Saturday, December 23, 2006

More Troops

"Gentlemen, would a larger military necessarily aid in fighting terrorism?" So begins Scott Simon as he talks to two militarists to educate us about increasing the size of the US Army and Marine Corps. Now a person of intelligence and curiosity might ask a few different questions:
  • Gentlemen, is the US foreign policy of global military and economic expansion one of the reasons for terrorism?
  • Gentlemen, isn't he history of US counter-insurgency actually a policy of state terror against impoverished civilians?
  • Gentlemen, couldn't one argue that the US military industrial complex has no interest in ending terrorism, and in fact seeks to provoke extremists by its violent, arrogant posture in the Middle East?
  • Gentlemen, isn't the idea of trying to end terrorism with military operations really a fraud and a a scam that only creates more terrorism, enhances antidemocratic forces in the US government, and creates billions in profits for war profiteers?
You won't hear such questions on NPR. As always, to explore questions of militarism, NPR turns to pro-military, establishment apologists like today's guests, General Scales and Bruce Hoffman.

Hoffman says, "Well certainly more troops would be enormously helpful…the key in fighting this type of warfare whether its counterterrorism or counterinsurgency."

And what different angle does General Scales offer? He states, "That’s true, but the importance of having a robust ability to put ground troops into affected regions is to prevent that [insurgency] from happening…"

Finally in case you, the skeptical listener didn't quite get the point, Scott Simon sums it up: " need an expansion of the Army and Marine Corps to maintain whatever has been gained…" To which Hoffman chimes in, "That’s it exactly."


1 comment:

Porter Melmoth said...

Well Mytwords, I have a feeling that your excrutiatingly truthful suggestions for Scott Simon to ask those eminent experts will go by the wayside. Another missed opportunity for NPR to peer out of its widening rut of irresponsible broadcasting. I truly wonder if such thoughts even occur to NPR reporters? Could they really be that clueless? That dim? Of course, when you've signed on to a specific company line, the nail that stands up will get hammered down. Scott Simon may fancy himself a champion for the downtrodden and the underdogs of the world, but the timidity that he exhibits in the interview in question here, has 'Vichy' written all over it. Superficial questioning often masks covert cooperation.

I have yet to encounter a sustained questioning in the US mass media about the issues and conditions that cause terrorism in the first place. The list you offer up is certainly withon the top 20 reasons why. But of course, any admittance of collusion must and will be repressed, even within small-time media like NPR.

In an earlier comment I mentioned the recent film, 'Why We Fight' as a clear and well-constructed explanation of the military-industrial complex's intense interest and involvement in most of the world's conflicts today. If Simon has never heard of the film, or if he has seen it and did not grasp what it was saying, then he's a much bigger dumbass (and company man) than I thought. But then sycophants are pretty impressionable, usually in the wrong directions.