Evolution of Freedom of Speech

Evolution of Freedom of Speech
the key to peace is free speech

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

FROM THIS ILLUSTRIOUS LIST, NAME THE WAR HEROES

Al Tavers 11:07am Feb 22 FROM HIS POST AT HIS GROUP, "JFK ASSASSINATION":

Let's play a little game... From this illustrious list, name the war heroes:

Obama
GW Bush
Clinton
GHW Bush
Reagan
Carter
Ford
Nixon
Johnson
JFK


------------------
ANSWER: (SCROLL DOWN)












JOHN F.KENNEDY ON PT 109








FACTS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Lee Harvey Oswald did not kill John F.Kennedy. But FOUR future Presidents after Kennedy WERE IN DALLAS ON NOVEMBER 22, 1963, the day Kennedy was shot:





Lyndon Johnson (took over the office when JFK died)
Richard Nixon (resigned from office due to corruption)
Gerald Ford (not elected --took over the office due to Nixon's VP's corruption))
George H.W. Bush (served one term)

ALL FOUR OF THESE PRESIDENTS SUPPORTED WAR.
IN ADDITION, THE SON OF GEORGE H.W.BUSH--GEORGE W. BUSH--WAS ELECTED TO A 2ND TERM ONLY BY DECREE OF THE SUPREME COURT -- AND BEGAN TWO WARS OF HIS OWN.

Monday, February 14, 2011


I WAS SHOCKED WHEN I TOLD A REMOTE FAMILY MEMBER LIVING IN TEXAS TO PLEASE CHECK OUT HOW SCANDINAVIAN COUNTRIES HANDLE PROBLEMS SUCH AS HEALTH CARE, POLLUTION, HOUSING, .FREE COLLEGE, AND THE FACT THAT T
HERE IS PRACTICALLY NO SUCH THING AS A HOMELESS PERSON, PLUS MUCH LESS VIOLENCE -- AND HE SAID NO COUNTRY WAS BETTER THAN AMERICA, AND THAT I WAS LYING.
THE LADY FEATURED IN MY BLOG TODAY KNOWS WHAT SHE IS TALKING ABOUT....

What a 'Liberal Media' Might

Look Like

By Lisa Pease
February 9, 2011

Editor’s Note: For decades now, the American Right has pushed the myth that the national U.S. news media is “liberal,” even though the owners are mostly wealthy corporations run by rich executives who generally favor Republicans over Democrats. And that was true even in the days before Fox News and right-wing-dominated talk radio.

Even the limited inroads of liberalism in media have been under pressure in recent days with MSNBC’s ouster of liberal icon Keith Olbermann and AOL’s purchase of HuffingtonPost (raising new questions about Arianna Huffington’s ideological sojourns). However, in this essay, Lisa Pease contrasts what today’s media is versus what a “liberal media” might look like:

I’m surprised that otherwise intelligent people continue to believe the myth that the media is “liberal.” I think it’s worth discussing what a liberal media would look like if we had one, so we can better understand thttp://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/45128000/gif/_45128350_rich_poor_226.gifhat we don’t have one.

Let’s imagine a fictional cable network called LNN – the Liberal News Network. What might the morning news on such a channel be?

The show might lead with pictures of starving children all over the world, so that while you sat down to breakfast, you’d be reminded of just how lucky you were to have been born in the U.S., and how others are still very much in need.

Viewers would be encouraged to send in at least some of their morning latte money to feed a baby for a week. Each morning, the number of children who had been moved out of poverty would also be shown. If there were truly a liberal media, that number would be growing, daily, by leaps and bounds.

You would see pictures of the war – really horrible, tragic pictures, showing not just death, but the maiming, the suffering, the devastation to innocents we currently think of solely as “collateral damage.” Each day, the grievances of both sides would be fully aired.

We’d hear not only from our own soldiers but from soldiers we were fighting, so we could start to understand why they are fighting back. If we are truly the good guys, there’d be no reason for anyone to oppose us.

A truly liberal media would allow us to hear the other side so we could better understand how our actions are affecting others, and what we could do to improve relations with the ultimate goal of ending all wars.

Truly, fostering better communication skills, deploring greed, and promoting fairness would be keystones of this network.

The commentators would be drawn from not merely all nationalities, but all walks of life. Instead of recycling the same news and intelligence and government figures, commentators would be sought among farm workers and blue-collar workers as well as low-level white-collar workers. The view from the socio-economic top would be balanced by the view from the bottom.

On LNN, union issues would be a regular discussion. Are workers getting a fair shake? Are unions really helping their membership or are they getting too close to management? When do unions go too far?

The ecological “state of the planet” would also be a regular discussion. Audiences would learn the science behind pollution, so that they’d make the link between the chemical elements in the products they buy and the environmental damage caused at every point in the production chain.

Corporations that were finding a way to offset their environmental damage would be recognized as heroes, while those whose policies amounted to a hit-and-run on the environment would be publicly castigated at ever turn.

Truly educational information about child rearing would be offered. Are those soft drinks making your children obese? No amount of advertiser action would stop LNN from exposing such a connection.

Can yelling at your child be a form of abuse? A liberal media would talk about things many people would rather not think about.

A liberal media would not make us feel good all the time, but would poke at us and challenge us to be better parents, better neighbors, better people.

