In the wake of the Isis attacks, promoting Clinton’s experience became a prominent campaign tactic suggesting her ability to protect us from terrorism. Her experience, however, does not support this; the facts contradict it just as they discredit Clinton’s identification as “the progressive (!)who gets things done.” Empty slogans are a pillar of her campaign; appallingly, people are falling for them.
Speak the truth whenever you can: what she has done -the specifics of Clinton’s experience-promise not a decrease in terrorism but the continuation of imperial politics, mendacious ideology, and a permanent war economy, – the insidious nexus of weapon profiteering, deception, and militarism that propagates terrorism.
Clinton’s resume includes two major war disasters that have incited global terrorism. The surge in terrorism caused by the Iraq war continues, unabated, and Clinton shares responsibility for it. She resents being called out on her judgment to which, eyes turned down and tight-jawed, she retorts/rebukes, “I have acknowledged my mistake.” One of the “illogical answer” genre of slogans, another campaign pillar. Admitting error doesn’t erase its cause: Clinton’s poor judgment. She chose to ignore the Middle East experts who warned that sectarian violence would ensue from Siddam’s deposition; she chose instead the Bush / Cheney line despite evidence of its spurious neocon machination; she chose violation of international law and chose the heavy cost in human suffering and death (more accurately ‘crimes’ than mistakes). That a Congressional majority went along with the ‘mistake’/crime shows Clinton’s susceptibility to group ,over, critical thought, to saber- rattling, and to war-mongers’ raucous cries,- confirms ,that is, her poor judgment.
Confronted with the same evidence, others exercised sound judgment and the choice of independent, critical thinkers. Sanders voted against Iraq invasion and showed the perspicacity to warn of its dire consequences. Obama voted “no” and called it a “dumb” war. Tens of thousands of ordinary Americans, along with our European counterparts, took to the streets to protest the pretexts marshalled by the Bush neocons, the abrogation of international law, and the killing of civilians.
Then, for five years after Shock and Awe, even as Iraq devolved into a terrorist breeding ground, she defended her vote. That is, until 2008 when Obama’s anti-war record proved an impediment to her ambition. Then, Clinton acknowledged her ‘mistake’.
What does this behavior of a slow learner mean? The terrible unforeseen consequences were obvious for 5 years! For such a calamitous mistake, one expects a person of sound judgment, moral sensibility, and the capacity to judge consequences (unjustified killing; terrorist blowback, e.g.) to experience guilt, regret, and-minimally- to take painstaking efforts to avoid future ‘mistakes’.
Yet other than her unscrupulous attempt to hide her emails from public scrutiny, the “failed state,” Libya, is Secretary Clinton’s singular achievement. Clinton, impresario of forcible regime change, owns the cascading disaster of Libya as Bush owns that of Iraq. Again, her choice needs emphasis. Many advisors, and Obama himself, initially opposed force and feared its Iraq-like consequences. Alternative paths to deposing Qaddafi were on the table. However, Robert Gates, former Secretary of Defense during Libya deliberations, states that Clinton closed the door to negotiating an exit for Gadhafi.
Her belligerence prevailed .After 7 months of bombing in 2011, her choice transformed a prosperous, stable Libya into apocalyptic chaos,- a “failed state,” –all social, political, legal, economic institutions collapsed; rival gangs/ jihadist factions now sow violence and chaos. The people suffer the brunt of Clinton’s failed policy. To date, 300,000 imperiled, dispossessed Libyans are part of the flood of refugees inundating Europe, -contributing to terror-breeding, worldwide instability and conflict.
Libya pre-Clinton posed zero terrorist threat to the US. Post-Clinton, Libya morphed into a stronghold of jihadist groups (including Al Qaeda and ISIS) and a Mecca for arms marketing.
Still, in Orwellian fashion, , Clinton continues “to defend the indefensible,” surrealistically echoing her Iraq “mistake”: remember we were fighting a “murderous dictator” who had “blood on his hands” and was promising to kill thousands of his own people (disputed intelligence , subsequently proven distorted ); the world was begging us to save the people (so we bombed them and destroyed their country); and once we deposed him, LIbya enjoyed the first free election since 1951 (one and one- half month after which all social, political, economic institutions collapsed.)
The media’s silence veils her debacle and permits her fantastical deceptions. Until now, Reagan’s MX missiles ‘”peacekeepers” have been the Superstars of the doublethink cannon. Clinton has trumped them with the audacity to advertise her fiasco, “smart power at its best.” An absurd and callous pretense that denies the suffering it inflicted, denies the failure, — an oxymoron that ranks with designating Adam Lanza’s Newtown massacre “intelligent childcare at its best.” Why does she think it can succeed? Because she counts on people not knowing the Libya fiasco, and/or perhaps because she is indifferent to, and considers, the human and social catastrophe of Libya and the spread of terrorism unremarkable side effects, unworthy of recognition.
