THE INDY VOICE
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THE INDY VOICE
HAS MOVED TO
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I point to those ignorant bastards that neither understand history nor have any compassion in their small black hearts and say you did this:
"Hundreds of thousands of Shiites chanting "Death to Israel" and "Death to America" marched through the streets of Baghdad's biggest Shiite district Friday in a show of support for Hezbollah militants battling Israeli troops in Lebanon."
"Demonstrators, wearing white burial shrouds symbolizing their willingness to die for Hezbollah..."
"Protesters set fire to American and Israeli flags, as well as effigies of President Bush and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, showing the men with Dracula teeth."
"Saddam and Bush, Two Faces of One Coin" was scrawled on Bush's effigy."
"Alongside the painted [U.S. and Israeli] flags was written:
"These are the terrorists."
Have you seen the images of destruction in Iraq and Lebanon? Have you seen the death tolls? Do you fully understand the extent of human misery and suffering taking place there? As a human being can you blame them for their anger and hatred of the U.S. and Israel when our bombs are dropping on their heads unabated? It is not a statement of an apologist to say that when acts of imperialism are perpetrated on any group of people, bloodshed, chaos and acts of retribution are not only logical but certain.
The cowardly warmongers who have personally risked nothing have brought this on our country. The world outside our borders sees our actions not as a form of self-defense but of a country of blissfully ignorant and violent fools. Is it any suprise that the world no longer trusts us and views US as the most destabilizing force? Now we no longer even have the facade of righteous. This is where we have been lead and it will take many decades to dig out from under the effects of our actions. Before you go ranting on about "terrorists" in other lands you may first want to look at your own actions and ask yourself,
Who are the real terrorists?
What do you call a nation that says that it doesn't deliberately target civilians but manages to kill vastly more civilians than the group that it has labelled as "terrorist?" Israel is by its own definition, a terrorist nation. Maybe that label isn't strong enough. What should we call Israel being that it has managed to kill 4 times as many civilians than Hezbollah and the Palestinians put together? So, they don't target civilians?! They still kill them very well, especially children. What do you label a country that has some of the most sophisticated weaponry the world has ever known and yet still manages to kill countless Palestinian and Lebanese children? The extremists call that "collateral damage," the good people of the world call that crazy.
Maybe all Muslims are terrorists, as the apologist evangelicals and irrational right seem to believe. That must be it. That 1-day old child who wasn't even alive long enough to be given a name was just going to become a terrorist anyway. The Israelis were justified in murdering her and countless other children just like her.
Do you want to know what the outcome of all this ruthless violence and iniquity will lead? Just follow the extremist's line of reasoning to its logical finality. Their road will lead us all to complete and utter annihiliation if we allow them to. But that is exactly what our government is advocating in the name of peace and just what Israel and Hezbollah are hurriedly carrying out. This is the essence of what President Bush, Prime Minister Olmert and Secretary General Nasrallah are advocating. All of them truly believe that they can attain a lasting peace through the destruction of the other. The truth is that they're all perfectly insane, as is anyone who believes this garbage. Their rationale is the definition of psychosis. The depraved madness of these men are not only evident in their rhetoric and their actions but also in their unwillingness to see that their acts are only successful in strengthening the insanity and resolve of their perceived enemy.
Almost exactly 2 years ago this author wrote a little diddy called "Win-Win" in which I itemized all the reasons why another 4 years with Bush at the helm would solidify a country wide opinion that the radical right is destroying our great country. It appears that I was wrong. Never could I have predicted the extent of the depraved leadership our country has seen in just the past 2 years. That fact, tangled with the polls that have repeatedly demonstrated time and time again that the American people stand firmly on the left-hand side of the aisle on almost every single issue should mean a landslide for Democrats in the mid-term elections. However, the American people are NOT stupid and while they've recognized that Republican leadership is a colossal screw-up, they've also recognized that the Democratic party doesn't offer them any alternative.
Today, that may have changed. In one of the most brilliant political and moral punches the Democratic party have ever thrown, Senators and Representatives including Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Dick Durbin, Steny Hoyer, Carl Levin, Ike Skelton, Joe Biden, Tom Lantos, Jay Rockefeller, Jane Harman, Daniel Inouye and John Murtha have called upon President Bush to end the U.S. occupation of Iraq. This just may be the sign that the American people have been waiting a long time for and what the right-wingers have prayed would never happen. The Democrats, if they can back up their rhetoric with action including widespread party support, may not only win in landslides in the 2006 and 2008 elections but this political mushroom cloud may just reverse the recent tidal wave of Republican victories for a very long time to come.
See for yourself,
Walt Handelsman of my hometown newspaper reminds us that we shouldn't take things so seriously, besides, what's a little privacy amongst comrades!
This isn't the first time Joe Lieberman's placed loyalty to his career above all other allegiances. Afraid that Connecticut's Democratic voters will reject him in the primary, he's now hedging his bets by planning to run as an independent if he loses. "I have loyalties that are greater than those to my party," he says, and tries to make this sound noble.
