Monday, November 26, 2007

Silencing the drums, before it's too late.

Chris Hedges, writing in The Nation, on the coming war with Iran:

I will not pay my income tax if we go to war with Iran. I realize this is a desperate and perhaps futile gesture. But an attack on Iran–which appears increasingly likely before the coming presidential election–will unleash a regional conflict of catastrophic proportions. This war, and especially Iranian retaliatory strikes on American targets, will be used to silence domestic dissent and abolish what is left of our civil liberties. It will solidify the slow-motion coup d’état that has been under way since the 9/11 attacks. It could mean the death of the Republic.

Let us hope sanity prevails. But sanity is a rare commodity in a White House that has twisted Trotsky’s concept of permanent revolution into a policy of permanent war with nefarious aims–to intimidate and destroy all those classified as foreign opponents, to create permanent instability and fear and to strip citizens of their constitutional rights.

A war with Iran is doomed. It will be no more successful than the Israeli airstrikes on Lebanon in 2006, which failed to break Hezbollah and united most Lebanese behind that militant group. The Israeli bombing did not pacify 4 million Lebanese. What will happen when we begin to pound a country of 65 million people whose land mass is three times the size of France?

The rest is here. I recommend this article to you, and I also recommend that we all start figuring out exactly how we - WE THE PEOPLE - are going to organize against this war. Because I firmly believe it’s coming, and soon, probably as the early primaries unfold after the holidays. The White House propaganda machine has been gining up its anti-Iran efforts for months, and every week, yet another story somehow tying Iran to the debacle in Iraq comes out. Listen to an hour or so of any conservative talk radio show. As soon as they get done with their latest anti-Hillary Clinton paranoic rant, it’s back to the “threat” posed by Iran. Hour after hour, day after day. And we know who’s feeding them this garbage. It’s just a matter of time before the covert actions across the border by U.S. forces, followed by a bombing campaign, will begin. With, I’m sure, all the dire consequences that Hedges predicts here.

So what do we do? When the Democratic candidates “debate” - that is, when they are not wasting their time and ours attacking each other like school children - the questions from the Blitzers and the Russerts of the Bootlicking Corporate Media all focus on somehow taking a stand that encourages war. NEVER is the question posed, to any candidate, on either side, “what can and should be done to avoid going to war with Iran?” NEVER are any of the candidates who now hold seats in the Senate asked “What will you do to STOP the Bush/Cheney regime from going to war with Iran, as they seem determined to do?” Instead, they are asked to show how “tough” they are by being pushed toward taking a pro-war stance.

Of course, any of them, if they wanted to, could answer differently. Only the C-list few seem interested, if they even get a chance to speak. Of course, they could make campaign speeches on this issue, but who’d listen? Bush, Inc. will find a way to scare enough people, with either fears about terr’ism at shopping malls (just in time for Christmas) or high gasoline prices as the bait. Obviously, as Hedges points out, those are two things that are GUARANTEED to occur should we launch another war.

So, again I’ll ask, what can we do? I’m going to start with composing letters to the editor of our local newspapers, and getting them out as soon as possible. If the pundit class is going to bang the drum for this war, or remain silent, as so many have so far, it’s up to us to speak out. In the newspapers, online, on call-in shows, on street corners, in our houses of worship, WE must SPEAK OUT. In fact, your church or temple or whatever would be a GREAT place to start. If Bush’s war on Iraq is illegal, immoral, and totally unjustified, what about this one? How can anyone POSSIBLY defend this action?

The point is, they can’t. Unless they truly are delusional. Or fascists. Or both. And, they can, if we let them.

The war in Iraq has been a disaster, in so many ways. A war with Iran will produce unspeakable horrors that we can only hint at now. It’s time for us - ALL OF US - to find a way to speak up and speak out. WE have to stop looking for other people to be the ones to wage peace. We have to be the peacemongers.

Silence is no longer an option. Silence means complicity. Silence means surrender.

Are you ready for that?

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