It has now been four days since President Obama announced, late Sunday night, that American forces had found and killed Osama Bin Laden in an operation whose intelligence aspects, we are told, allegedly began last August. Though it is four days since that announcement, I am in fact writing this blog Monday morning as I am listening to the various "news" agencies that inflict themselves on the American people.
As I listen, my stomach is churning. Don't get me wrong. If Osama Bin Laden is dead, good riddance. Let him join the ranks of Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot in whatever eternal putrescence awaits him.
But as I listen, I wish I could believe all this, but for so many reasons I cannot, and that is, perhaps, the saddest part of all this, that I - and I will wager - so many others, cannot. And why should we? Consider the list of things that have happened in this country since the murder of President John F. Kennedy, and consider the explanations we were given for each of them:
1) The Assassination of John F. Kennedy; 2) The Gulf of Tonkin (Non-)Incident; 3) Watergate; 4) Iran-Contra; 5) Ruby Ridge; 6) Waco; 7) The Oklahoma City Bombing; and of course, 8 ) 9/11.... and these are just the big ones.
With this broad context in mind - a context that began for me as a boy watching the JFK assassination drama played out live on TV, with the country's first live-televized on-air broadcast of a cold-blooded murder that following Sunday when Jack Ruby murdered Lee Oswald - with all this broad context in mind, I listened, wanting to believe what I heard.
I don't. You may accost me, accuse me, threaten and cajole me for being "unpatriotic," but I don't care. It is not my country or its good people that I am cynical about, but the "government" that claims to represent it.
How convenient it is that Bin Laden - whose death has been speculated upon since 2003, and in some cases for plausible if not entirely convincing reasons - was killed, that we know it was him because we did DNA tests, and that he was buried at sea to forestall the possibility that his grave would become a shrine. That, in short, is the story.
Here are my problems with it:
1) The Timing: this story is the latest in a long line of "events" that have that distinctive, putrid, rotting smell of the corporate elites written all over them, such as the BP oil spill, then the Japan earthquake-tsunami-nuclear disaster, then the Middle East eruptions, the Libya "episode," and then the President releasing - finally - his birth certificate which many are - again - calling into question.
2) The Claim to Have Exercised "Justice": We cannot have it two ways: either we are at war with terrorists, in which case we are not there to exercise justice, or we are engaged in a police action, in which case we are. Having thus contextualized the story, we were informed that justice had been done and that Usama Bin Laden (and by the way, did you note how his name was changed from Osama to Usama?) was dead. We were also informed that this was proven because DNA tests were done, before Bin Laden's body was dumped into the sea, which, we later learned, had to be done quickly as some Islamic religious tenet or another said it had to be done quickly.
Uh huh. So... how did they get DNA for this test? Did they have a DNA sample on file from Usama's "former" days as a CIA asset in Afghanistan helping the U.S.A.-backed Muhajedin? Or did they fly supersonic jets to Saudi Arabia and take DNA samples from the Bin Laden family for comparison, or did they get those from them before the Bin Laden family members that were here during 9/11 were quickly flown out of the country, or what? I'm a little unclear on this, so help me here.
Having then announced that justice had been done, Bin Laden was buried at sea...thus conveniently destroying the forensic evidence that could prove or disprove the story. We're left either to believe or disbelieve the story, which can then be used as a benchmark and litmus test of whether or not one is "patriotic." I'm noticing a pattern here... lessee, when was the first time they destroyed evidence when it looked like an officially promoted story was falling apart. Oh yea...I remember...Waco, then the Oklahoma City Bombing, and oh yea we had to clean all that huge pile of rubble away in a hurry in NYC after the "collapse" (their words, not mine) of the twin towers, that were brought down by jet engine fuel (cough hack wheeze) and(in later quasi-official versions) a combination of demolition charges and "nano-thermite."
If this was justice, it was summary justice; Bin Laden - much as the man probably deserved to die - was never given a day in court, and we must wonder why... but the answer should, in a certain sense, be obvious. Could the War Lords of the War on (Manufactured) Terror afford to ever let him stand trial, making his testimony and knowledge public record?
3) We were also told that Bin Laden had been asked to surrender before being shot during a firefight, by a team of Navy seals inserted into the compound by helicopter. I even heard one major news network commentator stating that she had been told that the seals repelled into the compound from the helicopters, and that none of these seals suffered any casualties... stop and think carefully about that one folks. First, I find it rather suspicious that any operational details were released that quickly, much less one so patently absurd.
But anyway, back to the surrender: was Bin Laden really offered to surrender? And when was this done? Was it done by bullhorns as the choppers were noisily hovering over the compound prior to the seals' insertion by repelling by ropes? Or was it done during the firefight itself? Or is this a complete fiction to reinforce the idea that some sort of "justice" was done here? Think about it again, friends, given Bin Laden's association with the CIA-backed Muhajedin, would the powers that be want him to come to trial? I very much doubt it.
3) Reinforcing the Official Versions: Now, this is where I really began to question the whole story we were being fed, because it was clear that the news of Bin Laden's death was also being used to reinforce the official version of what happened on 9/11...the planes-flying-int0-towers causing their collapse scenario, and the plane flying into the Pentagon, etc etc.
What really floored me, however, was the fact that the networks then ran the "newsy" note that Bin Laden was declared dead on the anniversary of the same day that Adolf Hitler was declared dead, having committed suicide the day before "with longtime mistress Eva Braun." So why, I wondered, are we bringing that up? Is it to reinforce another "official story" (one that, incidentally, most of you know I no longer buy)? Or is it some sort of sick "inside joke" among the powers that be that concocted this whole latest theater? As the declaration of Hitler's death by his own self-appointed successor, Nazi Grand Admiral Karl Doenitz, would have raised any law school graduate's suspicions, should we trust declarations of the authorities here, especially when we're not informed about these DNA tests and Bin Laden's body is now doubtless feeding some aquatic life? Why reinforce the official story of 9/11 - which I buy no more than I buy the Warren Report - in connection with the official version of Adolf Hitler's death?
4) Retaliation Excuse: Already at the time of the release of the New of Bin Laden's death, the networks began to ratchet up the fear that there would be retaliation. The State Department stepped in and made it official, placing U.S. Embassies around the world on alert. It's a nice way to create the "plausible climate" for any "activities" they may want to conduct in North America or elsewhere.
What's the lesson of all this? One sad lesson in all of this, as we are watching some of our countrymen screaming "USA USA!" and wrapping themselves in the flag on TV, is that some of us, many of us, are this cynical at all. The saddest part however, is that we have good reason to be. Want to know why? Check this out: