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imperialism & war | legacies

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED: Majority 18-29 Year Old Americans Say Vietnam War 'Not A Mistake'

Yes, a majority of Americans, 53 percent according to this week's Gallup poll, think it was "a mistake sending troops to fight in Iraq" 10 years ago. But the lessons of our folly will likely not stick for long. The memories fade as we now see in that same Gallup poll with perceptions of the Vietnam War. A majority of Americans ages 18-29 believe sending U.S. troops to Vietnam was "not a mistake." By contrast, 70 percent of those 50 and older, the generation with contemporary knowledge of the war, think it was.

That the young now approve of an irrational conflict in which 3.4 million Indochinese and 58,000 Americans died suggests that even the madness that was Iraq will come to be viewed by this fatally jingoistic nation as a good war.
from an article in the mainstream liberal (Robert Scheer's) web site truthdig, some telling poll statistics:

homepage: homepage: http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/dumb_wars_now_and_forever_20130319/


War Lovers Pitch Book at Powells, Meet Blowback from Wise Elders 21.Mar.2013 20:35

Lefty

On Wednesday, March 20th at 7:30pm, Powell's City of Books on Burnside hosted the coeditor the book "Fire and Forget: Short Stories from the Long War."

Fire and Forget: Short Stories from the Long War (Da Capo) is an unprecedented collection of hard-hitting, poignant short stories written by 13 young veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. On-hand for a panel discussion will be coeditor/contributor Roy Scranton and contributors David Abrams and Gavin Kovite. This event is cosponsored by the Returning Veterans Project.

At their appearance at Powell's, Scranton, Abrams, and Kovite tried to sell the idea that the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars were "just wars" which improved the lives the people of Iraq and Afghanistan while protecting Americans. They said they hoped that their book would help to persuade the
public that the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars were justified.

During the Q and A, a woman stood up and said that the Iraq and Afghanistan wars were based on lies, were crimes against the people of Iraq and Afghanistan, and were extremely detrimental for the US troops and for the US economy. Then a Viet Nam War veteran stood up and said basically the same thing.

A young Powell's staffer interrupted both the woman and the veteran, and he tried to pressure them to stop speaking, but they both ignored him, and they both said what they wanted to say. The crowd was swayed by the woman and the veteran's speeches, and for the remainder of the evening the three pro-War authors were conducting a damage-control operation for their Imperialist ideology.

The knowledge and ethics gap between the elder, wiser generation and the young war-lovers was palpable at the event.

Mnufactured history, State propaganda, and professional sycophancy. 22.Mar.2013 09:30

Lefty

The first paragraph of my preceding comment should read: On Wednesday, March 20th, at 7:30pm, Powell's City of Books on Burnside hosted three of the authors, including the co-editor, of the war-fiction anthology "Fire and Forget: Short Stories from the Long War."

During the Question and Answer session that followed the three "Fire and Forget" authors' presentation at Powell's Books, the authors were asked why they chose fiction, instead of non-fiction, to describe the US-led wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. The authors replied that fiction provided a more creative way to present their message, which they hoped would become the dominant narrative for the history of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The US Government, the US Military, and the CIA provide funding, support, and a career path for propaganda writers and filmmakers through various agencies. Shortly after 9/11, the US Government announced that it was recruiting writers to construct a narrative around the War on Terrorism. Later the US Military announced that it was directing active-duty service personnel to write pro-war and pro-military blogs on the Internet. Journalists are embedded with the US Military and the CIA in war zones, in foreign assignments, and within the USA. Since World War Two, the US Military has maintained a film propaganda agency, headquartered in Los Angeles, that "liaisons" with the Hollywood film industry to produce propaganda films that masquerade as action films and as historical or political dramas.

