Friday, February 25, 2011

The Two face Hypocrisy of US Foreign Policy

I have been writing and expounding on US foreign policy since the early 1980s. My first or one of my earliest essays was called “Israel’s fascist Penumbra” which was published in the Black Students Association Journal at Memphis State University in 1985.

It addressed the “do anything” for Israel mentality and our traditionally mistaken monolithic conviction of Arabs and Africans worldwide, that we often dissemble under the shadow of peace and agoraphobia. What is common regarding now and then and even times prior is the “do as I say and not as I do” legacy of colonialist and imperial belief orientations that place all European in origin at the summit of rational behavior and what is deemed to be acceptable.

On the one hand we vilify the Arab and African States for their desire for governments to run as theocracies, yet we do the same here. Promulgating policies based on religious beliefs and biblical guidance. Our own founding as a nation saw the assertion that Africans were less valuable and more akin to live stock than human beings. An edict that presented itself in policies from slavery to Jim Crow and segregation. In Oklahoma, a law was recently passed that bars courts from considering Shariah law when deciding cases was put on hold. And we are well aware of the tense debate facilitated via the discussion of abortion.

We condemn terrorist for their no holds barred attacks on America, yet we support going to Somalia and just killing everyone in sight as if their lives are less important than ours to avenge the deaths of four Christian Missionaries who were not asked to come to their country in the first place. We support invading and occupying Afghanistan and Iraq and manufacture policy and war to remove leaders we label tyrants and dictators and autocrats yet give similar men billions in aid annually and historically and invite them to the Whitehouse for dinner pretending as if their blood is not on our hands from the tanks and fighter we give them.

We supported Chiang Kai-Shek’s ROC government from the 1930s to 1949 in a civil war that saw the murder of tens of thousands. In Chilie we funded General Augusto Pinochet who murdered and tortured thousands from 1973 to 1990. Then there was Suharto in Indonesia and Papa and baby Doc in Haiti.

But it is to only be expected for unfortunately we too are a nation of terrorist and celebrate such resonantly. In Mississippi, there is an attempt to venerate Nathan Bedford Forrest, a man whose image on horseback I road past almost daily in my home town of Memphis, Tennessee. Yes, 150 years after the start of the Civil War people want to celebrate a murderer who founded a terrorist organization called the Ku Klux Klan. An organization from its inception main goal was to conduct inordinate acts of violence solely on African Americans in the South eventually including the bombing deaths of four girls attending Sunday school in a Church in 1963.

This man was also known for what he did on April 12, 1864 at Fort Pillow, Tennessee, when General Nathan Bedford Forrest captured the fort with his 1,500. In the process, according to eyewitness accounts like General Kilpatrick (USA), Forrest “nailed Negroes to the fences, set fire to the fences, and burned the Negroes to death.” More than 300 African American Union troops were massacred then.

But let me not digress, the point is that US foreign policy is the result of constructs that are two-faced. For if other did to us what we did to them we would be extremely upset and throwing hissy fits. We are so shallow, self-centered and heedless. Yes we are hypocrites and this hypocrisy may be what destroys us, just as it leads to behaviors that spoliated ancient Rome.


Anonymous said...

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