Martin Luther King would not support the ad for UN weapons inspectors
citizen at comcast.net
Sat Dec 7 13:32:05 MST 2002
I am getting emails urging me to sign the proposed MoveOn.org ad to appear
in the NYTimes. I cannot because the ad also endorses the basic premise of
the Washington oil regime's larger goal of a New World order. The ad
differs only on the issue of how the UN inspects Iraq. Being a Vietnam War
veteran and anti-war activist I have concluded that Martin Luther King, Jr.
and Malcolm X would not sign the NYTimes ad if they were with us today.
I recall Malcolm and Martin telling us the main threat to people of the
world was from our country, it being the most violent power on the planet.
They did not fall for the trick of trying to out-fox the fox, of pretending
imperialist can be benevolent now and then. They did not scapegoat Vietnam
or any country and instead spoke about the core of the these wars. They
took on the responsibility for making changes here, not patronizing others
struggling to be free from colonialism, they called on an end to U.S.
intervention around the world and focus on solving our problems like
poverty, inadequate housing, low wage jobs, health care and education.
Some friends tell me these are different times with different leaders here
and in Iraq, buying into the line that Iraq's leader is the main threat to
the international community, as the MoveOn.org ad proclaims. What crap.
The lessons of the Vietnam War are relevant to us now, perhaps even more
So, what are we to do?
Perhaps I think a lot about this because I live in a town, Albuquerque, NM
where down the street 3,000 weapons of mass destruction (WMD) are "hidden"
at Kirtland AFB. That awareness makes clear the false message sent by the
proposed NYTimes ad. For example, there are many thousands more WMD in
countries like Great Britain, France, the Koreas, Israel, India, Pakistan,
etc. The NYTimes ad is not demanding UN weapons inspectors enter and disarm
Kirtland AFB, the largest stockpile in this imperial empire, nor to disarm
any of the other nuclear powers, especially Israel, the greatest violator of
human rights after the U.S.
So what should Americans do to prevent being part of the Washington regime's
evil plan to grab the rich oil fields of Iraq? This issue is not really
about competent inspections but the larger geo-strategic needs of the U.S.
oil regime saddled with a failed capitalist economic system. This whole
scene is very similar to the period before World Wars I and II. Bush is not
an enlightened despot. They are going for the whole pie and MoveOn is
willing to walk with them if it is done with more diplomacy. This is the
line of the Democratic Party, the same since JFK and the 1968 Chicago
First, to support our disarming any country, such as Iraq, only empowers the
ability of this empire to deny any nation the ability to defend its right of
self determination and vital resources. In the long run this comes back on
us too. One cant' be both sheriff and protester at the same time, to
paraphrase Einstein on war and peace.
More importantly, to support this ad derails our movement for justice with
false solutions. This is possible because many people have been brainwashed
by the psychological propaganda coming out of Washington of yet another
"evil leader" we need to take out and the world will be safe again. Maybe
for the oil companies, but not for us common people.
I recall also what the Students for Democratic Society said in the Port
Huron statement of 1962 when they were faced with this same challenge to
find a course of action "...A half-century of accelerating destruction has
flattened out the individual's ability to make moral distinction, it has
made people understandably give up, it has forced private worry and public
The principle we lose by supporting this talk of regime change in Iraq with
or without UN inspectors is the lesson our own revolution of 1776. We
fought then against interference in our internal affairs by an imperial
power. Is it any wonder so many people of the world resist our country and
fear our technologies instead of feeling secure and looking toward a more
enjoyable life themselves? They see us as a hypocrite with big bad toys,
that we have one standard of self determination for ourselves and another
for counties with resources we need. The indigenous Indians here were the
first victims of this two faced policy.
For us, it is not progressive to say make the UN inspections work while we
continue to build more weapons of mass destruction and violate human rights
abroad and democracy at home on a scale beyond the Vietnam War era. A
progressive action for us demands we not fall for this trick and work to
disarm our war machine of its weapons of mass destruction and fight for our
rights at home. This is what Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. did. We
must deny the oil regime in Washington of its twin abilities to manipulate
the American public and disarm other nations of their rights.
The UN is in the wrong country, they should be inspecting here, and this
deployment further exposes the corruption of the once grand hope of world
peace. That dream will never work as long as our country dominates the
organization, with little differences along the way.
At home, we Americans do not have much time left to get our movement
energized given the rapid growth of fascist measures to suppress internal
resistance. These measures are intended for anyone who stands up against
the empire. We are in a much worse situation than when the COINTELPRO
operated covertly, now it is national policy.
The NYTimes ad disarms our resistance movement with illusions of a short
term false victory. We have a long road ahead with many hard tasks. We
should work to stop the U.S. war machine while we call for a more
sustainable, humane and just foreign policy from Washington. Supporting
benevolent imperial interventions for the oil and arms companies is not
going to make us safe or build the world we need for the 21st century.
Albuquerque, NM 87196
citizen at comcast.net
Robert L. Anderson, Ph. D.
University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131
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