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Tossing Pebbles in the Stream

This blog is my place to sit and toss pebbles into the stream. The stream of Life relentlessly passing before us. We can affect it little. For the most part I just watch it passing and follow the flow. Occasionally, I need to comment on its passing, tossing a pebble at it to enjoy the ripple affect upon Life's surface.

Friday, November 24, 2006

American Militarism

In Canada, when I was in school, American history was taught in a very positive uncritical way. It was superficial and tended to reinforce the myth of America. In short, American is a special unique country, a "light on the hill", a nation under God fullfilling a mandate to be a country which is democratic, where individual have great personal freedom and very extensive rights.
The United States believes itself to be a moral country, and a political model for the world.

At best this view of the United States is a series of half truths. I say this as one who admires much of the United States and its self correcting and organic political system. it is a work in progress, even if it presently has lost it way away from its highest ideals.

If as Canadians we are taught about the United States in its mythical form, One can appreciate how American youth are taught it largely uncritically.

I find this most stiking when Americans speak of their country as the best in the World. This always brings a smile to my lips. They sincerely mean it as if it were more than just pride of country: it is existentially true. Well, there are several countries in the World which by many measures are superior to the United State. I would point to all of the Scandinavian countries, Britain, Ireland, some European countries and, yes, even Canada are better countries. The United Nations rankings of countries on various scales confirms this.

Part of the American myth we are taught is that our neighbour is peace loving and the great defender of freedom and promoter of peace around the World.

The reality that is overlooked is that the United States has a long history of militarism and interference in countries around the World. The current efforts to create an American World Empire, with over 700 military bases around the World and claiming for itself the right to unilaterally interfere militarily in other countries where American interests, political, social and economic may be the apex of the American military audacity.

Click on the program below and see the long military history which is a direct challenge to the American image of itself as a peace loving, example for others.


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