We must stop lying to ourselves and our children. Dozens of U.S. wars and coups were not in honest self defense, or to spread “freedom” and “democracy.” These lies are made obvious when one studies history, and knows the U.S. has overthrown several democracies, and installed, supported and armed numerous dictators. The coups are overwhelmingly waged for corporate imperialist interests, for profits for the richest few.
Perhaps the most persuasive voice in describing U.S. imperialism is the highly decorated General Smedley Butler. Way back in 1933, Butler blew the whistle on corporate empire:
“I spent 33 years (in the) Marine Corps. I served in all commissioned ranks from Second Lieutenant to Major-General. And during that period, I (was) a high class muscle- man for Big Business, for Wall Street… I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism...I helped make Mexico (safe) for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys…I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefits of Wall Street….I helped purify Nicaragua for (Brown Brothers banking) in 1909-1912…I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American sugar interests in 1916. In China I helped to see to it that Standard Oil went its way unmolested.”
Fast forward to recent history, and see the U.S. empire has grown to over 800 foreign military bases in over 80 nations, and has neared total world domination. Most governments, whether democracy or dictatorship, have become subservient to U.S.-enforced corporate imperialist interests. When a given government stands up too strongly, like nationalizing key resources, that is the cue for regime change.
Imperialist warfare is not only military assault or CIA covert operations, but also economic warfare such as sanctions. We know sanctions often prove deadly to civilian populations. Just recently, sanctions were found to have killed over 40,000 civilians in Venezuela. In the 1990s, the New York Times reported Bush-Clinton sanctions killed 500,000 Iraqi children.
On national television, Lesley Stahl interviewed Secretary of State Madeleine Albright about these sanctions. Stahl asked, “We have heard that a half million children have died…that’s more children than died in Hiroshima…is the price worth it?” Albright calmly replied, “We think the price is worth it.” Her statement displays an utter lack of conscience, and brings to mind a choice psychological term.
My political awakening was triggered by 935 documented lies about Iraq’s nonexistent WMD and connections to 9-11. These lies led to a textbook definition of not just a war crime, but the “supreme international crime,” which killed over a million humans, wasted trillions of taxpayer dollars, and other ongoing horrors. That war had nothing to do with freedom, and everything to do with imperialism and oil.
Since Iraq, imperialist coups or attempted coups have been waged on several more nations, including Libya, Honduras, Ukraine, Venezuela, Syria, etc. The most catastrophic coup du jour on the menu is Iran. General Anthony Zinni warned, “If you liked Iraq…you will love Iran.” The “best” case scenario is, like Iraq, killing another million people and wasting trillions more. The worst case scenarios are unspeakable.
We must stop the lies and imperialism. Most people correctly see slavery was deeply immoral, and we must now realize imperialism is equally evil. What is imperialism but a love of money so extreme that it demands killing people?
About 75 percent of Americans consider themselves Christians. Perhaps it is time to re-read Matthew, “No one can serve two masters…You cannot serve both God and money,” and Timothy, ” For the love of money is the root of all evil.”
(Local action in Fayetteville, Arkansas: Toward stopping Iran war and imperialism, we are currently holding weekly peace protests every Saturday at 11 A.M. in front of Washington County Courthouse. Please join us.)