Bourgeois Deviant

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Thinking About Blowback

I was cruising some of the familiar and friendly bloggosphere and read a fine passage by PK. If you follow the link, he’s talking about conservatives (namely George Will) trying to say that progressives were wrong to oppose the Iraq war despite the mistake that it really is. It’s a good read and worth the time spent.

I took the time to comment about it and got hooked on the concept of blowback. Now, if you are unfamiliar with the term, in the context that I mean to use it, it simply means the unintended consequences of actions taken. This is going to take a while, but bear with me… To broadly generalize, the United States of America meddles in the policy and sovereignty of oil producing Muslim nations. This pisses a great many of the Muslim peoples off. The culture is not inhospitable, but it is xenophobic, for lack of a better term, against outsiders. American presence is seen as imperialistic and, consequently, nationalism in the Muslim nation rises, as does religious fervor.

America doesn’t pay attention to this because its primary concern, its agenda, is to pursue, secure and maintain its interests. The benefit is primary, but the possible detriment to the citizenry is seemingly a distant peripheral. So, smaller groups of people in these Muslim nations get rich as Croesus and run an oppressive style of government that are counter to the culture and wishes of its populace. But this doesn’t matter to America because the goods are being delivered at a favorable price and American citizens can enjoy the highest standard of living the planet have ever witnessed. Cake is abundant and edible as well for the U.S.A.

This status quo goes on for more than 50 years. Five decades plus of profit, opulence, entitlement, oppression and consequential resentment go by. The reaction of the oppressed and/or nationalistic peoples of the Muslim nations grow more intolerant. A figurehead with great wealth rises up and taps into the xenophobic zeitgeist and vows to attack the infidel and reclaim the land that “God” gave them. This guy isn’t necessarily right, but his attitudes are a direct product of implemented policies by his and our countries. Vows to take action are made by him and an infectiously growing number of his supporters.

In keeping with the cultural and religious values of his people, this figurehead operates within the precepts of his religion and his religion’s laws. He is extremely open and clear about goals and objectives. He makes no attempts to hide these or the reasons he pursues them. America takes note. They see this danger, but don’t regard it as a viable threat despite knowing the players and having full knowledge about the extent of their training because earlier American interests warranted us training and supplying them. Hubris maintains arrogance and nothing changes save for closer monitoring of the situation. The American public remain blissfully ignorant.

Jihad is staring America in the face and little is done. A strike is made at the U.S. An unsuccessful but jarring bombing of the WTC crosses the American consciousness. Later, a U.S. naval vessel is hit successfully by suicide bombers and American service men and women die. The sitting President Clinton won’t tolerate the slap given and orders a strike on a target where the figurehead, Osama bin Laden, is reported to be. The intelligence is faulty and a factory is hit, killing many innocents. Ire towards the United States grows in the Muslim world. Jihad is emboldened.

President Clinton favors the use of force to curtail bin Laden’s efforts to strike the U.S. This intention is hampered by a military unwilling to commit. With this conflict of interest, other avenues are not sought to head off the danger that faces America. That is to say that the policies and relationships that have fattened America to its current state of opulence at the expense of other nations that have created dangerous ire are not modified in the slightest because of the desire to maintain the status quo. Lack of sustainability is a fact, but not one anybody chooses to face yet. The wind has decidedly changed but no one can or will take heed of what is blowing our way.

Administrations change and America is now under Bush. A chief executive who was not popularly elected but appointed by the judicial branch. A man who has never left the country and has zero foreign policy experience that willingly chooses to surround himself with people who, for the most part, ascribe to some of the scariest foreign policy ideas this nation has ever known. Then, whilst floundering through the infancy of the G.W. Bush presidency, America gets hit with the world assault/crime ever perpetrated by a foreign power. Nearly 3,000 people lose their lives in a matter of a few hours.

Within 24 hours, we know a great deal and are making plans for retaliation. Afghanistan in our sights, promises are made to capture and/or kill those responsible for attacking us. No one questions why we were hit. No one asks about how this happened beyond the procedural steps made to conduct the attack and the who’s and how’s of its creation and implementation. With blame firmly placed and public sentiment solidly behind the action, retaliation is swift and devastating. It was clearly justified and, for Osama bin Laden’s part, totally expected.

