Friday, June 17, 2005

June 16, 2005

Spring Time for Neocons

Jeezzee I hate to do this, but what else can I do when it finally becomes this obvious.

This week we saw something truly remarkable, and thoroughly terrifying. I don’t know how to begin this so that I don’t lose half of you from the start.

Let’s begin with this:

Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) responding to the ongoing tales of serious abuse at Guantanamo Bay:

“Now, how do we treat these people? I sent down yesterday for the menu from Guantanamo, so that the average American could understand how we’re brutalizing people in Guantanamo, and I’ve got it right here. For Sunday they’re going to be having – let me see – orange-glazed chicken, fresh fruit groupe, steamed peas and mushrooms, rice pilaf, another form of torture for the hijackers. We treat them very well. (And, all in a resort-like Caribbean setting to boot!)

Guard, Allah willing, would you pass the lemon-fish. I always enjoy it, but it’s particularly good today – praise Allah and complements to the chef.

That gastronomic news conference was, for me, the death rattle for this administration’s war on terror. It is the kind of thing despots resort to when caught red handed being despots. By this time they have fooled their own people successfully, so many times, with so many lame lies and obfuscations they figure they can handle this one the same way.

Hello folks, we have been down this road before. History, what a bitch!

Check this one out:

“The English, the French, and the Americans have their Devil's Islands and penal colonies. They are located in deadly climates of brutal heat or ice cold, and poisonous insects. They all have such hells where they sentence lawbreakers for long years or even for life. Most end up dying before they have been there very long….Germany does not have such tropical Devil's Islands or deadly ice camps. And even if Germany had such places, no one would be locked away there. In German camps, criminals and misfits live in clean and orderly accommodations, receive sufficient nourishment and have enough time for both work and play.

That little gem is straigth from the original 1940 German propaganda booklet entitled, “Wie Sie Lugen, (How They Lie.) The booklet was produced and distributed to prepare the German public for allied reports of Nazis atrocities. (Full Pamphlet)

In 1941 word had gotten out of the Nazis mistreatment of Jews in Poland. The Germans responded with a film entitled, Der F├╝hrer gibt den Juden eine Stadt. (The Fuhrer Gives the Jews a City)

The city was The Ghetto of Terezin (Theresienstadt) the Nazi’s set up as a "model ghetto." The film showed families playing together, well dressed, well housed and well dressed. The Nazis used the film to impress the international community as well as deceive the Jews about what really lay in their future. Once the film was completed and distributed the Nazis opened a crematorium in their model ghetto in November 1942.

And let us not forget that the Nazi’s provided something for their prisoners we have not yet provided; high culture. While German civilians might not have been able to attend a symphony during the war, Jews could. And where? Auschwitz Concentration Camp, of all places! Yes, the Nazi’s wanted the world to know that, while they may not like Jews, and locked them up, they treated them well in captivity.

Just as Rep.Hunter and Sen. Session’s trotted out those steaming plates of scrumptious Gitmo food for the cameras, the Nazi’s provided pictures of concentration camp orchestras. It's one of the oldest s despotic ricks in the book. It’s all the same lying, cynical, crapola in a different wrapper.

I hope I have not lost any of you yet, cause I ain’t done.

When the public starts getting queasy, despots first try to scare them back into line. The administration and its Neocon supporters in congress are about this business now. They warn that all this loose talk about Gitmo and other US misconduct is putting our boys and girls in uniform at risk. Loose lips kill our kids, so shut the f—k up out there!

Well, the world's been there and done this dumb trick before too.

(From “False Consideration,” A Nazi propaganda pamphlet, describing a German soldier home on leave in 1939) (Full version)

“He visited a family of acquaintances. They spoke of this and that. The conversation turned to an old woman. One preferred to avoid Frau So-and-So. She was a nice enough woman, to be sure, but she said the oddest things. Recently, she said it was stupid that our soldiers had to undergo such dangers, and similar things. She caused a lot of bother and annoyance, and probably is not quite right in the head. One really cannot take her seriously. One didn't report her to the police, our reader asked? No, one could not do that. One could hardly send her to prison or even the gallows. She was such a nice woman!…This is the core of the problem that we have to speak openly about, German to German….Our enemy is giving us a clear enough picture of what he would do to us so that only a small percentage of criminals and racial trash in Germany opposes our victory. Their number is so small as to pose no danger to us. However, they could have an impact not only at home, but far worse on the soldiers at the front.”

Sound familiar?

Some Americans are beginning to argue we should close Gitmo, that the place has become worse than an embarrassment, it’s become a recruiting tool for terrorists. If that’s true, and only a fool would think otherwise, then it’s Gitmo, not loose lips at home, that’s really endangering our kids in Iraq and Afghanistan.

But the Neocons rallied in support of Gitmo this week. They say we have to keep it open because, damn it, the people there are really bad. They’d slit our babies' throats and drink their blood if let out. Only bleeding heart liberals and those who wish the US ill could possibly argue that what is going on at Gitmo is not wrong and not crucial to protect the American people.

Yeah, well, that justification jumped straight out of the same Nazi propagandist handbook quoted above:

“To whom was this slanderous distortion useful? Only the warmongers who wanted to starve and annihilate the entire German people…. Each of us knows what a crude and baseless lie this is. Every decent person in the world should have known this. And yet: "Some of it will always be believed, the stupid and gullible will never see through it all" — so hope the political liars and slanderers…..Certainly we do not relish the thought of losing our freedom, to be locked up, away from friends and family. But a country that wants to work to support itself in peace and tranquility must isolate the troublemakers to make them harmless. It has always been that way, and it will always be that way….We will not be confused by the lies of the foreign countries! We know what we are fighting for!”

This week's full court press by Bushite Neocons pulled out all the old propagandist tricks in the book. To me it has the sound of a death rattle to it. But death of what? That's what remains to be decided. We can hope it’s the sound of Neocon policies falling apart under the cold, disgusted glare of American voters.

But then it could also be the sound of America sliding down the slippery slope of – (and sorry, but there is simply no other word that applies) – fascism.

Don't wait until you hear the knock on the door in the middle of night to start worrying about it though. American fascism will not arrive in the familiar crude and obvious garb of Nazi fascism.

It will be better. There will be good food, and music.

Just don’t ask for seconds on the lemon-chicken if you know what's good for you.

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