Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The Neocons Want Another Terrorist Attack

I can't understand it. Obama has been in office for 65 days, and with the taste of sour grapes strong on their tongues - freshly removed from McCain's boots - the Neoconservatives, led by comedian Rush Limbaugh, are openly saying they hope Obama fails.

Our previous leader gets in due to one of the most egregious examples of nepotism in the history of American politics this side of the Kennedys, with the legitimacy of his first election still a hotly contested item among political scientists. Even his re-election is a topic of debate. But here it is, nine weeks into the Obama presidency, and people are hoping he falls flat on his face.

Before 9/11 and the subsequent revelation that we had a W.A.S.P. version of Fredo Corleone in the White House, the family idiot whose first decent gig was no less than the Presidency of the United States, Bush II sought policies that reeked of theocracy - the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act, spearheaded by private focus groups; faith-based initiatives; and a strict policy on stem cell research, preventing any major breakthroughs from occurring since the line of stem cells scientists were permitted to work with were tainted.

Yes, Bush's agenda of compassionate conservatism made him seem like a sawed-off Reagan, as if this country hadn't had enough of his ideologies. Furthermore, Bush withdrew us from participating in the Kyoto Protocol, and more sinisterly the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. Dubya wanted to protect this nation on a hill with an umbrella of weapons of mass death. As we have learned from history, brinksmanship is not the best way to manage foreign policy.

Then came 9/11. Everyone but the few who refused to sign the Patriot Act became ardent supporters of Bush. The only immediate reaction against our foreign policy came from the naysayer radicals, whose job is to constantly deride the actions of the US government, whoever is in charge. We rallied behind our President in the pursuit of evil, and so what if he gaffed and called it a "holy war?" Dammit, these colors don't run! There could be another attack - we have to stop them before they struck again. Our foreign policy became more like an action movie, where the bad guys with the nerve gas canisters had to be stopped - enter our charming lead actor - at all costs.

Wait, nerve gas? Who has nerve gas? Osama, right? No, no...but you know who does? That guy we gave nerve gas to in the 1980's when he was our puppet. What was his name, Saddam? Yeah, let's get him!

Summer of 2002 it started getting kicked around that the Iraqi government harbored terrorists, had something to do with 9/11, and was in possession of or seeking to develop weapons of mass destruction. Even then, I knew something smelled about this. Not to evoke imagery of a crackpot holding a "THE END IS NEAR SIGN," but dammit I was right! What followed was either the prime example of Reaganist foreign policy gone horribly, horribly wrong as we committed a colossal blunder, or one of the largest ruses committed in the free world this side of the electoral college.

The oppression would be televised, as we saw live images of Baghdad getting blasted to smithereens. It was called Operation Shock & Awe. Shocked? Somehow, in spite of my predictions coming true before my very eyes, the answer remained a resounding yes. Awe? No. Not in the least.

The man got away with murder until the midterm elections of 2006. Before that, the only sharp critics of the Bush Administration were members of what the media could dub "the liberal elite," the "leftist fringe." People like Cindy Sheehan, a sandal-wearing hippie who didn't stop her son from joining the Army but sure made a stink about it when he came back as freight draped in Old Glory. People like Michael Moore, a leading snake oil merchant of the bumper stickered station wagon set; he sharply criticized the war but owned stock in Halliburton, he couldn't stand to see his beloved hometown of Flint, Michigan fall into the trappings of the Rust Belt but lived in a mansion far away from the epicenter, oh yes - and he's fat. Even if you didn't see the exploitative speculative trash that was Fahrenheit 9/11, you could at least make a joke about Mr. Moore's girth.

Once the Republican majority in Congress disbanded after 12 long years of gridlock for Clinton and back-slapping approval for Bush Jr., it became fashionable to criticize the President. There were some folks who called for his impeachment - funny enough, none of them signed the Patriot Act. Perhaps it's no coincidence that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi was quick to say impeachment was NOT on the Democratic agenda. I guess if Congressman Kucinich had had his way and held everyone accountable, the halls of Congress would have gotten mighty quiet.

But now Obama has ascended to office - in the single greatest decision my generation has made that didn't involve signing an online petition or joining a Facebook group - the younger people of America who got him elected have turned off. We got him in, now let's allow him to fix everything. Bolstering David Letterman's query on whether Bush is the greatest political strategist in history or the buffoon's buffoon, the situation in Iraq is a volatile one, seemingly impossible to make a step in any direction. Obama could have opted to escalate the war - should we pursue "victory" (as defined by standards steeped in Cold War paranoia, wherein the spread of a contrary viewpoint is shut down and a McDonald's is built in their town square), the right step would be to send more troops and get the job done.

Not in a million years.

But with the pullout will come criticism from Republicans that we've gone soft - the fear that we'll look vulnerable in the international community (if there's one thing that will make the United States look stupid, it will be ending a war founded on what George Galloway called "a pack of lies" - yeah, we'll be the laughingstock at the United Nations...), thus prompting another terrorist attack. Hell, Obama's pullout was blasted by Reid and Pelosi - Devil's advocates, never to be satisfied so long as someone with a last name other than Clinton sits in the White House.

You would think the Republicans wouldn't want a terrorist attack, as it would theoretically mean the nation will rally behind Obama as being the kind of leader who looks good behind a podium in front of a pile of rubble and dead Americans. But the media is ready - and so are the politicians - to call a domestic attack an extension of Obama's lack of experience. This would be their chance, and they wouldn't dare pass on it. They'll call for another election - not unlike the California elections for governor with the recall of votes and such - and token Governor Bobby Jindal, a trained seal of a politician, selling his soul in exchange for ascending the ranks of a white man's political organization, would become our next President.

After all, it is the Faustian governor who is quick to defend Limbaugh's open prayer that Obama bites the curb: "Make no mistake: Anything other than an immediate and compliant, 'Why no sir, I don't want the president to fail,' is treated as some sort of act of treason, civil disobedience or political obstructionism." Great. I had predicted this sort of thing would happen - the crooks who put this nation where it is today, the faded decadence of yore now a cracked facade as America's many wounds ooze out blood the color of money, these bastards are now playing the cornered minority card.

And who better to voice such sentiments than a man of Punjabi Indian descent? If Gov. Jindal retains any fragment of the spiritual self which he sold to the Republican National Committee once Sarah Palin became passe to become the GOP's darling, he needs to wise up to the fact that he is a pawn in an almighty game of race-baiting.

Another Jindal quote: "This is political correctness run amok." Oh, yes? And what was people yelling "KILL OBAMA!" at McCain's rallies late in the election? Or the cracks made on Fox News about lynching Michelle Obama? Or Hillary's attempt to win the primaries by assassination? I suppose that rationalizations exist for all of these instances - such is the nature of situational ethics.

Other than tendering his resignation, the only thing that will prove Obama's worth as a leader to the Republicans is the baptism of fire (pun fully intended) that would come with a terrorist attack. I'm not encouraging it to happen. God, no. What I saw that warm Tuesday morning was horrifying. This is one of those things my grandkids will ask me about - and I will not forget what I saw, because whether I was politically aloof, conservative, liberal, socialist, whatever. We were presented with images of our fellow man, dead, dying, or suffering.

Anyone who wants to play the blame game of whose fault it was can shove it up their ass. It is a senseless debate, one that will not be answered until documents become declassified. And even then, what satisfaction will that bring? It won't resurrect the 2,700 who died that day. The dead in our military won't rise from their graves in time for Wheel Of Fortune. All the murdered Iraqi citizens, who died simply because they were Iraqis (to crib once again from MP George Galloway), won't come back to see another morning.

We've grown so cynical since the Contra scandal, "read my lips: no new taxes," the Lewinsky affair, Columbine, 9/11, and Iraqi "Freedom" (right!) that we can't help but see Obama as a potentially corrupt politician; others wish to judge him simply because of what his name rhymes with - or his middle name. Should another terrorist attack occur, we must convince ourselves that Obama would not sell himself to the military-industrial complex that has been running this country since 1945.

At least we'll finally be able to prove to even the most bigoted of Americans that Obama truly has no terrorist connections.

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