Saturday, December 10, 2011

(HERALD) Capitalist democracy: Promise peace and deliver war

Capitalist democracy: Promise peace and deliver war
Wednesday, 07 December 2011 21:31

Hillary Clinton backer, Adolph Reed Junior was dismissed by Barack Obama's supporters after he said: "He's a vacuous opportunist. I've never been an Obama supporter.
"I've known him since the very beginning of his political career, which was his campaign for the seat in my state senate district in Chicago.

"He struck me then as a vacuous opportunist, a good performer with an ear for how to make white liberals like him. I argued at the time that his fundamental political centre of gravity, beneath an empty rhetoric of hope and change and new directions, is neoliberal.

"His political repertoire has always included the repugnant stratagem of using connection with black audiences in exactly the same way Bill Clinton did -i.e., getting props both for emoting with the black crowd and talking through them to affirm a victim-blaming "tough love" message that focuses on alleged behavioural pathologies in poor black communities.

"Because he's able to claim racial insider standing, he actually goes beyond Clinton and rehearses the scurrilous and ridiculous sort of narrative Bill Cosby has made infamous."

Of the four Democrats that voted in favour of the draconian Republican cuts on child welfare during Barack Obama's days as an Illinois state senator, only Obama was non-white.

Rickie Hendon, an African American fellow senator was infuriated over the actions of the four democrats, and he was particularly disturbed with the action of Obama. This is what he had to say about Obama:

"He was running for the United States Senate at the time, and when I asked him with my sad eyes and perplexed, torn heart, he told me he did it because ‘we have to be fiscally prudent.'

"I said ‘Huh?' and he explained to me that we had to show fiscal responsibility during tough budget times . . . Finally, I heard the bill number for a cut in the South Side in Senator Obama's district.

"Barack rose to his feet, and towering over the senate, gave a heart-wrenching speech condemning this particular cut . . . he asked for compassion and understanding . . . his fiscally prudent vote took place only about 10 minutes earlier and now he wants compassion!"

When Obama lost the vote, sharp words were exchanged with Hendon. This was Hendon's narration:

"Barack leaned over and struck his jagged, strained face into my space and told me in an eerie, dark voice that came from some secret place within the ugly side of him, ‘You embarrassed me on the Senate floor and if you ever do it again I will kick your ass!"

"I said ‘What?' He said, ‘You heard me, and if you come back here by the telephones, where the Press can't see it, I will kick your ass right now!'"
Hendon agreed to the duel and he walked to the telephones before another senator rushed and dragged the two apart.

This is according to The Sun Times account.

Hendon concluded later, ". . . in this incident, he proved himself to be bipartisan enough and white enough to be president of the United States of America."
At one time Hendon said Obama was so ambitious that he would run for "The King of the World" position even ahead of Colonel Gaddafi.

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) has an amazingly massive grip on Washington.

Pro-Israel money plays a significant role in every US election, and AIPAC's approval can be decisive where the race is close.

For this approval there is only one criterion: blind loyalty to Israel and blind denunciation of those who are critical of its policies as bigots and anti-Semites.
Candidates for the US presidency, the House and the Senate from both parties queue obediently at AIPAC gatherings to pledge support and receive largesse.

In 2002, Obama opposed the attack on Iraq and this was possible because he was then a low-profile state senator, and it was politically inexpensive to do so.

By the time Obama was elected president, the US had occupied Iraq for six years, and the new president's first act on Iraq was to retain George W. Bush's defence secretary, Robert Gates, a long time CIA functionary and veteran of the Iran-Contra affair in the Pentagon.

This was a brazen signal of political continuity: one coming from someone who had pledged to end the Iraq war in his campaign and ascendance to power.

Obama had successfully preached and promised peace; only to deliver war.
While Bush promised to pull out all US combat soldiers by December 2011, Obama promised before his election to pull out all US combat forces from Iraq within 16 months of his taking office, ie, by May 2010.

Being the clever Obama he is, he adorned this with a safety clause that this pledge could be "refined" in the light of unforeseen events.

The clause was effected in February 2009 when Obama announced an extension of the withdrawal to September, something that was never fulfilled.

The legacy of the Iraq invasion is on public record: the destruction of the country's cultural patrimony, the brutal dismembering of its social infrastructure, the theft of its natural resources, the sundering of its mixed neighbourhoods, and not least the death or displacement of countless of its citizens, all noted by author Tariq Ali in the book "The Obama Syndrome: Surrender at Home, War Abroad".

