Monday, June 9, 2008

Major General Kelly Blatanly Lied to Marines in Fallujah on Memorial Day

On Memorial Day, a group of IVAW (Iraq Veterans Against the War) members including myself were at Alien Art Tattoo in Jacksonville, NC right outside of Camp Lejeune getting tattoos to memorialize our fallen comrades in one of the best ways to remember someone. Meanwhile, at Camp Fallujah, Iraq, Marine Corps Major General Kelly was taking advantage of the opportunity to lie to the troops and spew more of the kind of propaganda that is leading them to die for a worthless cause. I found the text of his remarks at The Sandgram where an anonymous blogger has lied about me before.

Below are excerpts of Kelly's bullshit, and some of my responses:

“With all this service and loss, we as Americans can be proud of the kind of people we are as we have never retained a square foot of any country we have defeated, we possess no empire, nor have we enslaved a single human being. Memorial Day was established three years after our terrible Civil War that finally established what kind of nation we would be.”

Ok, where are the bases in Germany? Japan? Iraq? Afghanistan? I guess they're just magically floating in midair, not occupying a single square foot of any of these countries. What a relief. We never enslaved a single human being? That's good to know, because I thought that this country's economy was founded on slavery. I guess all the African Americans here today are just descendants of migrant workers on some kind of guest worker program. And the Civil War had NOTHING to do with aforementioned mythological slavery of course.

“Like it or not America is engaged in a war today against an enemy that is savage, offers no quarter, whose only objectives are to either kill every one of our families in our homeland, or enslave us with a sick form of extremism that serves no God or purpose that rational men and women can understand. Given the opportunity to do another 9/11, our vicious enemy would do it today, tomorrow and everyday thereafter.”

Actually, most of “the enemy” in Iraq just want us to get the fuck out of their country. And if they want another 9/11 so bad, why are we giving them exactly what they want, having made it relatively easy for them to kill thousands of American soldiers in the Middle East? And if 9/11 was the work of some 19 guys with some money behind them, why invest in a resistance in Iraq?

“I don’t know why they hate us, and I frankly don’t care and they can all go to hell, but they do hate us and are driven irrationally to our destruction. The best way to fight them is somewhere else and that is why we are here.”

Nevermind that in his mind, “they” is probably “all Muslims.” Now we have to put up with “fight them there so we don't fight them here” bullshit from the general himself. Nevermind that we are making enemies faster than we can kill them. Hey, if it made sense, it wouldn't be part of the government, and definitely not part of the military.

“For whatever reason they want to destroy our way of life our countrymen at home should be on their knees everyday thanking God we still have enough young people in America today willing to take up the fight as our Veterans did from the earliest days of our nation.”

Does this guy even have the sense to listen to “the enemy?” I don't mean listen to as in cup of coffee and small talk, but in the Sun Tzu sense, “know your enemy.” But again, if it made sense . . .

The real fight is here at home, where we have an administration that wants to destroy our way of life (as in the free way of life with rights enumerated in the US Constitution) with things like the PATRIOT Act, warrantless wiretapping, and a tax system that amounts to slavery. “Our countrymen at home” should not be on their knees, but on their feet and up in arms! But then this is how the military/fascist leadership would like Americans to behave: servile, subservient, and submissive.

“They should know that they are protected today by men and women as good as have ever served; as good today as their fathers were in Vietnam, and their grandfathers were in Korea and World War II. In this my third tour in Iraq I have never seen an American hesitate, or do anything other than lean into the danger and, with no apparent fear of death or injury, take the fight to the enemies of our way of life.”

Kelly is clearly in denial about the lowered standards for enlistment and “search and avoid missions.” Clearly, this kind of ignorance of the people under his command would suggest he is unfit for duty. And at least in my time in Iraq, I didn't see any enemies of my way of life, except for the “invade and occupy a foreign country” way of life.

“Any one of us could have all stayed in school or gone another way, but yet we chose to serve knowing full well Iraq and Afghanistan was in our future.”

I signed up in 1999. The only people that knew Iraq was in my future were the NeoCons. A lot of the folks that have joined since then have been straight up lied to by recruiters. And as crazy as our military is today, I'm pretty sure this Major General didn't make his rank in less than the five plus years we've been in Iraq or six and half years in Afghanistan, so in his own words here, he is not, “one of us.”

“And the sacrifice continues as three Americans have gone to God since we all went to bed last night and slept free and protected.”

AMERICANS ARE NOT FREE! We have more laws in this country than on any other on earth telling us what we can and can't do. We have a tax system that our founding fathers would call slavery. We have more people in jail per capita that any other country. We still have selective service registration. Our government tells us what we can or can't say on TV and radio, what drugs we can put in our bodies, what kinds of guns we can, or more often can't, own, how much mileage our cars have to get, and some arrogant deluded assholes are still out there perpetuating the myth that this is a free country! And we give them guns! Lots of them. And lots of Marines with guns to do their bidding. These “leaders” aren't just created by the military system, they are selected. They are selected by militaristic politicians that want nothing more than to stay in power and want loyal soldiers who will use their myths to manipulate society.

These people aren't stupid, they are deluded, and that's what is really the greatest tragedy of American militarism. They have the courage to face the horrors of combat, and lead men into battle, (though I don't know if Kelly himself was able to make rank without facing combat – it has happened) and yet they don't have the courage or freedom of mind to question authority and to question their own beliefs.

Perhaps our society has been conditioning mental freedom out of students for so long that people in the military today don't have the basic critical thinking skills necessary to exercise the full freedom of mind that their creator has bestowed upon them. With the intstituionalization of government-run schools, it should be no surprise. The No Child Left Behind Act gets teachers doing nothing but test prep with students, and now they don't even have time for basic PhysEd let alone the kind of rigorous education that develops critical thinking skills. Ask any Drill Instructor or Drill Sergeant if his new recruits are getting fatter with every cycle and you'll know that they don't have the skills I'm talking about.

There was so much more in Kelly's remarks for me to rip into, but there are only so many hours in a day. These were just the ones that could be deconstructed in a reasonable number of words. I hope you have enjoyed this glimpse into the mind of a fascist General who has no qualms about lying to the troops, and the kind of propaganda we have been subjected to as members of the military.