If you are still reading, I will say more.
In the recent major news there were two stories of public figures with Muslim sounding names responsible for the deaths of American soldiers. I am, of course, referring to Nidal Hasan and Barack Obama. The case against one seems simple, but is not; and the case against the other seems outlandish, but is quite simple. So, as a long time peace activist, I would advocate that one of these men is a terrorist.
As surely most of the media-fed world knows, Nidal Hasan is the US Army Major, a military psychiatrist no less, who treated returning GIs for PTSD, until he himself went nuts and shot up half of Fort Hood, TX in early Nov. Thirteen dead, thirty wounded. Hasan made Harris and Klebold look like amateurs, which of course they were. Hasan wasn't a major by accident. He had worked himself up through the ranks and gone back to college and earned an MD. He won service medals for fighting in the Gulf War and the "War on Terror." All of which sounds good, until he starts shooting up the place.
While there is no doubt that his actions, and the media reactions they triggered, have terrified the nation, there has been a subsequent wave of news about the murderer that has tried to paint him as a terrorist - an Islam-o-fascist as the phrase goes. There can be no doubt in looking at the man's life that he was a devotedly religious man who grew revolted at the carnage he was forced to face from his patients-as should any religious man when faced with tales of violence, cruelty and depravity, in particular happening for a cause that he felt was wrong. The rules about killing are fairly clear in most belief systems.
However taking vengeance into one's own hands puts one above or separate from that religion. It's not serving God, but playing God, a role we would want no man to have.
While Hasan's actions clearly could qualify him as a religious fanatic, if it were indeed religion that drove him to it, (and, it is well known it is always a good idea to keep the weapons away from the religious fanatics) it does not make that person part of an international terrorist network, or a member of a sleeper cell, or another representative of this crazy killer religion to give us more proof on how we have to hate the Muslims. Like we used to be told we had to hate the Jews.
Think of all the Gentiles who have done evil things. Perhaps we should hate them too and that would just include everybody, since we are still being shown all the reasons we should hate Blacks, Hispanics and Indians all the time.
But I digress.
In Mark Ames' chilling AlterNet article "The Memory Scrub About Why Ft. Hood Happened Is Almost Complete ... If It Weren't for Archives," there is a different picture much of the media would like you to forget. Ames' compilation of original and subsequently revised major news coverage of the Ft. Hood Shooting reminds us what we already knew the second we heard the news of a lone gunman shooting up his workplace, in this case a military base. It's the tragic case of a loser who loses it. In this case, he happened to be trained in small arms.
Hasan was a faltering officer doing a well documented slow public decline. He was religiously, emphatically, against the war; he was appalled by the same stories that were devastating his patients. His personal life sucked, his performance evaluations were going downhill. He was trying to report his patients for war crimes, because, of all things, they were reporting war crimes and he told people it was driving him crazy. He was fighting his deployment tooth and nail and obviously exactly the wrong guy to send to the war front and in typical military snafu, that's exactly where they insisted on sending him. And he went postal. Stupid us.
Remember all the calls about why didn't anybody catch the warning signals? It was because there were so many for so many years that the military ignored them. It's not because he was a deep double agent, part of some super-secret Al Qaeda spy ring operating out of the same Falls River Mosque attended briefly by two of the 9/11 hijackers. That would be simply guilt by association. By that rationale, the Bush family would be terrorists because they were in bed financially with the Bin Laden family, as in Osama. In fact George Bush, Sr. was doing business with them that very day of Sept. 11, 2001 and that does not make him a terrorist.
The Bushes, both father and son, have been well proven as terrorists in their own right. Once again we need to set some terms here: WMDs? No. No WMDs. Never Happened. It was a deception the administration put upon America to sell us the war. Saddam = 9/11? Pure BS. Even though at one point as many as 70% of the public swore it was true and thought President Bush had told them so, it was never true and he officially denied it in the press the day after the 5th anniversary of Sept. 11. Look it up.
If you're still with me then follow this: As FAIR will document exhaustively for you, the Bush admin knew there were no weapons of mass destruction and Hussein was never linked to Al Qaeda and yet over 900 times they quite intentionally mislead the public to get us to believe it in the lead up and first year of the war.
So, it's a war of aggression. It's a war sold on lies. It is a war that is wrong, and while there are tons of reasons speculated as to how or why Bush did it, there can be no doubt he made America a terrorist. We needlessly destroyed another country to attack a misrepresented image of a man. Though, of course, Hussein was a terrorist to his own people, he was not a threat to us. He was a target Bush trained America to attack by lying to us.
It is an ugly truth, a shameful truth and until we act to correct it, we perpetuate the crime. In America we have the luxury of blaming our president; but a country at war is every citizen's shame. To the rest of the world, it is America, the terrorist. Until we correct this great wrong, it is hard to prove them mistaken. Why do they hate us? It has Nothing to do with our freedom, and lot to do with their chains.
So here's my argument: If Bush was a terrorist and awful and wrong to wage this war he sold us on lies, how could Obama not also be guilty if he continues Bush policies? The dribble of public relations style cosmetic restoration of civil rights and cessation of hostilities dried up it seems. Obama sides with Bush on torture a little, Guantanamo a little, Iraq a little, domestic spying a little. A little here, a little there, it kind of adds up.