, India and China brought Europeans into economic cultural contact with the most advanced technological and scientific achievements of the Eastern world - the rediscovery of Ionian materialism, Alexandrian science and technology, mathematics, the spice islands and cotton, silk, gun powder, the printing press, and the compass were put to use in the emerging capitalist mode of production by capitalists and engineers in ways hitherto not combined.
The 'Age of Discovery' soon became the 'Age of Colonization' by gun and canon and mercantilism engendered dynastic and colonial rivalries. These dynastic and colonial rivalries created the political geography of kingdoms which became the political geography of what was to become the frontiers of the bourgeois nation states of Western Europe together with their respective colonies.
The economic power of the bourgeoisie that was created together with manufacture and then industry by the world market resulted in the political centralization which established the absolute monarchies and the economic as well as political backing to overthrow feudal lords and dukedoms. This was the basis both for their alliances with Absolute Monarchies and those monarchies establishment of mercantilist empires in the interests of the home country's evolving capitalist mode of production and appropriation.
The overseas colonies were established as competitive mercantile empires, the objectives were to appropriate gold, silver and slaves, and and not to spread 'Christianity' or 'civilization'. In the beginning were the deeds - expropriations, conquests and colonization - words and justifications as 'noble causes' came later by the ruling intelligentsias and priests whose jobs were to make up ideologies to justify these acts. Then agricultural colonies followed as lands were expropriated from native peoples.
The agricultural colonies became the basis for world-trade including the slave trade and the rising bourgeoisie in those colonies trading with capitalists of the 'mother country', at the imperial centers. The United States, founded on capitalist commodity production by chattel slavery in the South and capitalist commodity production by wage labor in the North, Anglo-American imperialism is the country that spread accross North America from the original 13 colonies to the Pacific coast, including the conquest and appropriation of Texas and the South West from Mexico, in the name of civilization, Christianity and White supremacy.
"Many studies have discovered a close link between prejudice and 'patriotism' . . . Extreme bigots are almost always super-patriots."
"Patriotism which has the quality of intoxication is a danger not only to its native land but to the world, and "My country never wrong" is an even more dangerous maxim than "My country, right or wrong."
The US government is responsible for the massacre or relocation of millions of indigenous American hunters-gatherers, herders, horticulturalists, pastoralists and even agricultural peoples as its land hungry capitalist mode of production and appropriation expanded West: "go west young man, go west" was the battle cry.
Early in the 19th century, while the rapidly-growing United States expanded into the lower South ... settlers faced what they considered an obstacle. This area was home to the Cherokee, Creek, Choctaw, Chicasaw and Seminole nations. These Indian nations, in the view of the settlers ... were standing in the way of progress. Eager for land to raise cotton, the settlers pressured the federal government to acquire Indian territory.
Andrew Jackson, from Tennessee, was a forceful proponent of Indian removal. In 1814 he commanded the U.S. military forces that defeated a faction of the Creek nation. In their defeat, the Creeks lost 22 million acres of land in southern Georgia and central Alabama. The U.S. acquired more land in 1818 when, spurred in part by the motivation to punish the Seminoles for their practice of harboring fugitive slaves, Jackson's troops invaded Spanish Florida.
From 1814 to 1824, Jackson was instrumental in negotiating nine out of eleven treaties which divested the southern tribes of their eastern lands in exchange for lands in the west. The tribes agreed to the treaties for strategic reasons. They wanted to appease the government in the hopes of retaining some of their land, and they wanted to protect themselves from [American] harassment. As a result of the treaties, the United States gained control over three-quarters of Alabama and Florida, as well as parts of Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, Kentucky and North Carolina. This was a period of voluntary Indian migration, however, and only a small number of Creeks, Cherokee and Choctaws actually moved to the new lands.
In 1823 the Supreme Court handed down a decision which stated that Indians could occupy lands within the United States, but could not hold title to those lands. This was because their "right of occupancy" was subordinate to the United States' "right of discovery." http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part4/4p2959.html
This was the ideological significance of the frontier in American history. The biological warfare against native Americans in the territories of the North East British colonies - small pox, as well as wars was genocidal removal as well as the brutal removal of the Cherokee and the Trail of Tears, the Homestead Act and so on was justified by racist demonization of American 'Indians' as 'savages' and 'heathens', and that God gave this land to white Christians from Europe to conquer and 'tame the West' bring 'civilization' to it.
"One of the great attractions of patriotism -it fulfills our worst wishes. In the person of our nation we are able, vicariously, to bully and cheat, Bully and cheat, what's more, with a feeling that we are profoundly virtuous."
This was the ideological significance of the frontier in American history.
"Patriotism is your conviction that this country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it."
George Bernard Shaw
* The Monroe Doctrine of 1823 defined United States foreign policy in the Americas for the rest of the nineteenth century and beyond. It declared that the United States had an interest in the Western Hemisphere and that European powers must not meddle in the affairs of any developing nations there. The United States was a young nation in 1823 and did not really have the power to back up the Monroe Doctrine. However, the policy was used to justify the sending of U.S. troops into Mexico in 1866 (to intimidate the French) and the purchase of Alaska in 1867.
* The idea of manifest destiny gained popularity in the 1830s and 1840s. (The term was coined in 1845 by newspaper columnist John L. O'Sullivan.) As people began settling the western territories, wresting control of the land from the original Native American inhabitants, many Americans came to believe that it was their nation's "manifest destiny" to possess all of the North American continent. Later in the century, this idea easily gave way to larger dreams of expanding America's influence around the world.
* By the late nineteenth century, the growing industrial economy of the United States was producing many more goods than the nation itself could consume. This overabundance of industrial goods led the United States to look for new markets abroad.
* European nations such as England, Spain, France, Russia, Portugal, Germany, and Belgium had already carved up Africa and large parts of Asia into colonies and "spheres of influence" by the late 1900s. To remain competitive, the United States reacted to European imperialism by looking for a way to secure its own economic future through a policy of expansionism. http://www.smplanet.com/imperialism/teacher.html
US imperialism has claimed Latin America as its sphere of influence by the Monroe Doctrine. But militarily established its colonies in Africa [Liberia] Latin America [Cuba, Panama] and Asia [Philippines] in the late 19th-early 20th century.
"With the promulgation of the Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine in 1904 by President Theodore Roosevelt, the use of naval power as an instrument of U.S. foreign policy in the Caribbean and Latin America was explicitly foregrounded. Roosevelt, who had fought in the Spanish-American War (1898), wanted to make the United States the dominant power in the circum-Caribbean and across the Pacific. The U.S. Navy grew in size by ten battleships and four cruisers during Roosevelt's presidency. Under his stewardship the United States played a key role in Panama's break with Colombia and the building of the Panama Canal. He also presided over direct naval intervention in the Dominican Republic. Between 1905 and 1907, gunboat diplomacy ensured U.S. financial supervision and control in that nation while avoiding, at least initially, both the costs and the enmity that went with the establishment of a formal colony. The use of gunboat diplomacy, including the deployment of marines, in support of direct U.S. control over government finances was also central to Washington's involvement in Nicaragua between 1916 and 1933. Meanwhile, the United States intervened in Haiti in 1915, ostensibly out of concern that Germany was planning to establish submarine bases there; U.S. Marines remained in Haiti until 1934. http://www.answers.com/topic/gunboat-diplomacy
European kingdoms and capitalist imperialist nations had already colonized most of the Americas, Africa and Asia ideologically justified in names of Christian proselytizing and spreading civilizations. US imperialism doesn't have this excuse, so they draw ideologically from their cultural myths of 'democracy' and 'liberty', displacing European imperialist powers and quislings and lackeys with quislings and lackeys of their own.
Over centuries of capitalist expansionism hundreds of millions of men, women and children in wars of imperialist genocides of entire peoples in America, Asia and Africa and Australia have been committed in the names of altruism - Christianizing heathens and Islamists, civilizing 'savages' and 'barbarians', destroying indigenous modes of productions and appropriation of hunters-gatherers, herders, horticulturalists, pastorals and agriculturalists in the name of 'progress', taking the lands and resources from those people and bringing them into the capitalist mode of production and appropriation as wage slaves in poverty and as comprador bourgeoisie, quislings, lackeys and lickspittles of capitalist transnational corporations and imperialist politicians and CIA.
US imperialism is late to this highest and final stage of parasitic capitalism. It cannot justify its conquests of nations in the name of Christianity or of spreading 'civilization', since the European imperialists have already been there and done that. These ideological options were and are of no use to emerging US imperialism displacing European imperialism, economically and politically in America, Asia and Africa.
Insomuch as American political history as the United States arose as colonies from a War of Independence from the British Empire which was officially a kingdom, the US began as a republic and a 'democracy' in which all men are equal and its ideology of 'liberty' ignores the class power of the capitalist ruling classes and subordination to them of the members of the working classes and poor masses.
Yet, this myth is embedded in the American culture - 'My country t's of thee, sweet land of liberty' - 'one nation under god, with liberty and justice for all' - 'let freedom ring'. Words, words, words - more than peoples of any other culture Americans are culturally conditioned to respond to platitudes, flowery rhetoric and buzz words.
"Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel": Democracy, freedom and liberty are ideologically loaded buzz words that demagogues use to bring Americans to tears of jingoistic supremacy and self-righteous pride and whips up patriotic fever to manipulate gullible Americans to back American aggressions internationally.
Actually the US Constitutional Republic originated as a timocracy - a political state of the property owning men, for property owning men and by property owning men. The placing of the high power in the Senate and the lesser power in the House of Representatives, the function of the Senate to block the House and the President to check the Congress, the Supreme Court to check the Congress and President and overthrow laws made in cities, counties, and state legislatures and rulings by lower courts, predicated upon all these office holders, judges and justices being property holders and swearing to uphold the Constitution when in conflict with their constituences, along with the original property qualification of voting citizens also excluded poor white yoemen, share croppers, slaves, women, African Americans, Native Americans, indigenous peoples of the South West and California and all people under 21. See Beard's An Economic Constitution of the United States online text @ http://yamaguchy.netfirms.com/7897401/beard/const_index.html
The demogogic flowery rhetoric in the Declaration of Independence of all men being 'created equal, and endowed by their Creator with unalienable rights to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness' is superseded, negated by the Constitution. Native Americans were denied equal protection and had no right to life:
After their lands were stolen from them, the ragged survivors were herded onto reservations and the government sent out missionaries who tried to force the Indians to become Christians. After I became interested in American Indians, I discovered that many people don't even regard them as human beings. It has been that way since the beginning.
Cotton Mather compared them to Satan and called it God's work - and God's will - to slaughter the heathen savages who stood in the way of Christianity.
As he aimed his howitzers on an encampment of unarmed Indians at Sand Creek, Colorado, in 1864, an army colonel named John Chivington, who had once said that the lives of Indian children should not be spared because "nits make lice," told his officers: "I have come to kill Indians, and believe it is right and honorable to use any means under God's heaven to kill Indians." Hundreds of Indian women, children, and old men were slaughtered in the Sand Creek massacre. One officer who was present said later, "Women and children were killed and scalped, children shot at their mother's breasts, and all the bodies mutilated in the most horrible manner. The dead bodies of females were profaned in such a manner that the recital is sickening.
The troopers cut off the vulvas of Indian women, stretched them over their saddle horns, then decorated their hatbands with them; some used the skin of brave's scrotums and the breasts of Indian women as tobacco pouches, then showed off these trophies, together with the noses and ears of some of the Indians they had massacred, at the Denver Opera House. http://www.visualstatistics.net/East-West/Genocide/Genocide.htm
Slaves were property and not men, counted as 3/5th human for purposes of consensus to count in the political consensus of the slave owning states vis-a-vis the states based on wage labor where the proletarians were counted, this concerned the number of congressional districts and therefore members in the House of Representatives.
