On Democracy Now!, a fascinating look into Noam Chomsky's view on president's Obama announcing the delay in striking Syria. Chomsky amusingly brings to perspective the fact that the United States' threat of force is actually illegal.
The other things that [Obama] said were not unusual, but nevertheless kind of shocking to anyone not familiar with U.S. political discourse, at least. So he described the Unitedhe said that for seven decades the United States has been "the anchor of global security." Really? Seven decades? That includes, for example, just 40 years ago today, when the United States played a major role in overthrowing the parliamentary democracy of Chile and imposing a brutal dictatorship, called "the first 9/11" in Latin America. Go back earlier years, overthrowing the parliamentary system in Iran, imposing a dictatorship; same in Guatemala a year later; attacking Indochina, the worst crime in the postwar period, killing millions of people; attacking Central America; killinginvolved in killingin imposing a dictatorship in the Congo; and invading Iraqon and on. Thats stability? I mean, that a Harvard Law School graduate can pronounce those words is pretty amazing, as is the fact that theyre accepted without comment.
Russia's president Vladimir Putin agrees with this perspective of the United States as a rogue nation with his editorial in The New York Times:
From the outset, Russia has advocated peaceful dialogue enabling Syrians to develop a compromise plan for their own future. We are not protecting the Syrian government, but international law. We need to use the United Nations Security Council and believe that preserving law and order in today?s complex and turbulent world is one of the few ways to keep international relations from sliding into chaos. The law is still the law, and we must follow it whether we like it or not. Under current international law, force is permitted only in self-defense or by the decision of the Security Council. Anything else is unacceptable under the United Nations Charter and would constitute an act of aggression.
No one doubts that poison gas was used in Syria. But there is every reason to believe it was used not by the Syrian Army, but by opposition forces, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists. Reports that militants are preparing another attack -- this time against Israel -- cannot be ignored.
It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States. Is it in America?s long-term interest? I doubt it. Millions around the world increasingly see America not as a model of democracy but as relying solely on brute force, cobbling coalitions together under the slogan "you're either with us or against us."
Unsurprisingly, being told that 'Americans are not exceptional' was not liked by Americans.
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