Saturday Soliloquy: Stronger Together
Before Bill Clinton became president of the United States, he spoke to the “high cost of remaining silent in the face of genocide.”
His words said one thing; his later acts, quite another.
In 1993, U.S. officials were warned that Rwandan “Hutu extremists were contemplating the extermination of ethnic Tutsis.”
In early April 1994, President Clinton acknowledged in his weekly radio address the genocide just begun in Rwanda. He studiously avoided using the word “genocide” because of the obligations it would invoke, and made clear that his main concern was for the roughly 250 Americans there.
By May 1994, the world had provided Rwanda so little assistance that USA Today‘s editorial board wrote an editorial strongly condemning lack of intervention, which had already led to the needless loss of countless lives. About the U.S., it wrote, “President Clinton, who criticized George Bush for not doing more to stop ethnic cleansing in Bosnia, certainly took his time getting around to this genocide. Only last weekend did he finally deliver a radio address broadcast in Rwanda, pleading for an end to violence. That’s about three weeks–200,000 victims–too slow.”
After I read about this last weekend, I wrote, quotation marks included, “Well, [without] oil & other valuable resources, what good are they to us?”
And yet, even asking the question, I was still shocked to see my suspicions about enduring U.S. inaction confirmed–in other words–by the Clinton administration. It not only made clear that it did not intend to intervene (in addition to taking steps to inhibit other parties from intervening), it indicated it “felt the U.S. had no interests in Rwanda, a small central African country with no minerals or strategic value.”
I paused reading long enough to write, “Oh, shit. They actually said it?!”
From where did my cynicism spring?
The longer answer is: See my Politics page.
The short answer is: I learned it by watching former President Bill Clinton’s wife.
Hillary Clinton’s 2003 vote for the Iraq War has received a lot of attention this election cycle, but this barely scratches the surface of her lethal, calculated interventionism.
In Iraq, as a consequence of such interventionism, Saddam Hussein was toppled and Al-Qaeda’s influence diminished. Sounds like a win, right? It might have been, except that the power vacuum left was filled by the Islamic State, aka ISIS or ISIL.
A few days ago, Hillary Clinton–hereinafter, “Clinton”–said about Iraq that we must learn from our past mistakes. While that would be ideal, Clinton’s own learning is called into question by the fact she repeated similar “mistakes” in Syria and then nigh-utopian Libya, to name a few. In the former, her rejection of ceasefire discussions played a critical role in the consequent carnage that has since displaced hundreds of millions of refugees.
In Syria, her penchant for contesting governments we “don’t like“–that’s to say, ones not open enough to U.S. interests–has proven catastrophic from a human rights perspective. (From an arms deal one, on the other hand, it’s proven quite lucrative.)
Clinton took a similar approach with similar result in Honduras. When President Zelaya was forcibly removed from office, Latin America and the rest of the world called resoundingly for his reinstatement. Instead, Clinton focused on pushing what she bemusingly described as “free and fair elections,” backing the coup responsible to (purportedly) enable such elections.
Bloodshed and instability have been the direct result of this intervention disguised as non-intervention. Almost the entire population of Honduras has been devastated, thanks to Clinton; only the elite, able to afford security forces when influence does not do the trick, might say life is better there thanks to Clinton.
Did I mention weapons deals are lucrative? Just ask Wolf Blitzer, who’s concerned that the U.S. could lose jobs if it stops arming Saudi Arabia in its airstrikes against Yemeni civilians. Under Clinton’s State Department, arms deals increased “nearly double” over the prior administration’s sales during a like time period. Overwhelmingly, the countries that saw increased arms exports from the U.S. were Clinton Foundation donors. While the State Department is supposed to consider a potential recipient’s human rights record, arms deals to some of the world’s worst human rights abusers–Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Qatar, for example–proliferated under Clinton.
Today, I am told a vote for anyone but Clinton is a vote for misogyny and against feminism. But as I survey the lives of poor women worldwide devastated by Clinton’s actions to date, I find quite the opposite: a vote for Clinton is a vote for their enduring suffering, for bombs that continue right now to kill their husbands and children while obliterating their homes and hometowns. It’s a vote to keep them down to help prop up governments (and rebels) that play nicer with the U.S.
A vote for Clinton is a vote for human rights only to the extent those human rights benefit Clinton and her interests.
In her longstanding tradition of expecting the masses to fall in line (or should I say, be brought to heel?) after their leader is taken down, Clinton began proclaiming we are “Stronger Together” after she was named the Democratic presidential nominee. What she indubitably meant was that the Democratic party is stronger with Clinton and contender Bernie Sanders supporters unified against Republican nominee Donald Trump.
Looking at Clinton’s history, I find the words more sinister and repellant than unifying. I hear them and envision not her and Bernie arm and arm in shared victory, but her beaming at war criminal Kissinger. Elevating war criminal Kagame.
They are stronger together. We the voters only matter inasmuch as we can cast our votes to expand their power.
As an act of love for all those who struggle to survive after losing their livelihood and loved ones to Clinton- and U.S.-backed regime changes disguised as humanitarianism, and in memory of those who suffered and died needlessly for a U.S. few to stand Stronger Together, I will cast my vote against Clinton’s new Cold War and for a third party.
If that contributes to a Trump presidency, so be it, for
Your Trump fear mongering doesn’t really work as long as I can’t imagine
anything worse than dead children in Gaza, Syria and elsewhere.
- Superpredator: Bill Clinton’s Use and Abuse of Black America: I grimaced when I heard Clinton talk about bringing “superpredators” “to heel” a few months ago. Reading this book gave me a much larger, more informed, and disturbing context for that small reflection of an enormous willingness to do whatever it takes to achieve enormous power.
- Hillary Clinton’s Insane Plan for a No-Fly Zone: “No-Fly Zone” sounds so innocuous, doesn’t it? It’s not. (The fact Clinton supports it is practically evidence enough.)
- Even Worse Than Clinton’s emails: I recently read Glenn Greenwald’s With Liberty and Justice for Some. If I’d had any doubt afterward that the U.S.’s justice system has two tiers (and I didn’t), this would have undone them, together with reading the FBI’s report on Clinton’s servers and multiple related articles. Had any member of the lower tier of the U.S.’s two-tier justice system set up private servers full of confidential and top secret material, backed it up to the cloud, mailed both a laptop and thumb drive lost in mail after multiple staffers proved incapable of making email archives available otherwise, smashed with a hammer some of the nearly twenty devices used in a three-year stint (of which only three could purportedly actually be located for examination), had staff involved in a work (support) ticket at exactly the time all emails were deleted in principal and back-up after emails were subpoenaed, and turned over at whim only 30,000 of at least nearly 50,000 potentially applicable emails, they would have been crushed. Clinton? Not so much.
- The Biggest Lie: Clinton, Comey and Intent: See above bullet. Clinton is no peon, so different rules apply to her.
- Almost everyone gets Russia wrong — apart from Obama: While Clinton hopes exciting antagonism toward Russia will help get her elected, President Obama is here … how do you say? Oh, yes. Sensible.