Thursday, August 20, 2009

Media Excises Deep and Murky Context in Pan Am Bomber Story.

Today's 'featured" news story is on the release of a man from Libya by the Scottish Government from a prison where he was sentenced to serve a life sentence.  The man has cancer and is expected to die within 3 months.  We know he was convicted for blowing up a transcontinental flight. 

My problem with how the media is covering this is that story is being presented without context. 

We/the U.S./Reagan blew up some boats off the coast of Libya.  They retaliated and blew up a night club, La Belle Disco,  killing two U.S. service men and a civilian and wounded many dozens of people.  We attempted to assassinate Mumamar Qadaffi in a strike on Qadaffi's home that did not kill him but did kill his infant daughter.  Several Libyans then were then involved in the bombing of the flight that was exploded over Lockerbee, Scotland. 

Read a recount of this tit for tat escalation that helped no one but killed hundreds.  

Reagan chose to engage in Israeli style "diplomacy" -- i.e. assassination of a a country's leader.  The U.S. and most western govenments have chosen not to engage in assassination of leaders as it elevates the person in power to a symbolic level akin to that of a regal status where the person and the government or country are all the same.  

If memory serves me, this was also the  time the French did not allow overflight and an "errant" bomb fell on the lawn of the French embassy in Libya.   This instance of neener, neener, neener with bombs illustrated a level of in your face immaturity that is intensely troubling and frightening beyond words.

This is akin to the problem implicit within the use of drones.  It personalizes war to the level of assassination.   To have to have no contact with the people you kill was a trajectory started with the use of aerial bombings.  But this trend has expanded to the point that no support staff at all has to walk among the people who will be bombed.   This is supremely arrogant.   Our technological capability has evolved to a level where we cannot justify its use and maintain any sense of humanity.  We must do things entirely differently.  

My suggestion, train and disperse an educational militia primarily composed of women into areas of conflict and work with the women of the area to solve base level problems that percolate up through society to create international conflict.  Raging Grannies and CodePink Women and Women in Black would be a good population from which to initially draw for the corps.  

Women, wake up, we have to change all this.  


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