Barack Obama Archives - Vermont Republic https://vermontrepublic.org/tag/barack-obama/ Second Vermont Republic Fri, 07 Jun 2019 12:17:43 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=6.1.1 https://vermontrepublic.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/cropped-LogoSample_ByTailorBrands-1-32x32.jpg Barack Obama Archives - Vermont Republic https://vermontrepublic.org/tag/barack-obama/ 32 32 The Legend of Osama Bin Laden https://vermontrepublic.org/the-legend-of-osama-bin-laden/ Fri, 07 Jun 2019 12:17:43 +0000 https://vermontrepublic.org/?p=993 There he was at Ground Zero in New York City, Nobel Peace Laureate Barack Obama, basking in the glory of the cold-blooded assassination of Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad, Pakistan, which he had ordered a few days earlier.  It reminded me of the celebratory response of white racists in New Orleans in 1963, where I …

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There he was at Ground Zero in New York City, Nobel Peace Laureate Barack Obama, basking in the glory of the cold-blooded assassination of Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad, Pakistan, which he had ordered a few days earlier.  It reminded me of the celebratory response of white racists in New Orleans in 1963, where I happened to live, to the death of President John F. Kennedy.  They were beside themselves, just like most Americans are about the demise of bin Laden.

But who was Osama bin Laden?  Was he a real person or was he the creation of President Bill Clinton and later transformed by Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama into an international pariah?

Few Americans recall that it was Bill Clinton, not George W. Bush, who introduced the world to Osama bin Laden back in 1998.  Without any evidence whatsoever, Clinton blamed the Muslim fundamentalist and wealthy Saudi exile for the simultaneous bombings of the American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.  At that time Clinton’s presidency was deeply mired in the Monica Lewinsky affair, and he was in need of something to divert public attention away from his personal life.  Osama bin Laden,  said to be an international terrorist trained by the CIA living in Afghanistan, provided such a diversion, and he did so very well.

Clinton ordered military strikes against bin Laden’s alleged international terrorist training bases in Afghanistan and a chemical plant in Sudan which was thought to be producing biological and chemical weapons.  Even though the missiles aimed at the Afghan bases actually landed in Pakistan and the so-called chemical plant turned out to be an aspirin factory, almost overnight Osama bin Laden was transformed into a household word synonymous with global terrorism.  At least temporarily, he had become Global Enemy Number One, and Clinton’s political popularity turned upward.

The Legend of Osama Bin Laden
source: people.com

Shortly after September 11, 2001, our government informed us that nineteen Muslim fanatics armed only with boxcutters had pulled off the greatest act of terrorism in history under the command of a charismatic, sinister-looking Arab, also named Osama bin Laden, from his high-tech cave in the rugged mountains of Afghanistan.  Without one shred of evidence, the Bush administration claimed that these Arab terrorists commandeered four jetliners, brought down the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, severely damaged the Pentagon, and almost succeeded in destroying theWhite House and the Capitol.  And they did all of this because they “hated freedom.”

We were further told by Bush administration operatives that 9/11 was a special case of the terrorist activities of a global network known as Al Qaeda which was controlled by Osama bin Laden.  To combat this international network of money, weapons, and Muslim fanatics, the United States needed to launch a global war on terrorism.  Such a war on terrorism not only defined the Bush administration for the next seven years but resulted in illegal wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan, staggering budget deficits and no doubt contributed to a major financial meltdown.

Incredulous though it may be, the official U.S. government version of the 9/11 story has gone virtually unchallenged by our tepid media.  Anyone who has the audacity to question this utterly fantastic tale is accused of being an unpatriotic conspiracy theorist and not taken seriously.

Although the real perpetrators of 9/11 are unknown, it would appear that its purpose was to demonize Islam so as to justify a significant American military presence in the Middle East to hegemonize the supply of oil there.

Furthermore, there is little evidence to suggest that Al Qaeda is the tightly controlled, monolithic, all powerful organization we were led to believe by Team Bush.  Rather it seems to be a highly decentralized network in which terrorist attacks such as those which took place in Madrid and London, for example, were planned, organized, financed, and executed at the local level.  Osama bin Laden was not calling all of the shots from either a cave in Afghanistan or his alleged compound in Abbottabad.

But to the surprise of many liberal Democrats who voted for Obama, the transition of the war on terror from Bush to Obama was virtually seamless.  The legend of Osama bin Laden was still alive and well.  Obama actually increased the number of American troops in Afghanistan and upped the intensity of the search for bin Laden himself.

The Legend of Osama Bin Laden
source: thedailybeast.com

Then on May 1, 2011, in the Situation Room of the White House, Obama gave the order for a special forces team of twenty-five U.S. Navy Seals to search out and kill bin Laden in the compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, where he had been hiding for five years.  Forty minutes later, we were told by the White House staff, Osama bin Laden was dead and shortly thereafter buried at sea.  No photographs or video recordings of his death, his body, or his burial at sea were made available to the American public.  However, President Obama assured us that he was indeed dead.  It was all an eerie reminder of Ronald Reagan’s famous expression, “Trust, and verify.”  But that was not to be.

We may never know whether Osama bin Laden was a real person or not – whether he was responsible for the bombing of the two American embassies in Africa, 9/11, and other international terrorist events.  Neither do we know whether he is dead or alive or, if he is dead when he died.  But does it really matter?  Osama bin Laden was bigger than life!

What we do know is that he helped save Bill Clinton’s presidency and that his name and image were used to justify an international war on Islam – a war in which several thousand Americans and tens of thousands of Afghans and Iraqis lost their lives, not to mention the hundreds of billion dollars, possibly trillions, which it cost American taxpayers.  To protect ourselves from the terrorist threat engendered by bin Laden we have been willing to forego many of our constitutionally guaranteed liberties and turn a blind eye towards the abuse and torture of those accused of terrorism.  It remains to be seen whether the assassination of Osama bin Laden will help save Barack Obama’s presidency and pave the way for his re-election in 2012.

Whether dead or alive, the legend of Osama bin Laden lives on.

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The Myth of Bernie Sanders https://vermontrepublic.org/the-myth-of-bernie-sanders/ Mon, 22 Apr 2019 08:03:18 +0000 https://vermontrepublic.org/?p=816 Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has recently been elevated to near godlike status by the political Left in the United States.  Some of his fans have even suggested that he should challenge Barack Obama in the Democratic Presidential Primary.  The more often he is accused of being a socialist by his political enemies on the Right, …

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Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has recently been elevated to near godlike status by the political Left in the United States.  Some of his fans have even suggested that he should challenge Barack Obama in the Democratic Presidential Primary.  The more often he is accused of being a socialist by his political enemies on the Right, the more convinced the Left becomes that he surely walks on water.

Although Sanders may have once been a socialist back in the 80s when he was Mayor of Burlington, today, a socialist he is not.  Rather he behaves more like a technofascist disguised as a liberal, who backs all of President Obama’s nasty little wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Pakistan, Somalia, and Yemen.  Since he always “supports the troops,” Sanders never opposes any defense spending bill.  He stands behind all military contractors who bring much-needed jobs to Vermont.

Senator Sanders rarely misses a photo opportunity with Vermont National Guard troops when they are being deployed to Afghanistan or Iraq.  He’s always at the Burlington International Airport when they return.  If Sanders truly supported the Vermont troops, he would vote to end all of the wars posthaste.

Senator Patrick Leahy, Senator Bernie Sanders, and Congressman Peter Welch could hardly contain their enthusiasm over the news that Burlington International Airport had been named as a possible site to house the Air Force’s new F-35 fighter jet scheduled to replace the Vermont Air National Guard’s aging fleet of F-16s.  The new high-tech instruments of death will cost $115 million a pop in sharp contrast to the F-16s which cost a mere $20 million each.

Bernie Sanders
source: slate.com

From whom might these F-35s protect Vermont?  Possibly, Canada, separatist-minded Quebec, upstate New York, the New Hampshire Free State, or the Commonwealth of Massachusetts?  Why on earth would anyone want to invade Vermont?  Vermont has no military bases, no large cities, no important government installations, and no strategic resources unless you count an aging nuclear power plant.  What if Canada, China, Russia, North Korea, Iran, or even the U.S. Marines were to invade the Green Mountain state?  Just what would they do with it?  Would all of the black-and-white Holsteins be confiscated, or perhaps the entire sugar maple crop be burned?  Imagine trying to enslave freedom-loving Vermonters.  Good luck!

Vermont is too small, too rural, and too independent to be invaded by anyone.  It is a threat to no one.  Furthermore, Vermonters, not unlike the Swiss, tend to stick to their own knitting rather than intruding into the affairs of their neighbors.  Vermont has always been that way and probably always will be.

Major General Michael Dubie, head of the Vermont National Guard, has expressed the hope that the Vermont Guard might be morphed into a center for unmanned drone aircraft.  Sanders, not unlike President Obama, thinks drones are cool.

Sanders is the darling of the American-Israeli Public Affairs Committee and the right-wing Likud government of Israel.  He has done everything within his power to keep the myth of Islamic terrorism alive.  He never questions the U.S. government’s unconditional support of Israeli acts of genocide and ethnic cleansing against the Palestinians.  It is as though these are nonevents.

