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Thursday, October 27, 2016

St. Augustine blesses the kill list. And liberalism is just a nicer, slicker, more PR-savvy way of carrying on the brutal work of empire.

Behold President Obama, on the second day of his presidency, flanked by retired generals and admirals, signing an executive order to ban torture and declaring that the prison at Guantanamo Bay would soon be closed — fulfilling, in other words, some serious campaign promises.

“What the new president did not say,” a recent New York Times story explains, in gleeful servitude to the ironies of military-industrialism, “was that the orders contained a few subtle loopholes.” Those loopholes left, it turns out, plenty of room for the new administration to continue Bush-era, war-on-terror business as usual, preserving such controversial practices as extraordinary rendition, military commissions and indefinite detention.

“They reflected a still unfamiliar Barack Obama,” Times reporters Jo Becker and Scott Shane proceed to tell us, “a realist who, unlike some of his fervent supporters, was never carried away by his own rhetoric.”

And Obama’s base of support is dismissed in an instant as fervent fools who actually believed all that nonsense about . . . what was that word again? Oh yeah, hope. If you are stressed about human rights abuses, torture, indefinite detention, pre-emptive invasion, the slaughter of civilians, the occupation of sovereign nations, drone warfare, government-sanctioned assassination, the shredding of constitutional rights, depleted uranium, toxic military waste, the counterproductivity of war and such like, my friend, you are not a realist.

Realists recognize that certain human beings are expendable.

The buzz-generating article, published at the end of May, is “Secret ‘Kill List’ Proves a Test of Obama’s Principles and Will,” a 6,000-word opus taking us on a tour of the Obama war room. It’s a remarkable piece of work, based on interviews with three dozen of the president’s current and former advisers. The story’s primary revelation is that Obama and his security team meet every week to discuss the “baseball card” bios of suspected al-Qaida members in such places as Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, and “nominate” the ones to kill in drone attacks. The president insists on having the final, life-and-death say.

The story is a mostly uncritical celebration of the process and of Obama’s “pragmatism” — which is to say, his abdication of do-gooder principles whenever they become inconvenient and get in the way of America’s safety.

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Copyright 2012 The National Memo
  • William Deutschlander

    It appears the author is pro-bush, pro-GOP, pro-Republican!

    When you combat TERRORISTS and TERRORISM, you must do so with a scapel not a sword!

    TERRORISTS do not wear identifying uniforms, in fact that nine year old child around the corner may kill you, that is what he was trained to do!

    The author seems under the impression this is a perfect world!

  • ObozoMustGo

    Is Obozo like Bush? You should not insult former Presidents, Robert. The question should be “Is Obozo a more competent president than a pineapple? Ohh…… wait…… that’s still an insult to pineapples. Nevermind. Be nice. Don’t compare Obozo to anyone you dont want to insult. I’m just sayin, folks. I’m just sayin………

    Have a nice day!

  • dljones

    For the last 10+ years my television screen has been full of the Middle East. The most poignant fact prevails, the hardest to reconcile, is our military warriors have paid the price. It is long over due to declare victory, bring our soldiers promptly home, and sever all aid.

    Never again we engage in a war where the enemy fights under a different set of rules than our soldiers. May we resolve with determination to never erect a memorial or set a grave marker without serving notice that we, decisively take care of our sovereign right to be free.

    Irregardless of yours or my political affiliation, it is our collective responsibility to work for ourselves, not the legacy of those in government. for we are the government.

  • Ed

    Well, until the congress assertsit’sconstitutionally given power to deny the president a war, or to take the government to war, we will continue on the path to a dictatorship in which the President will, by edict, just decide what the laws will be. Something like Romney declaring that if he is elected he will do away with the Oboma health bill, a law legally passed by the Congress of the United States. (Long MAY IT LIVE!)

  • cholly8524

    I must say this article is nothing but partison BS written by a teatroll and hack.

  • karinursula

    Did not Romney say, that he would attack Iran with military force? I agree with Mr Deutschlander.

  • howa4x

    Hey we are at war. Like it or not. Obama didn’t start any of this but he has to conduct the war in a manner that limits American deaths. Most youths living in the tribal regions will become combatants whether drafted into it or volunteering upon graduation from a Madrass. I think it’s elitist of the NY times to think that they won”t. It is hard to fight a war ethically. That is a great goal but sometimes hard to do.
    Where do you think they are headed Harvard? These are poor children that where only taught an extreme version of the Koran. This is where the young people who shot up Mumbai came from. they will end up in a fire fight since they have no choice. It’s not cynical, but just the way it is. It was not his war. The only way we can get out of it is to eliminate or degrade as many taliblan as we can. Of course we could invade Pakistan. How do you like that for an alternative?

  • tavias51