This video is called Peace of Art: American artists fight against Afghan war.
By Ed Kinane, Truthout in the USA:
Who Benefits From the Organized Violence of War?
Sunday, 01 April 2012 08:29
A state of war only serves as an excuse for domestic tyranny. -Alexander Solzhenitsyn
The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has nothing to gain and all to lose – especially their lives. -Eugene Victor Debs
Few nations have such extensive borders or coasts as the United States. Few have borders as blessedly uncontested and unthreatened. Why, then, is the US so contemptuous of international law? Why does the US intervene in and invade other lands, often far from our shores, with such alarming frequency?
Why does this nation squander trillions of dollars on “security” and “defense”? Why does this nation maintain fleets and hundreds of costly military bases all over the globe? Why does this nation dissipate its treasure deploying the world’s most massive killing machine?
We may never solve these riddles unless we better understand both human nature and the nature of war. Toward that end, I’ll pose some questions; these may imply some answers, if only fragmentary ones.
Let’s start with “human nature” (whatever that means). Why does “human nature” seem often to lead to destruction, of others and of ourselves? (To really explore this issue, see Erich Fromm’s “The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness,” published in 1973 during the Vietnam War.) Is brutality just part of who we are? Does militarism – highly organized violence – stem from our mammalian or primate pedigree? Or, as some might plausibly suggest, is it a male thing? Would women-led societies be steeped in militarism?
Who “volunteers” to be the cannon fodder and why? Don’t many enlistments – mostly male – stem from the “poverty draft” and from chauvinistic indoctrination? What impact does war have on those who serve and fight? How many come home intact? When the warriors come home, how do they and their families fare?
But maybe human nature – and men – get a bad rap. Perhaps war isn’t human or even male, but a reflex or emanation of power structures. Such structures aren’t persons: most humans have no say in the power structures’ callous indifference to life. These structures – mostly regimes and corporations – tend to be machines with connected, but blindered parts.
Each nut and bolt plays its little role often oblivious to its contribution to the machine’s malign functioning. Usually those who have risen to positions of oversight and command internalize the machine’s inhuman dynamics. Consciously or not, malevolently or not, these leaders tend to make policy detrimental to the 99 percent. The logic of their positions calls for achieving short-term gains with little consideration of anyone out of sight, whether socially, geographically or generationally.
Bill Moyers | The Real Costs of War. Bill Moyers, Moyers & Co.: “Most discussion about the ‘costs of war’ focuses on two numbers: dollars spent and American troops who gave their lives. A decade into the war on terror, those official costs are over a trillion dollars and more than 6,000 dead. But as overwhelming as those numbers are, they don’t tell the full story. In one of the most comprehensive studies available, researchers in the Eisenhower Study Group at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies looked at the human, economic, social and political costs of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as our military actions in Pakistan”: here.
Steven Lee Myers, The New York Times News Service: “The United States and more than 60 other countries moved closer on Sunday to direct intervention in the fighting in Syria, with Arab nations pledging $100 million to pay opposition fighters and the Obama administration agreeing to send communications equipment to help rebels organize and evade Syria’s military, according to participants gathered here. The moves reflected a growing consensus, at least among those who met here this weekend under the rubric ‘Friends of Syria,’ that mediation efforts by the United Nations peace envoy, Kofi Annan, were failing to halt the violence in Syria and that more forceful action was needed”: here.
“Friends of Syria”—the antechamber of a wider Mideast war: here.
USA: Explore the features and see if your representatives stood up for peace or dragged their heels in 2011: here.
MORE THAN 500 activists attended the second United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC) conference, which was held in Stamford, Conn., from March 23-25. Activists at the event took part in more than 50 sessions covering a variety of topics on U.S. wars abroad and at home, and made decisions about the coalition’s direction for the coming year: here.
Pakistan: NATO Supply Lines May Not Open Anytime Soon: here.
Confessions of an Iraq War Whistleblower. The State Department fired me for telling the truth about US failures in Iraq. Here’s why I don’t regret it: here.
Naval Commander Stands Trial for Telling Supercommittee to End the Wars and Tax the Rich. Michael Levitin, Waging Nonviolence: “Consider the story of Leah Bolger, the latest American hero up on trial: She joins the Navy at 22, is made commander and serves two decades as an anti-submarine warfare specialist. After retiring she joins Veterans for Peace and becomes the organization’s first female president. Then, in October of 2011, she commits the crime of interrupting a public congressional hearing of the Super Committee to deliver a message from the 99 percent: End the wars and tax the rich to fix the deficit”: here.
Veterans Sexually Assaulted in VA Clinics and Hospitals: here.