Provisions in the Original Constitution
Article I, Section. 2 [Slaves count as 3/5 persons]
Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons [i.e., slaves].
Article I, Section. 9, clause 1. [No power to ban slavery until 1808]
The Migration or Importation of such Persons as any of the States now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the Year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a Tax or duty may be imposed on such Importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each Person.
Article IV, Section. 2. [Free states cannot protect slaves]
No Person held to Service or Labour in one State, under the Laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in Consequence of any Law or Regulation therein, be discharged from such Service or Labour, but shall be delivered up on Claim of the Party to whom such Service or Labour may be due.
Article V [No Constitutional Amendment to Ban Slavery Until 1808]
...No Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article. http://www.law.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/conlaw/thirteenthamendment.html
U.S. Supreme Court
Scott v. Sandford, 60 U.S. 19 How. 393 393 (1856)
Scott v. Sandford
60 U.S. (19 How.) 393
1. Upon a writ of error to a Circuit Court of the United States, the transcript of the record of all the proceedings in the case is brought before the court, and is open to inspection and revision.
2. When a plea to the jurisdiction, in abatement, is overruled by the court upon demurrer, and the defendant pleads in bar, and upon these pleas the final judgment of the court is in his favor -- if the plaintiff brings a writ of error, the judgment of the court upon the plea in abatement is before this court, although it was in favor of the plaintiff -- and if the court erred in overruling it, the judgment must be reversed, and a mandate issued to the Circuit Court to dismiss the case for want of jurisdiction.
3. In the Circuit Courts of the United States, the record must show that the case is one in which, by the Constitution and laws of the United States, the court had jurisdiction -- and if this does not appear, and the judgment must be reversed by this court -- and the parties cannot be consent waive the objection to the jurisdiction of the Circuit Court.
4. A free negro of the African race, whose ancestors were brought to this country and sold as slaves, is not a "citizen" within the meaning of the Constitution of the United States.
5. When the Constitution was adopted, they were not regarded in any of the States as members of the community which constituted the State, and were not numbered among its "people or citizens." Consequently, the special rights and immunities guarantied to citizens do not apply to them. And not being "citizens" within the meaning of the Constitution, they are not entitled to sue in that character in a court of the United States, and the Circuit Court has not jurisdiction in such a suit.
6. The only two clauses in the Constitution which point to this race treat them as persons whom it was morally lawfully to deal in as articles of property and to hold as slaves.
7. Since the adoption of the Constitution of the United States, no State can by any subsequent law make a foreigner or any other description of persons citizens of
Page 60 U. S. 394
the United States, nor entitle them to the rights and privileges secured to citizens by that instrument.
8. A State, by its laws passed since the adoption of the Constitution, may put a foreigner or any other description of persons upon a footing with its own citizens as to all the rights and privileges enjoyed by them within its dominion and by its laws. But that will not make him a citizen of the United States, nor entitle him to sue in its courts, nor to any of the privileges and immunities of a citizen in another State.
9. The change in public opinion and feeling in relation to the African race which has taken place since the adoption of the Constitution cannot change its construction and meaning, and it must be construed and administered now according to its true meaning and intention when it was formed and adopted.
10. The plaintiff having admitted, by his demurrer to the plea in abatement, that his ancestors were imported from Africa and sold as slaves, he is not a citizen of the State of Missouri according to the Constitution of the United States, and was not entitled to sue in that character in the Circuit Court. http://supreme.justia.com/us/60/393/case.html
The ideology of Manifest Destiny and the denial of rights to life, liberty, property and equal protection to indigenous peoples of Texas, the North West and California:
Beginning in the 1820s immigrants from the U.S. and Europe settled Texas (Tejas), then part of Mexico. Anglo and Hispanic texas joined to fight Mexico in 1836, defeating an invading army and declaring the independence of Texas. The Texas Republic included Tejanos as leading citizens, but Mexico refused to recognize its legal existence. The U.S. annexed Texas in 1845, leading to the Mexican-American War of 1846-48, followed by the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo in 1848. Together with the the Gadsden Purchase in 1853, the Treaty extended U.S. control over a wide range of territory once held by Mexico, including the present day states of Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, Arizona, and California. The vast majority of Hispanic populations chose to stay and become full US citizens. By and large, the Hispanic populations of these areas supported the new government. The Mexican government had become despotic under the on and off again president General Santa Anna and the U.S. Government offered protection from Indian raids that Mexico had not prevented, it meant an end to civil wars of the sort that continuously wracked Mexico until 1920, and it promised much greater long-run prosperity.
Although the treaty promised that the landowners in this newly acquired territory would enjoy full enjoyment and protection of their property as if they were citizens of the United States, many former citizens of Mexico lost their land in lawsuits before state and federal courts or as a result of legislation passed after the treaty. Even those statutes intended to protect the owners of property at the time of the extension of the United States' borders, such as the 1851 California Land Act, had the effect of dispossessing Californio owners ruined by the cost of maintaining litigation over land titles for years.
The loss of property rights in New Mexico created a largely landless population that resented the powers that had taken their land. After the Santa Fe Ring succeeded in dispossessing thousands of landholders in New Mexico, groups such as Las Gorras Blancas tore down fences or burned down interlopers' farm buildings. In western Texas the political struggle sparked an armed conflict in which the Tejano majority forced the surrender of the Texas Rangers, but in the end lost their influence, offices, and economic opportunities.
In other areas, particularly California, the Hispanic residents were simply overwhelmed by the number of Anglo settlers who rushed in, first in Northern California as a result of the California Gold Rush, then decades later by the boom in Southern California. Anglo miners drove Hispanic miners out of their camps, barred non-Anglos from testifying in court and imposed exclusionary standards similar to what was called Jim Crow in the case of African-Americans. ...
The lynching of Mexicans and Mexican Americans in the Southwest has long been overlooked in American history. This may be due to the fact that most historical records categorized Mexican, Chinese, and Native American lynching victims as white. It is estimated that at least 597 Mexican Americans were lynched between 1848 and 1928. Mexicans were lynched at a rate of 27.4 per 100,000 of population between 1880 and 1930. This statistic is second only to that of the African American community during that period, which suffered an average of 37.1 per 100,000 populatin. Between 1848 to 1879, Mexicans were lynched at an unprecedented rate of 473 per 100,000 of population. Most of these lynchings were not instances of "frontier justice"--of the 597 total victims, only 64 were lynched in areas which lacked a formal judicial system. The majority of lynching victims were denied access to a trial while others were convicted in unfair trials.
During the California Gold Rush, as many as 25,000 Mexicans arrived in California. Many of these Mexicans were experienced miners and had great success mining gold in California. Some Anglos perceived their success as a threat and intimidated them with violence. Between 1848 and 1860, at least 163 Mexicans were lynched in California alone.One particularly infamous lynching occurred on July 5, 1851 when a Mexican woman named Josefa Segovia was lynched by a mob in Downieville, California. She was accused of killing a white man who had attempted to assault her after breaking into her home.
The Texas Rangers were also known to brutally repress the Mexican-American population in Texas. Historians estimate that hundreds, perhaps even thousands of Mexicans and Mexican Americans were killed by the Texas Rangers.
Anti-Mexican mob violence and intimidation resulted in Mexicans being displaced from their lands, denied access to natural resources, and becoming politically disenfranchised. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Mexican_Americans
The Anti-Chinese Hysteria of 1885-1886
Ever since the Chinese came to the United States, the prejudice against them sometimes culminated in violence. The physical hostility became particularly virulent in the 1880s. During this period, Chinese communities were harassed, attacked, or expelled in 34 towns in California, three in Oregon, and four in Nevada. Property of the Chinese in America, worth millions of dollars, was damaged or destroyed in mining regions in Alaska, Colorado, South Dakota, and other states or territories. The worst occurrences of violence were in Denver, Los Angeles, Rock Springs (Wyoming), and Tacoma and Seattle (Washington).
Labor disputes were often the spark for anti-Chinese riots. In 1875, the Union Pacific Railroad Company first hired Chinese as strikebreakers in its Rock Springs mines in the Wyoming Territory. The bitterness this caused between the (largely immigrant) white miners and the Chinese festered for a decade before exploding in the fall of 1885. The attack on September 2 by 150 armed white men against the Chinese miners had calamitous results for the Chinese community: 28 deaths, 15 wounded, the expulsion of several hundred, and property damage of nearly $150,000.
After the Rock Springs riot, anti-Chinese violence quickly spread to other areas in the West. On September 11, Chinese were attacked in Coal Creek; on October 24, Seattles Chinatown was burned; on November 3, a mob of 300 expelled the Chinese in Tacoma before moving on to force similar expulsions in smaller towns. The Washington governor requested federal assistance to restore law and order and on November 7 President Grover Cleveland sent the U.S. military to Seattle and Tacoma to suppress the riots.
The Wyoming Territorial government established an investigating committee, but it was controlled by the anti-Chinese labor union, the Knights of Labor. The Chinese government sent their own officials on a fact-finding mission, guarded by federal troops, and demanded reparations from the U.S. government. President Cleveland believed that the federal government was not responsible, but agreed to the compensation as a gesture of good will. In 1887, Congress approved the indemnity legislation. Cleveland was appalled by the violence, but he had reached the conclusion that the anti-Chinese prejudice was so deeply entrenched in the West, and the Chinese and American cultures were so different, that the Chinese would never be assimilated. It was the governments duty, therefore, to protect the Chinese resident in the U.S. and to prevent the immigration of more Chinese through a new treaty to be negotiated between the American and Chinese governments. http://immigrants.harpweek.com/ChineseAmericans/2KeyIssues/TheAntiChineseHysteria.htm
Workers without rightsThe 1913-1914 Colorado Coal Strike was one of the most violent strikes in United States history. Although they were ultimately defeated, the coal miners in this strike held out for 14 months in makeshift tent colonies on the Colorado prairie. The strike resulted in an estimated 66 deaths and an unknown number of wounded. Although the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) lost the Colorado Strike, it was, and still is, seen as a victory in a broad sense for the union. The Coal War was a shocking event, one that galvanized U.S. public opinion and eventually came to symbolize the wave of industrial violence that lead to the "progressive" era reforms in labor relations (Crawford, 1995; Gitelman 1998). Coal miners in Colorado did ultimately see some material gains.
The Colorado mines themselves were notoriously unsafe, among the most dangerous in the nation, second only to Utah. In the years from 1884-1912, (28 years), 42,898 coal miners were killed in mine accidents in the U.S. Of these, 1,708 were killed in Colorado mines. Miners died in Colorado coal mines at over twice the national average (McGovern and Guttridge 1972:66; Whiteside 1991:74-5), while hand-picked coroner's juries absolved the coal companies of responsibility almost without exception. For example, in the years from 1904-1914, the juries picked by the Sheriff of Huerfano County, Jeff Farr, found the coal operators to blame in only one case out of 95 (Whiteside 1990:22).
The workforce itself was largely immigrant labor from Southern and Eastern Europe, who had been brought in as strikebreakers in 1903 (Beshoar 1957:1; McGovern and Guttridge 1972:50). Before the strike, the UMW counted 24 distinct languages in the Southern Field coal camps. In 1912, 61% of Colorado's coal miners were of "non-Western European origin" (Whiteside 1991:48). This obviously had consequences for organizing the miners and maintaining unity among them during the strike. http://www.du.edu/ludlow/cfhist.html
Abraham Lincoln in the Gettysburg Address lied when he said the U.S. government was a democracy "of the people, by the people, for the people". It was never in the U.S. Constitution. It is not in the Bill of Rights or in any of the Amendments to the Constitution. Justice Scalia was right when he said in defense of putting George Bush in office of President in 2000 - "America is a Constitutional Republic and not a democracy".
