Let’s be honest, quite a few Americans love a good war, especially those Americans who have never had to bear witness to one first hand. War is the ultimate tribally vicarious experience. Anyone, even pudgy armchair generals with deep-seated feelings of personal inadequacy, can revel in the victories and actions of armies a half a world away as if they themselves stood on the front lines risking possible annihilation at the hands of dastardly cartoon-land “evil doers”. They may have never done a single worthwhile thing in their lives, but at least they can bask in the perceived glory of their country’s military might.
This attitude of swollen ego through proxy is not limited to the “Right” side of the political spectrum as some might expect. In fact, if the terrifyingly demented presidency of Barack Obama has proven anything so far, it is that elements of the “Left” are just as bloodthirsty as any NeoCon, and just as ready to blindly support the political supremacy of their “side” regardless of any broken promises, abandoned principles, or openly flaunted hypocrisies. No matter how reasonable or irrefutable the arguments against a particular conflict are, there will ALWAYS be a certain percentage of the populace which ignores all logic and barrels forward to cheerlead violent actions which ultimately only benefit a select and elite few.
They do this, though they rarely openly admit it, because of unbalanced and irrational biases which drive their decision making processes. In the case of the wars in the Middle East, the common public argument boils down to one of “self defense”. “They are coming to get us!” At least, that is what we are constantly told. And I’m sure that some Americans out there truly believe this. However, in their heart of hearts, others instead relish the idea of imposing their world views and philosophical systems upon others, even if it means using cluster bombs and predator drones.
Some people simply hate Muslims, for one reason or another. Some people believe that war will bring with it economic gain. Some are so afraid of what they do not comprehend that they only feel secure by attacking it. Some believe that the U.S. citizenry is morally obligated to become entangled with governments like Israel’s, and support them without question as if they are infallible, though they are often just as corrupt as the governments we are directed to despise. And yet others (for religious purposes), actually clamor for Middle Eastern destruction in the desperate hopes that their version of biblical prophecy will be vindicated. Ultimately, most Americans who support continued destruction in the Middle East, or anywhere else for that matter, do so out a selfish need for private absolution and elevation, not out of a sincere sense of patriotism, and not because nations like Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, or Iran present a legitimate danger to their safety.
These men and women have invested their very identities into the mechanizations of collective war. They will not be swayed by evidence or honorable arguments. Any criticism of the actions of the collective will immediately be treated as a personal attack on their individual character, causing their minds to shut down completely.
As far as Iran is concerned, I am not here to convince the war-drum pounding zombie hoards infesting the mentally impotent sewage soaked wastelands of my country that their rationalizations for raining laser guided death on the third world is a “reprehensible thing”. Given their impenetrable biases, which I listed above, that would be a complete waste of time.
I could, indeed, point out how in 1953 the U.S. and Britain overthrew the democratically elected leader of Iran, Mohammad Mossaddegh, because he refused to allow global corporate interests to exploit his country’s oil resources. I could outline how the forced CIA installation of the Shah in Iran and the creation of his secret police led to the torture and murder of thousands of innocent people. I could list similar covert activities over the past 100 years or so, in countries all over the world, which have created the now universal disdain the third world has for the U.S. government. I could even show them a PBS special from 1987 which effectively details this history and warns of what is now going on today. The kind of mainstream news coverage that networks currently blacklist honest and daring journalists for:
But what about all the nuclear talk being shoved down our throats lately? Doesn’t this supersede any historical concerns between Iran and the U.S.? What if the terrorists get their hands on “the bomb”?!
On this issue, I could easily interject the fact that countries supposedly hostile to the U.S., like North Korea, have long had nuclear capability, and certainly the means to use infiltrators to deliver that technology, yet, we haven’t sent the Western war machine after them. I would also set the record straight by mentioning that the ONLY country in the world that has used a nuclear weapon against another is the U.S. I could educate these people on the exposure of secret Israeli nuclear weapons programs since the 1970’s, and the fact that Israel even attempted to illegally sell this technology to Apartheid South Africa:
I could try to clear the air by reminding the uninformed that Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta recently admitted that Iran has no nuclear weapons capability. And, that this fact was repeated by an Iranian nuclear scientist, Sharhram Amiri, who defected to the U.S. in 2010 with the help of the CIA in the hopes that he could be used to disseminate propaganda on “secret” nuclear weapons programs in his former homeland. Instead, he only reinforced the assertion that there are no such programs:
With the CIA made to look foolish, they have now decided that Amiri is “peripheral” to the Iranian nuke programs, and is no longer a solid source of information. I could follow by pointing out how decidedly convenient this is…
What about all the similarities between the lies on WMD’s in Iraq and the rhetoric against Iran today? What about the disinformation put forward by the IAEA and its cadre of foreign policy yes-men?