The Taliban falls and some terrorists are captured and/or killed, but not bin Laden. The primary goal is not accomplished, nor will it be. The promise remains unfulfilled and the threat is still present and arguably stronger that it was at the time of the fall of the Twin Towers. All that is given to the American people is the promise that bin Laden will be brought to justice and that the security of America is the primary job and goal of our government. It wasn’t before then?

The jihad against the U.S.A. has been going on for years. America only now fully engages it. Too bad its second leg, Iraq, was the wrong place entirely with no hope of a positive outcome. Still, no one demands a full answer to the obvious question. Why has all this happened? The question has been continually preempted by Bush and his administration with a palatable answer. “They hate our freedom.” This is surely not wrong, but it is also not the right answer. Hating our freedom is peripheral. It is not what caused all this. If they just hated our freedom, you would see more flag burning and effigy hanging. No one asks themselves rationally, what would make people want to kill themselves and thousands of others in a hateful act like 9/11? For someone to offer the rational answer of “our freedom” is folly and the epitome of myopic thinking.

Every attack on the United States of America by Islamic jihadists has been made because America, through its foreign policy and support of some governments over others, has meddled, oppressed and violated the peoples and sovereignty of other countries in some fashion or another. For a nation that espouses the virtues of liberty and freedom, our diplomatic and commercial interests are, at their cores, completely counter to those ideologies. America’s actions are out of step with the ideals by which it was founded and that incongruity is now costing the people of the United States of America blood and treasure over and above what the American citizenry are willing to pay. Is this current war worth all of that?

Again, the crux of it is blowback. Americans are used to a certain lifestyle. In order to sustain that lifestyle, interests and resources are needed. Those needs are fulfilled through rather entrenched policy and actions taken to secure interests in places (i.e. Iraq, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, etc…) that we are not entirely welcome. If you want the shirt off of someone’s back and take it without their consent or fair compensation, expect resentment and a kick to somewhere that will hurt.

With or without our consent, the United States made this situation. So, rather than bickering who is for or against the war, concentrate on accurately identifying the problems. Instead of questioning who supports what and who’s right or wrong in their support and when that was, realize that there is a simple choice to be made. Either endure the blowback of our unsustainable policies as part of the price of maintaining an imperial style republic or change the policies of this nation so as not to oppress foreign peoples and work towards making this nation a self sufficient and continuing example of what our Constitution mandates: a more perfect union that truly establishes justice, insures domestic tranquility, provides for the common defense, promotes the general welfare and secures the blessings of liberty to not only ourselves, but others, and the attainment of a mutual posterity.

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3 Comments:

  • Eloquent and enlightening -- well said, my friend.

    But does this mean you support al qaida? You fucking pansy ass progressive. Always apologizing for our enemies and funding terrorist training camps with your fancytalk and organic produce expenditures.

    Anyway, if Bono is to be trusted, as he has most certainly earned the right, The World Cup will solve all of these problems and more.

    America will have a new enemy and it will be Ghana. Blowback will be a bitch, but if it means advancing to the Ro16, Ghana and the rest of the world can suck it.

    -leporq

    By Blogger Le Porq, at Friday, June 02, 2006 10:43:00 AM  

  • Down w/ Ghana and up w/ Togo!

    By Blogger A. L. Deviant, at Friday, June 02, 2006 2:52:00 PM  

  • Speaking of blowback, here's an exchange between Zbigniew Brzezinski and an interviewer from Le Nouvel Observateur, published Jan. 15, 1998.

    They're talking about Brzezinski's decision, when he was Carter's National Security Advisor, to start giving aid to the Afghani resistance before the Soviets invaded in 1979:


    Q: When the Soviets justified their intervention by asserting that they intended to fight against a secret involvement of the United States in Afghanistan, people didn't believe them. However, there was a basis of truth. You don't regret anything today?

    Brzezinski: Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it? The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter: We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam war. Indeed, for almost 10 years, Moscow had to carry on a war unsupportable by the government, a conflict that brought about the demoralization and finally the breakup of the Soviet empire.

    Q: And neither do you regret having supported the Islamic [integrisme], having given arms and advice to future terrorists?

    Brzezinski: What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the cold war?


    http://www.counterpunch.org/brzezinski.html

    "Some stirred-up Moslems", eh?

    By Anonymous Ryan, at Tuesday, June 06, 2006 6:48:00 AM  

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