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A War for Soldiers or for Empire?

Long version: mp3, 3.56 MBs, 4:26
Short version: mp3, 2.37 MBs, 2:58

[Col. Writ. 3/29/03]

"I believe that War is Murder. I believe that armies and navies are at bottom
the tinsel and braggadocio of oppression and wrong, and I believe that the wicked conquest of weaker and darker nations by nations whiter and stronger but foreshadows the death of that strength..."
--W.E.B. DuBois, *Darkwater* (1920)


The War is On in earnest, and "Bombs over Baghdad" is no longer just a toe-tapping jam by that creative hiphop duo from Atlanta, Outkast.

The American People have been dragged, kicking and screaming into a War with a
nation that has never attacked the United States, by a government that has been
itching for a global demonstration of its military prowess from day one; and now, it has begun.

And because it has begun, people are being asked by the corporate media to support the war effort, if only for the soldiers.

Rarely has such madness been foisted on a people such as this tripe. 'Support
the troops!' is the latest mindless mantra, as if troops ever decided to fight a war, or indeed, in a democracy, should ever be able to decide.

Soldiers, by the very nature of military organization, decide nothing, for isn't that the very essence of democracy; that civilian, elected authorities decide? So 'support the troops' really means support the politicians who are in power, *even if unelected*, for they have decided to send the troops — even if their ideas were boneheaded, stupid, or just plain wrong. If you deeply believe it is wrong, are you really supposed to fold up your picket sign, run a weather-beaten flag up the pole, and paste a false smile on your face?

The military is not a democracy (This government isn't one either, but that's another story). There has never been an army where the troops made military decisions. Those decisions are made by officers; and supposedly by the politicians who appoint them. Therefore, 'support the troops' is a subterfuge for supporting the warmongers in Washington who are hell-bent on sparking World War III.

As bombs burst over Baghdad, it is comforting to believe that this will be an end to a pressing American problem; but, in truth, this is but the beginning. No matter what the outcome in Baghdad, a world full of people will now view the U.S., not as a 'liberator', but as an invading alien, who cares nothing for the will of the United Nations, nor that of any other entity outside of itself.

Before the Iraq Adventure was launched, prowar commentators were assuring an
anxious public that the Iraqis would greet the Americans with flowers and kisses. Some kisses. And since when do flowers have the blossoming aroma of cordite, and gunpowder?

We are witnessing a New Age of Colonialism; the opening salvo of a New World Order. This kindler, gentler 'humanitarian imperialism' features the promise of 'liberation', but what if the natives don't meekly accept such 'liberation'? They will be branded as terrorists by the corporate media, and the U.S. will 'liberate' them from their bodies.

The ghost of Vietnam, where 4 million people were slaughtered by the Americans,
gives us some idea of what 'liberating' a people means. During the War, the saying went, "In order to save the village, we had to destroy it."

Will the Americans 'save' Iraq, as they 'saved' Vietnam?

No conquerer announces his true intentions when he invades a nation. They always give rosy reasons for invasion and conquest. They bring "enlightenment." They bring 'freedom'. They promise the "Rights of Man." For 5 centuries such sweet lies justified the ravaging of Africa, Asia and Latin America. Behind those lies lay exploitation, stolen labor, man-theft, and brain-numbing brutality. Whole nations have become stepping stools for other nations, ostensibly, for their own benefit.

If you really want to 'support the troops', fight for an end to Empire. For that way, you support yourself, your future, and your posterity.


Check out Mumia's NEW book:
"Faith of Our Fathers: An Examination of the Spiritual Life of African and African-American People" at www.africanworld.com

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Submitted by: Sis. Marpessa

Text © copyright 2003 by Mumia Abu-Jamal.
All rights reserved.
Reprinted by permission of the author.