The Violent World of Mr. Hopey Changey

Most Greens don’t support most of Obama’s major policies. This is even truer when it comes to foreign policy – ie, pursuing existing and newer wars. The first Green MP, Caroline Lucas, was among 13 UK MPs that voted against the bombing of Libya, the so-called UN sanctioned No Fly Zone. Here John Pilger explains the detail.

The context is a long Western history of ambition for territory and resources. Libya has most of Africa’s oil, for example. But once the decision was made, Gaddafi becomes the ‘new Hitler’ and his actions become despicable, while others’ actions, such as Bahrain, are overlooked.  In Libya’s case, despite the despot, or maybe because of, Libya has one of the highest life expectancies in Africa, a very respectable 78.  As the people ourselves, in apparent democracies, our job is to question and challenge great power not to roll over and parrot its propaganda like so many Uncle Tom’s justifying what in fact is our own oppression too.

John Pilger – Welcome to the Violent World of Mr Hopey Changey.

May 26, 2011 – When Britain lost control of Egypt in 1956, Prime Minister Anthony Eden said he wanted the nationalist president Gamal Abdel Nasser “destroyed … murdered … I don’t give a damn if there’s anarchy and chaos in Egypt”. Those insolent Arabs, Winston Churchill had urged in 1951, should be driven “into the gutter from which they should never have emerged”.

The language of colonialism may have been modified; the spirit and the hypocrisy are unchanged. A new imperial phase is unfolding in direct response to the Arab uprising that began in January and has shocked Washington and Europe, causing an Eden-style panic. The loss of the Egyptian tyrant Mubarak was grievous, though not irretrievable; an American-backed counter-revolution is under way as the military regime in Cairo is seduced with new bribes and power shifting from the street to political groups that did not initiate the revolution. The western aim, as ever, is to stop authentic democracy and reclaim control.

Libya is the immediate opportunity. The Nato attack on Libya, with the UN Security Council assigned to mandate a bogus “no fly zone” to “protect civilians”, is strikingly similar to the final destruction of Yugoslavia in 1999. There was no UN cover for the bombing of Serbia and the “rescue” of Kosovo, yet the propaganda echoes today. Like Slobodan Milosevic, Muammar Gaddafi is a “new Hitler”, plotting “genocide” against his people. There is no evidence of this, as there was no genocide in Kosovo. In Libya there is a tribal civil war; and the armed uprising against Gaddafi has long been appropriated by the Americans, French and British, their planes attacking residential Tripoli with uranium-tipped missiles and the submarine HMS Triumph firing Tomahawk missiles, a repeat of the “shock and awe” in Iraq that left thousands of civilians dead and maimed. As in Iraq, the victims, which include countless incinerated Libyan army conscripts, are media unpeople.

In the “rebel” east, the terrorising and killing of black African immigrants is not news. On 22 May, a rare piece in the Washington Post described the repression, lawlessness and death squads in the “liberated zones” just as visiting EU foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton, declared she had found only “great aspirations” and “leadership qualities”. In demonstrating these qualities, Mustafa Abdel Jalil, the “rebel leader” and Gaddafi’s justice minister until February, pledged, “Our friends … will have the best opportunity in future contracts with Libya.” The east holds most of Libya’s oil, the greatest reserves in Africa. In March the rebels, with expert foreign guidance, “transferred” to Benghazi the Libyan Central Bank, a wholly owned state institution. This is unprecedented. Meanwhile, the US and the EU “froze” almost US$100 billion in Libyan funds, “the largest sum ever blocked”, according to official statements. It is the biggest bank robbery in history.

The French elite are enthusiastic robbers and bombers. Nicholas Sarkozy’s imperial design is for a French-dominated Mediterranean Union (UM), which would allow France to “return” to its former colonies in North Africa and profit from privileged investment and cheap labour. Gaddafi described the Sarkozy plan as “an insult” that was “taking us for fools”. The Merkel government in Berlin agreed, fearing its old foe would diminish Germany in the EU, and abstained in the Security Council vote on Libya.

Like the attack on Yugoslavia and the charade of Milosevic’s trial, the International Criminal Court is being used by the US, France and Britain to prosecute Gaddafi while his repeated offers of a ceasefire are ignored. Gaddafi is a Bad Arab. David Cameron’s government and its verbose top general want to eliminate this Bad Arab, like the Obama administration killed a famously Bad Arab in Pakistan recently. The crown prince of Bahrain, on the other hand, is a Good Arab. On 19 May, he was warmly welcomed to Britain by Cameron with a photo-call on the steps of 10 Downing Street. In March, the same crown prince slaughtered unarmed protestors and allowed Saudi forces to crush his country’s democracy movement. The Obama administration has rewarded Saudi Arabia, one of the most repressive regimes on earth, with a $US60 billion arms deal, the biggest in US history. The Saudis have the most oil. They are the Best Arabs.

The assault on Libya, a crime under the Nuremberg standard, is Britain’s 46th military “intervention” in the Middle East since 1945. Like its imperial partners, Britain’s goal is to control Africa’s oil. Cameron is not Anthony Eden, but almost. Same school. Same values. In the media-pack, the words colonialism and imperialism are no longer used, so that the cynical and the credulous can celebrate state violence in its more palatable form.