Neither is the phrase that the United States is a 'government by consent of the governed' in the Constitution. It's in the declaration of Independence as the declaration of Independence merely quoted John Locke's 2nd Treatise of Civil Government for propaganda and agitation purposes, addressed to a British parliamentary democracy vis-a-vis king George. It ain't in the Constitution, which is the basis for US law.
The Constitution of the United States is the fundamental legal basis enshrining the rights of the property holding minority against the tyranny of the propertyless majority i.e. upholding the economic interests of the appropriating capitalist classes against revolts by and encroachments of the exploited and appropriated working classes and debtor classes: the very class basis of this Constitutional Republic is anti-democracy. Given Taft-Hartley and other anti-labor legislation promoted through the Democratic Party as well as the Republcan Party America is in class terms one of the most repressive dictatorships of the capitalist classes in the industrialized world. The union campaign for 'card check' organizing rights has just been crushed.
The U.S. Supreme Court does not purport to uphold the rhetoric in the Declaration of Independence nor of the Gettysburg Address. US members of Congress and the swearing in of the President don't swear to uphold the Declaration of Independence or the Gettysburg Address, but up hold and defend the Constitution of the United States. Right to life? The US Congress has just put the final nail in the coffin of single payer heath care access.
Originally propertyless white men as well as native Americans and all women were excluded from the polity - had no voting rights and could not run for office. The westward expansion and with it the creation of masses of independent farmers resulted in Jacksonian Democrats, the conflicts between agricultural capitalist commodity production by chattel slavery in the South and industrial capitalist commodity production by wage labor in the North resulted in Abolitionists and the Republican Party, the War between the States and the Emancipation of slaves from chattel property, the Suffragettes movement in the 19th and 20th centuries and the Civil Rights movement in the 1950s-60s made the ideology of progress of 'freedom' and 'democracy' staples of ideological American political culture.
American capitalist classes and their political lackeys in government and lickspittles in the propaganda departments - the press and media propagandists masquerading as 'journalists' and novelists, historians and sociologists, movie makers and television programmers ... were able to draw on this ideological political culture of patriotic clap trap about America being a 'democratic country' which values 'freedom' and 'liberty' to manipulate US the masses into supporting US imperialism entering the global imperialist rivalries in World Wars I and II.
"A patriot is a fool in every age."
In the 19th century Americans were gullible enough to be manipulated by Hearst propaganda and demagogic politicians into believing that the US imperialist War against Spanish imperialism, by which became an overseas imperialist power by displacing Spain in the Caribbean and the Philippines, was to support the Cuban independence movement and Philippines revolution by bringing bourgeois governments to power to serve as lackeys of US imperialism. Americans read Kipling's 'The White Man's Burden" which ideologically hood winked them into regarding US imperialism in the Philippines as an altruistic imperialism and based on ideals of 'American values' of 'freedom and democracy'.
This famous poem, written by Britain's imperial poet, was a response to the American take over of the Philippines after the Spanish-American War.
Take up the White Man's burden--
Send forth the best ye breed--
Go bind your sons to exile
To serve your captives' need;
To wait in heavy harness,
On fluttered folk and wild--
Your new-caught, sullen peoples,
Half-devil and half-child.
With the notion of altruistic imperialist ideology now part of the American culture it was/ is internalized by individuals through socialization and education from one generation to the next. Americans were duped into believing World War I was an altruistic war for peace! - a "war to end all wars'! - and then American workers as self-righteous patriots were manipulated into supporting the promotion of US capitalists in the Second imperialist War, World War II, believing the nationalist propaganda that it was an altruistic war against 'dictators' and to 'make the world safe for democracy'.
"Patriotism is the passion of fools and the most foolish of passions."
Americans subsequently believed that the Korean War was to 'defend the independence of South Korea', ditto the Vietnam War was to protect the South Vietnamese 'democracy' from 'communist take over' - that they were protecting Koreans from Korean reunification with their families in the North and saving Vietnam from the Vietnamese, by killing millions of Koreans and Vietnamese to actually preserve quisling regimes that were established by US imperialism in opposition to the Resistance forces led by Communist and Workers parties which were restricted to the North of Korea and the North of Vietnam.
The European capitalist nations destroyed each others infrastructures and industrial capacities during World War II. Only the US infrastructure and industrial base was untouched by bombs and tanks. On the contrary, it became the prime producers of warplanes, bombs, tanks and other war products. Being technologically transformed by supplying its troops and lend leasing to British and Soviet Union while the Europeans were destroying each others industrial capacity and infrastructures enabled the United States to become the dominate imperialist power following World War II.
"The high period of gunboat diplomacy can be said to have ended in 1933 with the adoption of the Good Neighbor Policy by President Franklin D. Roosevelt (1933-1945). In the years prior to and immediately after World War II, the United States generally sought to exert its influence in Latin America and other parts of the world without resorting to the explicit use of military force that had characterized gunboat diplomacy.
"With the onset of the Cold War, however, Washington turned increasingly to overt and covert forms of naval and military intervention in the Caribbean, Latin America, and beyond. Although Cold War conflict was governed by new imperatives, a number of Washington's post-1945 interventions are still regarded by some observers as updated forms of gunboat diplomacy. http://www.answers.com/topic/gunboat-diplomacy
The US military-industrial complex was expanded and sustained by a permanent arms economy and space race in context of the Cold War vis-a-vis the Soviet Union and Hot Wars in Korea and Vietnam. It therefore subordinated universities and sciences to it, nuclear weapons and missiles were originally an American monopoly. The United States through its Marshall Plan and NATO economically and militarily dominated Western Europe.
The Communist Party in Greece was strong and independent because it was the leading force in the Resistance to both the regime and the German Occupation forces which supported it.
"On October 28, 1940, Italy invaded Greece but was rapidly chased back into Albania, where the Greeks held the Italians under siege for the next five months. In April 1941, responding to Mussolinis call for help, the Germans invaded and overran Yugoslavia and Greece; by the end of May the bloody fighting in Crete ended mainland Greek independence; the king and his government relocated to Cairo and sporadic resistance continued in the mountains. In the subsequent partition, Bulgaria realized her irredentist claims to Macedonia and Thrace. Germany took Salonika and environs, the stretch along the Turkish border to separate the Bulgarians and the Turks, and most of Crete. The remainder of mainland Greece and her islands, several (e.g. Rhodes and Kos) already occupied before the war, were allocated to Italy." http://jwa.org/encyclopedia/article/greek-resistance-during-world-war-ii
"The guerilla army of ELAS (National Peoples Army of Liberation) under the leadership of the KKE (Communist Party of Greece), led the resistance to Nazi occupation during the War. Inspired by the success of Tito's partisan army in Yugoslavia, ELAS held two-thirds of the country in February 1945, at which time a truce was negotiated with the Royalists.
In October 1946, DSE (Democratic Army of Greece) launched a campaign to win control of the whole country, and received support from neighboring Yugoslavia, Albania and Bulgaria. Despite the presence of British troops and aid from the US, the Royalists were not expected to last long against the guerrillas.
Citing the situation in Greece, the inability of the British to cope with the situation and alleged breaches of the Yalta Agreements in Romania, Poland and Bulgaria, US President Harry Truman launched the Cold War. Truman ultimately decided to break irrevocably from the alliance with Stalin formed during the Wold War II, terminating aid to the USSR and pledging significant monetary aid to the Royalists in Greece under the guise of the Marshall plan. http://www.marxists.org/subject/greek-civil-war/index.htm
The US following World War II and its new place in the world as the dominant economic and political imperialist power would define itself by its opposition to the Soviet Union: 'bastion of freedom', 'leader of the free world', 'defender of democracy' vis-a-vis 'communist dictatorships' in the Soviet sphere, &c.
The American people, were saturated with the politics of fear through print and electronic media propaganda campaigns to fear the Soviet Union, regard it as 'expansionist', and to support the actual expansionism of US imperialism as defending 'freedom' and 'democracy' in opposition to 'communist aggression' in e.g. Greece, Korea, Vietnam, &c. The new American culture of paranoia and self-righteous arrogance defined itself 'good' by its opposition to the Soviet Union as 'evil'.
"Patriotism is a pernicious, psychopathic form of idiocy."
George Bernard Shaw
Only the vast Eurasian Soviet Union had the military and industrial capacity for independence, itself emerging as the other victor from World War II, and itself having the scientists and technologies to rival those of the US. This rivalry of domination of Europe became the historical basis for the Cold War, which spilled over into the European and former Japanese colonies now supported by or under domination of US imperialism.
The Soviet Red Army having its troops in place in liberated countries in Eastern and Central Europe, where it defeated the German armies and it helped the national communist led Resistance liberate themselves from Nazi occupation, was in a position of power which excluded US imperialism from these nations. The Soviet Union militarily defended the Communist Party regimes it placed in power in Eastern and Central Europe.
In the Balkans the Communist Party led by Marshall Tito was the Resistance. In Albania the Communist Party was the leading Resistance cadres. The Soviet Union supported the guerrillas of the Resistance in occupied Europe, and the US and Britain used them in their battle plans but supported the 'governments in exile' e.g. De Gaul of France. The British and French imperialists had no intention of giving their African and Asian colonies their independence, and US imperialism wanted in.
In fact, the same as World War I, World War II was an inter-intra imperialist war: the British and the French were fighting to retain the possession of their colonies in Africa and Asia from German and Japanese imperialist's expropriations. How else does one explain the importance of the German Panzer, led by Rommel, the British forces lead by Montgomery and the American 3rd Army under George Patton fighting to the death in North Africa? The Soviet Union didn't have any troops in North Africa, or any other 3rd world colonial political geographic territory. The Soviet Red Army, led by Marshal Zhukov was defending Stalingrad from the German Panzer led invasion -
"Hitler redirected his 4th Panzer Army to Stalingrad in July of 1942. Stalingrad, renamed Volgograd (1961), sprawls thirty miles along the banks of the Volga River in south-western Russia. To find Volgograd, look directly down from Moscow to the band of land separating the Black and Caspian Seas. Here you will find this industrial city at the crossroads between Ukraine and Kazakh. Today, Volgograd is a beautiful, prospering city. But, in 1942, she was the scene of one of the bloodiest battles of World War II where over 1 million Russia soldiers lost their lives.
"By the end of August, 1942, Hitler's 4th and 6th armies were nearing Stalingrad with a force of 330,000 troops. Stalin's Red Army put up a valiant fight and caused heavy casualties to the Nazi 6th Army. On August 23, the German Luftwaffe broached the northern edge of the city and bombed it to rubble. The Soviet 62nd Army, under the command of General Vasily Chuikov, was driven into the central part of Stalingrad. By mid-September, the Soviets controlled only a nine mile strip of the city along the Volga. With their backs to the river, the fight for their city looked hopeless. However, the Nazi troops were tired, low on supplies and weary of an offensive that was taking more time than expected. Again, nature smiled on Russia; winter set in!
"The winter counteroffensive was the brainchild of Soviet generals G. Zhukov, A. Vasilevsky and N. Voronov. On November 19/20, 1942, a dual Soviet attack was launched against the Germans 50 miles north and 50 miles south of Stalingrad. The idea was to encircle the German forces and cut them off from each other. On November 23rd, the two Soviet flanks had joined about 60 miles to the west of Stalingrad, successfully encircling the Germans. Hitler would not allow a proposed retreat of Nazi troops from the city to join their fellow units stationed west of Stalingrad. Once again, with winter setting in, Hitler ordered his men to stand their ground in a city which they had bombed into the ground and with insufficient supplies. With 91,000 starving and sick, troops, the German commander in Stalingrad, Friedrich Paulus, surrendered to the Red Army on January 31, 1943. This was all that remained of the over 330,000 4th and 6th Army troops. Twenty-four other German commanders surrendered with Paulus.
