by Michael Novick, Anti-Racist Action
“Until the philosophy which holds one race superior and another inferior is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned, everywhere is war… and until human rights are equally guaranteed to all without regard to race, there is war.”
—Haile Selassie, popularized by Bob Marley in “War”
An increasingly desperate US Empire is engaging in destructive, endless and futile war, with drones, troops, bombs in Africa and Asia, seeking to destabilize governments in Latin America, rearming Israel after its brutal attack on Gaza, financing counter-insurgency in Mexico in the name of a drug war, re-entering Iraq and bombing Syria, using Ebola to increase its military operations in Africa, imposing sanctions — an act of war — against Russia, and positioning itself to wage a war of encirclement against China, whom the Pentagon sees as an economic, military and strategic threat.
Yet war wasn’t debated in the election. The anti-war movement that poured into the streets before Bush’s deadline to invade Iraq is conspicuous by its relative silence in the face of Obama’s aggression in Syria and Iraq. A diminishing number of party formations and peace coalitions hold small protests. But what happened to “connecting the dots”? Don’t climate activists see the connection between US militarism and US desire to control the oil wealth of the Arab people? Recognize the carbon footprint of the US military?
Understand the US use of fracked natural gas, Canadian tar sands, and Saudi petroleum as weapons against Russia and Venezuela?
Do the civil libertarians outraged by Snowden’s expose of NSA and corporate surveillance, or those demanding “Net Neutrality,” not see that US surveillance of its own population and allies is part of its daily growing war footing in cyber-space and on the physical globe? Do activists opposing the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and people concerned about inequality of wealth, not understand that the corporate elite make their money and protect their lion’s-share through war, and that US attempts to exert hegemony in Asia, Africa and Latin America through such “free-trade” treaties are nothing less than economic skirmishes in a hastening conflict with China?
The opening quote from Selassie of Ethiopia, condemning Italy’s fascist aggression against his country, put to music by Bob Marley, gives us a handle on understanding the reticence of progressives, environmentalists, and others to oppose and obstruct US war-making. It’s a white blind spot, a refusal rooted in empire and identification with the imperialists, to recognize that this system is in a constant state of war against colonized and oppressed people and against the eco-system. It’s time to take off the blinders, and take up the cause of humanity. It’s time to promote and support GI resistance, to denounce and impede bombings, drones, so-called humanitarian interventions. Imperialist wars have led to great revolutionary advances when people resist them and take advantage of the contradictions they create and expose. It is our responsibility and opportunity to do the same!