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Published: Wednesday, April 23, 2014, 12:01 a.m.
United States

Important to tone down jingoism

The last several weeks we have been inundated with stirring testimonials of how we are all “Boston Strong.” This to honor and commemorate the victims and survivors of last year’s tragic Boston Marathon bombing. It is right and just to honor and acknowledge the victims and the survivors, and those who responded to help the injured and dying. At the same time, we need to pay due intellectual caution to the endless testimonials that segue into jingoistic reaffirmations of American exceptionalisim and glorious odes to our magnificence. As such a mindset is both disquieting and extremely dangerous. Dangerous for both the United States and the world.
No sane person would advocate or support an attack where innocent people are indiscriminately slaughtered. Which is why every reasoned and caring American needs to take a hard unflinching look at what Joint Special Operations Command is currently doing in 70 to 100 countries worldwide. Our JSOC warriors have grown from 1,800 to over 25,000 in recent years. Our “dirty wars” have become a global juggernaut, a sanctioned murder incorporated with the eagle’s bloody stamp of approval. However, JSOC operations are seldom, if ever, reported. Some of our noteworthy achievements include murdering pregnant women and bombing wedding parties where children are shredded.
We need to collectively come to terms with the reality and horror that our global “war on terror” has wrought. In his book, “Terrorism Theirs and Ours,” the best book on terrorism ever written but seldom ever read, the late great Pakistani Eqbal Ahmad wrote: “The United States has sowed in the Middle East and in South Asia very poisonous seeds. These seeds are growing now. Some have ripened, and others are ripening. An examination of why they were sown, what has grown, and how they should be reaped is needed. Missiles won’t solve the problem.” Eqbal is now rolling over in his grave. His prescient warning came two years before 9/11. His message of cause and effect and you reap what you sow is of sentinel importance to Americans who harbor any hopes of a future for their children. We need to ween ourselves of the intoxicating impact of nationalistic fervor and endless self-aggrandizement and take a hard look at the global impact of our reckless military adventures — both the overt and perhaps more importantly the covert operations. Failure to do so will ultimately lead to acts of unimaginable blow back and revenge that could dwarf both 9/11 and Boston.
Jim Sawyer
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