A liberal news channel would have a regular report about working conditions around the world. Would you still buy that piece of clothing if you knew it was sown under essentially slave-labor conditions, sometimes by children working 12 hours a day?

Would you admire China’s economy if you realized its coal-powered growth made it one of the most polluted places in the world? Would you travel to Thailand if you understood how much of the tourist economy depends on sex-slave trafficking dollars?

Or might you spend that money instead on a country that plowed the money received from tourism into a public fund from which all citizens who shared that country could benefit? Would you enjoy flowers sent to you on Valentine’s Day if you found those flowers had been picked by forced labor on farms where women routinely faced sexual harassment?

If we had a liberal media, we’d be hearing about other economic models around the world. When does capitalism work best? Would the answer be like what we hear from CNBC anchors who say capitalism should be unregulated – or “self-regulating” – allowing monopolies to take over, which then can raise prices and strangle our options?

A rising tide won’t lift all boats if it’s only happening in a private pool.

LNN would talk about the difference between labor-based income and non-labor-based income (passive income), and discuss how the upper class has kept the latter from the masses to preserve the power of the rich, and how we need to change that.

There are other models, even within our own country, such as the Alaska Permanent Fund, a fund that allows all citizens of Alaska to receive royalties on the oil recovered from their state.

All products come ultimately from some finite earth resource. Imagine if we all had a share of income generated from the products taken from the ground in our respective countries.

LNN would never shade the truth to further an agenda. The facts would be selective, necessarily, but extraordinary effort would be used to ensure all sides of an issue were fairly presented.

Note that, however, that does not mean all sides would be proportionally presented by certain measures. Although 20 percent of the people control 93 percent of the wealth, it does not follow that they should be allowed to control 93 percent of the media. The other 80 percent deserve a much larger say than they have.

Our fictional liberal network would be absolutely fearless in taking on corruption within our own government. A liberal media would relentlessly ferret out secrets, exposing them unless doing so would genuinely damage more people than would be helped.

Even “taboo” topics with strong factual support, such as the Kennedy assassination and the October Surprise case, would receive a fair hearing, on our mythical LNN.

A liberal media would talk seriously about the very real danger that the use of computers in our elections may be compromising our votes. Without a transparent system, without a way to genuinely audit, by hand and in public, election results, what’s to stop a computer voting manufacturer from building in hidden switches that allow the reprogramming of elections in undetectable ways?

Nothing, as this network would point out to us regularly until people filled the streets in protest, insisting on a change.

==Note by JVB: What good is a "paper ballot" if the ballots are read by electronic devices? People can count -- and recount, if necessary. NEVER trust electronic voting machines. And don't listen to polls: many polls are now skewed to better reflect the desired response. Polls have become propaganda tools.===

A liberal media would even dare to explore all the money in the sporting world and ask, is anyone really worth that many millions? Should there be a cap – or at least a significantly higher marginal tax rate – beyond which some of the money goes back into the communities that have to put up with the traffic, pollution, noise and drunken damage that accompanies such events?

Sure, keep your first $50 million. You worked hard, you risked your life, you earned it. But how much more than that does one ballplayer or owner need? If that cap allowed whole communities to be employed, would that be a worthy trade? A truly liberal media would open such discussions.

A liberal media would ask hard questions of corporations. If the product you create comes from a violence-torn region, where the violence comes over the fight for the minerals you need to make your product, what responsibility should the corporation have for that violence? What should the corporation give back to those areas to end the violence?

A liberal media would be inspiring. Every day, people who fought for justice and won would be highlighted. Legislators who took brave stands that helped the many, rather than the privileged few, would be lauded.

Shareholders who overthrew bad regimes within corporations, ushering in management that was more socially responsible would be featured. Class-action suits won against corporate polluters would be praised.

The values of fairness, equality, freedom of movement and opportunity and – perhaps especially – the freedom to imagine a better, more equitable future – would be the cornerstone of this liberal media network.

A liberal network would not treat opinions as news, nor facts as opinions. Viewers would be educated to quickly recognize the difference. And historical context would be brought into play.

Events from the past would be use to better inform our understanding of present events, because after all, everything is connected. Every event transpires based on what has led up to that point. There is no “spontaneous evolution” at play in world events.

LNN doesn’t exist, of course, and it’s no surprise why. Media depends on advertisers for sustenance. Major media outlets depend on major corporations. Major corporations don’t want you to hear the kind of stories mentioned above because then you might press them to change their ways, cutting into their profits. And that would be bad for business, even if it might be great for the planet.

Now, this doesn’t mean you can’t find good news on television. CNN, MSNBC, and even Fox, once in a while, produce useful and valuable stories. But not one of them shows you the spectrum of coverage demonstrated here.

There are a lot of points of view you never hear, a lot of stories never attempted. There are many places they dare not go, in their coverage.

There is no liberal network out there. There is no “fair and balanced” network out there, either. They are all unbalanced in favor of the corporate landscape from which their revenues grow.



THIS ARTICLE CAME FROM

http://www.consortiumnews.com/2011/020911a.html

Lisa Pease is a historian and writer who specializes in the mysteries of the John F. Kennedy era.

Friday, January 14, 2011

WHO KILLED OUR PEOPLE IN 2001? WHO ARE WE KILLING TODAY? WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT IT?


