CairnsBlog is a courageous one-person blog that provides occasionally brilliant independent coverage of local issues in this region of Australia.
This morning it ran a strongly-worded anti-war article by Werner Schmidlin, a local peace activist, with the self-explanatory title: The futile and costly Afghan war.
The Michael Moore of Cairns isn't a Hollywood-promoted left-gatekeeper
It’s a fine article, not exactly what I’d have written myself, but thank heavens for diversity in the peace movement. Thank heavens that there is a peace movement in this country! You’d never guess it from the mainstream media.
The (latest) war against Afghan resistance fighters has now been going on for nearly twice as long as World War One. It’s a war going nowhere fast – unwinnable, futile and utterly destructive for Afghans and invaders alike.
The way forward is clearly to negotiate peace. The ‘west’ has a duty to offer reparations for an illegal invasion based on lies, followed by nearly a decade of bloody occupation. If we really want to help ‘womens rights’ in Afghanistan – or other equally noble objectives – our Governments could negotiate the terms of payments to the next Afghan Government and apply pressure that way, with carrots and not sticks.
Western troops in Afghanistan: opium production has soared since their arrival
After all, before the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, the Government in Kabul had come close to eradicating opium production, a quite remarkable achievement, soon reversed after the US invasion. In return for curtailing opium output Afghanistan received modest payments from the UN and US State Department. There are also precedents for promoting human rights in this much more benign way – if that’s what we really wish to achieve.
In reply to Mr Schmidlin’s article, I submitted a comment. Although controversial, it was published in full within minutes. That’s the blogosphere! Fast and fearless!
Afghan opium production, 1994-2008
This is the debate Australians should be having via our mainstream media. We should be hearing this debate in our Parliament. But most of the mass media – like most of our professional politicians – can’t or don’t foster such debate. That’s true in Australia, Britain, Canada and the USA.
It seems the entire English-speaking world is in the grip of war mongers. They are a tiny minority of the population – yet they’ve come close to controlling our national discourse.
As it has potential relevance beyond this region of the world, I’ll re-post my initial comment on the CairnsBlog article here:
Yesterday morning I was listening to the local ABC Far North radio. Australian National University ‘political scientist’ Professor John Warhurst came on with his weekly half hour slot.
I was so incensed by the combination of softball questions from presenter Fiona Sewell and regurgitated, conformist war-mongering spin from Warhurst that I rang the station to complain.
I asked for:
- More balance in the ‘experts’ they select to discuss such issue – and in particular more adequate representation for the 50%+ of Australians who, according to successive recent opinion polls, oppose Australian troops being in Afghanistan (in spite of incessant war-promoting hype from the Australian mass media)
- More opportunity for feedback, comment and criticism from the community. If Warhurst is to foist his views on FNQ for half an hour per week, why can’t we the public at least engage in dialogue with him about his views, which currently go unchallenged in Fiona’s sycophantic, crooning interviews?
My complaint got a fair hearing from the Station Manager. It remains to be seen if anything will change. Perhaps if more people call along similar lines it might?
The most outrageous Afghanistan-related lie – perpetrated by the western mass media including ‘Your’ ABC – is the lie that there was any need or rational basis for launching the initial invasion of Afghanistan in 2001. Only people in a deliberate state of denial still believe that. Nanothermitic high explosives were not implanted in three NYC skyscrapers by ‘Islamic fundamentalists’ based in Afghanistan. This is cutting edge high technology. Likewise, the cover-up of such a massive crime was clearly not orchestrated from the Hindu Kush.
The entire ‘War on Terror’ is a bogus sham. It was intended from the outset, by the Ziocons who plotted it, to suck the western world into endless conflict with the Islamic world.
Global prospects for peace and prosperity are being sacrificed for a shitty little Apartheid State (the perpetual war State of Israel). The Military Industrial Complex does well out of the racket too. For the rest of us, it’s a disaster…
That message, needless to say, is vigorously excluded from the mainstream media. If regular Aussies ever figured out what 9-11 was really about, 50%+ opposition to the war would rise to 95%+ – leaving only a rump of hard-core Zionists and their many stooges in the media and Parliament to defend the indefensible.
Many may disagree with the views I express above – but even if you do, don’t you think it would be better if they were tested openly in public debate – so the strengths and weaknesses of such a view can be properly explored?
The Australian Broadcasting Corportaion – a public broadcaster – does not exist to manage its listeners’ opinions. It should adequately reflect the diversity of views in the Australian community and provide opportunities for debate between opposing views.
As I said to the Station Manager, I’ve gone from a strong supporter of the ABC 10 years ago to someone who would prefer the organization be abolished if’t is to continue to promote pro-war propaganda and brush aside legitimate concerns and dissenting opinions about crucially important issues
Why should taxpayers pay for a sophisticated exercise in war-promoting mass deception?
Andrew Bolt: an Australian Zionist shill
I rarely bother to chase up op-eds written by professional opinion-manipulators these days. I see many of them anyway on TV or hear them on the radio. Their pro-war spin is generally predictable and easy to grasp.
Nevertheless, today I stumbled across Andrew Bolt’s odious article Don’t cry in which he lazily links (with barely any comment) to an article in The Independent. It milks the letters of a simple-minded (now deceased) British soldier in Afghanistan to his parents for all they’re worth in stirring up war-empathy.
I submitted a short comment of my own. Several hours later at the time of writing, it’s unpublished:
For your tireless service to the Military Industrial Complex and the Zionist cause, Andrew Bolt, I nominate you Australia’s Shill of the Year (there’s a lot of competition for this award, so the dishonour is notable).
The entire Afghan invasion, followed by an eight year invasion (now nearly twice as long as World War One!), was based on lies from the outset. Professional liars were needed to sell the narrative. You are one of the most persistent war-promoting liars in Australia, Andrew.
Fortunately, I don’t have to look at you in the mirror each morning. That is your pitiable reward.