The grownups of this world decided to go to war again, people still hate each other and don’t understand that we only have this life, and that we shouldn’t discard it so easily. The people in power are as ignorant as we all are the only difference is that they are in power. The air of knowledge and certainty hanging around them is a mirage originating from our own mind. What can we do? Not much. I read books to learn and think about it, write about it. But that’s about it, or not? Walking outside you don’t realize that the human world is a rotten place, it’s quite nice and the little lambs are walking around already, would the warmonger feel something when they see something like this? Natures clock is just ticking on regardless it’s children that don’t see its beauty.
To prevent complacency and happiness I took my weekly dose of depressive literature today. The book I chose and started listening to today is from Noam Chomsky and is called: Who rules the world Chomsky is a thinker I can recommend if you want your opinion of the world to get lowered by a mile. I really like his work and I get a lot of inspiration from him, but it is depressive to read his view of the world. In short, he sees America and their friends as a cause of much suffering in the world, a returning theme is the hypocrisy of these states when they call out terrorism done to them and the ease they dismiss there meddling in the world as being seen as terrorism by the receiving end of their meddling. I have no time or the capability to check all the cases Chomsky so easily sums up, I rely on others to do that kind of work and I can safely say that I agree with him after reading a lot of other books about the specific cases. There is a lot going on in the world and if you only consume one side of the story you will miss a lot.
Everybody’s worried about stopping terrorism. Well, there’s a really easy way: stop participating in it. Noam Chomsky
Reading the specific American or western side is for us westerners not necessary, our cultures is drenched with messages on how to see certain world events. Most of what we consume, through film, tv, media, books, or the internet; even if it is against America and their allies, is for the most part seen through our western eyes and not from the other side. A good example is the recent missile alarm in Hawaii. For 38 minutes those people were afraid that their life was going to end. It was all over the news how terrible that experience was. I happen to watch Democracy now on YouTube that day, I like their critical view. Someone compared it to people in Pakistan and Afghanistan that hear drones flying invisible in the sky, over their heads. For those people it’s like a missile alarm almost every day, they don’t know when the next bomb is coming down, but they know it will, they live in terror on a daily basis like those Americans did for 38 minutes. Which story did you here the most? You probably never realized that those people live under that kind of pressure, and we admire Obama who in this case terrorized those people for years. Obama is the terrorist in the eyes of the victims of a missile hitting the wrong house.
There are very few people who are going to look into the mirror and say, ‘That person I see is a savage monster;’ instead, they make up some construction that justifies what they do. Noam Chomsky
While doing my picture today I had some Chomsky on, on YouTube. It was a google interview with him. One thing I liked was the story of the workers and artisan’s a hundred years ago who would hire a young boy, if they could afford it, to read books to them while they work. Something I don’t have the money for but thank god for the audio-books. But the point of his story was that the working class in those day was often better informed than the other classes, something that is no longer true. And I agree with him on this, knowledge is so important. People are no longer interested to learn more about the world, it’s easy to pick a side by reading some headlines and following the people you like. On social media an amateurish poem or story about my work gets always more reaction’s than some depressive message about the world. Most people just don’t want to know that stuff, they tell me. But if you want a better world you have to start educating yourself, it’s like the plastic bag they offer you in the store, what does it matter for the environment if you take that one bag, it’s already made… you tell yourself.
I was watching a documentary about the “white helmets” in Syria, this is a group of people that try to get people out of buildings that just collapsed because of explosions caused by one of the warring parties. It’s hard to imagine what these people go true but one of the people said something that made me think. They were in Turkey for training when one of them said that by crossing a border, everything changed, the war was gone.
I am watching a documentary about the Vietnam war. It is a recently made by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick and more than 16 hours long. It is very well made with lots of interviews with veterans from both sides and anti war activist. This little part I show here is something that spoke to me because of the conflict you can have inside. There are no write or wrong answers if war is a fact and you have to choose.
I wanted to no more about civilian casualties of war, or Collateral damage. While doing research on the internet I came upon this site from the Watson Institute. The article goes about civilian casualties in wars that America started. They did research that shows that “The wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan have taken a tremendous human toll on those countries. As of March 2015, approximately 210,000 civilians have died violent deaths as a result of the wars.” There are other numbers to, if you search for Casualties of the Iraq War you will find among others this wiki page that reads: “Official estimates of Iraq War casualties range from 110,000 to 460,000. Other estimates, such as the 2006 Lancet study, and the 2007 Opinion Research Business survey, put the numbers as high as 650,000 and 1.2 million respectively”. If even big institutes and universities can’t make up their mind with all their available resources than I, sitting behind my computer, will of course never find out the truth. But if you assume it is the lowest number, and only for the war that America started in Iraq in 2003, than 110,000-civilian’s casualties are still a lot.
