By Carl Herman, National Board Certified Teacher in economics, government, and history, who blogs as the Nonpartisan Examiner at Examiner.com. Carl was one of the leaders who launched the microcredit movement, and is a tireless activist for peace and justice.
Don’t be confused by the title. Carl – like all of us at Washington’s Blog – is against violent revolution, following instead the non-violent paths of Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. As we have previously written:
I am NOT calling for the overthrow of the government. In fact, I am calling for the reinstatement of our government. I am calling for an end to lawlessness and lack of accountability and a return to the rule of law. Rather than trying to subvert the constitution, I am calling for its enforcement.
From Carl: My friend and colleague for justice, Washington’s Blog’s author, invited me to “guest blog.” I’ll provide two. First: Gandhi’s conclusion of the essential importance of speaking Truth. Second: a 4-part series to document that current US wars are unlawful, US economic policy is massive criminal fraud, and that these “emperor has no clothes” facts are lied about by US corporate media in constant deception.
I appreciate Washington’s Blog’s author for the intellectual integrity and moral courage to document powerful facts; as I appreciate readers’ thoughts, words, and acts of virtue – Carl Herman
“Passion has helped us; but can do so no more. It will in future be our enemy. Reason, cold, calculating, unimpassioned reason, must furnish all the materials for our future support and defence.–Let those materials be moulded into general intelligence, sound morality, and in particular, a reverence for the constitution and laws.” – Abraham Lincoln, Lyceum Address, 1838.
Revolution is from the Latin, revolutio, a “turn around” of political power.
The US public would revolt and end unlawful US wars and banksters’ rigged-casino fraud if they understood and embraced the central facts of these issues. This four-part series of articles provides the central facts, invites passionate public response, and proposes specific revolutionary public action.
Please share the Revolution to end unlawful US wars and return trillions of our dollars to constructive work. With millions of lives at stake (perhaps billions), there is nothing more important for public participation.
These four articles are academic in language and documentation. My citizen advocacy paper, Government by dicts, has additional resources.
US War Crimes: US political leadership is engaged in “emperor has no clothes” unlawful wars that have escalated into Pakistan, Yemen, and with rhetoric to attack Iran that darkly includes use of nuclear weapons in official first-strike policy. The US has abandoned its exercise of power under the US Constitution. Millions of Americans recognize this condition, but as yet a critical mass of Americans either do not recognize the facts or cannot articulate what they perceive into effective civic action. The educational stakes are whether the US will exist as a Constitutional Republic under the law, or as an unlawful empire.
The wars are not close to lawful, and political rhetoric is often in Orwellian opposition to the facts. One of the first academic leaders to explain the obvious is Francis Boyle, Harvard-educated (Ph.D in political science and J.D.) international law professor. His outrage is expressed in the title of his article, Is Bush’s War Illegal? Let us Count the Ways:
“The precedent again goes back to the Nuremberg Judgment of 1946 when the lawyers for the Nazi defendants argued that we, the Nazi government had a right to go to war in self-defense as we saw it, and no one could tell us any differently. Of course that preposterous argument was rejected by Nuremberg. It is very distressing to see some of the highest level of officials of our country making legal arguments that were rejected by the Nuremberg Tribunal.”
Richard Falk, Professor Emeritus of International Law at Princeton:
“An objective observer would reach the conclusion that this Iraq war is a War of Aggression, and as such, that it amounts to a Crime against Peace of the sort for which surviving German leaders were indicted, prosecuted and punished at the Nuremberg trials conducted shortly after the Second World War.”
Secretary General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan responding to the direct question whether the Iraq War is illegal:
“I have indicated it was not in conformity with the UN charter… from the charter point of view, it was illegal.”
In the January 2010 UK Chilcot Inquiry, testimony revealed that all 27 UK Foreign Affairs lawyers were in agreement that the US/UK war was an unlawful War of Aggression. Their unanimous professional legal assessment before the war began was rejected without public disclosure of their work and public debate.
This expert testimony that’s taken a few minutes to read has opened a door for you. The next step is to allow me to walk you through the laws that are being violated: the crystal-clear letter and spirit of the US-created UN Charter is taught and understood in high school history and government classes, linked here in my article, US war laws explained. Reading that article results in you having the objective facts that these wars aren’t close to legal, and only continue from public ignorance and belief in government/media propaganda. By analogy, anyone observing a baseball game, even if it was their first, when briefed on the strike zone could confidently assert that a pitch thrown ten feet over the batter’s head is definitively a ball. Importantly, this person could also confidently conclude that anyone in an official capacity who called such a pitch a strike would be intentionally lying.
