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OpEdNews Op Eds    H4'ed 10/17/11

Unveiling The Monument But NOT King's Condemnation Of U.S. Wars for Wall St.

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Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial
Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial
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Regarding the Official Unveiling Ceremony of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington DC:

How shall peace activists, aware of the forty-three year corporate media blackout of Martin Luther King's condemnation of U.S. Wars, react to the usual post-assassination praise of King as a great civil rights leader that unscrupulously avoids all mention of his having shortly before being shot, called his government " the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today?"

How do the vibrant with emotion eulogies of King's daughter, sister, son, and two men who held the dying King in their arms (and went on to successful political careers), sound to the demonstrators of Occupy Wall St., when all mention of King's condemnation of U.S. wars and the "unjust predatory investments they meant to maintain" is calculatedly omitted.

"Silence is betrayal!" cried out King at Riverside Church in 1967. At the unveiling of his monument in 2011, even King's own family and friends were silent about the continuing U.S, wars in six small countries and CIA covert activity in dozens of others, that their King would have described as going back in history all around the world, as wars created for Wall Street's "unfair overseas predatory investments." 

Hello Occupy Wall St.protestors! You are not silent. You are not betraying your country and conscience.

" The hottest place in hell is" not for you brave folks, but as Rev. Dr. King continued quoting Dante, "reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict."

In Washington DC at the King monument ceremony, speeches of corporate monument-funding CEOs put the final obscurantist touch.  Wealthy white elite emoting over how affected they were by King's words about the equality of men, pretending to be deaf to King having denouncing the immoral business materialism and violence along with its twin, racism.

Doesn't it seem like America has been listening to betrayal since King was himself 'silenced.?' Betrayal in the form of unctuous praise for all King's words except those words that surely cost him his life.

For over four decades, the New York Times, Washington Post, the television and radio networks have overflown with admiration, tribute and singing Rev. Dr. King's praise, but, those of us old enough, remember that after King's Beyond Vietnam - a Time to Break Silence sermon and up until his murder, this same investor-owned mainstream media, with the New York Times leading, vilified King as a a traitor, unpatriotic, allowing himself to be a tool of Hanoi

Would it be any different if King was still alive now, still calling his government the greatest purveyor of violence in the world, still condemning U.S wars and covert criminal action in favor of immoral imperial capitalist investments the world over, still crying out that everyone must protest, that silence is betrayal, that the hottest place in Hell awaits those who indifferently sit on the fence or on their hands?

But King is not here. He was shot in the head one year to the day of opening his mouth against Wall Street's homicidal wars and immoral and untold suffering causing investments. The U.S. wars in France's three Indochinese colonies continued on for another ten years after he made shocking headlines around the world, "KING CALLS US GREATEST PURVEYOR OF VIOLENCE IN THE WORLD"

Most Americans have been made to know absolutely nothing about those 'traitorous and unpatriotic' sermons of the last year of his life. And to this day, this writer knows of no church, synagog, mosque, temple or congregation that has endorsed, agrees with, or is willing to identify with King's brave, bold and blistering statements of fact and history.

Perhaps as a result of the awful riots and further loss of life after King's murder causing white establishment nervousness, some extra bit of attention was give to black grievances for a while, and King's image was honored and eventually 'pushed upstairs' and off the seething streets so to speak. All Americans are to honor Martin Luther King Jr. as a national hero during a three day yearly holiday. Not as a critic of his country.

King had bravely exposed the domination of society by powerful investors mercilessly speculating on the resources of the entire planet, using war as a tool to maintain investments. During the last two years, the outcry against investor control of society through privately owned central banks has been heard in the streets of every nation in Europe except Germany.  Autumn in New York has seen the birth and international spreading of the Occupy Wall Street movement. The world is waking up to what King woke up to and was murdered before he could wake up too many others.

In this Age of Instant Communication a relatively small number of King followers will awaken millions to what King taught. The tens of thousands of sensitive people long accustomed to protesting in spite of not expecting it to stop the wars, will join in making the well known image of King a catalyst for people everywhere to realize their capability to make wars unacceptable.
The creators of The King Condemned U.S. Wars Awareness Campaign, endorsed by Veterans For Peace, and many national and international clergy related peace organizations like Fellowship of Reconciliation, Pax Christi, Pastors For Peace, Ramsey Clark and renown musicians Pete Seeger and Wynton Marsalis, can understand a reticence on the part of many in America, for King's words sound confrontational in a country, where those politicians, who participated in lethal military action against Vietnamese rice farmers in their very own beloved country, are still praised as having been heroic and 'serving America' - certainly not shaming America, as King described in detail, in church, in his last months.

In the same way, today, in an infinitely more militarized United States, the ongoing dispatching of thousands of Afghani, Iraqi, Somali, Pakistani, Yemeni, and Libyans in their own beloved countries as designated enemies of America is hailed as serving to protect Americans in America.

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Jay Janson is an archival research peoples historian activist, musician and writer; has lived and worked on all continents; articles on media published in China, Italy, UK, India, in Germany & Sweden Einartysken,and in the US by Dissident (more...)

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