Have We Sold Our Souls By Turning a Blind Eye to Obama’s Drones?

Davey-D-purple-frameThere’s a lot of talk about President Obama and his use of drones as well as him having a kill list which has asserts that he can kill American citizens that he deems to be working against America and somehow down with al-Qaeda.. This is indeed very scary and something all of us should seriously reflect on, because whatever steps Obama takes will not be limited to him.. Whoever sits in the Oval office will be able to pick up where Obama leaves off..

Seems like quite a few are giving the President a pass on his policies.. Would we be comfortable with those policies if we had President Romney as opposed to Obama? What if it was former President George Bush saying he has a kill list and has a right to use it on American citizens? Many of us took to the streets and raised a ruckus for far less.

Yesterday in Washington, there were confirmation hearings for John Brennan who is said to be the brains behind Obama’s insidious drone policy…Brennan is shooting to be director of the CIA.. Are people really comfortable with his policies? Are we comfortable with the US setting up drone bases in Niger, knowing that during the Bush administration Bush had Colin Powell lie before the United Nations about the African country providing uranium for terrorists? His testimony was briefly interrupted by folks upset with the drone policies he later defended..


Barack Obama rightAre we comfortable with Obama having a secret drone base in Saudi Arabia and mainstream news outlets like the Washington Post agreeing not to report this to the American people?

I want people to be aware of a tactic that is being used in support of White House policies around the discussion on drones.. There is a set of talking points and particular phrasing being used by stealth surrogates and ‘supporters’ of the President designed to frame the conversation in way that moves one away from talk about diplomacy and de-escalation and into the arena of ‘All  We must fight terrorism at e

Inevitably someone will make try to put the onus on you for objecting..Pay close attention when someone responds or inserts themselves in a conversation and ask questions or makes statements along these lines:

1-If we don’t use drones what better ideas do you have to eliminate top terror operatives? Instead of complaining about the President fighting the war on terror, perhaps you should help him..This is difficult work..

2-Troops on the ground are not as effective..Drones are the only way to fight back… Do you have another way for us to take out top terrorist without troops?

3-There are Bigger threats that you can’t see. Bush started something that Obama unfortunately must finish to protect us all.. It took us over a decade to find Bin Laden

4-Those so-called innocents who have been killed by drones hide or aid terrorists..The terrorists use kids to fight us and then claim innocence. We haven’t killed that many innocent people.. They killed innocent people during 9-11…Our drones are doing the job of fighting terror more effectively

5-The terrorist plan there and then come here or against our interests around the world. They started it-remember 9-11. Its better for us to fight them over there then at home..

6-We must use drones because we have no other options Our allies like Pakistan hid Osama for years and lied to us.

7-Diplomacy doesn’t work..They want to kill us. They have an advantage on their land..they know it better than anyone. I don’t condone killing innocent people but so we must use drones to level the playing field.. They must be stopped!

Drone ProtestsBasically the tactic used is to situate the discussion as if we have no other choice but to fight the war on terror. Its designed to make you forget that the War on terror was a manufactured war with the goal of keeping it open-ended, and perpetual.. so we could expand it as necessary.

Obama is depicted as a reluctant participant who would rather have peace, but is ‘forced to clean up the mess’ that George Bush has started..

We are also reminded that its better for us to fight the war on terror overseas then have it here at home..Innocent people being killed is justified as being a part of war which is ‘ugly’. We are also reminded that terrorists use kids to fight us and hence we shouldn’t be ‘fooled’ or overly sympathetic..

There are Black and Brown faces increasingly being used to push these arguments.. Some are literally paid pundits and operatives. Others in a misguided sense of Black pride and unity have sold their souls and turned a blind eye to actions and policies that they know are dead wrong.. Others who once upon a time have been excluded, have been made to feel ‘special’ because they were put on some sort of White House mailing list,  got a phone call from someone important asking for their help or been invited to informal White House briefings.. The end result is a misguided sense of loyalty at all costs.. As fellow journalist JR Valrey of the Block Report once famously noted, many are not interested in justice or preserving life, they just want their turn to hold and crack the whip..

Obama's drones are terrorismBottom line be wary of the attempts to get folks to buy into a concept that we once railed against called ‘preemptive strikes‘..When Bush kicked this off we hit the streets by the thousands.. Obama doesn’t use the that term, instead he invokes the image of us being in a life and death struggle against ‘evil terrorists‘. As a result many have checked their conscience at the door to pick up a sword to join in sable rattling while simultaneously bemoaning the fact that youth in our community have turned to violence as a solution to problems vs de-escalation and diplomacy..

We Remember 9-11 Nine years Later and Ask; ‘How Did this Day Get Hijacked and Become a Circus?’

As we remember 9-11.. Ask yourself what are u doing to prevent a tragedy like this from happening again?  Have we been taking the path of love and understanding or hate and revenge?

In the days after 9-11, I recall how folks came together and tried to comfort one another…I remember for the first time in a long time folks would look and try to find the humanity in each other.

I remember those images of folks reaching out and trying to find deeper meaning in the tragedy that occurred. No one knew what they could really do so folks just started holding or even wearing the flag. Everywhere you looked you saw the American flag. Graffiti artists painted flags. Thugs wore flags as bandanas. Our radio station went and brought a bunch of flags to give to everyone.