Maybe I am crazy, but I immediately see in front of me a dull meeting room. In this room there is some bad lightning, lukewarm coffee and numbers scribbled on a board. There are a couple of people sitting at a big table, It looks like all middle-aged white man. They discuss the tolerated number of casualties of the war they are about to start. They sit there all smug. Probably thinking in themselves: “look at me, sitting here at the big table, making big decision, I am so serious, I am so important…wonder what’s for dinner tonight”. But it’s true, there was a table like that, in a room like that, with just a few old, probably fat and white, guys deciding over the willful killing of thousands of civilians, and every war kills civilians. They might claim it’s the state that goes to war, and they are just the tools that do it, but…
Picture this: try to see everybody naked in a big field. Naked we are all the same, without all the bells and whistles you will never know if that person is a hairdresser, a plumber or a congressman. We are all the same in that imaginary naked world but for some reason these fat white men started pointing at some people by a tree with a comfortable couch. The fat men give the order to kill them, they want the couch. These followers do that and… some bystanders get also killed. If you take away all the bells and whistles you end up with this picture. Collateral damage is what they call it, but at the end that is not what it is, It’s just a bunch of people that wanted something no matter the cost they, don’t care that some bystanders might die. Observing a group of naked people doing this ritual would surely make you wonder, put them some cloth on and call them president and general and it suddenly makes more sense…sadly, now it fits in a whole familiar narrative.
Every person that died in such an unjust war is murdered.
I’m not against war, if in the imaginary field full of naked people someone start beating his neighbor to death and you send your strongest friend there to stop him, first with words off course, and he accidentally hit the murderers younger brother that was standing to close. You might cal it collateral damage where an innocent bystander got hit, but there was a good cause. (I know, where do you draw the line, but morals without a line are no morals, passivism is no solution) It is generally agreed on that the Iraq war was not necessary and if there was a stronger power than America we would have seen some self-righteous American statesmen on the stand in Den Haag. Every person that died in such an unjust war is murdered. Nietzsche has this idea that morals get their value from the powerful, and he is right in that, America is not punished for the murder of more than 100,000 innocent bystanders because they are the most powerful country and can make the rules. Most Americans still go to bed without thinking about that, they just don’t seem to care. Would you stay in a country that murdered 100,000 man, woman and children?
necks, new Yorker’s, guns, American dream, poverty, and off course their wars. And If you slightly lift the Hollywood vail in front of your critical mind, you also see that Americans are not really interested in the rest of the world, I see this fake “Hollywood America” that is as narcissistic, nihilistic and schizophrenic as can be, but also has an air of innocence and naivete over itself. That’s how I see America, and that is a different picture than I have of a Hitler-Germany, a Stalin-USSR or a Mao-China, but they have something in common. They all rationalize their murderers rule over there subjects. And yes, I think we are all, the whole world, subjects of America. They have by far the most powerful military and culture in the world. They can pollute what they want, bully other countries, and start wars when they see fit. That kind of power corrupts and they are masters in rationalizing it. In 500 years, when their power and culture is no longer dominant, they will write about America in the 21st century in a similar way as we now write about Genghis Khan or the Conquistadors. We write about these murderer’s figures and groups, there adventures and complement it with some hard facts about them, including a list of there wars and casualties. That’s it, in 500 years America will be reduced to some anecdotes in a corner of a history book, and a list next to it of all the peoples it murdered.
I know (of) a lot of good Americans but I don’t think it matters when the current is so strong against them, they will also be judged by time an get lost…maybe we all are.
“What I relate is the history of the next two centuries. I describe what is coming, what can no longer come differently: the advent of nihilism. . . . For some time now our whole European culture has been moving as toward a catastrophe, with a tortured tension that is growing from decade to decade: restlessly, violently, headlong, like a river that wants to reach the end. . . .” Friedrich Nietzsche
“Nihilism is a natural consequence of a culture (or civilization) ruled and regulated by categories that mask manipulation, mastery and domination of peoples and nature.” Cornel West