Sunday, January 18, 2009

The US and Israel: 'Unqualified support'

Unanimous Consent
When Israel acts, Congress applauds. No debate required.

Glenn Greenwald, in The American Conservative: In most of the world, the Israeli attack on Gaza is viewed as an intensely controversial act and, more commonly, an excessive, unjustifiable, and brutal assault on a trapped civilian population. But not in the United States -- at least not among America's political and opinion-making elite... When it comes to Israel's various military actions, there is far more dissent within Israel... than there is within the US, where such criticism is all but nonexistent. Indeed, in the US Congress, there is far more unqualified support for Israel's wars than for America's own... It is difficult, perhaps impossible, to find in American political life any other issue of this consequence, complexity, and controversy that generates such absolute agreement within our political class.

Mark Slouka, in Harper's: What we need to talk about, what someone needs to talk about, particularly now, is our ever-deepening ignorance (of politics, of foreign languages, of history, of science, of current affairs, of pretty much everything) and not just our ignorance but our complacency in the face of it, our growing fondness for it. A generation ago the proof of our foolishness, held up to our faces, might still have elicited some redeeming twinge of shame -- no longer. Today, across vast swaths of the republic, it amuses and comforts us. We're deeply loyal to it. Ignorance gives us a sense of community; it confers citizenship; our representatives either share it or bow down to it or risk our wrath.

Ralph Nader, In the Public Interest: Why? The Congressional response: 'Hamas terrorists' everywhere. Sure, defending their Palestinian families is called terrorism. The truth is there is no Hamas army, airforce and navy up against the fourth most powerful military in the world. As one Israeli gunner on an armored personnel carrier frankly said to The New York Times: 'They are villagers with guns. They don't even aim when they shoot.' ... What is going on in Gaza is what Bill Moyers called it earlier this month -- 'state terrorism.' ... 

Since 2002, more than 50 Arab and Muslim nations have had a standing offer, repeated often, that if Israel obeys several UN resolutions and withdraws to the 1967 borders leaving 22 percent of the original Palestine for an independent Palestinian state, they will open full diplomatic relations and there will be peace. Israel has declined to accept this offer.

How a middle-class white guy came to accept the evil embedded in American political and military might.
Image source here.