Lieberman made a similar choice in the 2000 election. He hedged his bets then as well, by running for reelection as Connecticut Senator while also running for Vice President. It sent a great message of confidence for the ticket he was part of, but worse yet, had Gore won (as he would have without the Florida machinations), Lieberman would have had to resign his Senate seat, and be replaced by a Republican appointed by Republican Governor John Rowland. Given that the Senate ended up split 50/50 (until Senator Jeffords left the Republican party), this would have brought about a major political loss. But none of that mattered to Joe. His prime loyalty has always been to himself, from the first time he defeated moderate Republican Lowell Weickert with money from William F. Buckley and from rightwing Cuban exiles.
Of course, Lieberman's been looking more and more like a Bush-Cheney Republican as he defends one after another of the administration's positions. There's no clean solution to their disaster in Iraq. But while we can argue different approaches for withdrawal, Lieberman not only backed the war initially, but also continues to give Bush political cover on it, denying the magnitude of the disaster and attacking the patriotism and judgment of any who'd question our occupation. Although he's taken a few decent stands on labor and environmental issues, and that matters, each time he gives Bush political cover on his most vulnerable issues, he makes it harder to oppose him on all other questions Lieberman's self-created role as political enforcer has a long heritage. Eleven years ago, Lieberman joined Lynne Cheney in co-founding the American Council of Trustees and Alumni. Their purpose was to attack dissident educators, setting themselves up as cultural commissars who took on the right to decide what was and wasn't appropriate patriotism when educators explored key public issues. Their approach would have fit well in Communist East Germany, but seemed strangely out of place in a democracy, and Lieberman's never disassociated himself from it.
Of course Bush might not be even president had Lieberman not hamstrung Gore by arguing against demanding a full recount of the Florida ballots. Or if he'd held Dick Cheney even slightly accountable in their Vice Presidential debate for stands like opposing the freeing of Nelson Mandela from a South African prison, instead of cozying up to him in a fawning love fest. Maybe it was predictable that he'd support Bush's regressive energy bill, tax plans, and judicial nominations. Lieberman has already gotten endorsement from Sean Hannity and Ann Coulter and financial backing from major Republican lobbyists. He's already suggested that hospitals should have the right to refuse emergency contraception to rape victims, and force them to go elsewhere in the middle of the night. Maybe he should just drop the pretense and run as a Bush-Cheney Republican without any further evasions.
Paul Rogat Loeb is the author of The Impossible Will Take a Little While: A Citizen's Guide to Hope in a Time of Fear, winner of the 2005 Nautilus Award for the best book on social change, and Soul of a Citizen. For more information see www.PaulLoeb.org
While many Americans sit in their air conditioned homes eating ice cream and watching reality shows the fruits of their votes and taxpayer dollars are presently being dropped on innocent civlilians in the Middle East by a terrorist nation bent on the destruction of a civilization. The right wing extremists on both sides of this conflict continue to add support to their causes by instigating acts of violence by the other side in what seems like a never ending cycle whereby moderates become increasingly radicalized by the actions of the other. The propagandizing of the U.S. government with their mouth piece Tony Snow, have assured us through the complicit media that they are not involved in this conflict. As many of us already know, when the Bush administration speaks the converse is almost always true. The U.S. is not only providing political support for the war crimes being perpetrated by Israel but they are also providing logistics, equipment, intelligence and funding to the Israeli terrorist state.
What President Bush has failed to realize is that his failure to act for peaceful purposes will be just another example of what will surely come to be characterized as a legacy of being the most destabilizing force our country has ever known.
The only way to understand what is truly taking place is to view what people in nations in that area of the world are seeing and how it shapes their perspective. To do this you must turn to sources of information that are without profit motivation and not influenced through political arm twisting. Democracy NOW! with Amy Goodman and Mosaic, programs both found on LinkTV, a network that is contributor sponsored and without undue influence, is a great source of unadulterated information. To view some much needed "history, perspective and context" of what is presently taking place in the Middle East click HERE. To view the killing and destruction as people in the region see it, click HERE.
I was doing some research on the net when I found that one of my favorite columnists for Newsday (in NY), Paul Vitello, has since moved to the New York Times. In the past and prior to spewing my rantings on The Indy Voice, I would send these aforementioned rants in the form of repeated emails to my favorite columnist. He was also so kind as to respond to me and its made me reminiscient and somewhat nostalgic for a past life lived in a different state, listening to and reading different perspectives from one of the nicest guys around. Without further ado I present to you a "letter to Paul Vitello circa 2002."
Let me begin by stating that I am sorry for having to saddle you with this email but I read your column often, have written to you once before and believe that you will at least understand where I'm coming from. If you take away anything from this let it be this: keep up the good work and don't let them up for air.
Every time I see a report concerning another person having been molested by a priest it infuriates me. I have never been molested myself, not that it is pertinent, but I feel that I have almost a unique view on what should be done with the church. Let me describe to you how I feel with a fictional story that I just cannot stop thinking about.
