Shame has vanished
from Western "civilization." Hypocrisy has taken its place.
28, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown could be heard on National
Public Radio decrying the use of violence against democratic protesters
by the government in Burma. Brown declared the British people's
revulsion over the violence inflicted by the Burmese government
on its people. But Brown said nothing about the violence the British
government was inflicting on Iraqis and Afghans.
George W. Bush
also struck the blameless pose when he declared: "The world is watching
the people of Burma take to the streets to demand their freedom,
and the American people stand in solidarity with these brave individuals."
Bush and Brown
do not have the same sympathy for the peoples of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Neither Bush nor Brown stand in solidarity with those who are demanding
their freedom from foreign occupation by American and British troops.
Indeed, Bush and Brown, as commanders in chief, are on a killing
spree that makes the government in Burma look extremely restrained
Why were British
soldiers sent to kill Iraqis and Afghans? September 11 had nothing
whatsoever to do with the UK. No doubt but that the corrupt Tony
Blair was paid off to drag the British people into Bush's Middle
East war for American/Israeli hegemony, but Brown has done nothing
to terminate Bush's use of the British military as mercenaries.
The NPR announcers
also supported the Burmese people, but they, too, show little disturbance
over Bush's five-year old wars that we now know were based entirely
on lies. Al Qaeda is not the Taliban, and Iraq had no WMD. Neither
country was a threat to the US. Now that we know this, why does
the media still give Bush and Brown a free pass to use violence
against Iraqis and Afghans?
oppose a war when you accept the government's reason for
the war is an indefensible position. The Bush regime knows
that if people will believe its 9/11 story, they will believe
anything. Propaganda silences facts, and Americans fall
for one set of falsehoods after another.
To cut to
the chase, what is the difference between Bush and Brown on one
hand and the murderous Burmese government on the other? Bush and
Brown are actually worse. They pretend to be democrats concerned
with what people actually want. The Burmese government doesn't
pretend to be anything but a military dictatorship. Moreover,
the Burmese government is clean by comparison as it hasn't committed
acts of naked aggression - war crimes under the Nuremberg standard
- by invading other countries and attempting to occupy them.
the killing Bush has accomplished, he thirsts for yet more blood.
Iran is in his and Israel's sights. All indications are that Bush
is going to attack Iran. Propaganda, demonizations, and crass lies
are pouring out of the Bush regime and its media and academic propagandists
such as Columbia University president Lee Bollinger. Both parties
in Congress have lined up behind the coming attack on Iran. The
despicable senator Joe Lieberman even snuck language into a bill
to give Bush the go ahead.
Who is going
to stop Bush from a third war crime? Not his vice president, Not
his national security adviser, not his secretary of defense. Not
his secretary of state. Not Congress. Not the US military. Not the
corporate fat cats. Not the Israel Lobby. Not the bought and paid
for "allies." Not the anti-war movement. Not the American people.
Certainly not the media.
content with whatever crimes their government commits as long as
the justification is Americans' safety.
willingness to murder others out of fear for their own safety is
a result of September 11. The antiwar movement is impotent, because
it has accepted the government's 9/11 story. To oppose a war when
you accept the government's reason for the war is an indefensible
The Bush regime
knows that if people will believe its 9/11 story, they will believe
anything. Propaganda silences facts, and Americans fall for one
set of falsehoods after another. The alleged 9/11 hijackers all
came from countries allied with the US, principally Saudi Arabia,
but Americans believe the government's lies that Afghanistan, Iraq,
Iran, and Syria are responsible. Americans have been convinced that
without "regime change" in these countries, the American superpower
will remain helpless in face of stateless Muslims armed with box
have been brainwashed to believe that Muslims hate us for our
"freedom and democracy," whereas in fact the problem is the US
government's immoral foreign policy and interference in the internal
affairs of Muslim countries. Bush's message to the Middle East
is clear: Be a puppet state or be destroyed.
In the meantime,
to prevent democracy and civil liberties from getting in the way
of making Americans safe, Bush has set aside habeas corpus, due
process, right to legal representation, privacy, and the separation
of powers mandated by the US Constitution. Otherwise, Bush says,
we will lose the "war on terror." Bush
says he has made Americans safe by ridding them of these constitutional
impediments to their safety. And once American bombs fall on Iran
and Syria, those countries will be free and democratic, too, like
Iraq and Afghanistan.
Americans to this conclusion, Bush has sunk the United States to
a new low in human intelligence and morality.
Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the
Reagan administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street
Journal editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review.
He is coauthor of The
Tyranny of Good Intentions. He can be reached at: [email protected]
articles by Paul Craig Roberts:
American Economy, R.I.P.
The War Criminal In The Living Room
More War On The Horizon
China Is Not The Problem
China's Threat To The Dollar Is Real
In The Hole To China
A Free Press Or A Ministry Of Truth?
ASEAN CHAIRMAN & THE SANDMAN
General Lee Hsien Loong and General Than Shwe [right].
