"We didn't just invade Iraq – we invaded the Middle East, and the war that has engulfed Saddam Hussein's former dominion cannot be contained within its borders. War doesn't respect national boundaries, and tends inevitably to spill over such artificial barriers and spread like wildfire. And that wildfire will eventually consume the entire region – unless we act to stop the next war before it starts.
While the antiwar movement is protesting against the war in Iraq, the War Party is already well into the planning of the next war. Their target is Iran, and their method is remarkably similar to the scenario played out in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq. First we have the issue of "weapons of mass destruction," specifically nukes, which Tehran is said to be developing in defiance of the international community and Iran's treaty obligations.
It is a mistake to look at Iraq in isolation, because then the invasion doesn't make any sense. Why did we go to war with Iraq? This question vexes the war's critics, because they aren't looking at the War Party's plans for the entire region. Their goal is to "transform" the Middle East, to change the political culture of the region from above, so to speak: that is, at gunpoint. If, somehow, the countries of the Middle East were turned, overnight, into democracies, they would become – in theory – less aggressive, since democracies are supposedly inherently peaceful.
And yet the two model democracies of the West, Britain and the U.S., hardly conform to this rule. The British carved out a vast empire, and did not always employ sweet reason in attaining it: we inherited the imperial mantle, and are sinking slowly under the sheer weight of it.
The great irony of our war of "liberation" is that the longer and harder we wage it, the less free we become: the more we insist on "exporting" democracy to foreign lands, the less democratic we become. The reason is because war is the health of the State, as Randolph Bourne put it: war increases and centralizes State power, strengthening it and imposing a social and political conformity that armed struggle requires. American society, in short, is becoming rapidly militarized, so that all social factors – the economy, the political landscape, the life of the nation itself – are mobilized to a single end.
War generates authoritarianism – and it also generates more wars. The present war doesn't exist in isolation from the rest of reality: it cannot be conveniently compartmentalized so that we can live a normal life, that is, the life of a free people, while it rages. The longer it goes on, the more it eats away at the very foundations of our republic: the moral, political, and economic pillars that hold up the roof of the social order. And keep in mind that this war is supposed to last for at least a generation, if not longer, according to our leaders. That's more than long enough to fatally undermine the values that make life in America worth living.
The War Party in America operates at a great advantage over the antiwar movement: to begin with, they are in power – and, I might add, barring some entirely unforeseen upsurge of rebellion, they will stay in power no matter which major party controls the White House and Congress. This means they have the initiative – and they have the tremendous resources of the U.S. government at their disposal.
Secondly, the War Party dominates the elites, not only in the government but also in the media and academia....
Because they dominate the elites, the War Party also dominates the two major political parties. It may be that the people oppose the war plans of this administration, or any other, but there is a way to get around that: the people can't vote for peace if it isn't on the ballot...
The weakness of the antiwar movement is never more apparent when it comes to the issue of Iran: here, after all, is a case where the War Party is clearly planning to make a major move. The propaganda campaign we are hearing is strikingly similar to that which preceded the invasion of Iraq...
What's more, the supposed allies of the antiwar movement in the Democratic Party are considerably more aggressive when it comes to Iran than even the Bush administration. Hillary Clinton – the party's leading presidential candidate – has denounced what she calls "appeasement" of Tehran by the U.S., and has added her full-throated voice to demands from the neoconservatives that Bush get serious about stopping Iran's alleged nuclear weapons program. The Democrats' critique of the Bushian foreign policy is limited to means, not ends. The problem, though, is that it is the goals and assumptions of that policy that must be challenged, not the details."
Tuesday, October 31, 2006
teh "appeasement" of Tehran by the U.S
Posted by lukery at 10/31/2006 05:16:00 PM