HARVARD SQUARE COMMENTARY

June 25, 2007
Harvard Square Observer

The Imperial Impulse

Ernest Cassara


What the hell is the United States doing in Iraq?  President Bush has run through a laundry list as to why we invaded that far-off land - none of his excuses holding water.  The result has been the disruption of a stable society, setting off blood feuds among various groups.  Thousands of Iraqis and hundreds of Americans have given their lives for the obstinate person the Supreme Court saddled us with as president.  One can be sure that Al Gore never would have done this!

What does one do in a case like this?  One is in utter opposition to the polices of the president, yet, it is difficult to want to see him get his comeuppance with the defeat of one’s own country!

More and more, the country has turned against this foreign adventure.  Plenty of reasons why.  Among others, I suspect, is that Americans would have great difficulty finding the place on the map.

The image of Saddam Hussein standing on the gallows, about to be hanged, keeps recurring.  Tough to say, but, thus far, he has been the only one who has acted with dignity in this whole mess.

Whether intended by the voters or not, it appears that the U.S. is pursuing imperial ambitions.  How else explain that we have more than 500 military bases around the world? Did we the people vote for them?

My mind keeps going back to the story about Diego Garcia.  Perfect example of American aggrandizement. Suggest you consult Google.  Among other things, you will learn that the Brits have control, but the U.S. is allowed to have a naval base, the local population driven away.(“Diego Garcia is a narrow tropical jungle reef in the Indian Ocean, about 1,000 miles south of the southern India coast.”)

When did we Americans decide to become an empire?  It is said that the British did it in a fit of absentmindedness.  But, we cannot use the same excuse.  The Congress, and, of course, the administration, whether we poor voters like it or not, have set the course.


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