OUR LEADERS IN 2001.

THEY TOLD US THEY HAD TO INVADE AFGHANISTAN AND IRAQ.

HERE'S WHY,ACCORDING TO OUR LEADERS:

"Saddam had an established relationship with Al Qaeda, providing training to Al Qaeda members in the areas of poisons, gases, making conventional weapons."
- Cheney in October 2003.

Cheney has repeatedly asserted that the U.S. needed to go to war with Iraq because, he said, U.S. intelligence knew that Saddam was working with Al Qaeda. As he said on Meet the Press, "We know that [Saddam] has a long-standing relationship with various terrorist groups, including the al-Qaeda organization." However, in June, the U.N. formally investigated the claim and found absolutely no evidence.

As reported by the NY Times, "The chairman of the monitoring group appointed by the United Nations Security Council to track Al Qaeda told reporters that his team had found no evidence linking Al Qaeda to Saddam Hussein" [6/27/03]. Similarly, even the 9/11 commission report undercuts claims before the war that Hussein had links to Al Qaeda.

According to national security officials, "In the 14 weeks since the fall of Baghdad, coalition forces have not brought to light any significant evidence demonstrating the bond between Iraq and Al Qaeda…Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and Abu Zubaydah, the two highest-ranking Qaeda operatives in custody, have told investigators that Mr. bin Laden shunned cooperation with Saddam Hussein" [NY Times, 7/20/03]

Despite all this Cheney repeated the assertion in 2004, stating that Saddam "had long established ties with Al Qaeda."
- June 14, 2004

REF: "WHAT ELSE WAS CHENEY DOING WRONG?"http://infowars.net/articles/august2007/010807Cheney.htm

SO WHAT DID WE DO?
WE MADE A PREEMPTIVE ATTACK ON IRAQ, AND KILLED HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF INNOCENT IRAQI CITIZENS, MAKING MUSLIM ENEMIES BY THE MILLIONS IN THE PROCESS.

WE AMERICANS WENT ALONG WITH IT BECAUSE OF NINE-ELEVEN. WE WERE FRIGHTENED. WE WERE EASILY LED TO GIVE UP MANY LIBERTIES, TURNING OUR COUNTRY INTO A POLICE STATE. TODAY, OUR CHILDREN GET GROPED BY AIRPORT AUTHORITIES, SPYING ON ORDINARY AMERICANS IS THE RULE, AND WE HAVE GOOD, HARD-WORKING PEOPLE OUT OF WORK AND HOMELESS ON THE STREETS.

Foreclosure Record: Banks Seize 1.05 Million Homes In 2010
13 Jan 2011 ... 2.9 million US home foreclosure filings in 2010, new record .... S
www.huffingtonpost.com/.../foreclosure-record-2010_n_808398.html - Cached

WHO WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS? ME? YOU? INSTEAD OF RESCUING OUR PEOPLE, OUR LEADERS RESCUED THE BANKS, WHO CONTINUED TO FORECLOSE ON HOMES ANYWAY. HAD THAT BAILOUT MONEY GONE TO AMERICAN TAXPAYERS INSTEAD OF TO BANKERS, MANY OF THEM WOULD HAVE BEEN ABLE TO CATCH UP ON OVERDUE PAYMENTS, STAY IN THEIR HOMES, AND HOLD ONTO THEIR JOBS. IMAGINE BEING HOMELESS AND TRYING TO FIND A JOB, WHEN YOU HAVE TO SLEEP IN YOUR CLOTHES!

WHO CAUSED THE CRISIS?
WAS IT YOU?
WAS IT ME?

WHO WAS REALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR NINE-ELEVEN? HERE'S A HINT:

PLEASE COMPARE THE LIVE TV SHOT OF 9-11,2ND PLANE CRASH, WITH THE REPLAY ON THE EVENING NEWS LATER...



THE FILM WAS ALTERED.

A PLANE APPEARS THAT IS NOT IN THE ORIGINAL...

WHO ARE AMERICA'S ENEMIES?

WHY DID WE GO TO IRAQ? WHY ARE WE STILL IN AFGHANISTAN?

HOWEVER,RETURNING TROOPS HOME WILL ADD TO THE UNEMPLOYMENT BURDEN.

AMERICAN COMPANIES MAKING INSTRUMENTS OF WAR WILL LOSE CONTRACTS AND PEOPLE WILL LOSE JOBS.

THE AMERICAN WAR MACHINE MUST KEEP GRINDING UP PEOPLE-- BOTH AMERICANS AND THEIR 'ENEMIES' TO KEEP PROFITS ROLLING IN. WHO CARES IF AMERICA IS DESTROYED?

THE BANKER'S DON'T CARE.

OUR GOVERNMENT DOESN'T CARE. WE TRIED TO MAKE IT CHANGE. OBAMA, HOWEVER, IS HELPLESS.

TO HELP OUR NATION AND TO OBTAIN A LASTING PEACE, BEFORE THE ENTIRE MUSLIM WORLD TURNS AGAINST US, WE MUST FIRST LOOK AT THE ROOTS OF OUR PROBLEMS FOR THE KEY TO THE ANSWERS.

THE ROOT OF THE PROBLEM

WHEN YOU UNDERSTAND THAT LEE HARVEY OSWALD WAS INNOCENT AND THAT JOHN F.KENNEDY'S DEATH MEANT OUR COUNTRY WAS TAKEN OVER FROM THE INSIDE, THEN YOU CAN UNDERSTAND THE POWER BEHIND THE SMILING PRESIDENT AND THE PAID-OFF MEDIA.

THE PEOPLE WHO TOOK KENNEDY FROM US ARE STILL POWERFUL -- AND THEY HAVE INSTALLED THEIR OWN PUPPETS AND PUPPET MASTERS, WHO DO NOT CARE ABOUT YOU OR AMERICA.

THEY ARE STILL DESTROYING OUR PEOPLE'S JOBS, HOMES AND LIVES. THEY BEGAN WITH VIETNAM AND ARE STILL STILL SENDING OUR KIDS INTO SENSELESS WARS AND DESTROYING OUR WILL TO FIGHT THE EVIL THEY PERPETRATE IN OUR OWN COUNTRY.

OUR KIDS HAVE TO SELL THEIR SOULS TO PAY FOR THEIR COLLEGE EDUCATIONS.

OUR FOOD TASTES BAD AND IS UNSAFE.

THE WATER IS FULL OF CHEMICALS.

OUR SKIES ARE FILLED WITH CHEMTRAILS THAT THE GOVERNMENT PRETENDS DO NOT EXIST.

OUR VACCINES ARE UNSAFE, AND OUR HOSPITALS AND DOCTORS AND HEALTH INSURANCE COMPANIES BANKRUPT US SO WE HAVE NOTHING FOR OUR CHILDREN TO INHERIT.

OUR JOBS HAVE GONE OVERSEAS. PEOPLE GET ARRESTED BY POLICE WHO ARE NOT PROTECTORS OF THE PEOPLE,BUT OF THE STATE. JUST TRY TO HAVE A PEACEFUL DEMONSTRATION -- PAID TROUBLEMAKERS WILL CREATE MISCHIEF AND MAKE SURE LOS OF PEOPLE GET ARRESTED.

DRUGS AND ALCOHOL OVERWHELM THE POOR. SCHOOLS CONTINUE TO DECLINE IN QUALITY.

MEANWHILE, OUR LEADERS --FAT CATS WHO KEEP ON SPENDING US TO BANKRUPTCY --GIVE THEMSELVES RAISES AND GREAT HEALTH CARE. WHEN THEY RETIRE, THEY GET PAID FOR LIFE, WHILE WE ARE TOLD WE MUST WORK MORE YEARS THAN EVER, AND SHOULD NOT RELY ON SOCIAL SECURITY. ABOVE ALL, WE MUST BE AT WAR WITH MUSLIMS SO WE CAN HAVE NO CHANCE FOR WORLD PEACE!

BUT WAR WILL MAKE PLENTY OF MONEY FOR THE MILITARY-INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX.


WHAT CAN YOU DO?

FIRST --BUY THE FIVE BOOKS THAT WILL GIVE YOU THE TRUE HISTORY OF OUR COUNTRY, AND WHY AND WHEN IT CHANGED.

ME & LEE. DR.MARY'S MONKEY. JFK AND THE UNSPEAKABLE. CROSSFIRE. LBJ, THE MASTERMIND OF JFK'S ASSASSINATION.

GET THESE BOOKS INTO OUR SCHOOLS AND LIBRARIES.
TELL PEOPLE ABOUT THEM.

LEARN TO RECOGNIZE WHO THE REAL ENEMIES OF THE PEOPLE ARE.

Vice President Cheney answers a question from the Tony Snow Show via telephone, from the White House:



http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2006/03/20060329-2.html

Q: I want to be clear because I've heard you say this, and I've heard the President say it, but I want you to say it for my listeners, which is that the White House has never argued that Saddam was directly involved in September 11th, correct?

THE VICE PRESIDENT: That's correct. We had one report early on from another intelligence service that suggested that the lead hijacker, Mohamed Atta, had met with Iraqi intelligence officials in Prague, Czechoslovakia. And that reporting waxed and waned where the degree of confidence in it, and so forth, has been pretty well knocked down now at this stage, that that meeting ever took place. So we've never made the case, or argued the case that somehow Osama bin Laden [sic] was directly involved in 9/11. That evidence has never been forthcoming. But there -- that's a separate proposition from the question of whether or not there was some kind of a relationship between the Iraqi government, Iraqi intelligence services and the al Qaeda organization.



WE ARE STILL A GOOD PEOPLE.
WE ARE STILL A BRAVE PEOPLE.
WE CAN STILL DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS MESS.




ALSO:

REFUSE TO BUY ANYTHING MADE IN CHINA. PASS THAT WORD AROUND.

TRY TO PURCHASE ONLY ITEMS MADE IN AMERICA.

BUY AMERICAN CARS! REFUSE TO BUY A FOREIGN CAR.

TELL YOUR FRIENDS TO START WITH BOYCOTTING CHINESE PRODUCTS.
GET THE VITAL BOOKS TO THE PEOPLE, SO THEY WILL UNDERSTAND HOW THEY HAVE BEEN DUPED.
BUY AMERICAN.
PASS THIS MESSAGE TO EVERYONE YOU CARE ABOUT.

JVB

Friday, January 7, 2011

THE ART OF WAR: LESSONS WE CAN’T IGNORE FROM THE CHINESE CLASSIC



James Douglass, author of “JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters,” says John F. Kennedy’s Commencement Address at American University in Washington on June 10, 1963 is his greatest speech ever. You can listen to Kennedy’s speech here.

THE ART OF WAR: LESSONS WE CAN’T IGNORE FROM THE CHINESE CLASSIC
By Judyth Vary Baker


In 2009, the American people were asked to wait until December, 2010, to evaluate the progress of U.S. military strategy in Afghanistan, as reported by CNN on December 9, 2009:

“Gen. David Petraeus, head of U.S. Central Command [said]….Turmoil within the Afghan government over the 18 months of the troop increase is also expected as corruption is rooted out... That, combined with an expected backlash in the spring and summer, Petraeus cautioned, means officials and the public should wait until December 2010 to evaluate the progress of the U.S. military strategy.”
General Stanley McChrystal told us at about the same time that isolating the people from the influence of the Taliban would lead to success in Afghanistan:
"At the end of the day, the insurgency needs access to the population to be effective," McChrystal said in an interview with CNN's Christiane Amanpour. "They need to be able to coerce the population, to tax the population, to recruit from the population, and to prevent the government from extending its governance into those areas…If Taliban fighters are forced to keep their distance from the Afghan population, then "over time, they become irrelevant, and they, in fact, are defeated," McChrystal said.
The acknowledged classic master of war, Sun Tzu, wrote his own opinion about that well over two thousand years ago in what we now call The Art of War. General McChrystal’s stated strategy was keep the Taliban from reaching the people so the people could not be taxed, recruited, coerced, or governed by the Taliban. Over a great length of time, the Taliban then would become “irrelevant” and would be, in fact, “defeated.”

Isolating the people from the Taliban until the Taliban are no longer ‘relevant’ means isolation efforts that continue for a long, long time, since fundamental religious beliefs are involved, and the occupying forces are of not only foreigners, but most of them represent a different religion. In other words, the Taliban are locals and the occupying Americans and their allies are infidel foreigners.
Should our forces simply hunker down and keep the people isolated from the Taliban, for years?
If we are simply an occupying force, committed to staying in Afghanistan (no matter what the cost) indefinitely, that’s one thing. But if we are there to win a war, here’s what The Art of War has to say about failure to change strategy:

“Victory in war adapts its form endlessly.”
“ Do not repeat former strategies to gain victory.”
“Tethered horses and buried wheels (to make a stationery battle line) are not sufficiently reliable.”
In June, 2010, General McChrystal was fired for speaking unkindly about President Obama’s leadership in the war and General David Petraeus was put in charge. Petraeus stated that he would continue the same strategy as McChrystal.
Ref: BBC News, “Afghan strategy 'not changing' after McChrystal fired.”

If we are not in Afghanistan to win a war, we must ask why the people are being told that we are there to “win.”

In mid-December, 2010, President Obama said US gains in the war in Afghanistan “are “fragile and reversible”… in a statement to the press yesterday regarding his administration’s Afghanistan-Pakistan review.
Mr Obama promised the review a year ago, when he decided to send another 30,000 US troops to Afghanistan. …Mr Obama – and secretary of defence Robert Gates and secretary of state Hillary Clinton who spoke after him – gave the impression of flailing about in their attempt to be both positive and truthful.

“This continues to be a very difficult endeavour,” Mr Obama said, adding that “we are on track to achieve our goals”. The goals he listed have not changed – “disrupting, dismantling and defeating al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan”. In December 2009, Mr Obama made a commitment to begin reduce the 100,000 US troops in Afghanistan next summer. Almost immediately, his cabinet members downplayed that promise.
The decision on how many soldiers will depart has been postponed until the spring, but it is now clear that it will be a small, symbolic number. The recent NATO summit in Lisbon said combat operations in Afghanistan would be completed by the end of 2014. This almost surreptitious, four-year extension of the war was very much in evidence yesterday, when Mr Obama and Mr Gates emphasised the later date.”
Ref: Irish Times, ”Gains in Afghan war 'fragile and reversible', US says”
http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/world/2010/1217/1224285736090.html

One comment on the Internet in June, 2010 after McChrystal was replaced with Petraeus encapsulated the feelings of many Americans who view American presence in Afghanistan as expensive, wasteful of lives, and ineffective:

“…How can we possibly win in Afghanistan. Even if your definition of winning is the most rudimentary version …you would be completely unable to come up with a situation where we win. How can we fight a war against the people of a country that is thousands of miles away from the homeland? How can we convince the illiterate people of a country …that has been used to violence at the hands of warlords for centuries to take up our rather whimsical version of democracy? Do you think they will take up democracy? Our prolonged occupation is all about saving face. McChrystal has shown the same type of intransigence that cost America 60 thousand lives in Vietnam.”
Afghanistan is presently occupied by a vast number of foreign troops (mostly Americans) with troop movements and their projected dates of withdrawal made known to all, including to the Taliban, as Vice President Joe Biden’s statement to Meet the Press, published Dec. 19, 2010 by The Washington Post makes clear:
"We're making progress on all fronts, more on some areas than in others." He contended that the July 2011 troop reductions will be "more than token," adding, "We are starting it in July 2011 and we are going to be totally out of there, come hell or high water, by 2014."
The sages of The Art of War advise: “ If the truth leaks out, your strategy will be foiled.”

