Friday, May 04, 2018

Friday Facts in early May of 2018

There is the issue of migrants. We are not silent on this issue. The Trump administration is refusing to accept many migrants to come into America based on their circumstances of persecution. Trump believes in the bigoted notion that non-European migrants are somehow a threat to American society, which is a racist lie. These 200 immigrants are escaping war, violence, economic deprivation, and other complications from Central America. These migrants include Hondurans, El Salvadorans and Guatemalans. They have traveled thousands of miles in huge risk to try to achieve for themselves and their families a much better life. The racist Trump said that this country is being stolen today when America technically was created by folks stealing lands where the indigenous peoples live. That is why the original inhabitants of America didn't speak English. Trump wants border states in the South and the Southwest including the West Coast to use National Guard troops to assist law enforcement. The Trump administration's refusal to accept asylum seekers is a violation of international law. Article 14 of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights reads: “Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.” In 1951, the United Nations passed the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, which “provides that no one shall expel or return a refugee against his or her will, in any manner whatsoever, to a territory where he or she fears threats to life or freedom.” These laws came after WWII when many Jewish people were refused asylum even in America when the Shoah was taking place. Today, we have the largest refugee crisis since World War II. Trump omits that many of the military dictatorships in Central America were funded by U.S. forces. The crisis in some areas of that region is a direct product of imperialist policies. Even Jerry Brown agrees with the disgraceful policy of using National Guard troops in the California, Mexico border. The Trump's attacks on democratic freedom is a threat to humanity. We are in august solidarity with migrants irrespective of their nationality or color.

The Iraq War transpired as the result of the conflicts after the Persian Gulf War. The Persian Gulf War was a brief war where America and its allied (being based in Saudi Arabia) routed out Iraqi forces who were in Kuwait. Advanced technologies like stealth aircraft and cruise missiles were displayed prominently during the conflict. The Persian Gulf War ended in 1991 by the time of the Presidency of George H. W. Bush. George H. W. Bush didn't want to invade Iraq back in 1991, because he feared that ethnic divisions and a possible civil war would develop (which ironically occurred after the 2003 Iraq War). Iraq was prevented from conquering Kuwait permanently, but issues remained. One issue was about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program. America wanted it gone during the 1990's, but the West supplied many WMDs to Iraq during the 1980's. This was a time when Iraq and Iran fought each other in a vicious war. During the 1990's, Iraq was constantly monitored by the United Nations constantly and a no fly zone was enforced. Sanctions existed in Iraq and many people in Iraq suffered. President Clinton used aircraft strikes in Iraqi forces in Operation Desert Fox in December of 1998 as a way to try to prevent Iraq from developing weapons of mass destruction. Also, American and British forces were involved in the military campaign. By that time,  there was a debate on how much access weapons inspectors should have in Iraq. By the early 21st century, weapons of mass destruction were gone, but the neo-conservatives still advocated war against Iraq. The 1998 Iraqi Liberation Act (which was signed by then President Bill Clinton) desired a regime change against Saddam Hussein. Also, the neo-conservatives created the PNAC document which explicitly called for U.S. interests to dominate nations like Iraq. PNAC stands for a Project for a New American Century and its supporters developed a manifesto of neo-con thought involving foreign policy.

In essence, PNAC was a political think tank created by Bill Kristol and Robert Kagan. Of the twenty-five people who signed PNAC's founding statement of principles, ten went on to serve in the administration of U.S. President George W. Bush, including Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and Paul Wolfowitz. Observers such as Irwin Stelzer and Dave Grondin have suggested that the PNAC played a key role in shaping the foreign policy of the Bush Administration, particularly in building support for the Iraq War. One of the PNAC's most influential publications was a 90-page report titled Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategies, Forces, and Resources For a New Century. It had a quote that, "Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event – like a new Pearl Harbor." That quote certainly outlined an aggressive foreign policy position. PNAC ended in 2006. The neo-cons back then were war mongers and those who betrayed the tenets of international cooperation, international law, national law, and anti-imperialism. After the evil September 11 attacks in NYC, Pennsylvania, and Virginia (as the Pentagon is located in Northern Virginia), Dick Cheney (or the Vice President form 2001 to 2009), advocated for a war against Iraq immediately even though Iraq wasn't involved in the 9/11 attacks. Then President George W. Bush allowed inspectors into Iraq for a time. Bush used Colin Powell to give a speech in the United Nations to promote the myth that Iraq was a direct threat to the Middle Eastern region and to America. Powell later regretted that action. By 2002, Republicans and even some Democrats agreed with the authorization of force in Iraq. It was a time of massive changes in the world society.

I will mention information about Kanye West. What West is saying is not new neither it is groundbreaking. It is the same victim blaming, pro-elite, anti-Blackness rhetoric, and ignoring the past rhetoric shown not only by far right conservatives, but they white supremacists too. That is why Trump, Alex Jones, and others who are far right demagogues are praising Kanye West. Kanye West believes in the false notion that we must minimize the past in order to establish new ideas and a better future. The truth is that the future is tied to the past and the present. No real future can exist unless we learn about the past concretely. His original statements on slavery being a choice is one of the most self-hating comments shown by a black person in our generation. Kanye West is not the only person who believes in this sick rhetoric. Many textbooks in America lie and say that slavery was just "voluntary servitude." We have people who called themselves the "New Blacks" who try to lecture black people on liberty, but embrace the narrow minded principles of elitism, escapism, narcissism, omitting the necessity of social struggle, and total historical revisionism. These concepts are what Kanye West embraces fully, because he tries to minimize the oppression of slavery in order for him to promote an erroneous post racial narrative.

The truth is that while Kanye West is ambiguous on much of his views, we face environmental crisis, discrimination, racism, police brutality, and other real problems that Kanye is very silent now about in public recently. The reason why he is silent on these issues is because he wants to escape into a faux reality that ignores the black majority poor and working class. Our oppression internationally wasn't created by us. The mental slavery that some black people unfortunately have wasn't created by us. It was created by a system whose goal is to destroy and make us submissive to that system. We have the right to fight back and to establish future solutions based on past experiences. Kanye West have made respectability politics statements for years by saying racism is a dated concept, which is fallacious. Kanye West's comments on slavery not only slander our black ancestors, but do nothing to liberate black people today. Kanye forgets that while he can believe in what he wants, I have the right to disagree with him. Trump is the antithesis of free thinking. West may view himself as a black new slave (which is one title of one of his songs called "New Slaves"), but I view myself as a free black grown man.

By Timothy

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