When the video showing Ray Rice punching his now wife in the face and knocking her unconscious became public, it gave the NFL the excuse they were looking for to fire him and ban him from the League in order to calm the outrage that the incident and the light punishment he had received had understandably engendered, especially, among the female viewers, who make up close to half of their audience that the NFL relies on for its profits.
In an interview, yesterday, the NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, denied that NFL officials had received or seen that video when they decided to punish Rice with a mere 2 game suspension. Today, however, it was revealed by AP that the police had indeed sent NFL the video and that they had indeed seen it.
The light punishment originally imposed on Rice revealed once more how business interests trump justice and made light of a major social problem, which too many women face, everyday. NFL is a lucrative business, bringing in billions of dollars to the team owners, every year. So it’s not unusual or surprising for the spokesman of the business coalition to lie on behalf of the owners. How many times have we heard such industry representatives lie to us? Even if they hadn’t seen that video, what is clear is that he had hit her unconscious. What difference does it make to actually see how he had hit her? Would it have made a difference if he had kicked or elbowed her face instead of using his fist? Obviously, the severity or nature of the blow had no bearing on the choice of punishment they decided to impose. Both the original light punishment and the later change of heart were purely motivated by business concerns. All the talk of “we didn’t know how bad it was” is nothing but lies and propaganda.
But, be that as it may, what is getting lost again in all this and not being discussed enough is domestic violence and violence against women in general, which is an epidemic. This unfortunate incident is one of thousands every year. If there were one thing that could have come out from this incident that could be a silver lining, would be a discussion of and a higher consciousness and awareness about this epidemic, which again, didn’t happen in our corporate media.
As Glen Greenwald smartly observed recently, it’s almost as if ISIS and the US media worked together to frighten the daylights out of the American people. If the beheading of couple of American journalists (or in the case of Steven Sotloff, a dual citizen of US and Israel) scared the Americans enough to want another war in Iraq, how scary is it for people in the region who have to constantly fear being bombed by US drones? Though Americans don’t behead their victims, their drones sometimes do, including severing heads and limbs of women and children. Most Americans fail to see that actions have reactions and that the right or desire to retaliate isn’t exclusive to Americans.
No doubt ISIS is a barbaric and cruel organization and its beheadings are barbaric and indefensible, but so are US bombings in several countries, as were their bombings against Libya, which were meant to and did culminate in overthrowing and killing Gaddafi. So was the invasion of Iraq that caused the death of a million people. And so are the bombings of the Palestinian people, which take place every so often, with US weapons and help.
While US media outlets are beating drums of a new war in Iraq and Syria, no one is talking about the fact that the US and its Gulf allies, especially Saudi Arabia, Israel and Turkey, made ISIS what it is today. While its brutal massacres were directed at the Syrian people, the US and its allies were arming and funding them, in order to help overthrow the Assad government, which to this day has resulted in 180,000 deaths and displacement of 2.5 million Syrians. None of that was considered brutal and barbaric enough to make the US at least cut the support for ISIS, let alone fight it.
So, what has this joint ISIS-US media fear mongering bought for the US? The ticket to bomb Syria, supposedly of ISIS positions, along with training and arming of the Anti-government “opposition” – which so far has included ISIS – to make sure the vacuum left by ISIS, as they flee or get killed, is filled with the “opposition”, with the aim of finally toppling the government. When the issue of bombing inside Syria came up recently, the Syrian government, understandably, asked that any such intervention be coordinated with the government to avoid bombing innocent people, which the US rejected. I don’t need to point out that bombing a country uninvited is against international laws and Geneva Conventions, whatever the stated reason or pretext.
Once again, they want to conduct a bombing campaign against another sovereign nation, to achieve regime change, as they did in Libya, something they wanted to do in Syria, last year, but backed away from, due to public opposition. That’s what’s being planned and that’s what’s coming out of all the fear mongering.
