Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Hooked on Empire's Logic

Colorado Democrats voted down resolutions to Bring the Troops Home Now:
Delegates at the party's state convention expressed their hope for peace, but rejected calls for immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq.

The majority of Colorado Democrats at the party's state convention over the weekend rejected a resolution to bring American soldiers home from Iraq now.

It was an important message in an election year, when patriotism matters and when some Democratic candidates will be trying to woo independents and Republican voters in November.

But the outcome surprised some ideologues who expected the party faithful to make a statement that the war is doing more harm than good and that prisoner abuse has disgraced the United States before the whole world.

The rejected resolution urged: "Immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq and support for a United Nations International Peace mission to Iraq to bring about peace, security and stability in the sovereign nation of Iraq."

Delegates also rebuffed an even shorter peace resolution that said, in full: "Bring the troops home now." . . .

State Democratic Chairman Chris Gates said that by rejecting the proposal, the majority of Democrats showed they are "measured and prudent." Most party leaders believe the United States entered the war under false claims by the Bush administration that Iraq harbored weapons of mass destruction and al-Qaeda terrorists. But they also recognize that the United States can't simply pull the troops out, said Gates. ("Democrats Dodge Anti-war Bullets," Denver Post, May 25, 2004)
I take Gates' words at face value. The Democratic Party leaders must truly believe that Washington "can't simply pull the troops out" and that their position, such as it is, is indeed "measured and prudent." The irony is that there is nothing "measured and prudent" about "staying the course" as both the Democratic and Republican Parties say and continuing the military occupation of Iraq, overstretching the US military, raising the odds of terrorist attacks on Americans at home and abroad, and increasing the possibility of oil supply disruptions that will deliver crude shocks to the vulnerable global economy.

The ideology of empire turns the world upside down. What is extremely imprudent appears "measured and prudent" in the eye of those who are hooked on empire's logic. Those who recommend a truly measured course of action -- like the rank and file Democrats at the party's state convention in Colorado and Ralph Nader who says that the United States should "declare a set date for corporate and military withdrawal -- let's say the end of the year" and calls for "replacing U.S. forces with a peace-keeping force from the United Nations" (Maria Recio, "Nader Calls for U.S. Withdrawal from Iraq," May 24, 2004) -- are made out to be insane.

No comments: