Sunday, April 15, 2007

Editorial: The disgusting silence on war resisters

If he had any doubts upon arriving here, big news from back home likely erased them.
It was 5 p.m. Wednesday when Linjamin Mull, stepping off a bus in downtown London, ended a two-week journey that turned him from an American soldier to expatriate, just as the Iraq war controversy flared again in the U.S.
That same day, the U.S. government announced troop deployments to Iraq -- a war Mull refuses to join -- will be extended from 12 to 15 months.
"Most people don't have the courage to leave," said Mull, a New York City social worker and graduate of Southern Connecticut State University.

The above was reported by Patrick Maloney in "U.S. soldier in London to avoid Iraq war" (Canoe News). Someone help The Peace Resister up, she just fell off her cloud. All together now, make her feel comfortable (she loves the Stones), "Hey you, knocked off of your cloud, knocked off of your cloud. Hey you, knocked off of your cloud, knocked off of your cloud."

You know what their silence does? It allows the same piece of crap right-wing at a certain 'posh' college (monied but it truly is the school of last resort) to continue their attacks on war resisters. Now we're not suggesting that the attacks would stop if The Nation got off its lazy ass and actually covered war resisters (or the peace movement), but we are stating that when they wrote that crap, it could be called out. So we saw the baby of a professional coach -- who has 'expanded' his name in college -- who went to a private religious schools in the suburbs he lived in (though he claims a big city in his byline which is a complete lie, he was in the sticks, the White sticks that so many moved to when they panic at the sight of a person of color) -- start 'singing' a new tune -- Baby Bad Ass. Baby Bad Ass just went to town on war resisters last week. He doesn't know any real tragedies in his own life (other than his parents' divorce) but damned if he didn't act like the wisest (or most intoxicated) know it all at the bar.

Of course that was only after Ease-on outta' Journalism embarrassed himself further (and who knew that was possible!) by printing a piece of crap from a centrist attacking war resisters. If you're wondering, he left the Journalism builidng some time ago. The door officially closed on him when he felt the need to say he wanted his crappy site to tell stories for Democrats and for Republicans -- both points of view! And those who don't belong to either party? And those who don't expect newsmen and newswomen to cater to a political leaning but just lay out the facts? They got left out too.

So let's be really clear, war resisters are getting crap from all over the place and our independent media is silent.

Get it through your heads, the coverage isn't cutting it. It's not informing and it's not covering. The silence on the arrest of Kyle Snyder at the request of the US military is shocking. He was to be arrested and deported from Canada. He ended up just arrested thanks to the work of many. So you have the US military giving orders and Canadian police following them in violation of Canadian policy and where the hell is the coverage of that?

Joshua Key. Are we still believing the lies there too? Winnie Ng stated clearly what happened. Three men, who stated they were Canadian police, showed up at her front door (in Canada) asking where Joshua Key was. Now there are so many lies that have been told, it may be confusing.

So let's deal with the fact that as soon as he heard about the visit, Jeffry House (thinking as Winnie did that this had to do with the US military) contacted the US military who, as of last week, had still not returned his calls. He is the attorney of record for Joshua Key.

Now the lie, the first one, came from the Canadian police: We know nothing!

Then it was followed with: None of our police visited, we know nothing!

Winnie Ng's character was (wrongly) called into question as the Canadian police avoided the truth. Only recently (see "Editorial: Shameful") did they admit that, uh, yes, one of their officers did visit Ng's home. And, woops, he visited with two men from the US military.


The lie still standing (for those who choose to be or play stupid) is that the US military wanted to talk with Joshua Key about his book. They wanted more information about some of what he witnessed in Iraq.

Now, if that were true, they would've returned Jeffry House's calls. If that were true, they would have told Winnie Ng who they were instead of pretending they were Canadian police. In the US it is illegal to impersonate a police officer but in Canada, it's apparently as normal as chewing gum and crossing the street.

