We don’t see or directly feel the effects of the bombing. Its destruction of houses and whole villages. Its killing of our friends, families and neighbors. We don’t flee for our lives from the death and misery wrought by such systematic destruction.
Here, if you have legal documents and are not a foreigner, you are not expelled. If you are not an immigrant or poor here, the police don’t harass you. Here the effects of soil, air and water contamination is not the same as that of the bombs exploding directly in front of your face. It’s different here.
Instead everyday, while waving the flag of the U.S., ‘citizens’ watch with enjoyment images of villages and caves being bombed with sickening precision. One watches, but doesn’t see.
These images erase the carnage, the smell of death, the blood strewn everywhere. "It is far from here, not of my concern," cries the detached loyal ‘citizen’. "They did it to themselves by attacking the World Trade Center," which takes the personal and individual out of the equation.
But these images of carnage, if not approached with seriousness, could well cease to exist merely in the far off distance. They could become something we see, smell and feel directly.
I hear the mechanical drone of World War III in the closer still distance as the Bush administration declares war on the world.
But it is still different here.
Here, as ‘citizens’ with silence and complicity, in total patriotic tranquility, we prepare the way for World War III.
—from An Oppositional Voice
"By now, it is well-known: when one wants to carry out a conquest and extend one’s power, one starts by proclaiming to the four winds that such and such another people is of an inferior race, unworthy of governing themselves, hostile to every form of civilization. Histories, popular literature, travel books, geographies, statistics are ransacked; anthropology and ethnography are invoked to show with mathematical certainty that this race is treacherous, ungrateful, lazy, vile, murderous, savage, and that they deserve nothing but the gallows, and grape-shot abroad. One proclaims before the world that one’s own race is superior, chosen by god, predestined to bring the torch of science and law to the four corners of the earth; that the war being undertaken is a war for civilization and humanity or at least a war for defense and liberty…" 
Back to the Venomous Butterfly page