Our blundering interference and destruction of Iraq, and our long-going, ongoing comedy of errors presently being orchestrated in Afghanistan, where we have propped up a puppet government and announced all our plans to the enemy, does not resemble anything recommended as a war-winning strategy in the revered 6th-century Chinese classic The Art of War, written by Sun Tzu. The Art of War is considered the definitive authority on military tactics. Napoleon read it – and so did the victorious Vietnamese General Nguyen Giap,
“…the military mastermind behind victories over French and the American forces in Vietnam, [who] was an avid student and practitioner of Sun Tzu’s ideas. America's defeat here, more than any other event, brought Sun Tzu to the attention of American military thought leaders…The Art of War is listed on the Marine Corps Professional Reading Program …it is recommended reading for all United States Military Intelligence personnel and is required reading for all CIA officers.”

Ref: Military Applications of the Art of War
http://history.cultural-china.com/en/37H8481H13125.html

In The Art of War, we learn the following information about guerilla warfare: “Tire them by flight…When they come out, you go home…when they go home, you come out…This way, your strength will remain intact, while they will be worn out.”

We can see this pattern being used by the Taliban: in a PBS interview of Elisabeth Bumiller, a Pentagon correspondent for The New York Times, Bumiller said,

“…Commanders were saying that last week in the eastern part of Afghanistan, that they go right across the border. They plant homemade bombs. They attack American forces, and then they go right back across to Pakistan for rest…[We’re] killing Taliban or capturing Taliban on the border, in the border region… the strategy right now is -- it's not perfect -- is that -- to continue doing this…”

Ref: “Intel Agencies offer Gloomy View of Afghan War” Dec. 15, 2010
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/military/july-dec10/afghan_12-15.html

In The Art of War, regarding tactics such as those used by the Taliban, Master Sun Tzu commented:

“Appear where they cannot go, head for where they least expect you, To travel hundreds of miles with no fatigue, go over land where there are no people.”

It seems the Taliban have already figured that out.
We have told the Afghan people, the Taliban and the world that we intend to leave by 2014. We have been in Afghanistan a long time—in fact, longer than the Russians:
US Now in Afghanistan Longer Than Soviets Dec. 28, 2010
Ref: Patrick Cockburn, Counterpunch, http://www.counterpunch.org/patrick12082010.html

“US forces have now stayed longer in Afghanistan than the Soviet army during Moscow’s ill-fated intervention. The US military late last month exceeded the nine years and 50 days that Soviet troops were stationed in Afghanistan between 1979 and 1989… General Nur-al-Haq Ulumi, a powerful leader under the Communist regime, who was military commander for the whole of southern Afghanistan,[admitted that] “when the Americans arrived in 2001, everybody supported them and nobody wanted to fight them.”
The popularity of the Americans and their foreign allies has not lasted. They are increasingly blamed by Afghans for the continued violence and as sponsors and protectors of a deeply unpopular government. As US, Britain and almost 50 other states enter their tenth year of military action in Afghanistan, the dilemmas facing them resemble the problems that the Soviet army wrestled with a quarter of a century ago.”

The Art of War offers advice that was apparently ignored by both the Soviet Union and the US. Concerning how much good a prolonged war will accomplish for anybody:

“Do not stay in barren or isolated territory.”
“Even if you prevail over others in battle, if you go on too long there will be no profit…”
“A large-scale operation involves enormous expense, which not only breaks you down in the field, but also exhausts you at home. Therefore a wise government does not keep its army in the field.”
“Transport [military] supplies to a distant place, and your own people will become impoverished...the common people become poorer day by day.”
“Do not repeat former strategies to obtain victory.”

Oops! It seems nobody who supposedly studied The Art of War in military schools has decided to heed the wisdom of the ages. Then again, generals are trained to conduct war, not to negotiate for peace. It does not matter to a general if a war is endless, since war is the general’s source of glory. The Art of War tells us that “The general is an officer of death.”

How long should we stay in Afghanistan? Master Sun of The Art of War says:

“I have heard of military operations that were clumsy and swift, but I have never seen one that was skillful that lasted a long time. It is never beneficial to have a military operation continue for a long time.”

We were told that we had a war to win in Afghanistan. But we are not conducting ourselves in a manner that will equate “winning” anything. But perhaps we are there to create a democracy? A young Afghan scholar, Ahmed Shah, who understands his country, offers a brief and eye-opening assessment:

“Until 1973, Afghanistan was peaceful and sovereign, with capable and respected police forces, national army, educational institutions and health facilities, under a constitutional monarchy. In 1973, Dauod Khan, a Soviet sympathizer, overthrew King Zahir Shah and six years later the Soviets invaded.
This set in motion a chain of events whose consequences are still with us. When the last Soviet-backed government fell in 1992 and the U.S. turned its attention elsewhere, Afghanistan descended into chaos and civil war.
Therefore, Afghanistan’s challenge is not to create a “western-style democracy” but to restore what existed not long ago. Grand corruption, which began as a plague on the Afghan government, has spread like a virus throughout society.
According to Transparency International, Afghanistan is now the second most corrupt country on earth. It has become increasingly difficult for any legitimate business to function normally. Honest entrepreneurs face constant demands for bribes from government officials, and in the extreme, risk murder for resisting blackmail, refusing bribes or competing with the economic interests of powerful officials.
That is why a small number of privileged, connected elites have accumulated staggering wealth, while 99 percent of the legitimate, productive business sector struggles merely to survive.”

Ref: ”Afghanistan challenge is not to create “western-style” democracy” by Ahmad Shah
MAR 12, 2010 http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate-uk/2010/03/12/afghanistan-challenge-is-not-to-create-western-style-democracy/

Russia and the United States have wreaked havoc with Afghanistan, and in the process have drained Russian and American resources, treasures, precious lives and the will of the people to support their governments in such “war” efforts. A remarkable book, JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters, by James Douglass, examines how President John F. Kennedy – a Cold Warrior – changed to a man whose desire for peace led to his assassination not by Lee Harvey Oswald, who we now know was innocent of such a deed, but by forces desiring not peace but war, not democracy but a false fa├žade behind which the rich could continue to accumulate wealth, and not freedom, but the enslavement of the people to assure that wealth and power would remain in the hands of the elite, especially through the use of military action.

Kennedy knew all about the art of war. He, himself was a war hero.
It is time to consider what Kennedy had to say about war, as we consider our actions in Afghanistan.
In his famous speech at American University on June 10, 1963, President John F. Kennedy said,

“I have…chosen this time and this place to discuss a topic on which ignorance too often abounds and the truth is too rarely perceived--yet it is the most important topic on earth: world peace.
What kind of peace do I mean? What kind of peace do we seek? Not a Pax Americana enforced on the world by American weapons of war.
Not the peace of the grave or the security of the slave. I am talking about genuine peace, the kind of peace that makes life on earth worth living, the kind that enables men and nations to grow and to hope and to build a better life for their children--not merely peace for Americans but peace for all men and women--not merely peace in our time but peace for all time.
I speak of peace because of the new face of war. Total war makes no sense in an age when great powers can maintain large and relatively invulnerable nuclear forces and refuse to surrender without resort to those forces. It makes no sense in an age when a single nuclear weapon contains almost ten times the explosive force delivered by all the allied air forces in the Second World War. It makes no sense in an age when the deadly poisons produced by a nuclear exchange would be carried by wind and water and soil and seed to the far corners of the globe and to generations yet unborn.
Today the expenditure of billions of dollars every year on weapons acquired for the purpose of making sure we never need to use them is essential to keeping the peace. But surely the acquisition of such idle stockpiles--which can only destroy and never create--is not the only, much less the most efficient, means of assuring peace.
I speak of peace, therefore, as the necessary rational end of rational men. I realize that the pursuit of peace is not as dramatic as the pursuit of war--and frequently the words of the pursuer fall on deaf ears. But we have no more urgent task.
…Our problems are manmade--therefore, they can be solved by man...There is no single, simple key to this peace--no grand or magic formula to be adopted by one or two powers. Genuine peace must be the product of many nations, the sum of many acts. It must be dynamic, not static, changing to meet the challenge of each new generation. For peace is a process--a way of solving problems.
With such a peace, there will still be quarrels and conflicting interests, as there are within families and nations. World peace, like community peace, does not require that each man love his neighbor--it requires only that they live together in mutual tolerance, submitting their disputes to a just and peaceful settlement. And history teaches us that enmities between nations, as between individuals, do not last forever. However fixed our likes and dislikes may seem, the tide of time and events will often bring surprising changes in the relations between nations and neighbors.
So let us persevere. Peace need not be impracticable, and war need not be inevitable. By defining our goal more clearly, by making it seem more manageable and less remote, we can help all peoples to see it, to draw hope from it, and to move irresistibly toward it…Finally, my fellow Americans, let us examine our attitude toward peace and freedom here at home. The quality and spirit of our own society must justify and support our efforts abroad. We must show it in the dedication of our own lives--as many of you who are graduating today will have a unique opportunity to do, by serving without pay in the Peace Corps abroad or in the proposed National Service Corps here at home.
But wherever we are, we must all, in our daily lives, live up to the age-old faith that peace and freedom walk together. In too many of our cities today, the peace is not secure because the freedom is incomplete.
It is the responsibility of the executive branch at all levels of government--local, State, and National--to provide and protect that freedom for all of our citizens by all means within their authority…this is not unrelated to world peace. "When a man's ways please the Lord," the Scriptures tell us, "he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him." And is not peace, in the last analysis, basically a matter of human rights--the right to live out our lives without fear of devastation--the right to breathe air as nature provided it--the right of future generations to a healthy existence?
While we proceed to safeguard our national interests, let us also safeguard human interests. And the elimination of war and arms is clearly in the interest of both… “

Kennedy then said something that shows us, sadly, how much our country has changed since he took office: America’s present willingness for pre-emptive action – starting a war. For Kennedy added,

“The United States, as the world knows, will never start a war. We do not want a war. We do not now expect a war. This generation of Americans has already had enough--more than enough--of war and hate and oppression. We shall be prepared if others wish it. We shall be alert to try to stop it. But we shall also do our part to build a world of peace where the weak are safe and the strong are just. We are not helpless before that task or hopeless of its success. Confident and unafraid, we labor on--not toward a strategy of annihilation but toward a strategy of peace.”

