leroymoore

Needed Now: A Peace Movement Against Clinton Wars To Come

In Democracy, Human rights, Justice, Nuclear Guardianship, Peace, War on October 10, 2016 at 2:29 am

By Andrew Levine, http://www.counterpunch.org
Popular Resistance, October 8th, 2016

Barack Obama won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize –for not being George W. Bush. This seemed unseemly at the time, but not outrageous. Seven years later, it seems grotesque.

As the steward-in-chief of the American empire, Obama continued Bush’s Afghanistan and Iraq Wars, and extended his “War on Terror” into Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Pakistan, and elsewhere in Africa and the Middle East.

He also became a terrorist himself and a serial killer, weaponized drones and special ops assassins being his weapons of choice.

Much of this has taken place under a veil of secrecy. A great deal of effort has gone into keeping news of the murder and mayhem Obama let loose upon the world out of public view; so far out that, to this day, Obama, is still widely thought of as a man of peace.

He kept that illusion intact the way that Bill Clinton kept a similar illusion alive in the nineties– by keeping war talk to a minimum and by keeping American combatants out of harm’s way.

Along with his Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright, Clinton saw to it that sanctions would kill hundreds of thousands of Iraqis. And when sanctions weren’t enough to complete the dismemberment of Yugoslavia, he unleashed death and destruction from the skies.

With his drones, Obama has surpassed Clinton in that one respect; if they gave a Nobel Prize for killing from afar, he’d win hands down.

Sometimes, though, there is no avoiding “boots on the ground.” When this is the case, the Clinton-Obama way is to rely as much as possible on proxy armies or militias to do the fighting, using the empire’s own troops only as a last resort.

Also, like Clinton, Obama relies on “humanitarian” interveners to make his depredations seem kosher. Nobody can sell killing and maiming to a gullible public as well as they.

Now that old horn dog must be smarting inside – because he showed the way, and Obama got the prize.

The sad part is that, compared to several other Nobel laureates — Henry Kissinger and Menachem Begin come immediately to mind –Obama’s prize doesn’t even seem particularly absurd.

And credit where credit is due: an important accomplishment of Obama’s has been to restrain the more bellicose underlings he empowered. Hillary Clinton, his first Secretary of State and inevitable successor, for example.

This is why, when Obama goes off to do whatever he will do with the rest of his life, he will actually be missed.

It must be said, though, that the more noxious laureates at least didsomething to earn the honor bestowed upon them. What they did was often of dubious value, but it was something nevertheless.

For example, the late Shimon Peres also got a lot of people killed and maimed; and, remarkably, he too is widely thought to be a man of peace. But he won his Nobel Prize, along with Yasser Arafat and Yitzhak Rabin, for his role in negotiating the now defunct – and always doomed — Oslo accords. The Nobel Committee could at least justify giving the prize to him on that account.

Obama won his with no peace-making accomplishments at all, dubious or otherwise, to his credit. What he had going for him was just that “hope and change thing,” as Sarah Palin aptly called it.

This was before those words came to stick in the craws of progressives throughout the United States. Obamamania was already on the wane in America by the time Obama won his Nobel; evidently, it took a while for the news to reach Norway.

With Hillary it will be different. Candidate Obama was a magnet for illusions; Hillary is anything but. She is not about to get peace prizes just for being there.

Even the people who give out Nobels know better than that. She regards the (unindicted) war criminal Kissinger as a mentor, and, when she abases herself before AIPAC, she might as well be channeling Peres or even Begin, but it makes no difference to them. Her fondness for all things military is too well known.

Needless to say, while running for President, she would as soon not call attention to her bellicose and imperialist side. She and her handlers would rather people think that a vote for her is a vote against Donald Trump – period, full stop.

In a sense, it is; it is also a vote against Gary Johnson, the Libertarian candidate, and Jill Stein of the Greens.

Trump will get more votes than either of them, but his chances of being elected President are not much better than theirs.

This is why, despite all the anti-Trump hysteria mongering, what a vote for Clinton really is is a vote for war — for intensifying the wars Obama inherited or initiated, for starting others, and for provoking Russia, and its vilified leader enough to advance the Doomsday Clock by a significant amount.

And since, time and again, Hillary has proven herself too inept to properly execute her ill-conceived initiatives – the assault on Libya is only the most egregious example – the risk of nuclear war, once momentum for it gets going, will be a lot harder to contain than it has been under other Presidents.

Most Americans understand how dangerous it would be were Trump in charge of America’s nuclear arsenal – not so much because of his views, which, to the extent that they can be determined, seem generally saner than Hillary’s, at least in this respect, but because of his temperament. If he had a decent chance of winning, the idea that he might become the Commander-in-Chief would be worrisome indeed.

But his chances of winning are negligible. Hillary’s, on the other hand, are excellent, notwithstanding the fact that she is as charismatic as a turnip, and is widely despised for both good reasons and bad.

This makes her the one to worry about. Hillary’s impulse control is better than the Donald’s and she is a lot less inclined to act out, but she is, by sympathy and conviction, an ardent proponent of military “solutions,” even for problems that don’t exist.

Lesser evil voting is problematic in its own right; among other things, for fostering a race to the bottom. But, in this case, lesser evil considerations are, or ought to be, moot, because Trump, the evil lesser evilists want to avoid, is on track for suffering a major defeat. Lesser evilists who might prefer a turnip to Hillary or who realize how great an evil she is are therefore wasting their votes.

Nevertheless, Hillary is slouching towards victory, and nothing except an act of God can stop her.

Now is therefore the time to start planning for life after November 8.

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  1. Nice work, but sketchy. For a better understanding of how the U.S. has become so involved in regional wars of attrition, read “Lessons in Disaster: McGeorge Bundy and the Path to War in Vietnam,” by political scientist Gordon M. Goldstein.

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