I recall folks breaking down and crying uncontrollably in the streets and strangers would reach out and comfort them. For brief moment the world or at least things here in the US, seemed to stand still. All the planes were grounded and people seemed to genuinely care for one another. I’m not sure if we kept building off those feelings of upliftment. I’m not sure when they went away

In the days and weeks after 9-11 while folks were still vulnerable the seeds of revenge were planted in our heads.  I recall President George Bush sternly warning the Taliban, they better give up Osama Bin Laden or there would be hell to pay. He was soon joined by British Prime Minister Tony Blair who gave a prime time speech on our networks to the nation saying the same thing and pledging Britain’s unconditional support.

I remember President Bush standing in a church with a flag in the background stating ‘Either your with us or your with the terrorists’.  He was making it clear folks had better pick sides. Slowly we started to see the warm feelings we had toward one another move in the direction of war and revenge. The words ‘Love’ and ‘understanding‘ was being replaced by the word ‘payback‘.

For many our sentiments really began to turn when Bush gave his famous bullhorn speech from the middle of the rubble at Ground Zero, where he declared the ‘World hear you and soon the people who knocked down the towers would hear you’.. The crowd began chanting real loud ‘USA, USA, USA..’


I recall Reverend Jesse Jackson announcing that he was invited to meet with Taliban leaders and he wanted to go. He felt, perhaps there was a chance for us to negotiate and take a path for peace. That was quickly shut down when he got a call from then Secretary of State Colin Powell who told him fall back. There would be no peace negotiations.  Such peace talk would be seen as a sign of weakness.  Anyone talking about peace as a resolution was deemed un-patriotic and weak. Do folks recall that?

So as revenge became the order of the day, we began to hear lots of talk from high places about how we were gonna kick some major ass and take no prisoners. This was epitomized by football star Pat Tilman, a San Jose native with rugged GI Joe looks who gave up a lucrative contract with the Arizona Cardinals and volunteered to go fight.

The question we need to ask ourselves is 9 years later is ‘Do we feel satisfied’? Were our revenge efforts worth it?

9 years after 9-11 Osama still has not been caught. Pat Tilman is dead at the hands of friendly fire and we’re still at war in Afghanistan. The Taliban has returned and seem more defiant then ever. Even the president we installed in Afghanistan Hamid Karzai has turned out to be a corrupt, conniving individual who we’re forced to keep in power and deal with.

9 years after 9-11 we’re knee-deep in war. Why aren’t we knee-deep in love?

9 years after 9-11 why have we allowed all sorts of politicians to pimp 9-11 and send us off to fight un-winnable wars?

9 years after 9-11 we’ve seen scandal after scandal including some high-profile ones with our fire fighting heroes leaving their wives to marry the widows of fallen comrades have tarnish the memory of that dreadful day.

9 years after 9-11 we’ve seen so-called patriotic pundits like Ann Coulter publish books where she attacked and said hateful things about 9-11 widows.

9-11 has been hijacked by a 2 bit charlatan Pastor named Terry Jones

9 years after 9-11 the love we’re supposed to have for one another has been hijacked by a charlatan 2 bit, ‘Koran’ (Quran) burning preacher from Florida named Terry Jones. How did this happen?

How did 9-11 become hijacked by angry people attacking one another over their religion?  How did this day become hijacked opportunist politicians like Newt Gingrich and Congressman Peter King demanding that a community center/ Mosque not be allowed 2 blocks from ground Zero even though one Twin Towers actually had a Muslim prayer center?

How did we allow the memory of everyone who was killed many of them Americans of Muslim descent be obscured and demonized by Islamaphobes who are running around slashing the throats of cab drivers and vandalizing mosques 3000 miles away from Ground Zero?

photo credit ABC News

9 years after 9-11 I can still I recall the distinct smell from the towers that permeated Ground Zero months after the towers fell. The plan in those waning days was to build a serene tree lined park & memorial. People spoke emphatically about not allowing any buildings or any commercial development. It was to be sacred ground. Sadly over the 9 years that somehow all that changed. The area around Ground Zero has everything from strip clubs to fast food joints and on the day we should all be remembering those who lost their lives we have angry mobs shouting at each other.

I still cant get the sight of people trapped on those floors jumping out of buildings or those eerie photos showing people still alive crying for help on those top floors moments before the tower fell. Such memories should not be obliterated  by the circus that is now 9-11. Shame on all those corporate owned mainstream media outlets for their participation in this. They could’ve easily set a vastly different tone.

Many people used to say George Bush and hawkish-revenge seeking policies squandered the good feelings and  good will people around the world had toward us after 9-11. However, after hearing and seeing the vitriol & hate we’ve allowed to dominate our space over the past few months,  we can’t say Bush alone squandered this. We did.. All of us

Condolences to those who lost loved ones. Special prayers to the families of restaurant workers, janitors, secretaries and regular 9-5 man who woman who was barely making it  prior to 9-11 and hence their families did not get a hefty payoff when settlement checks were issued.  Many of them have been hidden in the shadows all but forgotten after all these years.

Some say revenge is a dish served cold. I say revenge is a dish not served at all.. How about we try loving those who lost and loving those we have before they are lost..

F— You Terry Jones and people like him for reminding us just how ugly people can be even on the most sacred of days.

Something to ponder

written by Davey D

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