Obama said in his special prime time “address to the nation” tonight that ISIS is taking advantage of regional strife and sectarianism to gain territory and impose its rule. US leaders should know. His mention of Syria and what he wants to do there – to train “the Syrian opposition” to do the regime change was not the biggest part of his speech, but you can be sure that that’s the main subject being discussed behind closed doors.
I keep having to write about this because it keeps coming up. It’s hugely prevalent among liberals and even some on the left. And that is the view that just about everything the US government does is because of Israeli lobby, including the war in Iraq, Libya and Syria, the sanctions and threats against Iran and many others. If one chooses, he or she can throw in the intervention in Ukraine and the follow up with threats and sanctions against Russia and the long running war in Afghanistan. Add also the drone attacks in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia and suddenly, you end up with the idea that the US government has all the good intentions and means no harm, anywhere, and it’s all Israel’s fault! What a convenient way for liberals, “progressives” and some “leftists” to be nationalistic and absolve their government of all wrongdoing! Just blame it on Israeli lobby! Is it also the Israeli lobby that makes the European governments follow the orders of their boss in Washington and go along with whatever has been decided in Washington – I mean Tel Aviv – and dictated to them?
Never mind that we’re talking about a world imperialism headed by the most powerful empire in history, an empire that has been created by and for large corporations, in order to take over the entire world and turn it into a source of profits for corporations of the US and its allies’. Or was the corporate empire itself created with all its plans and objectives for world hegemony, at the behest of Israel and by the orders of their lobby? I wouldn’t be surprised if that rhetorical question was answered affirmatively by some. Recently, when debating this issue with a friend on Facebook, I pointed out that US imperialism predated the creation of Israel and its lobby, to which she replied that no, Zionism existed long before the US became a major power and imperialist. So even when the state of Israel was just an idea in some people’s heads, it had a strong lobby and directed US policies and made the US what it is today, so it could then support and defend Israel! Which it raises the question: if Zionists had such power even before they were able to form the Zionist state, why didn’t they just make Israel a superpower imperialist country instead?
Now, I know that not everyone goes this far into the territory of the absurd and fantasy, but, most will say that: true, the US became a powerful imperialist country, with giant corporations seeking to rule the world through the government they control in Washington, but then came the Israeli lobby and suddenly, if up to that point, US policies were meant to pave the way for US corporations to control and profit from natural resources, cheap labor and markets, overseas, the US government then became the servant of Israel and the agent and enabler of their objectives. But, if you read that sentence carefully, you can see the contradiction and absurdity in it. According to this incredible scenario, the body of the US government is possessed by the brain of Israeli lobby, which directs it to wage wars and impose sanctions and drop bombs and give aid and arms to dictators around the world and commit coups and assassinations and develop and impose neoliberal “free trade” agreements and austerity measures on developing nations, keeping them poor and move towards creating a police state at home to prevent dissent, which all benefits US corporations, but is directed by Israel!
Maybe the misunderstanding is about the word “lobby”. If there is “lobbying” going on in Washington, it’s because there is a lobby they enter into and where they stand around, in the first place. In other words the system is already set up that way, which is to allow the influence, but not of any lobby group, only those who fall within the collective goals and objectives of the ruling class that is the ultimate controller of the policies. If there is Israeli lobby with strong influence, it’s because it’s allowed into the lobby in the first place and because the goals of that lobby coincide with those of imperialism, to begin with.
