AND JUSTICE FOR ALL DAY (FLAG DAY June 14, 1777), NEWSLETTER #4, June 14, 2013. Compiled by Dick Bennett for a Culture of
Peace. (#1 June 14, 2009; #2 June 14, 2011; #3 June 14, 2012). LIBERTY
OMNI’S NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL DAYS PROJECT.
Half of the Project affirms nonviolent DAYs, such as United Nations Day in Support of Victims of Torture, UN Nuclear Abolition Day, and Human Rights Day. The other half offers alternatives to violent, imperial, commercialized, or self-directed days, as with Peace Forces Day (Armed Forces Day). See end of newsletter for full list.
War Department/Peace Department
War Department/Peace Department
See end of Newsletter for #1 and #2.
Contents #3 June 14, 2012
OMNI’s National Days Project
Patriotism for Citizens of the World
Nationalism and the Flag
Patriotism and the Flag
Contents #4 June 14, 2013
Google June 11, 2013: Patriotic or Commercial Expressions
Dick, President as Cheerleader
Scahill, Dirty Wars Book and Film
, Torture, and Murder Guantanamo
Here is the link to all OMNI newsletters: http://www.omnicenter.org/newsletter-archive/ For a knowledge-based peace, justice, and ecology movement and an informed citizenry as the foundation for change.
Google June 11, 2013: Patriotic or Commercial Expressions. OMNI offers alternatives to the myths of patriotic nationalism.
PRESIDENT AS NATIONAL CHEERLEADER ON NATIONALISTIC DAYS.
I was a high school cheerleader and still enjoy watching. But in political cheerleading, what the leader says and what the leader does each must be founded on the truth and they must be congruent. If not on both accounts the public will lose trust in the leader and in government officials in general.
On and around Memorial Day 2013 President Obama gave several speeches for “the troops” and the nation. Let’s look at the quality of them.
he exhorted the public to honor their “sacred obligation” to veterans and
reminded us that “our nation is still at war.”
He described the cemetery as “a sacred place, where we honor our fallen
heroes.” And “here on this hallowed
ground” of headstones is “a monument to a constant thread in the American
character—the truth that our nation endures because it has always been home to
men and women who are willing to give their all, lay down their lives to preserve
and protect this land that we love.” He
lamented that “not all Americans may always see or fully grasp the depths of
sacrifice, the profound costs that are made in our name.” And he noted that “every loss is devastating
for the parents who lose a child, the husbands and wives who lose a partner and
the children who lose a parent.” And he
assured his audience that, as the one who send troops into combat he feels the
losses. “I feel it every time I meet a
wounded warrior. . . .I grieve with a Gold Star family.” So “Let us never
forget to always remember and to be worthy of the sacrifice they make in our
name.” He quoted from the mother of two
Marines, one serving in Arlington National Cemetery ,
who pleaded with him not to forget about her son. “A mother’s plea,” said Obama, “Please don’t
forget.” Finally the President blessed
the troop and Afghanistan . And then a bugler played taps,a soldier’s
reminder that “All is well, safely rest.” America
Using symbolic speech, he laid the wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns.
In an address on counterterrorism policy he said he hoped to move the nation off a war footing. Next year’s Memorial Day “will mark the final Memorial Day of our war in
.” “even as we turn a page on a decade of
conflict…let us never forget…that our nation is a war.” Afghanistan
Michelle Obama hosted a breakfast at the White House for “Gold Star? Families of service members who have been killed.
Their steady drum beat stimulated drums around the country. Mayor Bloomberg at
New York’s Soldiers
and encouraged his audience to “remember
the sacrifice that was made so that we could be here.” In Sailors Monument South Sioux City,
Neb., a statue honoring a Navy dog handler killed
was unveiled in his hometown. When the
subject is patriotism, Presidents lead some of the people by the nose. Afghanistan
Whew! My mother would say, depending on her mood and degree of knowledge of the subject, “that’s a mouthful,” or “takes a lot of gall.”
And it takes a lot of cant. Can you or anyone other than the President get away with so many pious platitudes so thoroughly undercut by the white light of contrary behavior?
How with a solemn face can he say he has a “sacred obligation” to veterans and in the same breath that “our nation is still at war,” when he could but has not stopped the war?
cemetery is a
sacred place, a hallowed ground, where we honor the fallen, when he knows the
federal cemeteries are bursting their boundaries with the bodies from expansion
of an aggressive empire he has surged? Arlington
Does he believe that our nation endures because its men and women generously give their lives and protect “this land that we love,” when not one of the some fifty invasions and interventions of other countries since 1945 were necessary, legal, or moral?
How can he say he feels with the parents and children and spouses the “losses” (i.e., deaths) of their loved ones, and sympathizes with the wounded, when he was one of the leaders who ordered them into harms way during a decade of conflict (that is, of invasions, occupations, bombings, atrocities) and has the power to end the harms? And what about the enemy—another construction--, has he no compassion for the victim Afghan, Iraqi, and Pakistani parents and children, or for the victims of military and CIA torture and murder? Does he believe these nationalistic effusions will lead to friends and peace around the world?
Did he really refer to a mother’s plea, and continue on to bless the troops and America, and allow taps to be played (all is not well), and lay a wreath in remembrance of all the troops blown to pieces in wars ordered by other presidents or dictators?
Does he think the people he (and Bush and all Memorial Day and Flag Day Presidents) loves to love can’t connect dots, are brain-washed automata? (I suspect he does.)
Does he not know that we know he has an option for the war drums of US Memorial Day and Flag Day—Liberty and Justice for ALL?
OMNI’s newsletters. Here are some recent ones:
“Obama Reminds Nation of What It Owes Veterans.”
Democrat-Gazette (May 28, 2013). Arkansas
DIRTY WARS CHALLENGE FLAG DAY TO BECOME
AND JUSTICE FOR
ALL DAY. LIBERTY
SEE JEREMY SCAHILL’S FILM AND READ HIS BOOK.