Last, but by no means least, is the U.S. government-owned Sandia National Laboratories.  For over two years Sanders and former University of Vermont President Daniel Fogel have been encouraging Sandia to open a satellite laboratory in Vermont.  Sandia, whose historical origins can be traced back to the Manhattan Project in World War II, designs, builds, and tests weapons of mass destruction.  The Vermont laboratory envisaged by Sanders would not be involved with nuclear weapons but rather would be engaged in projects related to energy efficiency, renewable energy, and electric grids.  Sandia, interestingly enough, is operated under contract by Lockheed Martin, the largest defense contractor in the world.  Lockheed Martin produces F-35s and drones.  General Dubie, who has close ties to Lockheed Martin, recently received an honorary doctorate from UVM.  No one at UVM seems to care whether or not the University gets in bed with a manufacturer of atomic bombs.

Bernie Sanders loves to rail against Corporate America, Wall Street, and the super-rich but has nothing to show for it.  He’s done little to constrain their power and influence.  But everybody on the Left loves Bernie.

Thomas H. Naylor

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Neoliberalism: Neoconservatism Without a Smirk https://vermontrepublic.org/neoliberalism-neoconservatism-without-a-smirk/ Mon, 11 Feb 2019 15:15:41 +0000 https://vermontrepublic.org/?p=333 It has become increasingly obvious that the only difference between Barack Obama and George W. Bush is that the famous Bush smirk has been replaced by the Obama smile.  The neoconservatism of Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, and Bill O’Reilly has given way to the neoliberalism of Bill Clinton, Timothy Geithner, Bernie Sanders, and Chris Matthews.  …

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It has become increasingly obvious that the only difference between Barack Obama and George W. Bush is that the famous Bush smirk has been replaced by the Obama smile.  The neoconservatism of Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, and Bill O’Reilly has given way to the neoliberalism of Bill Clinton, Timothy Geithner, Bernie Sanders, and Chris Matthews.  The differences between neoliberalism and neoconservatism are similar to the differences between Coke and Pepsi, virtually nil.

Neoconservatism is best defined by its foreign policy agenda which includes full spectrum dominance, imperial overstretch, nuclear primacy, the right of pre-emptive strike, and unconditional support for the State of Israel.  Although neoliberals are much less bellicose in their rhetoric than their neoconservative counterparts, they passively acquiesce to the neocon foreign policy paradigm.  They do little or nothing to end the wars with Iraq and Afghanistan as well as the annihilation of Palestine carried out by our close ally Israel.  Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech in Oslo was little short of a global call to arms couched in the language of the doctrine of “just war.”  Although neocons make it abundantly clear that they are military hawks, most neoliberals are closet hawks as well.

Neoliberalism: Neoconservatism Without a Smirk
source: wikipedia

Consider the case of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, the darling of the Left, who pretends to be a socialist, which he is not.  Not only does Sanders support all military appropriation bills and military aid to Israel, but he is currently promoting the opening of a satellite facility of the Sandia Corporation in Vermont.  The Sandia Corporation, a subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Company, develops, creates, maintains, and evaluates nuclear weapons systems.  Sandia’s roots go back to the Manhattan Project in World War II.  Just what peace loving Vermonters need, a nuclear weapons manufacturer located in their own backyard.

Both neolibs and neocons are apologists for globalization and are steeped in the ideology that bigger, faster, and more high-tech make better.  In their heart of hearts neolibs and neocons know that only the federal government can solve all of our problems, failing to realize that the federal government is the problem.  Both embrace corporate socialism, socialism for the rich, and the social welfare state while pretending to be opposed to publicly financed social welfare.  It’s all about people of the lie.

Neoliberals pretend to be concerned about inequities in the distribution of income and wealth.  Neoconservatives make it abundantly clear that they couldn’t care less.

Neoliberals and neoconservatives
source: therealmovement.wordpress.com

Both neolibs and neocons are authoritarian statists each with their own definition of political correctness.  Politically correct neolibs are expected to be pro-abortion, pro-gay-lesbian, pro-affirmative action, pro-Israel, pro-gun control, anti-clerical, pro-big government, and pro-American Empire.  Anyone who does not conform to this litany or who associates with those who do not, is at risk of being attacked by a left wing truth squad such as the Southern Poverty Law Center and accused of the likes of homophobia, racism, anti-semitism, religious fundamentalism, or even hate crimes. Politically correct neocons are more likely to be pro-life, anti-gay-lesbian, anti-affirmative action, pro-Israel, anti-gun control, pro-clerical, pro-big government, and pro-Empire. Both are vehemently opposed to secession.

Above all, what neoliberals and neoconservatives have in common is that they are technofascists.  Benito Mussolini defined fascism as “the merger of state and corporate power.”  Technofascism is the melding of corporate, state, military, and technological power by a handful of political elites which enables them to manipulate and control the population through the use of money, markets, media and the Internet.

Neoliberals and neoconservatives alike march to the beat of the same drummer – the largest, wealthiest, most powerful, most materialistic, most racist, most militaristic, most violent empire of all time.

Ultimately the differences between neoliberalism and neoconservatism are purely cosmetic.  You may either have your technofascism with a smirk or you can have it with a smile.

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