Another variation on the theme (with apologies to musicians for borrowing their phrase) of Israel directing US policies is that the Rothschild family created the state of Israel, so the Arab states “could be sufficiently weakened and fractured and eventually destroyed”, so the Rothschilds could “take over their oil resources”. This was argued in an article by Gregory Princze, and posted on Facebook by a friend. In fact, the article, among some correct things it says, which I duly give him credit for, implies – by sarcastically saying “what a coincidence” – that the creation of the state of Israel, which was planned by the Rothschilds, was the reason why they and some other US banks, “financed the Nazi war machine early on”, which then led the Nazis to commit the holocaust, “which turned out to be beneficial to Rothschild plans”, which the psychic Rothschilds could have anticipated, beforehand, so then the Zionists could create the state of Israel, which would then weaken and eventually destroy the Arab states, so they – the Rothschilds – could take over the oil on Arab land! And right after making the argument that a super wealthy American Jewish family plans and directs the creation of the state of Israel, he does a 180 and says: “on a much larger scale … the US does the dirty work for the state of Israel throughout the region with American soldiers doing the fighting and dying and American taxpayers picking up the tab.” Thus, the state of Israel that was the brainchild of a billionaire American family for further enrichment of that family, turns around and begins controlling the US government, making it do “the dirty work for the state of Israel”, using American soldiers who fight and die for the state, which in reality it is for the Rothschilds, I would have to conclude. But don’t the American billionaires already control the policies of their own government so they don’t have to go through the trouble of planning 75 years in advance to create a state that would control the policies of their own government on their behalf? Or was the Israeli control of their government not part of that long term plan and just happened?
The truth is: US soldiers are not dying for the state of Israel. They’re dying for US corporations and their wealthy owners. Israel is not controlling US policies. American multinational corporations, who are the beneficiaries of those policies, are. Israel is, rather, part of the global scheme for US imperialism for taking over and controlling the world and its resources and is thus the one being used to do dirty work of imperialism, not the other way around.
Some of these articles and those who write them seem very radical, but by putting all the blame on Israeli lobby and even on a single family, they absolve the US imperialism and the collective of large US and European multinational banks and other huge corporations and the international class of super wealthy, who own them. By implying that they’re stupid and duped by Zionists to do their dirty work – which makes no sense if you just argued that Israel was created by an American family – they make the US government the victim – a naive and gullible victim at that.
Such views result in miseducating about and obfuscating the reality of US imperialism, by moving the blame away from the parasitic class that is trying to take over the world and wages numerous wars and commits numerous atrocities to do it, leaving behind poverty and devastation for hundreds of millions of people and pushing the world towards a world war and turning the society into a police state. These are not done by Israel or their lobby.
Once you put the focus back on the real culprits as a collective – the cartel of corporations and the owner class – then you understand that it’s not Israel that uses the US, but the other way around. The loot and riches from world domination, first and foremost, go into the coffers of this class as a whole, which, no, it is not all Jewish or Israeli, and moreover, there are also poor Jews, whom the Jewish billionaires don’t give rat’s ass about.
What’s happening in the world is not all a Jewish conspiracy. Nor is the Big Bang and coming into existence of the entire universe. Let’s keep it real and keep the focus on the 0.1% and their push for wars, on several fronts, including against Russia, as well as, their support for massacres and genocide in Palestine. Until we are clear what and who the problem is, we can’t begin to change it.
We are living during precarious and dangerous times. Giant organizations with strictly defined and maintained hierarchies and rules of conduct, and a narrowly defined mission and purpose for accumulating as much wealth for a few individuals, as possible, with all means necessary, have created a modern day empire, hell bent on controlling, dominating and exploiting the whole world for profits and wealth. Rather than trying to take over and control territories, including their resources and people, on their own and individually, which would have been chaotic, inefficient and self-defeating, giant international corporations have collectively created a single hugely powerful and armed organization, headquartered in Washington, to advance the objectives of the group of owners, who are the beneficiaries of these corporations.
Similar setups have been created in other parts of the world, most notably and most relevant to the US, in Europe. Not only do the US corporations benefit from the government they own and control in Washington, but those in Europe, Canada, Australia and Japan, have also adopted this government and accepted its representation and leadership, giving even more power, legitimacy and capability to the empire, for the purpose of dominating over the world and funneling wealth to the owners in their respective countries.
In effect then, large corporations in North America, Europe and elsewhere are being collectively represented by the empire, even though its headquarters remain in Washington. Meanwhile, and naturally, the local governments in the satellite countries, which represent their own local corporations, have accepted the US leadership. This has largely removed the inter-imperialist rivalry that used to exist among imperialist governments, which was pitting one group against smother, which led to two world wars.
The creation of this super powerful coalition, under the leadership of the US, was a practical and pragmatic solution to the following problems or phenomena: rivalry and wars among these individual governments on behalf their own corporations, national liberation movements that exploded some 50 years ago, threatening the interests of corporations and presenting a challenge to their representative governments, and to coordinate and unify their efforts at controlling and exploiting the world for corporations, which by now are truly global and which needed a suitable and secure globalized environment for their activities and operations.
With the North American and European governments thus united, they could now rule the world, collectively, with an iron fist and punish and remove any detractor and opponent from their path, accelerating the global concentration of wealth into a small global class of wealthy individuals.
This is why these governments, whether their ruling party calls itself “Socialist”, “Labor”, “Christian Democrat”, “liberal Democrat”, “Democratic” or “Republican”, they’re always united politically, whether in defending Israel against the Palestinian people, or in doing regime change in Libya and Syria, or in supporting brutal dictatorships around the world, or in trying to weaken Russia, surround it with NATO forces and create the grounds for an eventual regime change there, or isolating and weakening Iran. (Even in the case of Iraq, they were mostly united).
Basically, these governments, under the leadership of the US, have created an international cartel for enriching few Mafia-type bosses in these countries, and to reach their goals, they wage wars and resort to massacres, assassinations, military interventions, coups and systematic disinformation and brainwashing of their people. So, remember this next time you’re contemplating voting for the lesser of two evils. There are no lesser or more evil. There is just an empire, also known as the military industrial complex, with its corporate agenda, which either party will faithfully advance.
Naturally, this state of affairs is not sustainable. Nor should it be sustained, due to the enormous gap it creates between a small minority of super wealthy and the vast majority of extremely poor, the wars and massacres and in the case of Palestine, genocide, it commits, and the tremendous injustices it causes or helps with on many fronts, including racism, police brutality, incarcerations, ruining of the environment, poisoning the water and food we consume, dehumanizations of women, encouraging waste and senseless consumerism, spying on citizens, disinformation and mind control through the corporate media, excessive corporate influence on elections and militarization of societies, which squanderes national wealth on devastating wars or preparation for war, instead of meeting people’s needs and raising their level of healthcare, education, comfort and enjoyment, and instead of fighting diseases and protecting and improving the environment.
What is obvious is that privately owned organizations that exploit the poor’s labor for the further enrichment of a select few is the wrong way of organizing a human society. What’s needed is a completely different paradigm, one which isn’t about profits and wealth building for a few, but one which is based on meeting people’s needs, one which instead of benefiting a few, would benefit many, one which instead of increasing the gap and conflict between groups of people, it would equalize and reduce and eliminate differences and conflicts, and one which instead of exploiting the underdeveloped nations, it would help develop them to help their populations live better.
This leads us to the necessity of taking the power away from and dismantling corporations and rewriting of constitutions, collectivizing and nationalizing all large industries and banks, and simultaneously working to base international relations on cooperation and mutual benefit, rather than exploitation of the poor by the wealthy of the developed nations, as well as demilitarizing nations to move towards the ultimate goal of creating peace and cooperation, worldwide.
Before you attack me for being idealistic and naive, I would like to point out two things:
1. Once we eliminate corporations and the grip they have on the largest economies and militaries, we will be setting the foundation for what now seems impossible, but which will seem within reach, then.
2. There was a time when the idea of getting rid of slavery or serfdom seemed too idealistic and naive. Even smaller changes such as women and blacks winning the right to vote seemed too far fetched, once.
I believe frequent wars, military conflicts and economic crises, along with record level of inequality and poverty, have created conditions that make this the right time to educate and agitate around these ideals. I also believe that globalization of capital and with it the concentration of so much of military and economic power in a few nations, under US leadership, make it possible to push for global change, rather than only in a single society. That would make it possible to unify and globalize the struggle for change in the global economic system, increasing its chance of success.