"The Battle of Stalingrad was a turning point in the war in Europe and demise of Hitler. He lost two armies to casualties and capture, was humiliated and found himself out maneuvered by the unexpectedly talented young Soviet commanders, primarily Zhukov.
"The Soviet victory at Stalingrad resulted in Hitler removing his troops from the Caucasus. The 3rd Soviet Army drove west from Voronezh and, in the Battle of Kursk, reclaimed the Caucasus for the Soviet Union. The territory taken by Germany in the summer of 1942, was quickly lost on February 8, 1943. An early thaw enabled the Germans to make their retreat along the Black Sea and regroup for another offensive.
"By 1944, the Soviets had managed to push their way into eastern Europe. Finally, the Allies had to deal with Stalin and the fact that he intended to dominate the states which he'd liberated from Germany. ...
"Germany held fast to the western portion of Poland. But, the Soviets were using a somewhat subtle, backdoor approach to dealing with Hitler. By the end of 1944, they had managed their way through Hungary and Yugoslavia, drawing German troops away from their stronghold in Poland. Like a repeating story, winter was setting in and the Germans were low on supplies while the Red Army was fit and well-fed; thanks to a steady flow of provisions from her American allies. At the end of 1944, 225 Soviet infantry divisions and 22 armored corps were sitting along the front between the Carpathians and the Baltic; poised for attack.. Hitler did not believe his own intelligence reports regarding this massive collection of Soviet firepower and forbade a retreat. Thus, he left a mere 12 armored divisions and 50 half starved infantry divisions to cover over 700 miles of the Eastern Front.
On January 12, 1945, the Soviets launched their offensive against the German front lines in southern Poland. It took the Red Army just two days to create a 200 mile gap in the German front. Soviet General Zhukov captured Warsaw on January 19th. Just one week into the Soviet offensive, the gap in the German line was 400 miles and impossible for a weakened army to span. In a desperate attempt to reclaim some ground, Hitler quickly formed another army under the command of Heinrich Himmler. Nonetheless, Zhukov was sitting on the lower Oder, just 40 miles from Berlin, on January 31, 1945.
The German front was diminished to just 200 miles along the Baltic coast by mid-February. The Soviets took Budapest on February 13th and the reduced Nazi front enabled the Americans and British to cross the Rhine River and begin intensified aerial attacks on Germany. Zhukov and his Soviet troops entered Vienna on April 6th and forced their way, along with Konev's units, across the Neisse. By April 23rd, the triumphant Red Army was rolling into the outskirts of Berlin.
"Hitler was holed up in Berlin and hoping that the Allied forces would be distracted by Roosevelt's death on April 12th. This was not the case. On April 25th, Zhukov and Konev completely surrounded Berlin and joined the American forces on the Elbe River. The Soviet troops were less than half a mile away from Hitler's hiding place, in Berlin, when he committed suicide with his mistress and bride of one day, Eva Braun. Their bodies were quickly cremated by the Nazis so they would not fall into the hands of the Soviets. The date was April 30, 1945. Hitler's successor, Donitz, was determined to not let German troops be at the mercy of the Soviets. He handed over some 1,800,000 German soldiers to the British and Americans.
"The last meeting between Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt was held at Yalta, in Crimea, on February 4-11, 1945. The western Allies didn't find much compromise in Stalin. He was not going to give up any of the territories in eastern Europe which he had liberated from Germany. As for Germany itself, the three agreed to a new post-war zoning which divided the land between themselves and France. They would provide the necessities to sustain live and destroy or control any Germany industry which could be used for manufacturing weapons. Nazi war crimes would be tried and a commission was to be established in Moscow to decide what reparation Germany owed and to whom. Yalta is considered to be the starting point of the Cold War and decades of distrust between the Soviet Union and the western world. http://www.russianlife.com/article.cfm?Number=349
In March of 1946, elections were held in Greece. The elections were corrupt and as a result, the victory was greatly in favor of the EDES. Therefore, the Communists formed the Democratic Army of Greece (DA), declaring they were fighting to restore Greece to a democracy. During the first year of fighting, the DA was ahead since they were receiving help from Yugoslavia and controlled the northern part of Greece. The British became increasingly worried and turned to the United States for help. In 1947, the United States agreed to help so President Truman issued the Truman Doctrine to help Greece fight the Communists.
By the time the US entered, the DA was holding land at the boarders of Yugoslavia and Albania, as well as land in southern Greece. The DA used guerrilla tactics for their warfare whereas the nationalists were receiving weapons from the United States and Britain. Once the United States went to Greece, the nationalist army greatly increased. Then, Stalin ended his relationship with Yugoslavias leader, Tito. The DA decided to support Stalin and lost the support of Yugoslavia. With this factor, and the help from the Americans, the nationalists were able to defeat the communists by the summer of 1949. During the course of the war, more than 80,000 people were killed while another 700,000 were left homeless. The civil war left Greece in shambles. http://www.coldwar.org/Articles/40s/GreekCivilWar1945-1949.asp
As in Europe so in Asia it was the Soviet supported Communist Parties in e.g. China, Korea and Vietnam that were the major cadres and main forces of workers and peasants which constituted the armed resistance to fascist occupation by Japanese troops and were decisive in the defeat of imperialism. Just as in Greece US imperialism took over for the now exhausted and under resourced British imperialists so to in China.
Hiroshima and Nagasaki: victims of nuclear terror
By Phil Shannon, Green Left Weekly, [18 September 1995]
Most people now agree that the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki 50 years ago was a tragedy. But for 50 years, the myth that it was also necessary has been argued by political and military supporters of nuclear weapons. All official commemorations assume that the nuclear bombing, though a terrible thing, was the only way to end the Pacific war without an invasion of the Japanese mainland that would have resulted in massive US casualties. President Nixon used to speak of the "risk of 1 million American dead" if Japan was invaded by US servicemen.
The reality, however, is that millions of Japanese civilians were killed, or still suffer from radiation illnesses, from a nuclear bombing that was militarily unnecessary. The nuclear bombing was a calculated, and criminal, political strategy by the US to extend its postwar expansion into Asia and the Pacific, and to use its nuclear "muscle" to seize other choice bits of global real estate.
By August 1945, Japan was virtually defeated. The bulk of the Imperial Navy had been sunk, its last operational forces destroyed in the battle of Leyte Gulf in the Philippines. The Air Force was reduced to sporadic kamikaze attacks. American B-29 bombers were in range of Tokyo and met little resistance, losing only around 100 planes in 7000 missions in the four months to June 1945, a rate of loss much lower than Germany was able to inflict on Allied bombing raids.
The US naval blockade had strangled the Japanese war economy, which could no longer support anything like its former military strength. Japan was cannibalising functioning civilian industrial plant and machinery to convert it into scrap metal for arms production. Japan's ally, Nazi Germany, had been defeated and the Soviet Union was about to declare war on Japan. Militarily, Japan faced overwhelming odds, and Japanese officials had privately accepted defeat and were making diplomatic surrender overtures to the Allies well before August. http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/27a/047.html
The Americans had the ambition of making China a US sphere of influence (in effect a semi-colony) after the War. But after all the sufferings of the Second World War, the American people would not have been prepared to support a new war to subjugate China. More importantly, the American soldiers would not have been prepared to fight such a war. The inability of US imperialism to intervene against the Chinese Revolution was therefore an important element in the equation.
In these conditions the US imperialists were compelled to manoeuvre and intrigue. Washington sent General George C. Marshall to China in 1946, allegedly to arrange negotiations between Maos Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) and Chiang Kai-shek. In practice, however, the aim was to strengthen Chiang by pouring in arms, money and equipment to build up the Nationalist forces in preparation for a new offensive. This manoeuvre did not fool Mao for an instant. He agreed to participate in the negotiations, but continued to prepare for a renewal of hostilities.
Although US imperialism was unable to intervene in the civil war of 1946-9, Washington gave huge amounts of money, arms and supplies to the Nationalists. The United States assisted the KMT with hundreds of millions of dollars worth of new surplus military supplies. However, any of the arms sent by Washington were later used by the Vietnamese against the US army, since, almost all this military hardware was captured by Maos forces.
Since the Moscow Conference of Foreign Ministers of the Soviet Union, the United States and Britain in December 1945, the United States has adhered to a "policy of non-interference in China's internal affairs". This was, of course, a farce, just like the previous policy of non-intervention in Spain during the Civil War, when the democracies boycotted the Spanish Republic, while Hitler and Mussolini poured in arms and men to support Franco.
US imperialism supplied the Kuomintang with bombers, fighter planes, guns, tanks, rocket-launchers, automatic rifles, gasoline bombs, gas projectiles and other weapons for this purpose. In return, the Kuomintang handed over to US imperialism China's sovereign rights over her own territory, waters and air space, allowed it to seize inland navigation rights and special commercial privileges, and seize special privileges in China's domestic and foreign affairs. The US forces were guilty of many atrocities against Chinese people: killing people, beating them up, driving cars over them and raping women, all with impunity. ...
Clausewitz made the celebrated remark that war is the continuation of politics by other means. Politics play a very important role in every war, but this is especially true of a civil war. Although the Americans (as always) maintained the fiction that this was a war between communism and democracy, in fact, their Chinese puppet Chiang Kai-shek was a brutal dictator. Probably under pressure from Washington, however, Chiang pretended to introduce a number of democratic reforms in order to silence his critics at home and abroad.
He announced a new constitution and a National Assembly, from which the Communists, of course, would be excluded. These reforms were immediately denounced as a fraud by Mao. The mass of the population were more concerned with the rampant corruption in government and the political and economic chaos, especially the massive hyperinflation that led to a collapse in living standards. There were mass nationwide student protests against US imperialism.
In the areas controlled by the Nationalist forces, a regime of White terror reigned. Chiang adopted the very same tactic used previously by the Japanese invaders: burn, loot, rape and kill. Millions of men and women, young and old were slaughtered. This earned them the hatred of the population and strengthened support for the PLA.
In theory, the Nationalists still had a big advantage over the PLA. On paper, they enjoyed a clear superiority in both numbers of men and weapons. They controlled a much larger territory and population than their adversaries, and enjoyed considerable international support from the USA and Western Europe. But that was only in theory. The reality on the ground was very different. The Nationalist forces suffered from a lack of morale and rampant corruption that greatly reduced their ability to fight, and their civilian support had collapsed.
The demoralized and undisciplined Nationalist troops were melting away in the face of the irresistible forward march of the People's Liberation Army. They surrendered or fled, leaving their weapons behind. The capture of large numbers of KMT troops provided the PLA with the tanks, heavy artillery, and other combined-arms assets needed to prosecute offensive operations south of the Great Wall. It was able not only to capture the Kuomintang's heavily fortified cities but also to surround and destroy strong formations of Kuomintang crack troops, a hundred thousand or several hundred thousand at a time. By April 1948 they took the city of Luoyang, cutting the KMT army off from Xi'an.