In "Seal Target Geronimo" (2011), a book about the alleged raid by US Navy Seals that supposedly killed Osama bin Laden, author Chuck Pfarrer wrote:

"Just days after the operation, the CIA started to meet with authors. The agency knew that JSOC [Joint Special Operations Command] would not cooperate with journalists or historians -- and that would allow them a chance to "inform the narrative" of the raid at Abbottabad. There was a legend to be made, and all that was necessary was to pour out the facts into the waiting notebooks of eager journalists.
But which story was the right one? The forty-five minute firefight? The "kill mission" to Abbottabad? The story was becoming muddled with corrections, and it looked like the tail was starting to wag the dog. The White House cracked down, and in the second week of May, the word went out -- no more leaks. Anyone who talked would be fired. This wrong-footed the CIA's Office of Public Affairs (OPA), who had already begun to meet with several authors. Writers and screenwriters who had been invited to headquarters for talks on background suddenly found themselves frozen out.[...]
As he prepared to move over to the Pentagon, Leon Panetta gave a CIA tour to a gaggle of twenty-five freshman congressmen. The topic of the Bin Laden movie actually came up, and one of the congressmen asked Panetta who he wanted to play him in the movie. Panetta answered right away -- "Al Pacino," he said.
Before Leon Panetta left the CIA, he'd quietly given the go-ahead to bring back the writers. But not just any [italics] writers. Those frozen few who had hoped the agency would call them back now read that the CIA was in the movie [italics] business.
Vanity Fair [italics] reported that Oscar-winner Kathryn Bigelow [who directed the Hollywood war-fiction propaganda film "The Hurt Locker," which was released in 2008] would direct the CIA's version of the Abbottabad raid for Sony Pictures. As Ms Bigelow lunched in the CIA's food court, she was unlikely to have spotted a table of plain-clothed SEALs, but they saw her."

Kathryn Bigelow's film "Zero Dark Thirty" (2012), about the alleged raid by US Navy Seals at Abbottabad, Pakistan, that supposedly killed Osama bin Laden, was nominated for five Oscars for the 85th Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actess (Jessica Chastain), and Best Original Screenplay. It was a theatrical triumph of manufactured history, State propaganda, and professional sycophancy.

What can one expect? 22.Mar.2013 16:47

Old timer

When my kid's male (and some female) friends know the hitory and background, can name and tell of the scenario, of every version of their warlike video games than real history?

Thanks for and to those who stood up.*

*Sorry, but in this day and internet world, this really did happen as protrayed, right? And if the answer's 'yes', am I being lied to? How am I to really know? Will Powell's publish a conflicting or corroborating version of the event, or hire a fiction writer to do that for them?

Seriously, all the cynicism aside, really, thank you to those who stood up and stood their ground. Wish I was there.

I was not at the book presentation at Powell's, but my sister was. 23.Mar.2013 09:09

Lefty

Old timer wrote: "*Sorry, but in this day and internet world, this really did happen as protrayed, right?"

I was not at the book presentation at Powell's, but my sister was. The following day, she told me a very detailed account of what happened there.
My sister normally avoids discussing politics, and she is not an activist, but what happened at the Powell's event had a profound and inspiring effect on her.

In my comment above, I did not include everything that my sister told me about the incident, although my comment contains the gist of it. My sister gave me descriptions of the authors and the people from the audience who spoke, and she shared her opinions about what each of them said. My sister said that the authors Scranton, Abrams, and Kovite had arrogant attitudes, and they were dismissive of the suffering that the wars have caused. She said that Scranton was very concieted about his education and his achievements.

Scranton was very conceited 23.Mar.2013 14:41

L

She said that Scranton was very concieted about his education and his achievements.

These wars were/are successful, when viewed throught the imperialist prism 26.Mar.2013 13:36

coaster

These wars made it possible to outsource slavery to these countries,and to exploit their resources. Vietnam is now a major source of cheap clothing--check out the labels on the clothes you buy or borrow. Iraq oil is now being sold to corporations which work with the US government, and the Iraqi people have been introduced to the big-box, junk-food economy of the US, as Vietnam has. Coca-Cola was a major interloper into Vietnam in the 1960's. I'm sure Coca-Cola and others are busy selling water back to Iraqis, along with their signature junk foods.

The 'mistake' wars of the US--Mexican, Spanish-American, Hawaian invasion and permanent occupation, Korea, etc, are not mistakes at all, but incursions to push products on the people, and exploit their resources. The 'press' has to make it sound like it's all a 'big mistake' to create the idea that 'liberals' exist who oppose the wars because they are 'failures'. Blah, blah, blah...

Real Liberals oppose US Imperialism both in war and in commerce 30.Mar.2013 08:52

Lefty

Correct, "coaster".

Real Liberals do not oppose the US wars of Imperialism because they are "failures"; we oppose them because they are Imperialist aggressions consistent with the standard US foreign policy of Imperialist aggression in war and in commerce.