If not, then, what’s the alternative – resigning to the current trend and state of affairs and accepting its inevitability and surrendering to the status quo and awaiting another catastrophic world war, in which humanity may not survive? That would not be idealistic, I’d have to grant you that, but, would be irresponsible and defeatist, which is far worse. Between apathy and surrender to the status quo and idealism, I’ll pick the latter, any day of the week.
According to slate.com, Hillary Clinton has writte a flattering review for a book Henry Kissinger has written called “World Order”, in which she says Kissinger “is a friend, and I relied on his counsel when I served as secretary of state. He checked in with me regularly, sharing astute observations about foreign leaders and sending me written reports on his travels”. She says in her review that she shares “a belief in the indispensability of continued American leadership in service of a just and liberal order.
participatory and democratic systems of governance.”
It’s common practice for any US official or candidate to stress his or her belief in “democracy” or “democratic principles”, no matter how much they actually and secretly detest it and do everything to undermine it. in fact, no leader of any nation, has done as much to thwart and undermine democracy as US presidents since World War II. But while both Kissinger and Clinton have shown a contempt for democratic values, Kissinger also shows it in words. This is what he said about US intervention in Chile, when he planned and directed a CIA led coup against the democratically elected Salvador Allende in 1973:
“I don’t see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist due to the irresponsibility of its people. The issues are much too important for the Chilean voters to be left to decide for themselves.”
The man Clinton says she listens to and consults with has this attitude about the rule of law and the Constitution:
“The illegal we do immediately. The unconstitutional takes a little longer.” (from March 10, 1975 Meeting With Turkish Foreign Minister Melih Esenbel in Ankara, Turkey).
Kissinger also showed what a psychopath he is when he said about killings by Khmer Rouge: “How many people did (Khmer Rouge Foreign Minister Ieng Sary) kill? Tens of thousands? You should tell the Cambodians (i.e., Khmer Rouge) that we will be friends with them. They are murderous thugs, but we won’t let that stand in the way”.
He bragged about massive and indiscriminate US bombings of Vietnam by saying: “they can’t see the B-52 and they dropped a million pounds of bombs … I bet you we will have had more planes over there in one day than Johnson had in a month … each plane can carry about 10 times the load of World War II plane could carry.”
It’s quite fitting that Hillary Clinton who has always vouched for war and who defended Netanyahu’s massacre in Gaza, unconditionally and without reservations – as did other US officials and politicians, including Elizabeth Warren – to praise war criminal Kissinger. Reportedly, she’s planning to announce her candidacy for 2016 presidential elections on January 1st, and MSNBC talking heads, such as Rev. Al Obama-is-the-Messiah Sharpton can’t hide their enthusiasm, even though she could not have been any clearer about her interest in starting new wars and committing new war crimes, as president. Obviously, that doesn’t bother our liberals who complained about Bush’s wars, but loved Obama’s.
As for Hillary, is she trying to convince the ruling class that heads the military industrial complex that she’s fit to be a president because she has no problem to order their future wars?
As a friend recently pointed out, it’s no accident that ISIS murderers dress their victims in orange jumpsuit and water board them, before savagely beheading them. That’s exactly the kind of jumpsuit the US makes Muslims it captures and indefinitely puts in Guantanamo Bay prison, wear. And water boarding is the method the US uses for torturing its prisoners of war, which it does in violation of all international laws and specifically against the Geneva Conventions it is a signatory to.
Besides, when the US does decide to kill, we must ask: is killing with a drone or dropping bombs from a fighter jet, which kills an entire household, including women and children, sometimes during a wedding and other times a funeral, any better or less barbaric? Was the bombing of apartment buildings and schools and hospitals that Israel did for more than a month against people of Gaza, which killed more than 570 children, which US officials kept defending and supporting with taxpayer money, any less barbaric?