Today I molested a young boy. It was no different than the other times I have done this but this time the parents found out. You see I work in a profession where a lot of young children are around me and parents trust me enough to allow them to be alone with me. I picked this profession for that very reason. Not only do the parents trust me with there children but I am so respected that they would never believe I would do anything wrong with their babies.
I know exactly how I am going to handle this situation; I’m going to do exactly what I’ve done before—nothing. My superiors will find out and they’ll discipline me by sending me to another location, but this is exactly what I want. If I was to stay here eventually others might hear about the allegations and they wouldn’t allow me exclusive access to their children, and I can’t have that.
What makes me giggle about all this is that when I am eventually uncovered, as I’m sure will happen because I’m just insatiable, I’ll just admit to it happening once, hold a press conference explaining what I did and that “I’m sorry” and I’ll just go on with my life. I still get together with my ex-superiors to reminisce about days past.
Sound like something all too familiar, huh? I never once said I was a priest, did I? What if I was a cop or a day care center worker? How about if I was a teacher? No, I never said once that I was any of these things, because if I was a cop, teacher, or any other person but a priest I would be in jail, my superiors, EVERY SINGLE ONE of my superiors, would be in jail had they known and did nothing about it.
What you just read is a fantasy as you and I know it. Had this been my own true story the screams you would have heard would have been my own, in a maximum security penitentiary because I had just been jumped and gang raped by a bunch of enraged ex-church goers who had been molested and/or understand that you never, EVER, mess with a child, because when you do, your likely to end up in jail with the very likeness of the person you have created by your actions.
The only press conference I would be holding would be to say no comment due to the pending criminal case. I wouldn’t be able to smile in public. I wouldn’t be able to wear the uniform of a respected man in public. The only uniform I would get to wear would be orange and have numbers on the back of it. My friends, family, neighbors and co-workers would not be shown on television being interviewed using words like “forgiveness” because they would give respect to the victims and their families, addressing their remarks to them and not concerning themselves with my situation and what I have brought upon myself. I would be lucky to get a plea bargain and “God forbid” a jury trial.
Where is the victims and society legal representation in all this? I call for every DA in every part of the US where an incident like this has taken place to do a FULL investigation. I don’t care what the League of Sanctimonious large hat wearers are doing, I want to know what my government is doing to protect children where I live. I want the priest(s) who have committed these crimes arrested. I want the pastor, bishop, cardinal, even the Pope, arrested and prosecuted as if he did the crime himself, if they allowed this to go on and/or, even worse, facilitated it happening again by moving the individual to another parish.
I don’t know if I missing something here but to the best of my recollection of the separation between church and state I don’t believe that it allows members of the church to commit heinous felonious acts and get away with it. I don’t care if the victim never presses charges, I want justice and I am outraged, and infuriated that I have not heard of one arrest, one indictment, one conviction. I want justice.
I know from personal experiences exactly what goes on in the Catholic Church. I have read about Christ since I was a young boy, if Christ was on this earth now, the church would see a fury the likeness mankind has never known. Jesus Christ was a man of forgiveness but what these men have allowed to happen to these “innocents” I don’t know if even he could forgive them.
Mr. Vitello, if you feel even an inkling of what I have stated here please continue writing about these injustices and pressure law enforcement agencies to get off their hands and convict these bastards.
Thanks for listening,
The Indy Voice
For articles by Paul Vitello, click here
Murdered by Israel:
An "8-year-old girl walking to her aunt's house"
A "15-year-old boy playing soccer near his house"
A "7-year-old girl whose house was destroyed by an Israeli artillery shell"
A "family taking their new car out for a spin"
A woman watched as "seven members of her family were killed by an explosion while they were picnicking on a Gaza Strip beach"
"In 2004... 8 Israeli children and 176 Palestinian children were killed – a ratio of 1 to 22"
"At least 82 Palestinian children were killed before any Israeli children were killed"
"The largest single cause of these Palestinian children’s deaths was 'gunfire to the head'"
"The overall count of all the victims of the intifada the ratio is three Palestinians killed for every Israeli killed, when it comes to children the ratio is 5:1"
"3,409 schoolchildren have been wounded in the intifada, some of them crippled for life"
7,633 Israelis and 30,376 Palestinians have been injured since September 29, 2000:
"Israel is the largest recipient of
US. aid in the entire world"
"American news reports repeatedly describe Israeli military attacks against the Palestinian population as “retaliation.” However, when one looks into the chronology of death in this conflict, the reality turns out to be quite different."
50.6% - 74.4%: 2,056 - 3,024
Targeted People Killed in Assassinations
Bystanders killed in the course of an Assassination
Israel's Crimes Against Humanity:
"excessive and disproportionate use of force"
"reckless shooting, shelling and aerial bombardments of residential areas"
"extrajudicial execution of targeted activists"
"denied access to medical care"
For more information:
KILLING THE FUTURE: Children in the line of fire
Killing children is no longer a big deal
New York Times Minimizes Palestinian Deaths
Palestinian civilians bear brunt of conflict; fewer Israelis slain
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