Burma supplies sand to $ingapore for its building needs.
week, Asean was kicked into issuing a statement against
Burma's crushing of street protests in Rangoon. Asean's
stated policy is non-interference in member states internal
affairs but the protests occured while the UN was having
its annual heads of states meeting and Asean was thrust
into the spotlight.
are both statements from Asean's current chairman, $ingapore.
We note the irony in General Lee Hsien Loong's polite request
for Burma "to work towards a political solution for national
reconciliation and a peaceful transition to democracy".
Saturday Sept 29, the police in $ingapore turned down a
request for a peaceful protest on Oct 5 and 6 against Burma:
the [$ingapore] police said they had rejected an application
for a permit to hold a 'Yellow peace walk for the people
of Burma' on Oct 5 and 6 in Toa Payoh."
$ingapore won't even permit a peaceful protest how exactly
are the Burmese generals expected to behave?
$ingapore's Foreign Minister General George Yeo was just
in Burma in April 2007. He was there to meet Burmese General
Thein Shin and request for sand for $ingapore's construction
needs. $ingapore's southern neighbour Indonesia have refused
to export sand to $ingapore and have requested an extradition
treaty to get back dirty money they claim is kept in $ingapore
to an April 23, 2007 Reuters report, "One third of $ingapore's
high-net-worth investors - those with net financial assets
of more than $1 million - are of Indonesian origin, Merrill
Lynch and Capgemini said in a report, adding that of these
18,000 have total assets of $87 billion."
Burmese generals do not go to China for treatment. They
fly to $ingapore and are admitted to Singapore's General
[sic] Hospital. Currently, Burma's Prime Minister Lt-General
Soe Win remains under treatment at the General Hospital.
General Than Shwe was here in January 2007 for a checkup.
far no news in $ingapore's nation-builder press about why
Burmese generals prefer $ingapore hospitals. Nor any about
the impact on $ingapore's sand supply.
letters below are in full:
29 September 2007
Singapore's capacity as the ASEAN Chair, I write to express
the deep concerns that other ASEAN leaders and I share over
the very grave situation in Myanmar.
have discussed this matter with all the other ASEAN leaders.
We are most disturbed by reports of the violent means that
the authorities in Myanmar have deployed against the demonstrators,
which have resulted in injuries and deaths. The videos and
photographs of what is happening on the streets of Yangon
and other cities in Myanmar have evoked the revulsion of
people throughout Southeast Asia and all over the world.
agree that the confrontation that is unfolding in Myanmar
will have serious implications not just for Myanmar itself,
but also for ASEAN and the whole region. Hence, our Foreign
Ministers issued a firm statement in New York, strongly
urging your government to exercise utmost
restraint, and to work towards a political solution for
national reconciliation and a peaceful transition to democracy.
ASEAN also called for the release of all political detainees,
including Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. I attach a copy of this
ASEAN Leaders fully support the mission by the Special Advisor
to the United Nations Secretary-General, Mr Ibrahim Gambari.
He has gone to Myanmar to help all parties involved find
a peaceful resolution. I would like to emphasise the importance
which the ASEAN countries, and indeed the whole international
community, attach to Mr Gambari's mission. We strongly urge
your government to grant Mr Gambari full access to all parties
in Myanmar, as you have done in the past, and to work with
Mr Gambari to try to find a way forward.
concerns are for the welfare of the people of Myanmar, for
a return to stability and normalcy, and for Myanmar to take
its place among the comity of nations. I hope you will consider
these views in that spirit.
by ASEAN Chair, Singapore's Minister for Foreign Affairs
George Yeo in New York, 27 September 2007
ASEAN Foreign Ministers had a full and frank discussion
on the situation in Myanmar at their Informal Meeting this
morning in the UN and agreed for the Chair to issue this
Statement. They were appalled to receive reports of automatic
weapons being used and demanded that the Myanmar government
immediately desist from the use of violence against demonstrators.
They expressed their revulsion to Myanmar Foreign Minister
Nyan Win over reports that the demonstrations in Myanmar
are being suppressed by violent force and that there has
been a number of fatalities. They strongly urged Myanmar
to exercise utmost restraint and seek a political solution.
They called upon Myanmar to resume its efforts at national
reconciliation with all parties concerned, and work towards
a peaceful transition to democracy. The Ministers called
for the release of all political detainees including Daw
Aung San Suu Kyi.
ASEAN Foreign Ministers expressed their concern to Minister
Nyan Win that the developments in Myanmar had a serious
impact on the reputation and credibility of ASEAN. They
noted that Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has
spoken to his ASEAN counterparts over the past day, and
will be writing to Senior General Than Shwe.
ASEAN Foreign Ministers gave their full support to the decision
of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to send Special Envoy
Ibrahim Gambari to Myanmar. They welcomed FM Nyan Win's
assurance that a visa would be issued to Mr Gambari in Singapore.
They asked the Myanmar government to cooperate fully and
work with him. Mr Gambari's role as a neutral interlocutor
among all the parties can help defuse the dangerous situation.
The Ministers urged the Myanmar government to grant him
full access to all parties in Myanmar, as they had done
in the past.