Friday, September 09, 2005

Nationalism

This section discusses how governments seek public endorsement of their policies through Nationalism.

In speeches and on Vietnam memorials it always states that the soldiers, who died, died for our freedom. This is really strange and illogical. We actually lost the war. Did the victorious "Charlie Cong" storm America and enslave us? Once we left Vietnam, we hardly had anything to do with them and they no longer posed a problem.

But did they ever pose a problem? It seems the word "Communist" was the real problem. When Ho Chi Minh declared that North Vietnam was Communist, America's cold war Red-phobia associated Vietnam with China and Russia even though there was no initial connection. North Vietnam threatened no one but South Vietnam. It was their war not America's.

But the US insisted on helping South Vietnam. How is this related to the freedom of individual Americans? The US soldier was told that he was fighting to preserve the liberty of the homeland, but this was a vicious lie. To compound the problem much of the military of the period were drafted. They were taken from their family and careers and sent to fight for a cause that was completely unjust.

They did not die for our freedom. Instead they died in vain mostly to fill the pocketbooks of military arms makers and contractors. Why is it that no one wants to admit that? Whenever somebody in government makes a speech, words like freedom and liberty are always used instead of words like needless or mistake. If no one admits that Vietnam was a mistake, how can we ever learn from it?

The problem with Nationalism is that many of the ideals that are being preached by the nation's leaders are not in the best interests of the nation's people. Yet disagreeing is considered unpatriotic and at times even traitorous.

Why did the Germans ever listen to the ravings of Hitler? Some of what he said made sense, but a lot of it was positively insane. When the propaganda machine takes hold of the individual he/she has trouble separating fact from fiction. Hitler only had radio, newspapers, and magazines. We now have TV and the Internet to confuse us with even more propaganda.

Currently we are involved in another unjust war, the Iraq war. The words such as "freedom" and "liberty" are again being abused by the government. Saddam Hussein was undoubtedly a cruel dictator, but he was able to keep Iraq unified. He had no nuclear weapons and no connection to 9/11 as the US government now reluctantly admits. Iraq is a fanatically religious nation deeply divided in their beliefs. By "freeing" it from Saddam's rule for a "democratic" rule, we sentenced the people to decades of possible civil war. Some countries need to evolve at their own pace, even if it means dictatorship. If left alone things would have worked out for the better.

We all know that the real reason for invading Iraq was to gain control of the Iraqi oil fields. But again we are told the troops are fighting for our freedom as well as Iraqi freedom. The US interfered where they had no business; they screwed up a nation, needlessly sacrificed American and Iraqi lives, limited American resources for dealing with natural disasters and wasted the taxpayers' money. What kind of freedom is that? The best thing to do now is to end the war and bring the troops home.

Governments like to use the flag as an instrument for people to proclaim their loyalty. Around this time (September 16th: Mexican Independence Day) the streets of Chicago are full of Mexicans in cars waving their flag. Most of them legally and illegally immigrated to the US because they couldn't earn a decent living in Mexico. It puzzles me, if their country means so much, why not remain there and try to fix its problems. Patriotism is funny thing, people don't even know or care why they wave the flag, yet they still wave it. I assume, that for Mexican immigrants, flag waving must only symbolize a sign of their heritage and not an endorsement of their current government.

Americans also like to wave the flag. During the Vietnam War some would burn the flag in protest. The burners associated the flag with the policies of the government. Others associated the flag with a deeper symbolism: "One nation under God with liberty and justice for all." These types of patriots want to imprison or even shoot anyone defacing the flag. Corporate aliens like to make flag jeans, underwear and t-shirts as well as ash trays and coffee cups, but it seems no one considers that type of thing disrespectful.

Again we are faced with the flag problem because of the Iraq war. My personal policy is this: Don't wave, don't burn. I refuse to wave the flag ( or wear any flag t-shirts ) until government policies change, but neither will I burn it so as not to offend those that treat the flag as a sacred symbol.( I wonder if t-shirts and coffee cups should be treated as sacred symbols as well?)

I personally avoid nationalism by considering myself as a citizen of the world. Since God is the creator, he must be the leading citizen of the world. I support anything I feel is right for my fellow man and reject the things that are against common sense regardless of what the local government has to say. As long as I'm alive the world is my country. I live in harmony with a God that rejects all "holy wars" and "wars for corporate profiteering". There is no need for flags or anthems. I respect all just laws and ignore those that I feel are unjust. Everyone everywhere is a citizen of the world too. Why not accept it. Stop thinking in the narrow sense of local politics and religion. Think in terms of what is best for everyone. Together we will be helping to build a better world regardless of where we live.

4 Comments:

At 3:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great Blog! Keep it up.

 
At 9:55 PM, Blogger Myrrander said...

Excellent post, very well written. I enjoyed reading it a lot, and I agree with what you've said here.

 
At 12:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nigger

 
At 10:58 AM, Blogger Ayannali said...

wow - amazing, a well written article

and someone has to go and call names.

sad

 

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