In Kennedy, we have a War Master’s words concerning “The Art of War” who gives us our own blueprint to follow.
A “Pax Americana” is unacceptable.
We have issues with freedom, justice and the health and safety of our own people that need our attention NOW. We should remove ourselves from the hopeless situation in Afghanistan and start taking care of the needs of our own people.

Convincing American generals --and a president who goes to the War Room to deliberate upon what to do about peace or war in Iraq, Afghanistan, or elsewhere, will require more will and courage than “we the people” have, for we have been mercilessly overworked, have been stripped of many personal freedoms, have lost our homes and job security, and have been systematically “dumbed down” with poor education, distracted with foolish TV programs, and duped by a sold-out media that reports whatever their corporate owners demand.

America’s shameful travesty of a health-care system, whose food and water supplies keep us sickly, and whose leaders hide the truth about the Kennedy assassination, Nine-Eleven, and the third-world future of a bankrupt nation with a weak dollar, are combining to keep most Americans cowed and feeling helpless. Frankly, those who will try to revolutionize the current system will face threats or actual elimination, while America sleeps itself into a coma.

We can still save our country.

It will take resolve, courage and good sense.

We can change the system from the bottom up, recognizing that our present government is corrupt and not about to listen to the cries of an increasingl desperate people.
We must insist on paper ballots, counted by human beings, not machines, who are monitored by all parties.

Election campaigns should be limited to six months.

A reasonable ceiling on how much money can be spent should be imposed, following the example of more advanced nations.

Concerning Afghanistan, using the lessons taught in The Art of War, we should leave that country and concentrate on helping Pakistan strengthen its border.

If we establish troops along Pakistan’s borders and protect Pakistan’s government so that its nuclear weapons will not fall into the hands of radicals, and simply let the warlords and corrupt government of Afghanistan go on with their endless years of in-fighting, we should be able to give Pakistan the strength it needs to protect its nuclear weapons from access by terrorists. If necessary, drones could still move quickly into Afghan territory to control surges.

It is time to turn our attention to our problems at home.

Consider: if employers were not allowed to overwork the decent, honest, hard-working American people by forcing them to work overtime and refusing to give them four to six weeks of paid vacations (which the people of the most prosperous European nations currently enjoy), more people would have to be hired and we would not have such high unemployment rates.

Consider: 4 employees working 60 hour weeks = 6 employees working 40-hour weeks.
Instead of an endemic unemployment problem, every qualified person would be employed.
True enough, employers would have to give more benefits to more people – just as they USED TO DO before greed, cruelty and corruption destroyed a system that had made prosperity, massive achievements and The American Dream reality for many millions before the 1970’s.

If rich Americans –not just the lower and middle classes – paid social security taxes without the present “tax break” cutoff that discriminates only against lower-income Americans who remain burdened with that tax, and if it became illegal to “borrow” from social security, our hard-working American people would not face the hellish fear that they will be homeless and starving after a lifetime of dedicated work.
The prevailing lie is that social security should be considered a mere supplement to retirement funds acquired otherwise, when the sad truth is that those following that rule have found their pension accounts destroyed, while scams in stocks have decimated their portfolios, while small businesses have vanished due to cheap Chinese imports and outsourcing.

All Americans should refuse to buy goods imported from China.

All Americans should refuse to purchase a foreign-made automobile.

“Made in the USA” is a label that is vanishing from the earth. Let’s bring the label back.

The rich are very, very good at avoiding their share of the tax burdens that the vanishing middle class now almost exclusively carry. They got their way again in 2010.

Any solution to this?

Since the rich are receiving such protracted and enormous tax breaks, they should be required to hire only American citizens in order to keep these tax breaks, with penalties assessed for every foreign employee they hire. Why? Every American who is hired pays taxes to the American government, helping to solve not only our deficit problem, but also expanding our consumer numbers, providing Americans with more purchasing power.

Support companies that hire “Americans first, Americans only.”

Solve our lowly rank in the world as pertaining to health care and longevity by getting rid of health insurance companies that simply blow up health care costs, and instead, start patterning our health care systems after the systems used in Scandinavian and other advanced European countries.

Limit lobbies to two per company (fat chance!).

Revoke the limitless contributions by companies which are now allowed to corrupt all legislators.

Limit all Senate and Congressional seat-holders to four terms, with their ‘retirement’ benefits limited to the actual number of years served.

Allow all Americans equal access to the same health care system that Senators, Congressmen, etc. presently enjoy.

We need to protect OUR borders. Bring our troops home and place them across the Mexican border on patrol.

We need to stop antagonizing Muslims by invading Muslim countries and polarizing ordinary people into Muslim-versus-non-Muslim American-haters who can agree to endless, senseless wars while concurrently fueling the flames of terrorism.

A Pax Americana will only create enemies. Education (for both sexes), good communication, population control through free birth control methods, and extensive commerce, rather than pre-emptive acts of war, threats of war, and the long and expensive occupation of distant lands, are the true keys to world peace.

God help us, for it seems we cannot help ourselves.

Judyth Vary Baker