By John M. Kelley
It’s been interesting to watch everyone from animal cruelty people to Bill O’Reilly tear their hair, rend their garments and beat their chests all while howling with indignation over Atlanta Falcon quarterback Michael Vicks indictment for illegal dog fighting activity. Now, I do not support dog fighting, cockfighting or any other form of cruelty to animals. But I find the hypocritical hysteria a little appalling.
The ones on the right are particularly interesting to watch. They are the same ones who support the death penalty, torture, holding people without civil rights, and a war that has now needlessly killed 3,700 American military and wounded tens of thousands more, some horrifically. Their opinion of Iraqi’s must be somewhat less than their opinion of dogs because they approve of a President and his administration whose actions have resulted in the deaths of over 700,000 Iraqi civilians, driving another four million from their homes, half of those from their country. They say if they withdraw they will spark genocide and ethnic cleansing. What is the magic number for genocide? One half million, one million I think we are there. As far as ethnic cleansing the Bush administration has and is supporting a puppet government that works in cooperation with the militias to do just that.
Sectarian violence was not a problem that started with the Samarra mosque bombing but, while John Negroponte was Ambassador in Iraq. Negroponte earned his spurs as the Ambassador to Honduras under Reagan, providing funding, weapons and training to Contra death squads in El Salvador and Nicaragua. Indeed he spoke in Iraq of using the “Salvador solution” to quell early insurgency made up of unemployed Sunni soldiers. In other words hire their traditional enemies to carryout revenge killings indiscriminately against the civilian population of the other side. And O’Reilly is outraged about dog fighting.
Most of these folks think that football which trains young men in brutality and quasi military behavior day after day is fine. And the thousands of young men who pursue the false hope of a NFL career who don’t make it because of skill ceilings or injuries are to be cheered but quickly forgotten when they can’t compete. We train these men from boys to do their best to hurt each other, crush the other side, put them out of the game, teach them every day that its ok to be brutal for entertainment and money’s sake, and we’re surprised when one of them is caught dog fighting.
As Mike Ditka recently discussed, no one shows the retired NFL greats after just a few years in the league who are crippled for life, many with severe head injuries leading to deteriorating mental functioning and dementia. Dog fighting outrage, what about boxing? Muhammad Ali, known for being extremely hard to hit is the poster boy for brain injury from boxing, the rest you never know about. Ain’t owning that Super Bowl Ring or Heavyweight Belt great!
This week I heard one of the local Kool Aid drinking local radio hosts say in all seriousness that the Democrats were out of control and a threat to the nation because they “didn’t support war but peace”. What a horrible possibility.
Personally I don’t trust that either Obama or Clinton will be any different then Nixon was with Viet Nam. For those not old enough to remember, in 1968 he ran on “his secret plan to end the war”. It was recently revealed by Robert Dallek’s investigation of the Nixon archives in his book Nixon and Kissinger: Partners in Power that the decision that the war was not militarily winnable was made in 1969. They not only decided to continue the war during Nixon’s first term, they consciously decided to extend it till the fall of 1972 so that any adverse collapse in Vietnam would occur after the presidential election was over. Tens of thousands of Americans and millions of Southeast Asians were killed as a result of continuing the war which Nixon spread to Laos and Cambodia, destabilizing those countries as well.
So when you hear all of the fluff from the right about the Democrats wanting to undermine the troops and leave a catastrophic genocide in the wake of a withdrawal just like they did in Vietnam, remember Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger. And when you hear Hillary and Barack talk about maintaining a repositioned permanent presence in the Middle East think of, well Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger.