I haven’t had a good idea for a blog in quite a few days; I’m getting kind of sick of talking about Obama and the need for a third party, the economic situation confuses me, and sports – while my first love – just don’t excite me enough to write. Then I woke up this morning; first I was reminded of something fucked up that happened a month or so ago and then I was smacked in the face with something brand new. I’ll briefly touch on both.
The first thing I read this morning was by Glenn Greenwald and it concerned an issue that I’ve known about for a little bit; in fact, I may have even written about it once or twice…who remembers? The United States Army now has a brigade – a brigade that has spent the previous four years in Iraq – stationed right here in the United States. We are a police state; almost every police department in the country has weapons originally intended for the Armed Forces, they teach their recruits to be almost as cold-blooded as the Armed Service, and they have completely separated themselves from their motto of “to protect and serve”. Despite this, the US Government still feels the need to station soldiers in our midst with the intention to “help with civil unrest and crowd control or to deal with potentially horrific scenarios such as massive poisoning and chaos in response to a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear or high-yield explosive, or CBRNE, attack. This is according to an extremely underwear browning article in the Army Times. I’ve been racking my brain for a few weeks now, trying to figure out a situation where the army is needed to control a crowd. This situation would mean that the town police, county police, state police, National Guard, and probably a Blackwater type group have all attempted and failed to keep a crowd under control. What could possibly be going on where this would be needed? I have plenty of what most people would call paranoid scenarios that I can imagine, and am even in the process of trying to form a “what if” group.
This is all shocking because this is the first time that there has been an active duty brigade stationed in our country without some kind a civil war going on. Even more shocking is the fact that no one seems to care. There was a part of me that envisioned John and Jane Q Public rising up if the government decided to postpone the elections or declare Marshall Law because of some random event somewhere in the world, but now I highly doubt it. This should be on the front page of every newspaper, reporters should be grilling the Defense Department for real reasons as to why this is happening, and anyone who gives half a shit about their freedom should be in the streets demanding answers. None of this is happening; there was a tiny article in some mainstream newspapers the day the news came out, and then nothing. Most not so mainstream papers are not even covering this on a regular basis; when I woke up this morning and read the Greenwald blog I was very surprised.
Just when my brain started spinning uncontrollably I clicked Chris Floyd on my favorite’s toolbar and came upon this. I get breaking news updates from the New York Times via email; I have been one of the first among my friends to know the winners of each and every primary, how much stocks have shot up or down, and the conviction of Ted Stevens. Yet when I checked my email this morning there was no mention that the United States has bombed Syria, killing innocent civilians; including children. This attack was not only unprovoked, but according to the BBC we did not even inform Syria (a sovereign nation) that we were sending helicopters in to drop bombs on their population. The US thinks that we can do whatever we want to whomever we want and totally get away with it. Chris Floyd listed three possible reasons as to why this happened. The first is that Syria – long time an “enemy” of Israel, and therefore an enemy of the US – has been beginning peace talks with its neighbors. This is unacceptable to the people who decide our foreign police (read: the weapons manufacturers and other war profiteers). Even if Syria is not too much a grave threat, it is still a monster in the closet that can turn evil at the drop of a dime. Because of this, we must continue to pump more and more money into our military industrial complex. Without ‘enemies’ how would the war profiteers maintain the scaring the general public enough to continuously add zeros to their (probably oversees) bank accounts? Floyd’s second reason is that Bush is a second grader. It is looking more and more like – if we have a fair election – Obama is going to win the presidency. With someone willing to negotiate in office, other countries may back off a little and try the diplomatic route. George Bush thought (or whoever thinks for him told him to think) that this would be a perfect time to get a good kick to the ribs in before disappearing into the hall of shame forever. Finally, another plot involving Bush: how bad would it look for Republicans if, over the next few years, things actually begin to improve in the Middle East? Angering a country that so far hasn’t really been involved is the perfect way to assure things don’t improve.
Personally, I think all these things are tests; the government is attempting to find out how much exactly they can get away with. In the span of a couple weeks troops have been stationed in the United States and we have killed innocent civilians in a sovereign nation; the reaction has been nil. The elections are a week away and – thanks to the above mentioned events combined with the taking away of our rights for the past eight years (all of which also were met with little to no resistance) – our government knows what they can (everything) and cannot (nothing) get away with. I know my writing isn’t the clearest, nor do I get many readers, but maybe in a couple years someone will stumble upon this and put me on the list of people who lost their voices screaming about what is so obviously about to happen.