The New York Times had a really bad article that attempted to spin the self-check outs as men (no women were mentioned) who were just mad to go to Iraq, they could taste it, they wanted it, baby, they really, really wanted it. But see, they have PTSD. They have a trauma. That's what's preventing them. But damn it, if it weren't for the PTSD, every self-check out in the world would be over in Iraq because just like the paper's John F. Burns, they know that Iraqis want Americans occupying their country.

Yeah, buy that sh*t if you're stupid or a crap collector.

As the useless Democratic web (we wouldn't call them the left) applauded like trained seals and did their link fests of hoseannas, the little reality that was in the article went largely unnoticed. Self-check outs were on the rise, self-check outs had been undercounted and underreported by the US military since the start of the illegal war.

That should have awoken our independent media and even our so-called independent media. "Hmm, there really are a lot of self-check outs, just like some have been saying all along. I dismissed it because I live by the official numbers and, goodness-golly, my government would never lie to me. I should cover this!"

Forget it, didn't happen. Camilo Mejia can tell you about the number that greet him, congratulate him and tell him they have self-checked out. Anyone even slightly involved in the issue knew the earlier numbers were lies. (Several called the numbers out as lies. Applause for them.)

We'll assume the Democratic web is too damn busy straining their necks to avoid seeing that the two measures that passed in the Congress do not bring all troops home, do not compell Bully Boy to bring any if he wants to reclassify them or just use the all purpose "national security" excuse. The poor things are nearly doing a Linda Blair in order to avoid seeing the obvious, the Democratic leadership bought the war with both measures, they fully funded Bully Boy's request (and tacked on a hell of a lot of pork to the bills as well).

So we really don't expect the Party Hacks to do a damn thing on or for war resisters.

And we'll even cut slack for two individuals: Amy Goodman and Aaron Glantz who have covered this movement. If they're attitude was, "I've covered it and covered it" -- if that made them want to take a break, we wouldn't be thrilled, but we'd understand. It must be very difficult to always be the one who steps up. [Note: Goodman and Glantz are not party hacks. A transition was lost when C.I. pulled a very detailed paragraph. C.I. has noted, "Like Anais Nin, I can pan life for fiction and we may have some very interesting short stories this summer." To which Rebecca added, "People think it's me, but my sex life has been nothing compared to C.I.'s and if C.I. starts with a certain independent media person who said he was divorced, the least of his lies, and writes up that story, it will be riveting for readers and very uncomfortable for all who know the story."]

The rest of you? "The war raged for years and I covered . . . DC getting the vote (again and again and again and again and . . .)." Or, "The 2008 elections! I started covering it non-stop in January 2007! I did the same thing with the 2006 elections!"

Don't offer us your lousy horse racing ("For the left!" said in Woody Allen tones), your half-baked columns and tell us we have been informed.

Two words for you: Molly Ivins.

Lot of shared stories, lot of tributes. It's really easy to say, "I loved Molly Ivins." It's a lot harder to demonstrate that with any action such as doing what she intended to do. Ivins can't cover Iraq with every column now and all those Molly-lovers must be so traumatized by her passing that just the mention of Iraq sends them off sobbing.

We're sick of it. We're tired of it. And if you're one of the ones complaining (in e-mails or to friends) that this community is, in the words of one, "just out of control!" You don't know the half of it. We will step it up. We will take it up a notch. The war continues. The war drags on.
And what the hell are you doing and what the hell have you done? You're real at begging for money (and, no, that's not a slam at Pacifica, we're referring to print media) but what do you use it for? The text equivalent of the Sunday chat & chews -- from the left! Or the slightly left these days.

So hover over your keyboards, prepare to whine to mutal friends (some of whom you'll send to plead your cases and it won't work anymore), prepare yourself because your silence allows the illegal war to continue and we're not going to aid you or abet you. We're not going to be complicit in your desire to prolong the war long enough to get a win for the Democratic Party in 2008. We're tired of it and we're surprised you're not. Crawling around on your knees must be very difficult, none of you are toddles, and it's past time you learned how to stand.
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