Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Obama and "Change"

Well, with 30,000 more troops on the way to Afghanistan to "finish the job" as Obama put it we know, once again, that Obama's idea of change was limited, by and large, to a change of political parties in the White House and little else. The poverty of Obama's language reflects the poverty of our ideas, that is, our conventional ideas about politics. Anyone who remembers Vietnam will remember that Obama is merely repeating policies tried before. The government of Vietnam was corrupt and we kept saying that we would punish them unless they changed their ways but they did not and we did not. And we did not because we could not. Obama has hitched his wagon to Karzai and his government and there is only one alternative, which is the Taliban, so he cannot actually do anything but ask Karzai to end the corruption, which Karzai will not do in part because his brother is involved and in part because the "corruption" serves to keep him in power. Obama apparently has never read Eisenhower's Farewell Address and Ike's warning about the "military-industrial complex" and its threat to republican government in the United States. You could call that "corruption" if you wanted to, but it wouldn't make much difference given how essential this complex has become to how we live in the United States today. But then as pointed out here before, Obama said nothing, not a word, about the militarization of American society when running for office so we have gotten what we could have predicted we would get. Obama will fail in Afghanistan which is not the worse thing to happen there. More American soldiers will die, more Afghans will die, more lies will be told to the American people to make it look like we are succeeding, whatever that means, and eventually we will abandon Afghanistan just as the Russians did, the British did, and even Genghis Khan did.

Besides, our troops have nothing to fight for. Only the American empire is implicated in this war and because we say we don't have an empire and say we are not imperialists, we have nothing to fight for. If you have an empire and are imperialistic but can't admit it, your wars are pointless and your troops will know this, just as happened in Nam. That war destroyed our military for a long time and this war will do the same thing. It's a shame but, as noted, predictable given what Obama did not say during the campaign.

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