Friday, March 14, 2008

Aims of the Global War on Terror

Friday March 14, 7:00PM - 8:30PM

*Note – We are Live Blogging Winter Soldier Friday through Sunday.
You may see more typographical errers errors than usual
as we type like @$#!

Please bear with us as we get the news out to you*

7:20: Anthony Arnove
five basic points about the two occupations:
remember that the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan were launched on false pretenses
Schwartz describes Afghanistan as the "forgotten occupation"The general punishment of a c - - -civilian population is illegal and against international law.
-The main "enemy" in both countries are insurgents defending their country from occupation
-As long as we remain in those countries we will be the main source of violence and instability
-The Us in not helping the civilian populations in either country

Since these are false claims what are the Geopolitical Aims that drive the US and its allies to occupy Iraq and Afghanistan
- the invasions serve as an example and warning to other countries
_ Increases the power and influence of the US in the Middle East
better control of trade routes inthe middle east
- Create client states as regional bases of power - regional hegemony increases global hegemony
- Imposes a neo-liberal model that gives US privileged access to Middle East resources
- to destroy the legacy of Vietnam which gives VVAW and VFP a position of power

The policy has back fired by making Iran more influential and isolated and marginalized US influence and prestige Globally


7:45 : Michael Schwartz
Tenacious stand on the war by US leaders - we must not expect our mainstream democratic leaders to withdraw US troops from the middle East anytime soon
Obama - "Maintaining our influence in the Middle East"
Hillary -
McCain - "100 years in Iraq"

Why? - Its the oil stupid!
Time line:
1980s -Centcom formed by jimmy Carter to provide rapid response to crises in the Middle East

1990s - The Unipolar Moment - Us becomes the preeminent military in the world - we spend more money on the military today than all other nations combined

noeconservative movement - US military power be used to expand US power -

1991 - temporary suspension of oil from Iraq and Iran - triggered recession which defeated Bush#1

1998 - US imports more than 50% of its oil - peak oil looms and supply will eventually fall behind demand

Late 1990s - US does not control its oil supply in the Middle East - Bush Administration enters the stage

US ace in the hole - Our Military - rejected long term policy changes to embrace alternative energy - instead they chose a war in Iraq
So Us energy policy and military policy are welded together over Iraq which is the lynchpin on American world hegemeny.

8:05: Amy Goodman
Why do the American people allow themselves to be led to commit wor crimes?

Media consolidation - Where the New is Clear Channeled

We need a larger spectrum of opinion in the media - one in which we can actually see the differences between two sides!
Private Corporations are using the public airways for private profit and power

Media needs to provide a forum for discussion of our most important issues - a large kitchen table that stretches across the country.

Militarism - Racism - Poverty
Martin Luther Kings last campaign
Awareness of Our radical History of Rosa Parks and Emmett Till and Winter Soldier 1 and 2

Important questions: Who should be in jail - the soldiers who refuse to fight an illegal war or those who take up into them?
What should be on television? the lies that take us into an illegal war or the death and torture that resulted from those lies?

Global War on Terror - SourceWatch

Global War on Terror, used repeatedly in the internal text of the October 16, 2003, memo written by Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld, entitled Global War on Terrorism, seems to be a new rhetorical device justifying expansion of the "war" and perhaps new agencies. Citing the memo:

"Today, we lack metrics to know if we are winning or losing the global war on terror. Are we capturing, killing or deterring and dissuading more terrorists every day than the madrassas and the radical clerics are recruiting, training and deploying against us?"

In this view, which is relatively new even for the Bush administration, the goal is not to end the threat posed by terrorist groups of global reach, the previously stated objective, but the eradication of all militant Islamic groups that cross the line from militancy into attacks on the USA and its allies, wherever they are, whether they have a right to be there or not. It is the eradication of a mind-set that is the objective, not specific groups.

The dangers of this view will be obvious to those who recall the Vietnam War. In that war, there was a similar focus on metrics and eradicating the mind-set of Communist insurgents in former South Vietnam. This of course was impossible, because in at least some ways, there was a strong case to be made that Communists were quite right about the inequities in the client state which the USA set up in South Vietnam, and actively "managed" (by various means including, some say, the outright assassination of its President at one point). In this kind of environment, it is not possible to wipe out insurgency, because it continues to be motivated by the overt injustice of the US-backed regime of the client state(s).

But what is quite new about this Global war, is his proposal for "a 21st century information agency in the gov't to help wage a battle of the minds."

This can be taken a number of ways. The most innocent of which is the following: "Should we create a private foundation to entice radical madradssas to a more moderate course?"

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