It is a staggering million plus murdered Iraqis, three million refugees, five million orphans, according to conservative government figures.

Obama is still struggling to put in place a reliable puppet government in Iraq while he manoeuvres his way towards a possible war with Iran.

Iran is America's problem state, one that has always posed a conundrum. Here is an "Islamic Republic" always publicly breathing fire against the Great Satan while sometimes quietly extending assistance to the same wherever and whenever most needed, like it did with the collusion with counter-revolutionaries in Nicaragua, or with the invasion of Afghanistan, or more predictably and prominently, with the invasion of Iraq.

Iran's abrasive and ferocious rhetoric is more directed at the rulers of Israel and at the Little Satan in London than it is directed at the two's patrons in Washington.
Israel has for some time now been galvanising its assets in the United States into a campaign to ensure that Washington commits to striking down Iran's nuclear programme.

As usual Israeli objectives are always internalised as little less than nature by US policymakers; and as such Obama has to be at his best in countering Iran's oratorical tirades by dishing out his own, and of course by tightening US sanctions on Teheran.

It does not matter that Obama came into office just short of explicitly saying war against Iran was not an option, when he vehemently preached the idea of a diplomatic settlement in the interest of all parties; denuding Iran of nuclear capability in exchange for an economic package and a political embracing from the West.

This was made hard by the June 2009 presidential election in Iran, when Washington had to opt to prop up the openly pro-Western wing, hoping the puppets would take power on the wave of mostly middle class Western sponsored protest; itself comprehensively defeated by a counterstrike of alleged electoral fraud and militia violence - allegations that were rarely backed by any verification or evidence, as has been the case with each election the Western sponsored MDC-T party fails to win against the Western-hated Robert Mugabe.

The Iran election, just like that of Zimbabwe a year earlier, gave Barack Obama the opportunity for perfect ideological posturing.

In a moving and emotive peerless display of sanctimony, he lamented with tearful grief the death of a demonstrator killed in Teheran on the same day his drones wiped out 60 villagers in Pakistan, most of them women and children.

Obama repeated this ideological posturing when he awarded Zimbabwe's Magodonga Mahlangu and Jenni Williams with the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award in November 2009, kissing the two women passionately, and declaring "You deserve a kiss."

Apparently the two women were being awarded for their outstanding performance in implementing the Western sponsored protests against the rulership of President Robert Mugabe, and more directly against the law enforcement details of the country.

As usual, Obama's ideological cries are fully backed by Western media; and it was comical to see the thwarted candidate in the Iranian contest elevated into an icon of the Free World; that despite that the man has a terrible history of being one of the most brutal butchers of the regime, at least by Washington's own standards, having been responsible for mass executions in the 1980s.

Obama's grand plan for reconciliation between Teheran and Washington was washed away by the misadventure of his backing of Amahdinejad's June 2009 election rival, itself being the initiative of AIPAC on behalf of Israel.

Now Obama has had to borrow and continue Bush's attempts to corral Russia and China into an economic blockade of Iran, in the hope of so strangling the country that the Supreme Leader will either be overthrown by hungry masses or be obliged to come to terms.
Failure of this leaves open the option of an air strike by Israel or American bombers on Iranian nuclear facilities, but this largely looks more like a back up threat than a practical prospect.
Those who argue for this possibility have a strong point in saying that once the West at large, in this case factoring the brazen and violence-loving Nicolas Sarkozy, and his smooth-faced murderous British sidekick David Cameron, and other Western leaders, has pronounced any Iranian nuclear capability intolerable, it is hard to imagine a rhetorical retreat in the event of Iran insisting with its nuclear intentions.

This writer is well aware of British and US intelligence agencies' habitual stoking of dissent and divisions in targeted client states in general, but also highly privileged to have fairly sufficient detail of such efforts in the politics of Zimbabwe, particularly the stoking of tribal dissent pretexted on the imagined and real differences between the Shona and the Ndebele.

We have white authors stumbling upon each other to install themselves as custodians of Ndebele memory over the atrocities that happened between 1980 and 1987 in the country, pumping up humanitarian fury and whipping up emotions in a narrow direction pointing the way of Robert Mugabe - that "land grabbing dictator" whose unforgivable crime is of course the audacity to take away land from "skilled white farmers" and giving it to "unskilled black famers."

Zimbabwe we are one and together we will overcome. It is homeland or death!!

Reason Wafawarova is a political writer based in Sydney, Australia.

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