TRUTH TO POWER?
Last night the president gave his speech on the war- he will withdraw 10,000 troops this year- another 20,000 by September of next year. That leaves around 60,000 going into 2013.
When the president came into office there were 30,000 troops on the ground in Afghanistan- he doubled it to a little over 60- then did a 30,000 man surge [West Point speech].
Many anti war folk [like me] were not happy with the 60- never mind the surge. Yet we are staring at 90,000 for the next year- then down to 60- and they are talking about leaving 20-25 thousand forever!
Last week I caught a CNN special called Wiki Wars- they covered the Julian Assange case. Assange is the ‘Omega man’ looking Australian who has shaken the world with his on line ‘leaking’ factory [Wiki Leaks]. The show covered his nomadic upbringing- his mission to change the world- and his determination to expose corruption wherever he finds it.
His work has been recognized by Amnesty International [for exposing corrupt leaders who slaughtered innocents] and overall his mission has been very noble.
Eventually he would come into possession of thousands of leaked on line documents that would expose many hidden discussions of our military. He also released the now [in] famous video called ‘Collateral Murder’.
The video shows our guys hovering over a vehicle in Iraq [I think it’s Iraq?] and the audio allows you to hear the conversation. As we watch the enemy walking back and forth- seemingly oblivious to the chopper watching them [strange?] our guys radio communication is describing their contact with their commander.
As they wait for the go ahead to shoot- they finally get the o.k. They then show the video of our helicopter shooting the men. Most of the guys are killed quickly- others run. One guy is wounded and laying in the street- another vehicle pulls up and tries to help him- we then blow the hell out of him too.
Then something happens- one of the guys starts running from the first vehicle with a young child in his arms- our guys say ‘wow- he has a kid with him- that’s what he gets for being so stupid to bring his kid with him’ [our guys think they are enemy combatants].
The scene looks terrible- especially when we later find out that all these guys were reporters- mostly working for Reuter’s news service.
As the CNN host questions the military commander who is watching the video with him- the commander explains that our guys did ‘what they were supposed to do’. That these reporters should not have been in a hot zone- walking around with their camera equipment- which was mistaken for a rocket launcher.
This military leader actually justified our actions. Then as the show progressed- they got into the Wiki Leaks founder who released these videos. He gave the standard U.S. govt. line that the leaking of these videos/emails was unjust- that it might cause harm to people- and therefore our govt. is justified to go after Assange and the soldier [Bradley Manning] who supposedly leaked the stuff.
I found it strange to see this commander ‘justify’ our killing of the reporters- while at the same time condemning the person who uncovered this act.
This week NATO bombed another civilian house in Libya- killed a couple of kids [one a baby] and a few civilians. Once again- they released another statement saying ‘this house was a command and control operations base’ which means they thought Gadhaffi [or his men] might be there. Now- they have done this before- they kill innocent people, kids- then they justify the action.
I was wondering how long it would take before the Western media got off the Obama bandwagon and reported the truth- stop simply regurgitating the words of NATO and report the facts on the ground.
Surprisingly, as I read the article- the report said that as the journalists arrived at the home that was bombed- there were other Libyans who immediately starting saying ‘Gadhaffi blew up this house to blame it on NATO’.
These reporters have been fed this before- and simply believed it. This time as they investigated- they indeed found out that we and NATO simply blew the hell out of a civilian home- and killed a new born along with another child.
The home was a political supporter’s residence. Now- I certainly realize that these actions are not meant to kill innocent people- and I know our guys did not mean to kill reporters. But when we as a nation lie about this stuff- cover it up to a degree- and then actually seek the execution of those who leaked the evidence- then we are doing unjust things.
I heard the reasoning behind why when this type of info is leaked in a traditional way [N.Y. times, etc.] that these leaks are considered very noble- uncovering the secret agenda’s of the powerful. But then the person being queried said when the leaks are being released ‘on line- without actual ink and paper’ then yes- we are justified in seeking the execution of the leakers.
It’s amazing that we accept this type of reasoning without question.
I’m glad we are starting to draw down our troops- right now in Afghanistan we are spending a couple of billion every week- we are facing a fiscal crisis at home that might eventually ruin this entire nation. And China is digging copper out of the Afghanistan ground- making deals with the corrupt Afghan govt.- and we are footing the bill for the security so China can enrich themselves and the leaders of Afghanistan- all at the same time when we are about to default on our debt- to China!
There just seems to be too many things wrong with this picture. I in no way blame our brave fighting men and women for these atrocious acts that do take place during times of war- but I do blame those in power, those who know about these acts- who seek to cover them up- and then after they are leaked- our govt. goes after them- seeking to raise the level of these leaks to the crime of treason- so we can execute the leakers. These things are unjust- and we need to recognize this fact.