And as “Mr. Hopey Changey” (the name that Ted Rall, the great American cartoonist, gives Barack Obama), is fawned upon by the British elite and launches another insufferable presidential campaign, the Anglo-American reign of terror proceeds in Afghanistan and elsewhere, with the murder of people by unmanned drones – a US/Israel innovation, embraced by Obama. For the record, on a scorecard of imposed misery, from secret trials and prisons and the hounding of whistleblowers and the criminalising of dissent to the incarceration and impoverishment of his own people, mostly black people, Obama is as bad as George W. Bush.

The Palestinians understand all this. As their young people courageously face the violence of Israel’s blood-racism, carrying the keys of their grandparents’ stolen homes, they are not even included in Mr. Hopey Changey’s list of peoples in the Middle East whose liberation is long overdue. What the oppressed need, he said on 19 May, is a dose of “America’s interests [that] are essential to them”. He insults us all.

http://www.johnpilger.com

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10 Reasons to vote Green

1. Fight the cuts!

The Green Party stands full-square in opposition to the cuts. They’re totally unnecessary. This is ideological bias by the Con-Dem government for the banks, for bailouts, for corporate tax avoidance – and against the rest of us.

2. Tax fairly!

After 13 years of “Labour”, inequality is greater in Britain now than any time since World War II. This will worsen with 20% VAT, as young people lose many existing options through cut youth services (especially in Hull with its high youth unemployment), and as up to 1 million lose their jobs.

The changes we fight for are for banks and corporations to pay their way: a Robin Hood Tax on banks, the closure of tax loopholes, the collection of high-earner tax (many high earners on £150,000 and over, have not been taxed for over a year!), and ultimately for the 50% rate to apply to those on £100,000 and over. Our taxes will be fairer and redistributive, not with the heavy bias to the rich that we see now.

3. Free University Eduction.

No to tuition fees. The LibDem u-turn on this was stunning – as is their complete sell-out, so far, to a highly right-wing Tory agenda. This is NOT what people voted for last year, especially with the Lib Dems’ centre-left policy then.

4. Renewable energy for Hull.

Kirklees has lots of it – solar panels, ground source heating, why not us? Energy prices are no joke. Oil decline is about to become a reality. Hull City Council should use its power now to promote wind capability WITHIN the city and/or CHP (Combined Heat and Power) plants – for the people.

5. Anti-capitalist.

One we thing we can be certain of: the 3 leading parties are as pro-capitalist as they come! The Green Party doesn’t promote itself as anti-capitalist, or pro-socialist, because the terms get in the way. But essentially we put people – and planet – before profit. Politics is for people, families and society; it’s about the Earth we live on, about equality and the sustainability of the way we live now, and the coming generations.

6. Hull needs the best.

A vote for the usual suspects means yet another voice for Labour or the Lib Dems – and, in Hull, all the bigotry that’s associated with it. A Green councillor will work equally with both sides for the best outcomes regardless of party camps.

7. To help protect the NHS and other health provisions, from creeping privatisation, from mass redundancies and from the plans to make all surgeries into consortiums with doctors as managers.

8. An increase in the Green vote will make the other parties stop and take note that people are responding to the pro-people policies we are fighting for, and help decrease their increasing right-wing stance.

9. So little is being done to really protect our local environment. A green voice will make a big difference when it comes to planning applications, for example, and other initiatives to promote nature over unthinking human destruction.

10. Greens are promoting a YES vote to AV. It’s not PR, true, but it’s a step in the right direction. By ordering your preferred candidates, it favours the most widely acceptable candidates and so excludes extremists. AV will create 44 new marginal constituencies.

Yet another bin Laden death claim

My position has been for some years that bin Laden was already dead.

This is based on lots of earlier reports from various sources. Though not pronouncements from a President – though again some will remember Bush’s infamous “well you know, one man just doesn’t interest me anymore…” words, from years ago.

Some may remember that in 2006 the FBI was on record as not wanting bin Laden for 9/11 due to “no hard evidence” (not quite what we were told years earlier).

One book to read, for example, is David Ray Griffin’s Osama bin Laden: Dead or Alive. A number of reports have bin Laden either killed, or dead (from kidney disease), in late 2001. I have no reason to believe it happened just now because Obama tells me.

Overall then Sun/Mon events were a psyop – for us. A major win for our state(s) and the military, to unify our national support. The so-called death picture is a fake (even the Daily Mail questions it!) based on another person’s death picture released in early 2010. The burial at sea handily destroys all evidence (the claim it satisfied Muslim death rites should draw a wry smile – as if the US military were suddenly interested in such things).

As to our Afghanistan policy, surely now the job is done(!) Bring the troops home…

Much more importantly, after 10 years of America and Britain in Afghanistan, the people have an average life expectancy of only 45 years.

For US planners, the prospects for the pipeline there remain a possibility, which will only grow as oil declines. So it does the empire no harm to continue the fight to “help the people” and spread “democracy”, while their arms companies turn a profit, and to kill more bin Ladens, preferably having built them up into monsters in the media beforehand.

It’s nothing to do with justice, or even “winning a war”, let alone actually building a nation (which the US unjustly gets crticised for).

But I suppose it’s good theatre.

Martin Deane