In fact, we can even go further and ask: is lethal injection, which is the American way of killing a prisoner, at times, as it turns out, of innocent black men, that different from ISIS’ way of killing journalists it decides are guilty and must die? Aren’t both barbaric? Two North Carolina black men were just released after being in prison and on death row for 30 years, when it was discovered that they were indeed innocent. And, they wouldn’t have been the first to be murdered by the government, unjustly and savagely, for being in the wrong place, at the wrong time.
I do not condone in any way, nor do I defend or justify or make light of the barbaric acts of beheading journalists, even if they had dual US and Israeli citizenship and even if they were being used by their governments politically, for intelligence, or in any other way. But, I don’t fall for the patriotic bravado and calls for war on the entire Middle East to kill even more people, either, because of these barbaric killings, which are done in retribution – no matter how wrong – for acts of terror and atrocities the US has committed, over many years, in that part of the world, and which, incidentally, are committed by the very same Islamist organization, which is in fact the offshoot and result of US support for terrorism against governments it deems unfriendly and which tries to get rid of by arming and supporting such barbaric organizations. I should point out for those who may not know, that ISIS, which has helped murder some 180,000 and displace millions of Syrians in that so-called civil war and has taken over parts of Syria to create an Islamic caliphate, has been armed and supported by the US and its allies to help topple the Syrian government. Not only did their barbarism go unnoticed and was ignored by TV commentators who are furious now, they were getting help from the US, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey to do regime change in Syria, which was, of course, kept from the American people.
This should sound familiar to those who are familiar with the story of Bin Laden and the Mujaheddin of Afghanistan, who were being armed, financed and supported by the CIA to fight the Soviets, who then turned on their bosses and only then suddenly became dangerous terrorists and only then the American people found out about them, without being told what happened before that.
It’s not that the US policies are wrongheaded or misguided or stupid, as many liberals claim. After all, I for one, wouldn’t claim to be smarter than the ideologues leading the biggest and most lethal empire man has known. In fact, they’re anything but stupid. The fact is: US policy makers, who lead the military industrial finance complex, cause all the mayhem, wars, destabilizations, conflicts and massacres, on behalf of giant corporations, who have taken over the government, which, like a possessed killer, is on a dangerous path towards ever more wars and possibly even another world war, to expand and reinforce the reach and influence of the corporate empire, for ever more profits. Therefore, I place all the blame squarely on Washington and its allies, from Riyadh to Tel Aviv to London to Brussels.
The Guardian of London reported today that Israel is building a “huge new settlement” on occupied land in West Bank, which even the US and UK “condemned”, when it became public news. These two imperialist governments of big corporations want it both ways. They keep arming, financing and supporting the occupation army of Israel and its ethnic cleansing, home demolitions and genocide against Palestinians, while under pressure by the international community who are shaming them, and to pretend that they’re opposed to the building of settlements, they make a soft verbal complaint about that, which they themselves make possible with their money and arms.
What I want to know is: would they take the same stand and react the same way, and moreover, would they help and support the Russians were they to literally and really – not just hype and lies – take over and occupy Ukraine and build thousands and thousands of settlements and kick out non-Russian Ukrainians from their ancestral homes on those lands and settle Russians that they would bring from all over the world and settle on occupied and stolen land? Would they continue having cooperative relations and keep supporting them financially, politically and diplomatically and then softly mumble that they shouldn’t be doing that? Do the war criminal cowards in American and British governments know anything else in their low life existence, but hypocrisy, double standards and lying and cheating and deceiving? Did somehow, mysteriously, all the scum and assholes and psychopaths of the Earth decide someday to go take over these two and a few other European governments, which are their allies, such as France? Do they think we’re stupid?
We, the people, can and will get rid of these scum of the Earth in position of power, who are causing so much mayhem and misery and injustice, eventually, but eventually isn’t soon enough for the suffering people of Palestine, who keep losing their homes and becoming displaced and who are starved, imprisoned, tortured and massacred, while these criminal governments keep aiding and abetting with the genocide against them. We must continue to boycott Israel and help the international BDS (Boycott, Divest and Sanction) campaign succeed. Words don’t matter actions do.