In December, Democracy Now! conducted a chilling interview with famed whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg, the author of the new book, “The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner”. Ellsberg talks of the insane plans for nuclear war, first instituted by President Dwight Eisenhower, that would had led to at least 600 million deaths. The information in this interview may not be too surprising, but hearing the coldness of the plans, and the scope of the destruction planned, is terrifying.
On April 30, 1967, Martin Luther King, Jr. gave a speech detailing his opposition to America’s involvement in the Vietnam War. Although that war ended decades ago, many of King’s thoughts are still relevant today. This speech, given at Riverside Church in New York, can be heard in the YouTube video linked below. A transcript can be found here.
The 2014 documentary “Drone” looks at various aspect of the use of American drones in the “war against terrorism”, including the legality of drone use, and the impact on those charged with piloting the drones and launching missiles on human targets.
CNN looks briefly at how U.S. presidents now routinely use the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) as justification for military actions.
According to a May 2016 report from the Congressional Research Service, there have been “37 relevant occurrences of an official record, disclosed publicly, of presidential reference to the 2001 AUMF in connection with initiating or continuing military or related action.” That includes “detentions and military trials,” like those carried out in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Let’s remember that California Democratic Representative Barbara Lee was the only member of either house of Congress to vote against the measure. Below is an interview Democracy New conducted with Lee regarding her vote and the AUMF. As you watch her speech, which is shown early in the clip, keep in mind that it was made days after the attacks of 9/11/01, when the mood of the American government, media and people made giving such a statement especially difficult.
I haven’t seen this clip in its full context, but I’m still taken aback by the use of various forms of the word “beauty” to describe such an event.
Keep in mind the radical budget proposed by Donald Trump as you watch this video, produced by World Beyond War. When will we start making different, and much better, choices for the world?
This video, for a song by Eric Colville, speaks for itself.
The International Committee Of The Red Cross published this short video about the rules of war in August of 2014. It’s less than 5 minutes long, and gives a good, brief overview of the topic.
What exactly are we (the U.S.) up to around the world? In a riveting documentary called “Dirty Wars”, Jeremy Scahill sheds light on some of the American involvement in places like Afghanistan and Yemen. The movie prompts another round of the same questions some of us have been asking for years:
Regardless of how many people are killed, will the so-called war on terror ever end as long as there are American politicians willing to continue it, and voters willing to keep electing those politicians?
Is this so-called war making America, and the world, more or less stable and safe?
Did we help create problems that we can’t simply kill our way out of?
If the answers to the above questions are obvious to us, why aren’t they obvious to more people?
One of the more chilling quotes was made regarding Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC).
What we have essentially done is created one hell of a hammer, and for the rest of our generation, for the rest of my lifetime, this force will be continually searching for a nail.
This comment was offered by a Somali warlord.
America knows war. They are war masters. They know better than me. So when they’re funding a war, they know how to fund it…. They know very well. They are teachers, great teachers.
This interview of Noam Chomsky by Abby Martin is worth watching. Chomsky calmly makes points that should be obvious, but are rarely made in mainstream American political discourse.