The PLA was able to pass onto the counteroffensive, forcing the Kuomintang to abandon its plan for a general offensive. Having captured large quantities of arms from the enemy, it was able to improve its military potential, forming its own artillery and engineer corps and a mastering the tactics of storming heavily fortified points. Prior to this, it had possessed neither aircraft nor tanks, but once it had formed artillery and an engineer corps superior to those of the Kuomintang army it was able to conduct not only mobile warfare but positional warfare as well. According to Maos own estimate:
The transformation of the military situation was really incredible. The PLA, which for years had been outnumbered, by July-December 1948 finally gained numerical superiority over the Kuomintang forces. These are the figures given by Mao at the time:
Each month [the PLA] destroyed an average of some eight brigades of the Kuomintang regular troops (the equivalent of eight present-day divisions). (Carry the Revolution through to the end, December 30, 1948, Mao, SW, volume IV, p. 299)
In the first year, 97 brigades, including 46 brigades entirely wiped out; in the second year, 94 brigades, including 50 brigades entirely wiped out; and in the first half of the third year, according to incomplete figures, 147 divisions, including 111 divisions entirely wiped out. In these six months, the number of enemy divisions entirely wiped out was 15 more than the grand total for the previous two years. The enemy front as a whole has completely crumbled. The enemy troops in the Northeast have been entirely wiped out, those in northern China will soon be entirely wiped out, and in eastern China and the Central Plains only a few enemy forces are left. The annihilation of the Kuomintang's main forces north of the Yangtse River greatly facilitates the forthcoming crossing of the Yangtse by the People's Liberation Army and its southward drive to liberate all China. Simultaneously with victory on the military front, the Chinese people have scored tremendous victories on the political and economic fronts. For this reason public opinion the world over, including the entire imperialist press, no longer disputes the certainty of the country-wide victory of the Chinese People's War of Liberation. (Carry the Revolution through to the end, December 30, 1948, Mao, SW, volume IV, p. 299)
There is no reason not to believe that this estimate is substantially accurate. All the bourgeois historians accept that by this stage, Chiangs forces were retreating in disarray and that the PLA was rapidly gaining in strength. http://www.marxist.com/chinese-revolution-1949-one.htm
AP. 2 February 2002. BBC Reports Korean Refugee Killings.
LONDON -- A British Broadcasting Corp. documentary aired Friday
reported that U.S. warships killed up to 400 Korean refugees gathered on
a beach during the early days of the Korean War.
The documentary also cited new American witnesses to the killing by U.S.
troops of civilian refugees under a railroad bridge at No Gun Ri in July
The documentary entitled "Kill 'em All" cited "newly unearthed" military
documents in which U.S. commanders, fearing North Korean infiltrators
might be sheltering among refugees, issued orders to "shoot all
refugees," and "All refugees ... are fair game."
The documentary presented South Korean survivors who described the
killing by U.S. soldiers of 82 villagers cowering in a small shrine.
It also said that up to 400 civilians died when U.S. warships shelled a
crowd of refugees on a beach.
The BBC said the killings on the beach occurred Sept. 1, 1950, but the
network did not name the ships involved. The BBC said it arrived at the
400 figure from interviews with survivors.
"So many people were hit by the shrapnel," said survivor Choe Il- Chool.
"So many were screaming and crying. The whole beach was full of
mutilated bodies. The war ships were really close. The sound of the
shells was so loud."
The Pentagon declined to comment on the BBC report Friday.
Revelations Continue to Mount of U.S. War Crimes in Korea
Summary Report of U.S. Veterans Delegation to Korea, August 2 - 9, 2001, a project of the Korea Truth Commission (KTC) planned with members of Veterans For Peace (VFP). Yoomi Jeong, Deputy Secretary General, Korea Truth Commission, served as guide and translator.
by S. Brian Willson
August 21, 2001
VETERAN MEMBERS OF THE DELEGATION:
James Gary Campbell
Korean War (Army)
Presbyterian Church (USA) minister (ret.)
VFP member at large
Edward A. Everts
World War II (Army Air Corps)
Activist, TV Producer
VFP member of Green Mountain Chapter (VT)
Michael (Mickey) Grant
Vietnam War era (Marines), served as
civilian in Laos during Vietnam War
VFP member at large
John C. (Jack) Ryan
MP (Army) at nuclear weapons site
Former FBI agent
Co-Director Catholic Worker House
VFP member at large
S. Brian Willson
Vietnam War (Air Force)
Author/Activist/Executive Film Producer
VFP member of John Steinbeck IV Chapter (CA)
Our delegation traveled 1,350 ground miles to
Kwangju (South Cholla Province) and to Chinju,
Masan, Hamanhn, Eryung, Changnyung, Pusan,
Ulsan, Kyongsang, and Taegu (each in South
Kyongsang Province). We visited 12 representative
sites at which massacres were committed in 1950-51
by U.S. forces, or South Korean paramilitary and
military units under the command of U.S. forces,
meeting many of the survivors and receiving
extensive, riveting testimony from more than two
dozen witnesses. Several of these sites have only
recently been revealed, including: (1) a rugged
mountain location near Kwangju where reportedly a
biological (mycotoxin T-2?) or chemical (gas or
herbicide?) warfare agent (a "whitish powder" or mist
sprayed from light planes) was used causing a dark
skin discoloration prior to killing several hundred
villagers in the fall of 1951, suggesting death from a
type of hemorrhagic fever; (2) a newly discovered
second Japanese mine near Kyongsang that served as
a depository for hundreds of bodies; (3) the Jin Chi
Ryung railroad tunnel near Chinju; and (4) the
Wonbuk railroad tunnel near Masan. These latter two
tunnels, where civilians were murdered in the
summer of 1950, are 90 miles from the now famous
No Gun Ri railroad viaduct massacre site.
The grief and rage experienced by Koreans who
survived numerous traumatic assaults on their
families and villages, especially from 1945 to 1953,
have been psychically stored for more than 50 years
without chance for expression due to fear of
repression, even death. This deeply repressed rage
and grief is called "Haan" in Korea. Only recently has
it been "safe" for these survivors to publicly express
their memories. Thus, the revelations of atrocities are
still unfolding, likely to number in multiples of
hundreds before all of the stories are finally public.
As well as the "Korean War" to displace the Japanese in Korea and displaced the Japanese to recolonize the Philippines and Quam, US imperialism also backed French imperialism's military effort to recolonize "French Indo-China" including Vietnam.
"The First Indochina War (also known as the French Indochina War, the The Anti-French War, the Franco-Vietnamese War, the Franco-Vietminh War, the Indochina War, the Dirty War in France and as the Anti-French Resistance War in contemporary Vietnam) was fought in French Indochina from December 19, 1946, until August 1, 1954, between the French Union’s French Far East Expeditionary Corps, led by France and supported by Emperor Bảo Đại’s Vietnamese National Army against the Việt Minh, led by Hồ Chí Minh and Võ Nguyên Giáp. Most of the fighting took place in Tonkin in Northern Vietnam, although the conflict engulfed the entire country and also extended into the neighboring French Indochina protectorates of Laos and Cambodia.
Following the reoccupation of Indochina by the French following the end of World War II, the area having fallen to the Japanese, the Viet Minh launched a rebellion against the French authority governing the colonies of French Indochina. The first few years of the war involved a low-level rural insurgency against French authority. However, after the Chinese communists reached the Northern border of Vietnam in 1949, the conflict turned into a conventional war between two armies equipped with modern weapons supplied by the United States and the Soviet Union.
French Union forces included colonial troops from the whole former empire (Moroccan, Algerian, Tunisian, Laotian, Cambodian, Vietnamese and Vietnamese ethnic minorities), French professional troops and units of the French Foreign Legion. The use of metropolitan recruits was forbidden by the governments to prevent the war from becoming even more unpopular at home. It was called the dirty war (la sale guerre) by supporters of the Left in France and intellectuals (including Sartre) during the Henri Martin Affair in 1950.
While the strategy of pushing the Viet Minh into attacking a well defended base in a remote part of the country at the end of their logistical trail was validated at the Battle of Na San, the lack of construction materials (especially concrete), tanks (because of lack of road access and difficulty in the jungle terrain), and air cover precluded an effective defense.
After the war, the Geneva Conference on July 21, 1954, made a provisional division of Vietnam at the 17th parallel, with control of the north given to the Viet Minh as the Democratic Republic of Vietnam under Ho Chi Minh, and the south becoming the State of Vietnam under Emperor Bảo Đại, in order to prevent Ho Chi Minh from gaining control of the entire country. A year later, Bảo Đại would be deposed by his prime minister, Ngô Đình Diệm, creating the Republic of Vietnam. Diem's refusal to enter into negotiations with North Vietnam about holding nationwide elections in 1956, as had been stipulated by the Geneva Conference, would eventually lead to war breaking out again in South Vietnam in 1959 - the Second Indochina War. ... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Indochina_War
US imperialism subsequently displaced the defeated French imperialism to make the conquest of Vietnam its primary objective in East Asia. Martin Luther King Jr in opposition to this colonial war pointed out the contradiction between America claiming to be a fighting force for 'freedom' and supposed supporter of national liberation and it's actuality as a colonial power:
And as I ponder the madness of Vietnam and search within myself for ways to understand and respond to compassion my mind goes constantly to the people of that peninsula. I speak now not of the soldiers of each side, not of the junta in Saigon, but simply of the people who have been living under the curse of war for almost three continuous decades now. I think of them too because it is clear to me that there will be no meaningful solution there until some attempt is made to know them and hear their broken cries.
They must see Americans as strange liberators. The Vietnamese people proclaimed their own independence in 1945 after a combined French and Japanese occupation, and before the Communist revolution in China. They were led by Ho Chi Minh. Even though they quoted the American Declaration of Independence in their own document of freedom, we refused to recognize them. Instead, we decided to support France in its reconquest of her former colony.
Our government felt then that the Vietnamese people were not "ready" for independence, and we again fell victim to the deadly Western arrogance that has poisoned the international atmosphere for so long. With that tragic decision we rejected a revolutionary government seeking self-determination, and a government that had been established not by China (for whom the Vietnamese have no great love) but by clearly indigenous forces that included some Communists. For the peasants this new government meant real land reform, one of the most important needs in their lives.
For nine years following 1945 we denied the people of Vietnam the right of independence. For nine years we vigorously supported the French in their abortive effort to recolonize Vietnam.
Before the end of the war we were meeting eighty percent of the French war costs. Even before the French were defeated at Dien Bien Phu, they began to despair of the reckless action, but we did not. We encouraged them with our huge financial and military supplies to continue the war even after they had lost the will. Soon we would be paying almost the full costs of this tragic attempt at recolonization.
After the French were defeated it looked as if independence and land reform would come again through the Geneva agreements. But instead there came the United States, determined that Ho should not unify the temporarily divided nation, and the peasants watched again as we supported one of the most vicious modern dictators -- our chosen man, Premier Diem. The peasants watched and cringed as Diem ruthlessly routed out all opposition, supported their extortionist landlords and refused even to discuss reunification with the north. The peasants watched as all this was presided over by U.S. influence and then by increasing numbers of U.S. troops who came to help quell the insurgency that Diem's methods had aroused. When Diem was overthrown they may have been happy, but the long line of military dictatorships seemed to offer no real change -- especially in terms of their need for land and peace.
The only change came from America as we increased our troop commitments in support of governments which were singularly corrupt, inept and without popular support. All the while the people read our leaflets and received regular promises of peace and democracy -- and land reform. Now they languish under our bombs and consider us -- not their fellow Vietnamese --the real enemy. They move sadly and apathetically as we herd them off the land of their fathers into concentration camps where minimal social needs are rarely met. They know they must move or be destroyed by our bombs. So they go -- primarily women and children and the aged.