Just as in baseball, the laws of war are meant to be understood clearly by all who care to be educated. The irony of the title in this academic area, political “science,” that has so little regard to the objective facts, calls for a breakthrough in American civic education to force political accountability for the life-and-death facts of war and trillions of dollars of cost. I’m going to introduce more testimony to paint the picture of our US civic education condition, but before I do I must again ask you to follow this link so the laws of war are clear to you. Only by understanding the law can you definitively see the Orwellian condition of unlawful US wars that these experts claim.
Daniel Ellsberg was the top whistle-blower of unlawful US acts in the Vietnam War, including the government-created lies to initiate, continue, and expand the war into neighboring countries. He writes and lectures that current US wars are also all founded upon obvious lies, unlawful, and in direct violation of the US Constitution.
In addition to the illegality of US wars that the evidence so far definitively proves upon examination, we know from the disclosed evidence of our own government that all claims for current US wars were known to be lies as they were told to the American public and not “mistaken intelligence.” Read this to verify.
Let’s support this perspective with history:
President Kennedy warned of the need of public awareness that political leaders will lie on the world stage:
“No treaty, however much it may be to the advantage of all, however tightly it may be worded, can provide absolute security against the risks of deception and evasion.”
President George Washington’s Farewell Address, the culmination of his 45 years of political experience, warned of the primary threat to America as “the impostures of pretended patriotism” from people within our own government who would destroy Constitutional limits in order to obtain tyrannical power:
“All obstructions to the execution of the laws, all combinations and associations, under whatever plausible character, with the real design to direct, control, counteract, or awe the regular deliberation and action of the constituted authorities, are destructive of this fundamental principle, and of fatal tendency.”
Young Abraham Lincoln wrote eloquently to defend the US Constitution from unlawful tyrants within our own government. In Congress, he spoke powerfully and truthfully that the President’s claims for armed attack and invasion of a foreign country were lies. Although war-mongers slurred Lincoln’s name at the time and he lost re-election, history proved his powerful and unpopular words correct in asserting the President of the US was a war-mongering liar:
“I carefully examined the President’s messages, to ascertain what he himself had said and proved upon the point. The result of this examination was to make the impression, that taking for true, all the President states as facts, he falls far short of proving his justification; and that the President would have gone farther with his proof, if it had not been for the small matter, that the truth would not permit him… Now I propose to try to show, that the whole of this, — issue and evidence — is, from beginning to end, the sheerest deception.”
Lincoln also wrote that “pre-emptive” wars, such as the US engages in now in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, and threatens for Iran, were lies and “war at pleasure.” Indeed, many of the Founding Fathers’ strongest admonitions were to guard against usurpation of power from within our own government.
General Smedley Butler (and here) was the most honored man in Marine Corps history upon his retirement after 34 years of service around the world, and privy to top secret war planning conversations. He wrote and publicly spoke that the purpose of US wars is never for democracy or national defense, but for political and economic control for millions and billions in profits for America’s leading “bankers, industrialists, and speculators.” General Butler asserted that all US wars is a “racket:” a deception whereby blood money from American taxpayers to “insiders” is always disguised as noble and necessary ventures. Americans are propagandized into paying again and again, and succeeding generations of loyal and gullible men unwittingly serve as the muscle for oligarchic profits. His recommendation to end war was to end its profit motive:
“Let the officers and the directors and the high-powered executives of our armament factories and our munitions makers and our shipbuilders and our airplane builders and the manufacturers of all the other things that provide profit in war time as well as the bankers and the speculators, be conscripted – to get $30 a month, the same wage as the lads in the trenches get.
Let the workers in these plants get the same wages – all the workers, all presidents, all executives, all directors, all managers, all bankers – yes, and all generals and all admirals and all officers and all politicians and all government office holders – everyone in the nation be restricted to a total monthly income not to exceed that paid to the soldier in the trenches!
…Give capital and industry and labor thirty days to think it over and you will find, by that time, there will be no war. That will smash the war racket – that and nothing else.”
It’s important to distinguish General Butler’s expert testimony concerning a subjective analysis of motive from the objective fact of current unlawful US wars proved by the crystal-clear letter of the laws. The strength of my proposal for Revolution to end unlawful wars is based upon the independently verifiable evidence that is as “emperor has no clothes” obvious as a pitch ten feet over the batter’s head is nowhere close to a strike, and as obvious as Jim Crow laws being in violation of the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution.
You’ve read the laws of war to verify this by now, yes?
