Saturday, September 15, 2012

Storming the bastions of US power

“Innocence of Muslims,” the video which has fueled anti-US protests in over 20 countries, isn’t merely Islamophobic rubbish; it’s an obscene & cinematic disaster--& not even a need for documentation can persuade one to plow through its entirety. Very likely, the majority of protestors haven’t viewed it since YouTube censored it in many countries after it provoked protest. Just as obscene is the propagandistic response to the protests by US officials, the media, & the various expert half-wits they employ for analyses. A lifetime of reading this crap & you never become inured to the banality & cynicism! 

Expert analysts quoted in the media are from the most right-wing, establishment think tanks in the country: the American Enterprise Institute, the Hoover Institute, the Center for American Progress. This little gem of insipid drivel is from the LA Times: “The demonstrations & destruction were instigated by Islamic militants, many linked with Al Qaeda, who are attempting to steer the volatile societies emerging from the Arab Spring toward Islamic law, known as sharia, & their narrative that only violence, not political change, will solve age-old problems of economic disparities & sectarian tensions, several Middle East experts said.”

The NY Times is just as lying & loathsome but in a more existential way: “Did he {Obama} do enough throughout the Arab Spring to help the transition to democracy from autocracy? Has he drawn a hard enough line against Islamic extremists?”

Farah Stockman, an ace reporter from the Boston Globe, appeared on TV to say, with no apparent irony: “People in Egypt, & Libya, & some of these places don’t understand freedom of speech & don’t understand these are not the views of the American people & the US government.” Millions of the people she refers to spent over a year in the streets, dodging bullets & tear gas (both provided by the US), braving military violence, incarceration, torture & they don’t understand freedom of speech!? 

But for sheer hypocrisy, venality, & malignancy, few rival the homiletics of Barack “I’ve come to Cairo to seek a new beginning between the US & Muslims” Obama & Hillary Clinton. They both deplore the content & disclaim any official US role in the video & blither on about respect for Islam but their primary criticism is directed at protestors & violence against US diplomatic agencies--because they can see the political tsunami coming when people fearlessly defy the very bastions of US power. According to the NY Times, the US Is “preparing for a long siege of Arab unrest.” And well it should, because the fury is not just about the desecration of Islamic ideals & institutions but about opposition to using Islamophobia to justify meddling, occupation, bombing, & war. These are protests against US-NATO wars & bombing sieges in several Islamic countries (Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Yemen, Libya, Pakistan) & direct involvement in thwarting democracy movements (in Egypt, Tunisia, Syria, Palestine, Bahrain, Morocco, Yemen, & elsewhere) & they deserve our full support. Here protesters in Sana’a, Yemen storm the gate of the US Embassy on Thursday.

The most powerful way to oppose Islamophobia & express solidarity with Muslims & others under US-NATO siege is to participate in upcoming antiwar protests on October 5th-7th. Info on actions available at:
(Photo by Hani Mohammed/AP)

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