They watch as we poison their water, as we kill a million acres of their crops. They must weep as the bulldozers roar through their areas preparing to destroy the precious trees. They wander into the hospitals, with at least twenty casualties from American firepower for one "Vietcong"-inflicted injury. So far we may have killed a million of them -- mostly children. They wander into the towns and see thousands of the children, homeless, without clothes, running in packs on the streets like animals. They see the children, degraded by our soldiers as they beg for food. They see the children selling their sisters to our soldiers, soliciting for their mothers.
What do the peasants think as we ally ourselves with the landlords and as we refuse to put any action into our many words concerning land reform? What do they think as we test our latest weapons on them, just as the Germans tested out new medicine and new tortures in the concentration camps of Europe? Where are the roots of the independent Vietnam we claim to be building? Is it among these voiceless ones?
We have destroyed their two most cherished institutions: the family and the village. We have destroyed their land and their crops. We have cooperated in the crushing of the nation's only non-Communist revolutionary political force -- the unified Buddhist church. We have supported the enemies of the peasants of Saigon. We have corrupted their women and children and killed their men. What liberators?
Now there is little left to build on -- save bitterness. Soon the only solid physical foundations remaining will be found at our military bases and in the concrete of the concentration camps we call fortified hamlets. The peasants may well wonder if we plan to build our new Vietnam on such grounds as these? Could we blame them for such thoughts? We must speak for them and raise the questions they cannot raise. These too are our brothers.
Perhaps the more difficult but no less necessary task is to speak for those who have been designated as our enemies. What of the National Liberation Front -- that strangely anonymous group we call VC or Communists? What must they think of us in America when they realize that we permitted the repression and cruelty of Diem which helped to bring them into being as a resistance group in the south? What do they think of our condoning the violence which led to their own taking up of arms? How can they believe in our integrity when now we speak of "aggression from the north" as if there were nothing more essential to the war? How can they trust us when now we charge them with violence after the murderous reign of Diem and charge them with violence while we pour every new weapon of death into their land? Surely we must understand their feelings even if we do not condone their actions. Surely we must see that the men we supported pressed them to their violence. Surely we must see that our own computerized plans of destruction simply dwarf their greatest acts.
How do they judge us when our officials know that their membership is less than twenty-five percent Communist and yet insist on giving them the blanket name? What must they be thinking when they know that we are aware of their control of major sections of Vietnam and yet we appear ready to allow national elections in which this highly organized political parallel government will have no part? They ask how we can speak of free elections when the Saigon press is censored and controlled by the military junta. And they are surely right to wonder what kind of new government we plan to help form without them -- the only party in real touch with the peasants. They question our political goals and they deny the reality of a peace settlement from which they will be excluded. Their questions are frighteningly relevant. Is our nation planning to build on political myth again and then shore it up with the power of new violence?
Here is the true meaning and value of compassion and nonviolence when it helps us to see the enemy's point of view, to hear his questions, to know his assessment of ourselves. For from his view we may indeed see the basic weaknesses of our own condition, and if we are mature, we may learn and grow and profit from the wisdom of the brothers who are called the opposition.
So, too, with Hanoi. In the north, where our bombs now pummel the land, and our mines endanger the waterways, we are met by a deep but understandable mistrust. To speak for them is to explain this lack of confidence in Western words, and especially their distrust of American intentions now. In Hanoi are the men who led the nation to independence against the Japanese and the French, the men who sought membership in the French commonwealth and were betrayed by the weakness of Paris and the willfulness of the colonial armies. It was they who led a second struggle against French domination at tremendous costs, and then were persuaded to give up the land they controlled between the thirteenth and seventeenth parallel as a temporary measure at Geneva. After 1954 they watched us conspire with Diem to prevent elections which would have surely brought Ho Chi Minh to power over a united Vietnam, and they realized they had been betrayed again.
When we ask why they do not leap to negotiate, these things must be remembered. Also it must be clear that the leaders of Hanoi considered the presence of American troops in support of the Diem regime to have been the initial military breach of the Geneva agreements concerning foreign troops, and they remind us that they did not begin to send in any large number of supplies or men until American forces had moved into the tens of thousands.
Hanoi remembers how our leaders refused to tell us the truth about the earlier North Vietnamese overtures for peace, how the president claimed that none existed when they had clearly been made. Ho Chi Minh has watched as America has spoken of peace and built up its forces, and now he has surely heard of the increasing international rumors of American plans for an invasion of the north. He knows the bombing and shelling and mining we are doing are part of traditional pre-invasion strategy. Perhaps only his sense of humor and of irony can save him when he hears the most powerful nation of the world speaking of aggression as it drops thousands of bombs on a poor weak nation more than eight thousand miles away from its shores.
At this point I should make it clear that while I have tried in these last few minutes to give a voice to the voiceless on Vietnam and to understand the arguments of those who are called enemy, I am as deeply concerned about our troops there as anything else. For it occurs to me that what we are submitting them to in Vietnam is not simply the brutalizing process that goes on in any war where armies face each other and seek to destroy. We are adding cynicism to the process of death, for they must know after a short period there that none of the things we claim to be fighting for are really involved. Before long they must know that their government has sent them into a struggle among Vietnamese, and the more sophisticated surely realize that we are on the side of the wealthy and the secure while we create hell for the poor. http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/45a/058.html
The United States emerged from World War II as the dominate imperialist power in Western Europe, its occupation forces displaced German occupation forces in Italy and France, and in West Germany, which became NATO; in Asia its occupation forces displaced the Japanese in Guam, the Philippines, South Korea and in Japan itself.
The US military forces killed 3,000, 000 in the Korean War and another 3,000,000 Vietnamese: 6,000,000 Korean and Vietnames men, women and children - mostly civilian. It would go on to sponsor the Afghan Islamisc Jihad in the Al Queda-Taliban anti-communist contra war against the Soviet backed government and Soviet troops, a war costing milions of Afghan deaths and the destruction in south Asia:
Brzezinski: According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahadeen began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan, 24 Dec 1979. But the reality, secretly guarded until now, is completely otherwise Indeed, it was July 3, 1979 that President Carter signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. And that very day, I wrote a note to the president in which I explained to him that in my opinion this aid was going to induce a Soviet military intervention.
According to this 1998 interview with Zbigniew Brzezinski, the CIA's intervention in Afghanistan preceded the 1979 Soviet invasion. This decision of the Carter Administration in 1979 to intervene and destabilise Afghanistan is the root cause of Afghanistan's destruction as a nation.
Q: Despite this risk, you were an advocate of this covert action. But perhaps you yourself desired this Soviet entry into war and looked to provoke it?
B: It isn't quite that. We didn't push the Russians to intervene, but we knowingly increased the probability that they would.
Q: When the Soviets justified their intervention by asserting that they intended to fight against a secret involvement of the United States in Afghanistan, people didn't believe them. However, there was a basis of truth. You don't regret anything today?
B: Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it? The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter. We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam war. Indeed, for almost 10 years, Moscow had to carry on a war unsupportable by the government, a conflict that brought about the demoralization and finally the breakup of the Soviet empire.
Q: And neither do you regret having supported the Islamic fundamentalism, having given arms and advice to future terrorists?
B: What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the cold war? http://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/BRZ110A.html
Also in its proxy wars to force the Soviet Union to divert its resources and capital to wars the US government armed, trained and funded the contra wars in Angola, Mozambique and Nicuragua in Africa and Central America resulting in millions more deaths in those countries.
For the facts and stats of the other US interventions against the rights of nations to self determination see: http://www.thirdworldtraveler.com/Blum/US_Interventions_WBlumZ.html
Although the United States of America had its birth as a Republic by a War of Independence from the British Empire, which is incorrectly inculcated through the culture and psyche of Anglo-Americans a "war of national liberation" is a lie. If anything, the colonies independence in North America is comparable to the White South African and 'Rhodesian' break away from Britain. National liberation would have been the Native Americans dismantling the Colonists government. But, this lie is present in the culture and internalized by the assimilation of individuals into the culture by socialization and formal education, religion and so on. It is predicated upon this lie internalized that Americans believe that US imperialism's foreign policies favoured rights of nations to self-determination - e.g. support for certain countries against others.
The actual state of affairs is motivated by material interests i.e. defined by its relation to its enemy e.g. rhetoric about rights of nations to self determination to justify US interventions e.g. US imperialist interests e.g. Cuba vis-a-vis Spain and its backing of the "Philippine Revolution " against Spain, which also was used to justify Guam and capture it. In other words the Spanish-American War was really an imperialist war, notwithstanding it was sold to Americans as a progressive war in support of national liberation in Cuba and democratic revolution in Philippines. U.S. imperialism continue to have extensive military presence [bases and personnel] in the Philippines propping up lackey regimes and even in Cuba - Guantanamo Bay - notwithstanding the Cuban social revolution of 1959 and defeat of the US trained and sponsored Bay of Pigs invasion in 1963.
Nevertheless the ideology of 'American exceptionalism" - an eclectic mix of Anglo-Saxon Christian ideological supremacy of the United States as a "Christian nation" [chosen as was Israel of old] and the world's first, greatest [secular] democracy and 'city set upon a hill', that is the 'envy of the world', a bastion of 'freedom' and standard bearer of 'human rights' that is the 'light to all nations', Americans are culturally conditioned to respond to any and all nations that refuse to capitulate to US global domination as evil, envious, godless communists, Nazi like dictatorships and so on.
The belief that America is 'good' and its enemies 'evil' ... or what CNN anchors and 'expert' commentators call 'the bad guys' is the basis for Americans believing every war it enters American troops are altruistic savours with god on the side of America. This socialization was reflected in the revision of the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag made in context of ideological and political anti-communism domestically, engendered through the national political praxis as US imperialism was confronting the Soviet Union in Europe and in Asia at the height of the Korean War. Domestic repression - the McCarthy era's Red Scare ideological HUAC - was to require moral sanction of religion.
"Francis Bellamy (1855 - 1931), a Baptist minister, wrote the original Pledge in August 1892. He was a Christian Socialist. In his Pledge, he is expressing the ideas of his first cousin, Edward Bellamy, author of the American socialist utopian novels, Looking Backward (1888) and Equality (1897).
"Francis Bellamy in his sermons and lectures and Edward Bellamy in his novels and articles described in detail how the middle class could create a planned economy with political, social and economic equality for all. The government would run a peace time economy similar to our present military industrial complex.
"The Pledge was published in the September 8th issue of The Youth's Companion, the leading family magazine and the Reader's Digest of its day. Its owner and editor, Daniel Ford, had hired Francis in 1891 as his assistant when Francis was pressured into leaving his baptist church in Boston because of his socialist sermons. As a member of his congregation, Ford had enjoyed Francis's sermons. Ford later founded the liberal and often controversial Ford Hall Forum, located in downtown Boston.
"In 1892 Francis Bellamy was also a chairman of a committee of state superintendents of education in the National Education Association. As its chairman, he prepared the program for the public schools' quadricentennial celebration for Columbus Day in 1892. He structured this public school program around a flag raising ceremony and a flag salute - his 'Pledge of Allegiance.'
"His original Pledge read as follows: 'I pledge allegiance to my Flag and (to*) the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.' He considered placing the word, 'equality,' in his Pledge, but knew that the state superintendents of education on his committee were against equality for women and African Americans. [ * 'to' added in October, 1892. ]
"Dr. Mortimer Adler, American philosopher and last living founder of the Great Books program at Saint John's College, has analyzed these ideas in his book, The Six Great Ideas. He argues that the three great ideas of the American political tradition are 'equality, liberty and justice for all.' 'Justice' mediates between the often conflicting goals of 'liberty' and 'equality.'
"In 1923 and 1924 the National Flag Conference, under the 'leadership of the American Legion and the Daughters of the American Revolution, changed the Pledge's words, 'my Flag,' to 'the Flag of the United States of America.' Bellamy disliked this change, but his protest was ignored.
