Tuesday, April 24, 2012
"Oh the irony! As our right to a fair trial, our right to live without possibly being assassinated by an out of control government, and our last shreds of privacy (if we indeed have any privacy in America today, which is highly debatable when one does the research) could be thrown out the window if over 3,000,000 corporations have their way, the glorious Obama administration is worried about the rights of those abroad."
Oh the irony! As our right to a fair trial, our right to live without possibly being assassinated by an out of control government, and our last shreds of privacy (if we indeed have any privacy in America today, which is highly debatable when one does the research) could be thrown out the window if over 3,000,000 corporations have their way, the glorious Obama administration is worried about the rights of those abroad.
Now, I don’t mean to be overly nationalistic, but shouldn’t we be a bit more concerned about the massive surveillance state being created in the United States?
With the National Security Agency (NSA) building a ludicrously massive data center the likes of which the world has never seen, the largest digital spying campaign in history to begin on July 12 thanks to our wonderful Internet Service Providers and troubling technological developments like chips allowing mobile phones to see through walls and others which allow collection of location data with unprecedented precision, I think it is quite clear that the Obama administration (if they actually served us, which they clearly do not) should be focusing on the disturbing trends here at home.
Instead of working for the American people, our government is now setting their sights on the Syrian and Iranian governments for further destabilization and sanctions.
Obama outlined his new policies on April 23 during a lengthy 25-minute speech at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.
During this address he claimed that these policies would help the U.S. government respond to the threat of genocide around the globe in a more effective manner.
“National sovereignty is never a license to slaughter your people,” Obama said, which was already self-evident and painfully obvious. Even the staunchest proponents of national sovereignty (myself included) do not think that it is somehow a free license to commit genocide. Such a notion is patently absurd.
Indeed, if the U.S. government started using those hundreds of millions of rounds they recently acquired in a genocidal attack on the American people, I would hope that someone would step in. Although it is likely the case that in such a situation the government would rapidly become rabidly pro-sovereignty in an attempt to defend themselves.
However, does this mean we should intervene military every time someone is allegedly killed by a government across the entire earth? No, and our government clearly has no interest in doing so as they only step in when it is beneficial to them in one way or another.
During his speech, Obama also announced the formal creation of the “Atrocities Prevention Board,” which has a name fashioned in what has become the typical Orwellian fashion of the U.S. government (think the wholly un-patriotic USA PATRIOT Act and the “war on terror” which creates more terrorism than it fights).
According to The Washington Post this board will draw senior officials across the government and “will serve as a clearinghouse for real-time intelligence, policymaking and other issues related to the threat of mass killings.”
The problems with this are likely quite obvious to my readers. That is, how does one prevent atrocities? By intervening militarily of course!
Evidence to support this can be seen in Obama’s decision to boast about his actions to “prevent mass killings” – by which he means military intervention in foreign nations under the guise of humanitarianism.
He pointed to the U.S.-NATO-Arab League assault on Libya, which killed unknown numbers of civilians (in the name of protecting them, of course) and left Libya arguably much worse than it was before with the rebels U.S. Senator John McCain lauded forcibly feeding black Africans flags among other atrocities.
Somehow this is seen as a victory in preventing atrocities, even though the atrocities are ongoing thanks to the United States and allied nations.
Something tells me the Atrocities Prevention Board will support many similar “preventions” which end up, in the long run, enabling more atrocities than they prevent.
The focus on Iran and Syria in the speech makes that disturbing possibility even more likely, as the propaganda surrounding a potential foreign intervention in Syria has been heavily propagated for over a year now (as you can see in my April 16, 2011 article on the subject).
I have been following these issues closely over the past year and have authored countless articles on the subject for End the Lie (I have written hundreds on Iran and Syria, far too many to list here) in an attempt to counter the seemingly endless stream of disinformation and propaganda that we are subjected to.
Now Obama has announced a brand new Executive Order which will allow American officials to impose sanctions on non-Americans who have allegedly utilized cell phone tracking, Internet surveillance and other technologies to carry out human rights abuses.
They claim that the order was crafted to target specific individuals and corporations assisting the governments of Iran and Syria – not all too surprising that they did not include Bahrain since they are choosing to ignore the Bahraini government’s wrongdoing and fuel the crackdown there – while in the future it could be expanded to target additional nations.
New sanctions include a visa ban and sanctions on financial transactions against a wide range of agencies in Iran and Syria, as well as individuals.
In Iran, those include the Ministry of Intelligence and Security, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), law enforcement, and Datak Telecom.
In Syria, the targets include the director of the Syrian general intelligence services, Ali Mamluk, the General Intelligence Directorate and the Syriatel telecommunications company.
In one of the most hilarious sentences in the entire rambling speech was when Obama said, “These technologies should be in place to empower citizens, not to repress them,” while that is exactly what the U.S. government is doing here.
Obama also announced that he is extending the deployment of some 100 special forces troops to Uganda and neighboring nations past the 150 days originally planned, which is hardly surprising and likely at least partially in response to the wildly popular “Kony 2012” fraud (which I also discussed in an incredibly informative discussion with journalist Nile Bowie).
All of the above considered, Obama did attempt to claim that this does not mean that the U.S. will be intervening military constantly, even though that is exactly what they have been doing long before this Atrocities Prevention Board existed.
“That does not mean that we intervene militarily every time there’s an injustice in the world,” Obama said. “We cannot and should not.”
Suffice it to say, I will believe it when I see it.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation also brings up some interesting points, although they are approaching it from a wholly different angle than I. They also note the glaring absence of Bahrain but they do seem to think parts of it are great, which I’m not so sure about.
It remains to see how this Atrocities Prevention Board and this order will be used, but in my humble personal opinion based off of what I have researched for my writing and the trends I have noticed in the history of the U.S. government since it was established, my hopes aren’t all that high.