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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Quote du jour

[I]s the curriculum for history classes in some American states restricted to learning about Hitler and the Nazis and 1938 and Hitler and Germany? It must be, because there are many right-wing fanatics whose entire understanding of the world is reduced in every instance to that sole historical event -- as though the world began in 1937, ended in 1945, and we just re-live that moment in time over and over and over:

Love war? You are Churchill, a noble warrior. Oppose war? You're Chamberlain, a vile appeaser. And everyone else is Hitler. That, more or less, composes the full scope of "thought" among this strain on the right.
-- Glenn Greenwald, who also examines the foreign policy consensus, from Bush to Obama, which is destroying the world day by day:
[B]y and large, the American Foreign Policy Community -- notwithstanding the tragic disaster it has wrought and the untold damage to our country for which it is responsible -- continues to control the terms of our foreign policy debates. They sit around in their extremely well-financed institutions, in their plush conference rooms, debating with each other in the most sterile and technocratic tones about optimal "force deployment packages" and which countries should be bombed and/or invaded next and how the countries we control should be organized and "partioned" and which ones should have their governments changed by the United States.

They have a built-in system of very potent careerist incentives to ensure that there is no real deviation from the bi-partisan consensus concerning America's role in the world. Our "experts" who go on television and write in magazines about foreign policy are drawn almost exclusively from their ranks, thus bolstering this consensus further. And thus we continue to be subjected to such plainly absurd, actually quite obscene, notions -- including from its "liberal" sect -- as: "there is a good argument to be made for going to war against Iran and North Korea."

Large numbers of Americans believe that we should stop acting as the world ruler -- the new Pew Poll found "widespread feelings that the US is playing the role of the hegemonic or dominant world leader more than it should be" -- but such views are rigidly excluded from the bi-partisan Foreign Policy Community and thus excluded from what we are permitted in the mainstream to debate.