"In 1954, Congress after a campaign by the Knights of Columbus, added the words, 'under God,' to the Pledge. The Pledge was now both a patriotic oath and a public prayer.
"Bellamy's granddaughter said he also would have resented this second change. He had been pressured into leaving his church in 1891 because of his socialist sermons. In his retirement in Florida, he stopped attending church because he disliked the racial bigotry he found there.
"What follows is Bellamy's own account of some of the thoughts that went through his mind in August, 1892, as he picked the words of his Pledge:
'It began as an intensive communing with salient points of our national history, from the Declaration of Independence onwards; with the makings of the Constitution...with the meaning of the Civil War; with the aspiration of the people..."If the Pledge's historical pattern repeats, its words will be modified during this decade. Below are two possible changes.
'The true reason for allegiance to the Flag is the 'republic for which it stands.' ...And what does that vast thing, the Republic mean? It is the concise political word for the Nation - the One Nation which the Civil War was fought to prove. To make that One Nation idea clear, we must specify that it is indivisible, as Webster and Lincoln used to repeat in their great speeches. And its future?
'Just here arose the temptation of the historic slogan of the French Revolution which meant so much to Jefferson and his friends, 'Liberty, equality, fraternity.' No, that would be too fanciful, too many thousands of years off in realization. But we as a nation do stand square on the doctrine of liberty and justice for all...
"Some prolife advocates recite the following slightly revised Pledge: 'I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all, born and unborn.'
"A few liberals recite a slightly revised version of Bellamy's original Pledge: 'I pledge allegiance to my Flag, and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with equality, liberty and justice for all.'
Baer, John. The Pledge of Allegiance, A Revised History and Analysis, 2007, Annapolis, Md. Free State Press, Inc., 2007. Available on Amazon.com.
Miller, Margarette S. Twenty-Three Words, Portsmouth, Va. Printcraft Press, 1976.
"Federal legislators are lobbied by religious leaders from the Knights of Columbus, as well as the Hearst Newspapers and the American Legion, who are "worried that orations used by 'godless communists' sound similar to the Pledge of Allegiance." A bill to add "under God" to the Pledge of Allegiance is introduced in the House by Rep. Louis Rabaut (D-MI), and in the Senate from Sen. Homer Ferguson (R-MI). Sep. 29 2003, Los Angeles Times
Rev. Dr. George MacPherson Docherty (left) and President Eisenhower (second from left) on the morning of February 7, 1954 at the New York Avenue Presbyterian Church; the morning Eisenhower was convinced that the pledge needed to be amended
"As Lincoln Sunday (February 7, 1954) approached, Rev. Docherty knew not only that President Dwight Eisenhower was to be in attendance, but that it was more than just an annual ritual for him. While raised a Jehovah's Witness, Eisenhower had been baptized a Presbyterian just a year earlier. Docherty's sermon focused on the Gettysburg Address, drawing its title from the address, "A New Birth of Freedom."
"Docherty’s message began with a comparison of the United States to ancient Sparta. Docherty noted that a traveler to ancient Sparta was amazed by the fact that the Spartans’ national might was not to be found in their walls, their shields, or their weapons, but in their spirit. Likewise, said Docherty, the might of the United States should not be thought of as emanating from their newly developed atomic weapons, but in their spirit, the "American way of life". In the remainder of the sermon Docherty sought to define as succinctly as possible the essence of the American spirit and way of life. To do so, Docherty appealed to those two words in Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. According to Docherty, what has made the United States both unique and strong was her sense of being the nation that Lincoln described: a nation "under God." Docherty took the opportunity to tell a story of a conversation with his children about the Pledge of Allegiance. Docherty was troubled by the fact that it did not include any reference to God. Without such reference, Docherty insisted that the Pledge could apply to just about any nation. He felt that the pledge should reflect the American spirit and way of life as defined by Lincoln.
After the service concluded, Docherty had opportunity to converse with Eisenhower about the substance of the sermon. The President expressed his enthusiastic concurrence with Docherty’s view, and the very next day, Eisenhower had the wheels turning in Congress to incorporate Docherty’s suggestion into law. On February 8, 1954, Rep. Charles Oakman (R-Mich.), introduced a bill to that effect. On Lincoln’s birthday, four days later, Oakman made the following speech on the floor of the House:
'Last Sunday, the President of the United States and his family occupied the pew where Abraham Lincoln worshipped. The pastor, the Reverend George M. Docherty, suggested the change in our Pledge of Allegiance that I have offered [as a bill]. Dr. Docherty delivered a wise sermon. He said that as a native of Scotland come to these shores he could appreciate the pledge as something more than a hollow verse taught to children for memory. I would like to quote from his words. He said, 'there was something missing in the pledge, and that which was missing was the characteristic and definitive factor in the American way of life.' Mr. Speaker, I think Mr. Docherty hit the nail square on the head.
Senator Homer Ferguson, in his report to the Congress on March 10, 1954, said, "The introduction of this joint resolution was suggested to me by a sermon given recently by the Rev. George M. Docherty, of Washington, D.C., who is pastor of the church at which Lincoln worshipped." This time Congress concurred with the Oakman-Ferguson resolution, and Eisenhower opted to sign the bill into law on Flag Day (June 14, 1954). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pledge_of_Allegiance
The German philosopher Hegel observed:
"In North America the most unbounded licence of imagination in religious matters prevails, and that religious unity is wanting which has been maintained in European States, where deviations are limited to a few confessions" (Hegel Philosophy of History p. 85)
This has enabled individuals independent of any denominational doctrinal check to spout anything and everything as divine revelation: shysters, opportunist con men and women and swindlers preaching prosperity gospel -the more the faithful turned their money over to god - i.e. give it to them as god's representatives god world reward them with monetary 'blessing they wouldn't have room to store' -- there were and are right-wing political scoundrels who preach patriotism and support of the government and its foreign policies as 'bible prophecy fulfillment' and the 'will of god'.
These pulpit propagandists were provided an ideological boon when European and American expatriate immigrated to Palestine, and with the arms and funds provided by British, French and finally most of all US imperialisms engaged in genocidal wars to expropriate the lands of Palestinians. The American pulpit propagandists identified this brutality as 'Bible prophesy' and painted everyone who opposed this as not just 'anti-Semitic' but 'the Anti-Christ' and 'Satanic': Gog and Magog of the 20th chapter of the Book of Revelation!
And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.
And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,
And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.
And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.
But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.
And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.
And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
According to a tradition of dispensationalist Biblical hermeneutics, Gog and Magog are supposed to represent Russia. The Scofield Reference Bible's notes to Ezekiel claim that "Meshech" is a Hebrew form of Moscow, and that "Tubal" represents the Siberian capital Tobolsk. This identification of Gog with Russia, and Cold War tensions with the West and with Israel, led Hal Lindsey to claim that the Soviet Union would play a major role in end times prophecies. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union ... modern end times prophets have attempted to recast Iraq or some other country in the role of Gog.
Rational readers who actually read of the book of Revelation, the Apocalypse - know the war of Gog and Magog vis-a-vis the saints, not Israel - to be defeated by the intervention of Christ - is supposed to occur after the rapture and consequent 7 year tribulation, to be ended by the return of Jesus whose angels, that after the Anti-Christ, Satan and the False Prophet into the bottomless pit for a thousand years - the millennium - that it is after this thousand years Satan will be loosed from the bottomless pit that the final war that the 'battle of Armageddon' will occur in which "Gog and Magog" will fight the saints and be finally defeated by Christ. In other words, according to The Book of Revelation the 'battle of Armageddon' will not occur until at least a thousand years from now!
But, this does not stop Hal Lindsey, Pat Robertson, John Hagee and these other imperialist war advocates to claim god told them that this war will be against Israel, not against the saints, and will be defeated by the United States in defense of Israel rather than by Christ in defense of the saints, and that it will not be a thousand years from now [after the millennium] but 'any day now'! Thus, the ignorant Americans mesmerised by political pulpit propagandists, masquerading as ministers of god if not 'latter-day prophets', were manipulated by these charlatans into supporting US imperialist wars, the Cold War vis-a-vis 'godless communism' -the Soviet Union and China, until China became an American ally against the Soviet Union - and after the collapse of the Soviet Union the new 'Anti-Christ' and 'Gog and Magog" leading up to the invasion of Iraq was Saddam Hussein and Iraq. Presently it is Iran!
Bob Dylan summed up the American-Anglo-Saxon Christian Conservative Protestant and Pentecostals patriotic mindset in the lyrics to 'With God on Our Side':
"With God On Our Side"
Oh my name it is nothin'
My age it means less
The country I come from
Is called the Midwest
I's taught and brought up there
The laws to abide
And the land that I live in
Has God on its side.
Oh the history books tell it
They tell it so well
The cavalries charged
The Indians fell
The cavalries charged
The Indians died
Oh the country was young
With God on its side.
War had its day
And the Civil War too
Was soon laid away
And the names of the heroes
I's made to memorize
With guns on their hands
And God on their side.
The First World War, boys
It came and it went
The reason for fighting
I never did get
But I learned to accept it
Accept it with pride
For you don't count the dead
When God's on your side.
When the Second World War
Came to an end
We forgave the Germans
And then we were friends
Though they murdered six million
In the ovens they fried
The Germans now too
Have God on their side.
I've learned to hate Russians
All through my whole life
If another war comes
It's them we must fight
To hate them and fear them
To run and to hide
And accept it all bravely
With God on my side.
But now we got weapons
Of the chemical dust
If fire them we're forced to
Then fire them we must
One push of the button
And a shot the world wide
And you never ask questions
When God's on your side.
In a many dark hour
I've been thinkin' about this
That Jesus Christ
Was betrayed by a kiss
But I can't think for you
You'll have to decide
Whether Judas Iscariot
Had God on his side.
So now as I'm leavin'
I'm weary as Hell
The confusion I'm feelin'
Ain't no tongue can tell
The words fill my head
And fall to the floor
If God's on our side
He'll stop the next war.
The Soviet Union and Eastern/Central Europe lacked the advanced technology and capital fund to compete with the US and Western Europe economically, nor the Soviet Union in its support for national liberation movements and liberated anti-imperialist regimes against the US military interventions and CIA interventions against them in Africa, Asia and Latin America. The Soviets successfully aided China, North Korea [also aided by China] and Vietnam, and was able to protect Cuba which, with Soviet aid helped the Angola's MPLA government defeat UNITA and its allied Apartheid South Africa's counter insurgency, which consolidation and stabilization helped stabilize FRELEMO government and Mozambique and the revolution in Ethiopia. But the Soviet Union was unable to defeat the CIA armed, trained and financed counter-revolutionaries in El Salvador, Nicaragua and Afghanistan.
US imperialism was hell bent on crushing any and all national liberation movements and governments which refused to capitulate to the dominance of its empire, and the fact that these liberation movements and independent governments were supported by the Soviet Union enabled US politicians and American pulpit propagandists, together with secular print and electronic media propagandists to promote US imperialist wars and CIA interventions as fighting 'Soviet expansion of 'godless communism', atheism and 'communist dictatorships'. Once the Soviet Union collapsed and the Yeltsin regime destroyed the communist opposition in Duma, Russia became a 'friend' and no longer the seat of an 'evil empire' of Gog and Magog! The next step of US imperialism was to take direct control of the oil producing regions of Middle Asia and North Africa, the center piece of which was/ is the conquest and subordination of Iraq as either a colony or a Quisling governed suzerainty.
The opening chapter of this war was so-called Operation Desert Storm and the subsequent sanctions and no-fly zones that together were designed to encourage the Saddam regime to surrender its independence and become along with the governments of Aden, Kuwait and Saudi Arabian regimes a lackey of US imperialism. When the sanctions didn't work, after having killed over a million Iraqis, mainly aged, children and the sick, US imperialism opened the second chapter of conquest. It was called "Operation Iraqi Freedom", the objective of which was to overthrow the existing Iraq government and subject it to direct colonial domination. The Iraqi Resistance made this impossible. The third chapter in this saga of violence was the tried and tested scheme to set up a suzerainty by placing in ostensible 'authority' a Quisling regime on the basis of rigged elections. The present chapter in this occupation, under cover of wolfing about a 'surge' of armed forces ostensibly to 'protect Iraqis from terrorists' - i.e. the resistance that was in actuality killing US Gestapo occupation Storm Troopers, US imperialism bought off tribal chiefs and their agents, which enabled the next president of US imperialism to fake a 'withdrawal' - i.e. leave the cities where US forces were defeated to relocate to outside garrisons and have Quisling troops do the work of repression for them.
Afghanistan had importance for US imperialism only in its strategic location vis-a-vis the Soviet Union, and Al Qaeda was and is nothing but a ragtag collection of renegades from Arab countries under the thumbs of US Arab allies - the Saudis, &c. Afghanistan is a mountainous country which has no economic significance for US imperialism whatsoever. However, since its armed forces were untrained Taliban forces without outside backing, and the country had been all but destroyed by the US sponsored 'jihad' against the Soviet infidel invaders, US imperialism figured it to be an easy target to blame for the 9/11 guerrillas assaults in the US on military, political and economic targets - i.e. the Pentagon, the Congress and the World Trade Center.
All the politicians and the pulpit propagandists tirades and rants connected to 9/11, together with the print and electronic media propagandists posing as journalists, were religious in nature. The same people who were previously denouncing the Soviet Union as a 'communist dictatorship', "Gog and Magog", an "Evil Empire" were/ are now vomiting their propaganda and spitting their lies against the Afghan Taliban Party government as "Islamists" and its army "militias" and "terrorists".
Just a couple days ago the anti-communist Cold Warrior Pat Robertson declared:
“Islam is a violent--I was going to say religion--but it’s not a religion. It’s a political system. It’s a violent political system bent on the overthrow of governments of the world and world domination.” And, he added: “They talk about infidels and all this. But the truth is, that’s what the game is. You’re dealing with not a religion. You’re dealing with a political system. And I think you should treat it as such and treat it’s adherents as such. As we would members of the Communist party and members of some Fascist group.”
The majority of the Democrats and Republicans in the US government are or claim to be Christians. Yet no one in government nor in the media has ever referred the US government of Christians as a "Christian Crusader government" or the US army as "Christian militias". Referring to the government of Afghanistan as Taliban Islamists and the Afghan army as Islamist and Taliban 'militia is to de-legitimize this government and the nations army. It is also part and parcel of the imperialists ideological assault on Resistance movements against US invasions in and throughout the oil producing region and its environs - not just Afghanistan but Iraq, Sudan, Somalia and the like.
The dehumanization of Arabs and demonizing of Muslims began with the US armed and funded Zionist entity's occupation of West Bank and Gaza in the late '60s and the Iranian Revolution in the late 70s.
Demonizing Arabs and Islam:
The president of the Union for Reform Judaism accused American media, politicians and religious groups on Friday of demonizing Islam.
Last update - 00:00 31/08/2007
Reform Jewish leader tells U.S. Muslims that Islam is being demonized
By Shlomo Shamir, Haaretz Correspondent and Reuters
Addressing the annual convention of the Islamic Society of North America, Rabbi Eric Yoffie said Muslims have been turned into "satanic figures."
"There exists in this country among all Americans, whether Jews, Christians, or non-believers, a huge and profound ignorance about Islam ... there is no shortage of voices prepared to tell us that fanaticism and intolerance are fundamental to Islamic religion, and that violence and even suicide bombing have deep Koranic roots," he said.
The US bloody invasion of a relatively defenseless Iraq was promoted by US politicians as well as justified by pulpit propagandists in religious terms, fighting 'evil'.
The president of the United States, in a top-secret phone call to a major European ally, asked for French troops to join American soldiers in attacking Iraq as a mission from God. Now out of office, Chirac recounts that the American leader appealed to their “common faith” (Christianity) and told him: “Gog and Magog are at work in the Middle East…. The biblical prophecies are being fulfilled…. This confrontation is willed by God, who wants to use this conflict to erase his people’s enemies before a New Age begins.” This bizarre episode occurred while the White House was assembling its “coalition of the willing” to unleash the Iraq invasion. Chirac says he was boggled by Bush’s call and “wondered how someone could be so superficial and fanatical in their beliefs.”
Similarly, on the battle field, to whip up patriotic self-righteousness to motivate and justify the slaughter of the innocent and destruction of their homes and mosques, the US troops had to be ideologically psyched up.
When for instance US occupation forces were being prepared to brutally invade Falluja slums in Iraq and viciously and mercelessly wipe out the citizens and destroy homes Iraqis as Arabs and Muslims were not just dehumanized but demonized, literally. US officers in charge of the slaughter used the Bible and battle of Armageddon imagery to motivate the soldiers to slaughter these people:
"The marines that I have had wounded over the past five months have been attacked by a faceless enemy," said Colonel Brandl. "But the enemy has got a face. He's called Satan. He lives in Falluja. And we're going to destroy him."
To bring secular American patriots into the loop of support for US imperialism's invasion and occupation of Iraq and overthrow of Hussein, to place in its stead a Quisling regime in government, the invasion and occupation was called 'liberation - 'Operation Iraqi Freedom'; its invasion, occupation and overthrow of the Afghan government to displace it by its Quisling regime is called "Operation Enduring Freedom".
The American politicians and its print and electronic media propaganda have hoodwinked the American citizens to believe its role in Iraq and Afghanistan is the same as those of the US and - though they don't mention it role in liberating Europe from German occupation - the Soviet Union, whereas in reality US and British imperialism in Iraq and Iran are doing what the Nazi armies did in occupation of European countries. Moreover, Americans have swallowed the propaganda that the Iraqi and Afghan Resistance fighters are 'terrorists', rather than the same as were the Italian, French, Balkan and Albanian Resistance fighting the American Gestapo.
The American established 'government' in Iraq and in Afghanistan are historically parallel to the Nazi propped up Quisling regime in Norway and the Vichy regime in 'Free France'. The American politicians - Democrats and Republicans alike, are telling Americans that the US will withdraw its armed forces once it has 'trained' an 'Iraqi and Afghan army to 'defend itself' and its respective people's 'security', against the Resistance forces that are fighting to overthrow these Quisling regimes in Iraq and Afghanistan. Asking Iraqi and Afghan Resistances to lay down their weapons and participate in their respective nation's 'democratic processes' is really no less than demanding of these fighters that they cease their resistance and submit to the 'authority' of the US installed Quisling regimes in their respectively occupied countries.
Now regarding the US imperialist's introducing 'modernization' in Afghanistan. This is but the latest ideological ruse to both sham the American people into continuing to support the US occupation forces in Afghanistan, even after the NATO forces have withdrawn, by thinking the occupation is something 'good' and altruistic for domestic consumption of delusional patriots in America, and in Afghanistan its a conditioned version for the buying off of clan and tribe opportunists comparable to the buy off of the clan and tribe opportunists in Iraq.
Bringing opportunists in Iraq and Afghanistan into paid support for the Quisling regimes placed in position by US imperialism as the ideological and political basis for an 'honorable' withdrawing of US Gestapo occupation forces from those countries, is nothing but versions of US imperialism's 'Vietnamization':
Soon after taking office. President Richard Nixon introduced his policy of "vietnamization". The plan was to encourage the South Vietnamese to take more responsibility for fighting the war. It was hoped that this policy would eventually enable the United States to withdraw gradually all their soldiers from Vietnam.
To increase the size of the ARVN, a mobilisation law was passed that called up into the army all men in South Vietnam aged between seventeen and forty-three.
In June, 1969, Nixon announced the first of the US troop withdrawals. The 540,000 US troops were to be reduced by 25,000. Another 60,000 were to leave the following December.
Nixon's advisers told him that they feared that the gradual removal of all US troops would eventually result in a National Liberation Front victory. It was therefore agreed that the only way that America could avoid a humiliating defeat was to negotiate a peace agreement in the talks that were taking place in Paris. In an effort to put pressure on North Vietnam in these talks, Nixon developed what has become known as the Madman Theory. Bob Haldeman, one of the US chief negotiators, was told to give the impression that President Nixon was mentally unstable and that his hatred of communism was so fanatical that if the war continued for much longer he was liable to resort to nuclear weapons against North Vietnam.
Another Nixon innovation was the secret Phoenix Program. Vietnamese were trained by the CIA to infiltrate peasant communities and discover the names of NLF sympathisers. When they had been identified, Death Squads were sent in to execute them. Between 1968 and 1971, an estimated 40,974 members of of the NLF were killed in this way. It was hoped that the Phoenix Program would result in the destruction of the NLF organisation, but, as on previous occasions, the NLF was able to replace its losses by recruiting from the local population and by arranging for volunteers to be sent from North Vietnam. http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/VNvietnamization.htm
Actual history of the world's empires as well as analysis of the contemporary situations of imperialism makes it is clear that bigotted consciousness of superiority of race, culture and/or religious proselytizing or 'civilization' technology transfer is nothing but ideological lies to justify political the aggressive military means for achieving economic domination of specific conquered peoples in the respective conquered territories. Colonial missions were never to create independent states for colonized territories.
Afghanistan was self-governing before the US and British invaded Afghanistan and its occupation forces overthrew the Afghan government to displace it by a Quisling regime of lackeys and lickspittles! Afghanistan therefore will only be independent and once more self-governing after the imperialist occupation forces are driven from Afghanistan by the armed resistance, and the Quisling government of lackeys and lickspittles are driven out with their imperialist bosses.
Taliban is the legitimate Afghan political government in exile, and it is a reversal of the truth to suggest that Afghanistan will become 'self-governing' if the Quislings, lackeys and lickspittles succeed in crushing the Afghan resistance and Taliban. That would on the contrary turn Afghanistan into a neo-colonial lackey regime in blind obedience to Western imperialists. It aint gonna happen in Afghanistan, any more than it was possible in South Vietnam.
This war has nothing to do with 'national security' - that's patriotic hogwash, the last refuge of scoundrels to manipulate gullible Americans into believing US aggression is 'defensive' rather than offensive. The statements by generals to increase troops wasn't 'leaks' against an Obama proclivity to withdraw imperialist occupation forces from Afghanistan, but a planned statement to make it appear that Obama was forced into doing what he was going to do any way - increase the occupation forces.
Obama is no different than Bush. The Democrats are the same war party as are the Republicans. Both Parties are parties of imperialism. In response to gullible opposition to the then governing party, once one displaces the other then 'new' administration carries out the same policies as the previous administration did. The real political criminals are the 'left' so-called 'progressives' who promoted the Democrats by fostering the illusion that there is a difference between the Democrats and Republicans.
This is not the way Afghans see the imperialist's colonization of their country. They know that what US imperialism calls 'political and economic progress' in their occupied country means repression and suppression. US activities in Afghanistan is no different than German occupation forces in Poland and Ukraine. Just as the Jews in Warsaw Ghetto saw the 'surge' of Nazi forces to crush the ghetto rebellion so in Afghanistan Obama declaring he will 'finish the job', means intensifying the bombings and killings of Afghan Resistance and its support networks.
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