Monday :: Sep 15, 2014

9/11 Did Not Herald A New Age of American Terrorism

by paradox

I am always relieved when 9/11 has come and gone, re-living parts of that awful day is bad enough, but I vividly remember an America before 9/11 when flying was fun, casualty lists where not compiled from war reports, and the country was not disgraced for starting a war for lies.

I feel bad for the victims for 9/11 and their families, of course, my sorrow for them is not lessened by what we have become twisted into today.

For various reasons—immature nationalism, war profiteering, bellicose militarism, sick internal politics, and a tiny regard for the “security” of Americans—our response has been an avalanche of war, violence and death on a scale incomprehensible when were so quaintly worried about that vicious Y2K bug.

We dubiously engaged war with Afghanistan, a hellhole we cannot withdraw from. Then the funhouse of a war for lies in Iraq, a terrible crime that is still blowing up in our faces today. A state of secret war in an unknown arc through North Africa and Southwest Asia as drones and ships blast apart weddings by mistake with hellfire and tomahawk missiles. If it all wasn’t enough horror now we have a fresh war with who-knows-what in Syria.

Not to mention unlimited budgets for security quacks so they could spy on American citizens from their Starship Enterprise chairs. With that zestful American addition of militarism of turning our local cops into tank-blasting killers, we are simply unrecognizable from the celebrations of our new century.

Putting aside the bleak knowledge none of this violence will work and will likely backfire, then heaving asunder the awful comprehension the United States desperately needed all those hundreds of billions of dollars for domestic recessionary spending, one irrefutable fact emerges: 9/11 did not herald a new age of domestic American terrorism, we are not under sustained attack.

This stark elemental truth was conveyed last week via Talking Points Memo and Josh Marshall1 under a strangely obfuscating headline, it came from one of his readers. As 9/11 quickly fades behind us on the calendar and the Middle East erupts into another war we have to remember 9/11 was a one-time event of terrorism, there never was any war here.

Time is the implacable, overbearing delivery mechanism of truth, despite all the degrading airport security, invasion of privacy, service people dead and wounded, aggressive wars and ruthless fear we have not been attacked by foreign terrorists again in anything like a major event.

We would have been attacked by now if there were sleeper cells or anything like a sustained effort from an outside foe, but we haven’t. As Josh says, no one bats 1.000 at prevention at this with well over a decade in trying, the big bad scary guys with bombs and headscarves just aren’t out there, America, not for us and the lands2 given to us.

I can definitively state what exists in my tiny world, a postage-stamp park under the PG&E towers on Hillsdale 400 yards from my little house, I often walk the Pomeranian twice a day there. Like many small public enclaves in these terrible times it has become the flimsiest of refuge for those hurting and homeless, they’ve built a gate at the back fence and there’s a hobo camp back there for 5 or 6 souls.

For whatever reason single desperate mothers often use the park as a sort of waiting spot, they’re trying to handle something while they’re kids play on the equipment. 3 weeks ago I walked the dogs past 3 kids, a pretty Latino girl plainly bored as she told her mother she’d climbed a post, glad for the distraction of the cute dog.

Damn it that pretty girl bothers me, what the freak are you doing out here on a Sunday evening? Why aren’t you giggling with your sisters over some stupid American television show, or folding laundry in a clean warm house or playing with the other kids on the street or reading a book with your mother? God damn it, you’re a person of color and female already, what kind of life is ahead of you if you’re going nowhere in this park tonight?

Am I an American frog of the 21st century, slowly being boiled out of the peaceful America I knew by fear and war, like the good Germans were in the 30’s by the Nazis? As a good person in the land of software plenty am I supposed to be brutally callous and blind to lives of fellow human beings all around me?

I don’t know. I do know the United States is not under sustained terrorism attack, we do not have to continue all these awful wars of violence while our children wander in the streets.

[1] I’m fortunate to have Mr. Marshall as a friend on Facebook and have been able to see the pictures of his happy, ridiculously angelic boys progress through their short lives. As I wobble on through this world my respect for individuals who can raise children like that exponentially grows.

[2] A rather absurd notion, really, that lands were “given” to Americans in the scheme of things, but it simply reflects as an acceptance of who we are today. The United States is not a Homeland, we are not marauding conquistadors, we are not brutal occupiers who believe the Bill of Rights only exists for North Americans (not even all of them). It’s creepy in multiple dimensions to see the word Homeland in our times, ugh.

paradox :: 9:33 AM :: Comments (0) :: Digg It!