My point in briefly reviewing testimony of Presidents Kennedy, Washington, Lincoln and General Butler is to communicate that the Revolution to end unlawful wars is not only founded in current law, but among the most important concerns throughout US history to safeguard the nation from propaganda-facilitated unconstitutional acts for oligarchic power and profit.
In irony of our history and law, there is no end in sight to current US propagandized unlawful wars. Fear-mongers’ use of “national security” rhetoric to attack and invade resource-rich and weaker nations continues. For example, in April 2010, Pentagon spokesperson Geoff Morrell officially stated attacking Iran is “always an option,” in Orwellian repudiation to the UN Charter and his Oath of Office to defend the US Constitution that recognizes the UN Charter as having equal force as Constitutional law. As Professor Frankfurt properly assesses: this is bullshi*. We cannot be proud of American government without revolutionizing this condition of official lies that the US can attack, destroy, and kill with our dollars under our American flag upon the dictate (dictatorship) of the leader rather than under the rule of law.
Upon examination, the war-mongering to attack Iran is composed of Orwellian and “emperor has no clothes” obvious lies. Let’s quickly prove one of many: Presidents Bush and Obama, many US Senators and members of Congress, and corporate media say that Iran’s President Ahmadinejad threatens to destroy Israel, to “wipe them off the map.” This is repeated endlessly as a lie of commission believed by most Americans.
However, it is an Orwellian lie verifiable with 5-minutes of reading the October 2005 speech that originated the claim. The clear content and context of the speech is the support of Palestinian resistance against the Israeli government’s violations of their civil and political rights, and the rule of law. Mr. Ahmadinejad uses an historical phrase from an Iranian exiled by Shah Pahlavi to encourage Iranians to persevere against the US-imposed Shah. The one paragraph in question in the speech continues to say that people thought the Shah’s government would never fall, but it did. People thought the USSR’s government would never fall, but it did, as did people think about Saddam’s government. The government of Israel will also fall if they continue their unjust policies toward Palestine.
There is no physical threat to Israel in any rational reading. Zip. Zero. Again, take the five minutes to confirm the American public is under attack from “official” propaganda for their civic education on a life-and-death issue that includes official policy to use nuclear weapons. The NY Times provides the translation, despite their lie of omission of definitive refutation of war rhetoric and call for impeachment of the political War Criminals.
The origin of the “reporting” was propaganda from an apparent faction vying for power within Iran and similar to what preceded the CIA-orchestrated overthrow of Iran’s democracy from 1953 to 1979 in the now disclosed CIA Operation Ajax. If you have Persian friends, talk with them. I have a Persian friend who is a manager at NASA; incredulous and outraged the US government can tell such an enormous and obvious lie to threaten the results of Iraq on friends and family in Iran, especially with the known history of the US previous overthrow of Iran’s government under government and corporate media propaganda.
Once you confirm this specific example of an official civic lie for war, it also becomes clear that such a transparent lie is being protected by corporate media propaganda. I will address further evidence of corporate media collusion after the economics section. If you would like to understand how US “official” claims of Iran’s “nuclear program” are similar lies of commission and omission with zero evidence of any unlawful act by Iran or any evidence for nuclear material used for any purpose other than lawful energy and medical use, read this.
You can help catalyze this transformation; just as the Civil Rights Movement and Gandhi’s work for independence for India were functions of broad-scale public education. Civil Rights, freedom, and peace all require civic revolutions to accomplish, and are our most-treasured human accomplishments.
The “emperor has no clothes” American Revolution I’m proposing is for what is already legislated with war laws; a victory of WW 2. Indeed, all members of the military and government employees have already taken an Oath to support and defend the US Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Revolution is the obvious and responsible American civic response to unlawful US wars from Republican and Democratic “deception and evasion,” with “the impostures of pretended patriotism,” and from “beginning to end, the sheerest deception.”
We the People can only declare ourselves “lawful” if we honor the war laws our own nation initiated. We the People promised a world that secures future generations from the scourge of war, and have the lawful basis under treaty status of the UN Charter for Revolution from the criminal cabal within political “leadership” and corporate media.
American adults sense many of these facts even if many of us cannot accurately articulate them; only one in five Americans report trust and satisfaction with their government. Americans are ready to act. This lawful call for Revolution can harness America’s passion for justice under the law, and constructively build a brighter future.
A dangerous possible consequence of refusing lawful Revolution is destructive public anger and civic violence. And given the state of the US economy, that we will discuss next, public anger could explode if not channeled into constructive Revolution.