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Thursday, April 18, 2013

America seen descending “out of control” into barbarous, self-destructive cruelty

From Jamie Wendland’s “A train on fire – America’s waning empire”
Excerpt, minor edit, end comment by 
Carolyn Bennett

“Every reasonable person understands that war is an occasional reality for nearly every nation. 

“Civilized people
acknowledge the brutality, human cost and repercussions of military action. It is reserved as the final option for extreme cases of defense from an aggressor, or a last extreme measure when the peace and security of the nation is threatened.

Danger lies when war becomes a way of life and an accepted part of national culture.

All aggression is redefined as somehow a justifiable defensive act.  The only time the United States was actually attacked by an aggressor was by Japan in December of 1941 ─ but (Americans) sanitize all of their aggressive actions as a ‘preemptive’ defensive, instead of the offensive acts of war they really are.

The USA is a train on fire, in love with war; so puffed with ignorant, patriotic pride that it is unaware that it is careening out of control, on a destination of complete self destruction.

Affair with war

“Present day America is so entangled in the intimate affair with military might that even newborns, wearing ‘adorable’ camouflage jumpers adorned with ‘U.S. Special Forces,’ suckle war from birth.

“War is everywhere in this culture and the acceptance is so internalized that the romanticism is hardly questioned anymore.  

“Glorification of militarism
is present in virtually every store, petrol station, pub and television commercial break.
Even American churches ‘support the troops’ and their murderous conquests.

Through posters, fundraising canisters and even commercial packaging, Americans are reminded of the great sacrifice by their patriotic troops.

Returning and active soldiers are held in such high regard, it is a small wonder there is little shortage of young new recruits.

 who claim to oppose [U.S.] Imperialist wars are not immune to this seduction. Quick to attach soldiers to any cause they possibly can, activists are actually glorifying the creation of the very warriors whose action they claim to oppose.” 

Reality confronts Rhetoric: 
“how” contradicts “who”

 “You would be hard pressed to observe any protest without liberals dragging along a few Veterans. American liberals actually wave around Veterans far more than the ‘pro-war’ ‘conservatives’ these same people claim to scorn.

“Liberals are quick to point out that one in four American homeless people are veterans ─ so society, therefore, must be unfair to veterans.

The issue of the homeless is a national disgrace for anyone to suffer but the high percentage of veterans simply means that more Americans overall are veterans and more of them are also homeless.

Liberals are essentially requesting special housing privileges for homeless veterans when they should be demanding an end to the wars which created both. 

When all of a nation’s resources are paying for war, the very conditions which create homelessness can never be addressed.

U.S. President Barack “Obama’s escalation of war not only quadrupled American deaths but also resulted in more than an additional 17,000 permanently and severely injured American troops.

“Seventeen thousand
so maimed by war that any decent human would recoil in disgust and demand an end to such atrocities. But such is American romanticism of military that they glorify these injuries through insulting Facebook memes, actually celebrating the simple achievements of the needlessly disfigured.

“Limbs and faces blown to bits are not inspirational ─ they are revolting, disgusting reminders of what uncivilized barbarians this nation has become.

Blinded by shrapnel, this person is a jawless torso confined to an institution for the rest of their life because of war. They were not born this way. This is no unfortunate biological abnormality that they have overcome.

It is not beautiful symbolism of human spirit that this person has now learned to tap Morse code with their head.

But there is no horror. There is only another patriotic fighter of the American way embracing his child with the cold steel of artificial arms ─ Isn’t it heartwarming?

“The American view of innocent civilian death by these wars is repulsively heartless. One Democratic Party supporter of terrorist drone attacks summarized the attitude well during a rare media discussion of this merciless atrocity, even against children:

‘The important point is, there are no four-year-old American children being killed.’      

“To Americans today, there no longer exist the ‘horrors of war’:
injuries and deaths so gruesome and terrible that any person of moral conscience would be moved to action in order to prevent them; casualties so staggering and profound that a reasonable leader of any nation would be motivated to wage wars very judiciously.…”
For the United States today, military action prompts no raised brow (or rarely so); military action is a way of life  ─ no longer needing justification or explanation. “War consumes media, entertainment and the economy. Above all other priorities, domestic and foreign, it dominates politics.…

 “Historically, as an end result, perpetual war is counterproductive for a nation, empire and people,” Jamie Wendland ends. “On this course, the United States will either spend itself to death on Imperialist expansion or threaten the peace of so many other nations that it can no longer be tolerated.

“But eventually ─ through its own actions ─ America will strangle itself by its own hand.  The

United States, as a wise songwriter of another land, language and era noted of another:

‘This train is on fire and we have nothing to reap anymore.

 This train is on fire and we have nowhere else to run.

 This land was ours before we got bogged down in war.

 She will die if it is a tie; it is time to return to the land itself.’ ─ Boris Grebenshikov, “Train on Fire” 

Sadly, I could not agree more.

Sources and notes

Boris Grebenshikov or BG

One of the most prominent members of the generation widely considered the ‘founding fathers’ of Russian rock music, Boris Grebenshikov has written, in a 30+-year career, more than 500 songs, most of which have been recorded and/or performed publicly.

Among his recorded cover albums on material from the two most prominent Russian-language songwriters [Alexander Vertinsky (1994’s Songs of A.Vertinsky (Pesni A.Vertinskogo)] and Bulat Okudzhava [1999’s Songs of B.Okudzhava (Pesni B.Okudzhavy)], two albums of mantra music with Gabrielle Roth and the Mirrors, (1998’s Refuge and 2002’s Bardo), and an album of electronica versions of Aquarium songs from late 1970s – early 1980s with the Russian duo Deadushki. He is credited on records by big-in-Russia bands Nautilus Pompilius, Mashina Vremeni and Kino, as well as the UK acts Shakespeare’s Sister and Kate St. John.

Boris Borisovich Grebenshchikov (also known as Boris Purushottama Grebenshikov and colloquially known as BG) is a household name in Russia; often called ‘Grandfather of Russian Rock.’ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boris_Grebenshchikov

“A train on fire - America's waning empire” by Jamie Wendland at Pravda RU, April 18, 2013,


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