Cycle of hypocrisy

Talk about irony. We’d need a whole lot of irony to fall on Mr. Martin Samuel for him to realize how truly appropos it is for the blood stained steel from the World Trade Center to be melted, fastened, bolted, and burnished into U.S. Warships.

Martin Samuel's screed entitled, "Turn 9/11 rubble into a killing machine? Hello?" is... uh, a piece of work to be sure. The layers of blame-America-irony are thick.

In this way, the 2,800 souls that perished as an indirect result of an interventionist foreign policy that achieved the exact opposite of its stated aims can be honoured by a vessel built to ensure that this flawed cycle of violence continues. The USS New York will carry 360 soldiers and 700 combat-ready Marines. It puts to sea with the motto: “Never forget.” Except they do. They always do. Times Online
Classic liberal-speak. What flawed cycle of violence would that be? Certainly not terrorist violence, eh? Not hatred being preached by islamic imams and funded by their dictatorial governments? No, Martin is incensed that Americans would choose to defend themselves with more than tired liberal pacifist self-hatred.
"...an indirect result of an interventionist foreign policy that achieved the exact opposite of its stated aims..."
Is he talking about Clinton foreign policy? Or just the entire history of American policy because he sure as hell can't be talking about Bush foreign policy before 9/11. Perhaps the vagaries of time lapse memory are playing havoc with Martin's judgement.

The ships would commemorate the attacks, if that is the right word, which it is plainly not. Exactly what is being commemorated anyway? Not the memory of the victims, as nothing is known of how they want to be remembered, and certainly not whether they would wish a warship to be dedicated in their name. Who knows in which direction their anger would be channelled? It could be that some of the dead might have thought over-reliance on warships was their downfall in the first place. Times Online

Oh, I don't know... I'd be willing to guess that most of the victims of 9/11 and their families don't take offense to 360 soldiers and 700 combat-ready Marines defiling their memories by being borne by the same steel that held them in the World Trade Center. In fact, I'd be willing to bet that they would be proud of our men and women in uniform having that steel being beat into swords to protect America; the steel bones of their tragedy being beat into massive weapons of war.

In essence what is being commemorated here is failure; the failure of American foreign policy to protect fully the interests of its citizens or make their world a safer place. America came under attack because the actions of successive governments have made it the enemy to large swaths of humanity. Anti-Americanism is growing alarmingly because, since September 11, the world’s most powerful nation has continued to alienate and divide even its allies. While not excusing wicked acts committed by terrorists, it would be foolish to view the behaviour of terrorists as motiveless. If we regard terrorism as the work of madmen and unrelated to our relationship with their world, we learn nothing from history.  Times Online

The real crux of the problem

Martin believes both that it is America's responsibility to make the world a safer place and that its 'interventionist policies' are to blame if they fail to make it a safe place. The cycle of hypocrisy is complete.

Martin's vision is dimmed by the pale light of liberal anti-americanism. To actually believe that 9/11 is America's fault is not just an instance of blaming the victim, it is an instance of being brainwashed by decades of Soviet propaganda. To believe that large swathes of humanity have valid reason to hate America is not logical. It is not even coherent. It is merely dogma.

Martin probably doesn't even consciously understand why he believes in the inherent evil of America. Can he answer why, in his mind, the building of U.S. Naval warships had more to do with causing 9/11 than the hatred preached by imams and funded by the dictatorships of the middle-east? I doubt it.

Since the September 11 attacks, the familiar argument is that the West did not start this war, but is determined to finish it. Yet the USS New York with its 700 combat-ready Marines was already on the drawing board before the World Trade Centre was hit, in all but name. Had the towers not fallen, there would still be a deadly billion-dollar vessel under construction in Louisiana. It would just be called the Saucy Sue and might not be built from the habitats of dead people and imbued with such heavy symbolism that workers in the shipyard are said to have treated its components with religious reverence.  Times Online
Martin's argument is that  9/11 was America's fault. To him the symbolic use of steel from the World Trade Center is an admission of guilt. Thus the apparent irony. The true irony is how uninformed and unintelligible Martin's arguments are because Martin has surrended his mind to the arguments and propaganda of the last enemy that America spent enormous amounts of blood and treasure to defeat in order to keep the world a safe place.

And while USS New York may currently be serving metaphorically as a symbol of American indefatigability and courage, it will one day be engaged in a genuine sense in the propagation of a foreign policy that continues to contribute to recycled violence, from continent to continent, with New York office workers the occasional collateral damage. To turn the rubble they left behind into the machinery for the next big mistake shows an ignorance of cause and effect that explains why some still believe George Bush and Tony Blair were right about the war, but wrong about the peace; as if the two can be separated. Our mistake was that we didn’t have an exit strategy, they say. Makes the entrance a pretty dumb-ass move, then, doesn’t it, Sparky?

“I think somebody should do a marker,” said Gerry Howard, editorial director of Broadway Books, “to say that irony died on September 11, 2001.” Wrong, Gerry. Turns out it was just hitting its stride. How ironic is that?

Posted by Eric Simonson at May 24, 2006 1:46 PM
Comments
Comment #150927

That Martin guy sounds like a hippie. Eric, I don’t know what we’d do if you weren’t keeping an eye on the aging last remnants of the flower power generation. Thank you for your vital service to this nation. You’d have been wasted in the military.

Posted by: American Pundit at May 24, 2006 2:12 PM
Comment #150938

Eric,
Holy Cow! The online version of The London Times printed that! There are three major newspapers in London: The Times, the Guardian, & the Independent. The Guardian tends to be leftist, the Independent more moderate, and the Times right wing. I believe the London Times is owned by Rupert Murdoch.

If that is what the right wingers in Britain think of us, we are in serious, serious trouble.

In more general terms, for all practical purposes the War on Terror ended with the capture of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in 2003. Any response today, in 2006, which depends upon military force is worse than useless.

We are in a battle for hearts and minds. Winning by reducing the number of hearts and minds and killing them is just sick.

Posted by: phx8 at May 24, 2006 2:23 PM
Comment #150939

Wouldn’t it be better to use the steel as armor for Humvees? Heaven knows they need all the protection they can get.

Posted by: Aldous at May 24, 2006 2:23 PM
Comment #150951

This is the first I’ve heard of this. What a great idea!

Posted by: traveller at May 24, 2006 2:51 PM
Comment #150961

In my opinion, the use of such steel is in seriously bad taste. It’s like using tombstones as ammunition in catapults, or coffins as wood for bows and arrows. Let the steel be put to some peaceful use honoring the dead. To have more death associated with it, whether or not it’s for a good cause, is just unsavory.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at May 24, 2006 3:09 PM
Comment #150974

phx8

The “right wing” in England is more like a moderate left-winger in our country, someone like Harry Reid, so the sentiments should not be too surprising. That editorial was a waste of bandwidth. I guess my question is if Anti-Americanism is so much on the rise, why are so many people trying to get in?

Posted by: SWMichiganBill at May 24, 2006 3:35 PM
Comment #150977

Stephen Daugherty
I don’t agree with you very often. When I do I try to in clear conscience, without knee-bending, try to thank you and so my appreciation. Take this as a serious thank you for the above posting.

Posted by: tomh at May 24, 2006 3:40 PM
Comment #151008

Bill,
You are confusing America with the Bush administration and its conservative policies. Conservative philosophy appears to be nearly extinguished around the world; only Australia seems to still be on the same political wavelength as the Bush administration. Like the Bush administration and the conservatives, the Australians have been beset by nativism. The Australians are in thrall to their own coal industry, just as BushCo represents the interests of Big Oil in the US.

Many people come to the US for economic opportunity. That does not mean they are down with conservative philosophy or the Bush administration.

Posted by: phx8 at May 24, 2006 5:10 PM
Comment #151029

Amerikan Pundit,

Eric, I don’t know what we’d do if you weren’t keeping an eye on the aging last remnants of the flower power generation. Thank you for your vital service to this nation.

You are very very welcome. It’s my pleasure to serve you in this way.

You’d have been wasted in the military.

Quack. (Or whatever sound a chickenhawk is supposed to make.)

Posted by: esimonson at May 24, 2006 6:56 PM
Comment #151033

As symbolism goes, I do not have a problem with using the wreckage to make weapons. I think that Samuel’s argument is just an extention of the “Blame America First” line of thought. Given Mr. Samuel’s probable combat effectiveness, it is much safer for him to blame America rather than the blood thirsty terrorists or their rabid imams who will issue fatwahs calling for the death of those who oppose them or criticize their religion of peace.

Posted by: goodkingned at May 24, 2006 7:13 PM
Comment #151101

chickenhawk sound, mel blanc.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at May 24, 2006 11:47 PM
Comment #151366

That’s right, Eric. Here we were, just minding our own business within the confines of the US, and for some bizarre reason, these guys came to hate us and attacked us. I think they hated our freedom, that’s it. Yeah, must be, because we have never interfered in their lives (except for Iran, Iraq, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, …).

Posted by: Mental Wimp at May 25, 2006 5:56 PM
Comment #151404

When the Taliban was going to destroy icons of Buddha,the world wide outcry was astounding. The twisted remnants of the Towers are in a place culturally, spiritually, that echoes this and other places of strong human emotion . To use them as a instrument of further destruction would be as wrong as wrapping the wounds of Pearl Harbor victims in Japanese flags. What should be done with at least some of the remnants,is the offer them to countries around the world. Let them display them to all the citizens there. Show them a mighty symbol of what unfettered hate and misunderstanding can bring about.

Posted by: jblym at May 25, 2006 8:33 PM
Comment #151462

While I agree that it sounds like hate America speech, Eric, you often sound like America right or wrong.

I see no problem with codemning the repressive regimes installed and supported by American Policy of making foreign resources our dominion.

I see no problem with understanding the hate generated by these regimes who used American arms to repress and murder their own people.

I see no problem understanding to break a cycle of violence requires inner examination rather than continued rage.

I haven’t read this, am not likely to read it, but I wonder does he condemn their violence somewhere in there, our was that inconvenient for your post?

Rage on, Eric, it’s very becoming of you. Please explain why your hate mongering is better than the hate mongering abroad, again?

Posted by: gergle at May 26, 2006 12:35 AM
Comment #151502

gergle:

I don’t think that Eric has actually blown anything up in a fit of religious pique. That distinguishes him from the terrorists.

That was easy. Ask another one.

Posted by: goodkingned at May 26, 2006 5:55 AM
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