The Reagan Standard

I started working on this post a while ago when the death of bin Laden was fresh news. It's something not on our minds so much now with Occupy Wall Street and what not, but it's never NOT relevent:

What is terrorism and how should the world deal with terrorists? The killing of Osama bin Laden has stirred these questions for some. As an American, I feel I have been given an inaccurate view of terrorism and terrorists. I've seen the celebrations on mainstream media of Americans over-joyed with the death of bin Laden. In fact, his killing has seemed to bring both liberals and conservatives together admitting that either way "he had to go". Yet, I believe something is missing. Though the death of bin Laden is not something to be sad about, I wonder why Americans aren't more angry at their government for operating with such hypocracy.

Terrorism is defined as: systematic use of violence and intimidation to achieve ideological or political gain.

In the 1980's, tens of thousands of Nicaraguans were killed by bombings and shootings in, some would say, the worst acts of terrorism the world has seen. This was done is the name of ridding the world of Communism by the Ronald Reagan administration. Reagan stood to gain a lot from terrorizing the people of Nicaragua: namely, the overthrow of a non-allied ruler. Stomping out the Nicaraguan government and supporting the Contras ensured a new ruler who would bend to the will of the US government (sound familiar?). Reagan funded his "war" by illicit arms sales to Ayatollah Khomeini’s Iran (and in turn, to the Taliban). All the while, and to this day, Reagan was able to keep the guise of the good guy; he was spreading democracy and "the American way" to less fortunate people (again, sound familiar?).

You may be asking yourself, if what Reagan did was so bad then why hasn't anyone spoken out or tried to do anything about it? The answer is: they did take notice and they did try to do something about it. In 1984 the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled, in the case of The Republic of Nicaragua v. The United States of America, that U.S. support for rebels fighting to overthrow the Sandinista government of Nicaragua violated both "customary international law" and a 1956 Nicaraguan-U.S. friendship treaty. The US was guilty of illegally placing mines in Nicaraguan harbors. The court also ruled that  the U.S. encouraged human rights violations by the Contras. ICJ demanded that the US pay reperations to the Nicaraguan people. However, the Reagan administration simply said it would ignore the ruling because the court has no power to enforce its decision. Seriously. They were seemingly correct and to this day the U.S. government has taken no responsibility for their acts of terrorism. The United Nations established ICJ after WWII to, basically, rule on morality and put a checks and balance system into place so large nations/armies cannot steamroll their way to political gain. The U.S., historically, accepts the court's jurisdiction only on a case-by-case basis (or when it's convenient).

Who are the bad guys and who are the good guys? Apparently, we're afraid to view our own country's actions as terrorism and are willing to let history repeat itself over and over while small, impoverished groups take the blame. In the late '80s a top CIA official, Jonh Stockwell, testified that, at the time, over 6 million people had been killed by American acts of terrorism in covert operations... how many more have been killed since then under the false flag of democracy?


Long Haired Outlaw said...

Your comment, “Though taste usually still overpowers morality, at least statistics like the ones just mentioned will help people reevaluate food choices for their own safety,” made me think of this article. I know from past posts you are a big gamer so I thought you might take this into consideration. http://www.medindia.net/news/People-Playing-Video-Games-Not-Concerned-About-Its-Environmental-Impact-33908-1.htm

Jayna said...

Great article, thanks for sharing! Definitely things to consider. I do enjoy gaming, but don't have a console of my own anymore.... maybe that's a good thing after all. Thanks for reading and commenting and sparking my interest in reading further about gaming :)