Friday, December 24, 2010
The good news is that it may be well on the way to becoming legendary, joining iconic Vietnam and Civil rights era Washington protests in our collective memories. If so, this will be at least in part due to a remarkable and deeply moving video documenting the event for posterity.
Framed by a searingly prophetic oration of Chris Hedges, alongside a Lincolneque cameo by Daniel Ellsberg, a procession of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans function as a kind of Greek chorus, bearing witness to the human wreckage of war, which they both inflicted and suffer from themselves, living breathing testimonies to Hedges “War is a Force which Gives us Meaning” and his subsequent, even more radical books.
But while recognizing that halcyon possibility we must also splash ourselves with some cold water. For in an important sense, the demonstration might as well not have happened in that very few, relatively speaking, have any inkling that any such thing — the largest demonstration of Veterans at the White House since Vietnam — even occurred.
The reason, as has been noted by Dave Lindorff among others, is by now predictable: it was barely mentioned within those channels through which most get their information, which is to say, through major media: network television, high profile dailies and internet news outlets.
The underlying explanation for this blackout should also be well known by now which is that the establishment media does not challenge but rather serves power.
We need to stop complaining and simply recognize corporate media complicity and censorship as the fact of life it is. And given this fact, we need to redirect our attention to monitoring those media outlets and individuals who claim to offer alternative to the corporate mainstream and give voice to the left, such as it is.
And this means, specifically, that we need to ask certain questions about their relationship to this event.
Posted by Michele Kearney at 4:43 PM