Sunday, April 17, 2016

Replacing hate with love

GUEST: Brian Trautman, board member of Veterans For Peace and college instructor in peace studies and economics, talks about how and why veterans have become active in combating racism and Islamophobia.

Veterans have more of a voice in the empire than ordinary citizens, unless of course they are worth billions of dollars. 

People listen to veterans because they "served" their country, and risked their lives when so many haven't. Being a veteran gives one the chance to say antiwar things, and for the most part get away with it.

Veterans also know about racism because they have seen it first hand, in the wars they have fought and in the 800 foreign military bases that the empire maintains throughout the world. US military dominance is preserved through terror and veterans know that better than anyone else in America. They have been a part of that terror, and done things that they can never forget.

In the empire's wars for oil and geopolitical dominance, Muslims became our enemy of choice. Our bombs and blockades have killed over a million in Iraq alone, and left that country looking like the war torn and cratered moonscape of Vietnam. Defy the empire and your country will go back to the Stone Age.

Veterans who have done the dirty work get to tell the whole story about war crimes done in our name. Veterans have little to lose telling the truth to the American people. In fact, they have a great deal to gain by exposing the racism of empire. They hope to win back some measure of decency and humanity. 

As a veteran, I am eager to tell the story of how the empire's racism abroad feeds hatred here at home. I give my thanks to Veterans For Peace and activists like Brian for replacing hate with love. 

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