Iraq incontrovertibly revealed Clinton’s poor judgment; but Libya’s indictment is more damning. She repeated her mistake; moreover, she shows no signs of recognizing that her repeated mistakes belong to the long chain of US’s disastrous history of regime change politics. This inability to learn history’s lessons needs to be widely acknowledged , and Clinton’s disturbingly flat learning curve traced to her espousal of American Exceptionalism, – a delusion that by clinical definition depends on denial of reality. Fact is kryptonite to delusion; they can’t co-exist. Case studies of the many Jesuses who inhabit psychiatric wards show us rational personas who with straight calm faces construct ingenious rationalizations to demolish any evidence/fact that threatens to loosen the grip of their fantasy. If you join them in the cloud cuckooland where beliefs float untethered to sound premises, they are weirdly/scarily persuasive.
Watch Clinton express her/collective superiority faith to a bemused Jane Pauley, and highlight Clinton’s support for this myth on the basis of her/our “self-correcting behavior” (sic!). http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/hillary-clinton-i-still-believe-in-american-exceptionalism. If I could afford to speak on TV, I’d broadcast this video every day for 2 weeks (the minimum time to dislodge disinformation). Visually, I would juxtapose Clinton’s face and words with clips and claims from the gallery of tyrants, despots, conquistadors who boasted superiority to justify wars of conquest and atrocities. Then how all these messianic- laced Empires and Reichs lead their people down the road to ruin.
Clinton embraces this nefarious delusion and is in tight with the neocons, mostly Republicans, who populate governmental circles and influence policy. These are the ideologues behind the Iraq disaster and the surge debacle in Afghanistan. To meet the growing terrorist threat, they propose more force; theirs are the heinous voices calling for carpet bombing to annihilate terrorism. Neocons and Hilary Clinton transcend party politics. Clinton appoints them to key positions, and they cross lines to support her Presidency. That’s how much they trust her.
Her emails provide more powerful reasons and the evidence to expose the pretense of Clinton’s experience. Those that have survived her redactions spotlight Clinton’s choice of advisors (they who will guide our futures if she’s elected); they also reveal how in-bedded she is with the corporate war powers, choosing for their profit (and her private gain), to broker billions in arm sales to countries (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, etc.) who she herself had condemned as active supporters of terrorism. And they reveal how Clinton’s militaristic choices fit into her election game plan.
Sid Blumenthal, Clinton’s closest advisor, speaks first in the excerpt below. Highlights of his experience: creator of the sham video explanation of the Benghazi attack that killed four Americans ; fabricator of Monica Lewinsky the Stalker who victimized Bill Clinton; counselor who recommended Obama bomb Libya to lift his sagging approval ratings ; the messenger of rumors of Gadhafi atrocities (unfounded) that rationalized Clinton’s military force:
“First, brava! This is a historic moment and you will be credited for realizing it,” Blumenthal wrote on Aug. 22, 2011.
“When Qaddafi himself is finally removed, you should of course make a public statement before the cameras wherever you are, even in the driveway of your vacation home. … You must go on camera. You must establish yourself in the historical record at this moment. … The most important phrase is: ‘successful strategy.’”
Clinton forwarded Blumenthal’s advice to Jake Sullivan, a close State Department aide. “Pls read below,” she wrote.
“Sid makes a good case for what I should say, but it’s premised on being said after Q[addafi] goes, which will make it more dramatic. That’s my hesitancy, since I’m not sure how many chances I’ll get.”
She got her chance, and the world suffers. ISIS strengthened and emboldened. As I write this, the growing terrorist crisis in the Libya has led to plans for US military intervention to clean up the mess Clinton quarterbacked. And we know how effective this strategy has proven!
As for how her record of “self-correcting” choices would leech into a future with her as Commander in Chief, Clinton leaves no doubt. She boldly proclaims her immunity from corrective feedback. In response to the ISIS attacks, Clinton’ s hyper masculine persona comes out fighting, “tall and tough.” .She wants regime change in Syria, even as more rational voices realize that defeating ISIS and overthrowing Assad (the enemy of ISIS) are incompatible. She would intensify dangerous conflict, proposing a no fly zone, – effectively initiating war with both Russia and Syria. Pressed to answer in the second debate if she would shoot down a Russian plane, she refused to answer. Then, not in her resume, but most apropos: Clinton is the candidate most favored and funded by the defense corporations.
People are rational in fearing terrorism; fear is an important survival trait; and people want /need safety from violence. But expecting, on the basis of Hilary Clinton’s experience, relief from the dangers of terrorism is as delusional as expecting retirement security from Bernie Madoff’s financial expertise. Hilary Clinton’s militaristic foreign policy and her neocon associates spread the terrorist plague we rightfully fear, for they perpetuate the ineluctable Newtonian law of human history and psychology: that violence will always beget an answering violence.
The image of Commander in Chief Clinton, or Trump, or Cruz is a nightmare from which I hope to awaken, and one reason I’m fighting for Bernie. At least, he disavows regime change politics, – and, most important, – he can’t boast of Hilary’s experience!