Philadelphia . . . So Here We Go Again
research at SPAMneravt.com
Wed Aug 2 14:49:54 MDT 2000
New commentary on my Web site by Ron Jacobs.
So here we go again. On Tuesday the 1st of August, the US program of
control at home and control abroad reared its head in a number of ways down
in Philadelphia. While police manhandled protestors in the streets
attempting to bring attention to the continued expansion of the
prison-industrial complex here at home, the bridesmaids of the
military-industrial complex in the convention hall kissed each others tail
and trumpeted their proposed rebirth of US military power around the world.
Now, as any one with even a speck of rationality can tell you, there
doesn't need to be any rebirth of American military power since there was
never any death of that power. Indeed, immediately after the US military
defeat in Vietnam, Gerald Ford (the only non-elected U.S. president)
attacked a Cambodian island --an act trumpeted in last night's paean to
imperialism as a great victory, by the way. Since that attack, the US has
asserted and maintained its dominance because of its military
superiority--a dominance that has only magnified since the disintegration
of the Soviet Bloc.
Despite this history, the GOP would have us believe that the Clinton
administration has been militarily weak. In order for one to accept this
lie, one would have to ignore the continued sanctions and bombing of Iraq,
the attacks on Sudan and Afghanistan, the bombing and occupation of various
provinces in the former Yugoslavia, the escalation of U.S. involvement in
Colombia, the increasing use of the military in border patrol and civil
insurrection scenarios and, last but not least, the continued growth in the
military budget. All of the aforementioned make one group of Americans
very happy: the corporations who manufacture and supply the business of
war. Something that will make these corporations even happier is the
rebirth of the so-called Star Wars missile defense system or the Strategic
Defense Initiative (SDI). This boondoggle was originally proposed by
Ronnie Reagan's advisors in the 1980s and was considered dead until
recently when Bill Clinton's corporate buddies (amazingly the same bunch of
corporations!) started to push concept once again. It is, of course, no
surprise that GW Bush is also in favor of the plan.
Now, many liberals oppose this plan because no test of the hardware has
ever worked -- which is a good enough reason in itself. However, the real
reason to oppose this military madness is because it is madness and has no
place in a world where the only way to ensure our survival as a species is
to end the reign of the killers who control our planet. Like all military
endeavors the only people this missile system would benefit are the people
who are profiting from it: the military, the corporations who are building
it, and the politicians those corporations have paid off. Politicians, let
me remind the reader, from both the Democrat and Republican parties.
Politicians who, like Dick Cheney (a man whose whoredom to the
military-industrial complex is only too apparent) have no conscience other
than that determined by the dollar and the guns needed to keep those
dollars coming in their direction.
The police response to the street actions in Philadelphia on August 1st
were quite predictable and are the direct result of the militarization of
police departments in the United States begun during the reign of LBJ. The
attempted pre-emptive strike against the puppet makers in the
warehouse/convergence center and the subsequent arrest of all of those
inside was eerily similar to a military mission GIs might conduct in
Kosovo. These types of maneuvers on domestic lands are not accidents nor
are they the product of some innovative local police commissioner. They
are the result of a concerted planning and training effort run out of the
In the early 1980s, then president Ronald Reagan declared a "war on drugs"
in another of his rather surreal television addresses.. This war was not a
new one, but Reagan's approach to it would make it a much more serious
conflict. Since that time, the "war on drugs" has become a war on the
American people and those who immigrate to this country. In the
government's drive to control the flow of drugs into and within the
country, it has abridged our constitutional rights and freedoms, created a
multimillion dollar enforcement industry which now guides the "war" more
than the "war" guides it, and blurred the distinctions between, and clear
separation of, law enforcement and military activities.
The 1986, Vice President George Bush (former CIA chief) and Attorney
General Edwin Meese organized a drug interdiction system along the
southwest border of the United States known as Operation Alliance. This
operation heralded the beginning of joint police and military activities.
Its principle focus is securing military support for law enforcement
activities in the border states. In 1989, the Joint Chiefs of Staff
established Joint Task Force 6 (JTF-6) to serve as the planning,
coordinating and operational headquarters for all military assistance to
law enforcement agencies in the region. Originally, the directive creating
Operation Alliance limited the support to drug enforcement activities only.
However, in 1993, that directive was expanded to include immigration
enforcement, "terrorism", and other activities.
The JTF-6 directive allows for four types of operational assistance to law
enforcement: reconnaissance, logistics, research, and training. The
training typically involves Advanced Military Operations on Urban Terrain
(AMOUT) and Close Quarter Combat (CQC) instruction. In 1992 during the
rebellion following the not guilty verdicts against the police accused of
beating Rodney King, a little known military operation was activated for
the first time since its inception in the 1960s. The name for this
operation is Operation Garden Plot. In short, what this plan calls for is
the imposition of martial law, the rounding up of immigrants and possible
troublemakers by police and military forces, and their imprisonment in
various detention centers around the country. This plan was originally
conceived in the mid-1960s and then shelved after a series of revelations
concerning governmental abuses of the constitution during the Watergate
Once Reagan and Bush began planning and supporting the contra
war against the Nicaraguan government, the plan was revived and updated.
Its intended use then was to be against antiwar protestors if the United
States launched a full invasion of Nicaragua. This never happened and the
plan has been consistently revised since them to include gangbangers, drug
users, immigrants, and political activists. The activation of parts of
this plan in 1992 in Los Angeles is now perceived as a test run. It is
also widely believed that this plan was also in place during the so-called
Battle of Seattle and the A16 protests against the World Bank and the IMF.
It can also be assumed that it is in effect in Philly and will be in place
once again in Los Angeles during the Democratic Convention in a couple of
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