I don’t know what makes me more uncomfortable; watching the events of the world, or watching the way the media reports on the events of the world. The latter refers to the unseen, the unreported, the things that don’t fit into the accepted narrative.
I am haunted by the horrors the Bush administration unleashed in Iraq, as the instability and violence continues. Is that what this “democracy” we brought them looks like?
What about all the refugees who fled Iraq and were welcomed into Syria starting a decade ago? What have they got of a life now that Syria is up in flames? The undermining and overthrowing of authoritarian governments seems to be what the United States is pursuing around the world, but is this something else other than well meant almost utopian belief that “freedom” and “democracy” will blossom once the tyrants are overthrown?
How much is the quest for control of global energy resources, or undercutting economic rival nations as THEY move in on resources?
I think the beginning of the “Arab Spring” was a genuine freedom struggle. Only in Tunisia are things moving in that direction now. Egyptian youth flushed with idealism ran into two huge forces; fundamentalist religion and a large entrenched military. When the former won at the polls, the latter stepped in and took power back.
Libya? Religion and weaponry as well as rivalries from before and after the revolution have not brought stability. Like Iraq, they largely feel life was better before… at least things were functioning.
The unseen and unreported role of the U.S. in stage managing the events of other nations bothers me a lot. Doing things that would never be tolerated were the shoe on the other foot, this country will help foment dissent, aid protesters when it’s deemed in our interest, stage coups on leaders we don’t like (all three in Venezuela under Chavez, but Eastern Europe as well) as well as run elections of candidates we do (Goni in Bolivia, Yeltsen in Russia for two).
Currently there are two messy struggles in the news; Ukraine and Venezuela that have U.S. hands all over them. In Ukraine that “Fuck the EU” tape leak kinda showed the machinations behind the curtain. Venezuela is a bit more hidden, but is well documented by Eva Golinger’s* reporting on the 2002 coup attempt on Chavez. The “National Endowment for Democracy,” as well as Republican and Democratic party based international operations were helping create dissent and develop and put forward “leaders,” of which Leopold Lopez is but the next showroom model.
There was a great book written by Stephan Kinzer in 2006 called “Overthrow” which follows the history of overthrows of other governments by the U.S., and mostly for corporate economic interests. Starting with Hawaii in 1898, and on to Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Philippines, Nicaragua, Honduras, Viet Nam, Guatemala, Chile, Grenada, Panama, Afghanistan and Iraq as of 2006.
Now, with “advances” in weaponry and proxy fighters, combined with media and internet propaganda power, has anything really changed?
I’d say one major thing. Civilian deaths and displacements on a scale never seen before.