The Arrogance and Hypocrisy of Empire
by Jacob G. Hornberger
Every day brings more proof as to why the American people need to reject the federal government’s pro-empire, pro-interventionist foreign policy in favor of a pro-freedom, limited-government republic envisioned by the Founding Fathers.
U.S. Empire officials are warning the Iraqi government to take action to stop Kurdish attacks on Turkish troops operating in Turkey, which itself exposes the lie of Iraqi sovereignty. After all, if Iraq is now a sovereign and independent country, rather than a colony of the U.S. Empire, then under what authority do U.S. officials issue such warnings?
At the same time, Empire officials are telling Turkish officials to show “restraint” by not sending troops across the border to attack the Kurdish guerrillas who have killed Turkish troops in Turkey.
Restraint? You mean, like the restraint that U.S. officials exercised in attacking and occupying Iraq, a country that never attacked the United States, killing and maiming hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, none of whom had anything to do with 9/11, and destroying their country? I’m amazed that these people can even show the restraint of keeping a straight face as they counsel Turkish officials to show restraint.
I wonder how much restraint U.S. officials would exercise if Mexican drug dealers were crossing the U.S. border and attacking and killing U.S. troops.
Now, get this: At the same time that Iraqi Kurds are crossing into Turkey and killing Turkish troops, Iraqis Kurds are also crossing into Iran and attacking and killing Iranian troops. So, are U.S. officials advising Iraq to stop those Kurds? Of course not. Why not? Because U.S. officials hate the government officials of Iran and, therefore, consider it okay for Kurdish troops to kill ordinary soldiers serving in the Iranian military. Never mind that the Iranian soldiers have loved ones and families and are probably serving as conscripts. Their lives are considered worthless because their government officials refuse to bend their knee and join the U.S. Empire.
Of course, if the CIA were able to install another shah-like puppet to rule Iran, as it did in 1953, the tune of U.S. Empire officials would change immediately. All of sudden, Iran would be our trusted ally and partner in the war on terror.
How come Americans have such a difficult time understanding why so much of the world hates the hypocrisy and duplicity of U.S. foreign policy? Perhaps it’s because within their minds they still conflate the federal government and our country and also because they’ve been indoctrinated to believe that our country cannot be great without an imperial foreign policy.
Notice also how Bush’s intervention into Iraq is now leading America into being embroiled smack dab in the middle of the old Kurdish fight for an independent Kurdistan encompassing parts of Iraq, Turkey, and Iran.
Meanwhile, the longtime U.S. Empire obsession with controlling Cuba, an obsession that is more powerful than the obsession that U.S. officials have with controlling Iraq and Iran, is once again rearing its ugly head. According to today’s New York Times. President Bush is “planning to issue a stern warning Wednesday that the United States will not accept a political transition in Cuba in which power changes from one Castro brother to another, rather than to the Cuban people.”
Imagine that — the head of the U.S. Empire warning an independent and sovereign country what the U.S. Empire will accept and not accept. What better example of imperial arrogance than that? It doesn’t even occur to Bush that as much as the Cuban people might not like socialism, most of them would fight to the death to prevent the U.S. Empire from conquering Cuba as it has done to Iraq.
As an aside, it might be appropriate to ask what President Bush has against Castro anyway, given that he and Castro share a common commitment to such things as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, public schooling, income taxation, welfare, gun control, drug laws. torture, military commissions, and denial of habeas corpus, due process, trial by jury, and right to counsel.
The answer revolves around the issue of control. It’s not a philosophical difference that Bush and other U.S. officials have with Castro. It’s that they don’t control Castro, as they do, for example, Pervez Musharraf, the military dictator of Pakistan, who is no different in principle than Castro but who is a close friend and ally of President Bush because of his willingness to be a team player within the Empire.
The good news is that there is a solution to all this arrogance, hypocrisy, and duplicity, if the American people can muster up the wisdom and courage to pursue it. As Chalmers Johnson points out in his excellent article “Intellectual Fallacies in the War on Terror,”
There is, I believe, only one solution to the crisis we face. The American people must make the decision to dismantle both the empire that has been created in their name and the huge, still growing military establishment that undergirds it.
Mr. Hornberger is founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation.