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March in Washington against the attack on Syria

On Saturday, September 7, 2013 I had the opportunity to attend a protest in front of the White House against the attack on Syria. It was the reaction of the people to the fact that President  Obama had been pressuring Congress to approve the said attack. On Capitol Hill the lobbying and debates were intensified, but everything seemed to be a media maneuver to distract attention from the unquestionable reality that the U.S.  Congress, as powerful as it may think it is, has no power to authorize an attack a nation that represents no threat to U.S. security. If the millionaires in Congress have any remaining interest in pretending to represent the people, they could vote NO to that attack, as did the British House of Commons; but even if they were seduced by the “persuasion” of the lobbyists of the war industry, such an “authorization” for the President would have no validity whatsoever to legalize an attack that the Organization of the United Nations opposes. 

One objective of the protest was to refute the corporate media that serves as a ministry of propaganda for the war industry. To belie falsehoods such as that the bombing would be a humanitarian intervention to defend civilians; that the Syrian government used chemical weapons; and that the Syrian people want the United States to intervene. These are three grotesque lies to cover up the reality that the United States does not resist the temptation to attack. The Syrian people are but the current battlefield of the indirect war of Israel and Saudi Arabia against Iran. A regional conflict in which the United States wants to play, once again, its eternal role of empire: to seize the opportunity to get in the middle, destroy the original nation and control what remains as one more of its dependent pseudorepublics, one without sovereignty, nationalism, or national identity and in addition managed by puppet governments servile to the interests of the elites who control power in Washington.

In a desperate attempt to rally public opinion, Secretary of State John Kerry made public images of the victims of the chemical attack, but failed to prove who the perpetrator was. The truth is that the United States has presented no proof that chemical weapons were used by Syria’s government. Much to the contrary, Russia has presented evidence that these weapons went from northern Iraq to Turkey, and from there to the rebels, among whom are found terrorist organizations.

Another of the lies refuted during the protest was that made by President Obama to the effect that there would be no war, because they would not send deploy troops on the field. That rhetoric was ridiculed as a conscious effort to fool the people, suggesting that they remain calm and go shopping because the only blood to be shed would be Syrian blood. A clear example of how the US government promotes American Exceptionalism in order to imprint on the collective consciousness the idea that the people of the Unites States are high above the rest of humanity, closer to the Creator than to humankind, which would keep the people of the United States from empathizing with the peoples that successive U.S. governments attack throughout the world.

No-one knows for sure how the U.S. Congress will vote in the end, nor whether the first African American U.S. president and Nobel Peace Prize winner will surpass George W. Bush in cynicism by attacking another nation under false pretenses, and to do so in the name of freedom.

What appears to be evident is that the people of the United States are growing weary of being convenient accomplices of the crimes against humanity that their various administrations committed around the world in favor of the same corporate interests that steal resources from social programs on the homeland.

After the protest in front of the White House, there took place a march to Capitol Hill, to make the lawmakers and lobbyists who work there listen to the voice of the people. At the head of the column marched a couple of soldiers waving the flag of the United States. One of them was Sergeant Springer, a veteran of Afghanistan who, when asked why he opposed the attack on Syria, said: “because this has nothing to do with freedom, it’s just another excuse to feed the war industry. The people of Syria has done nothing to us, they did not bomb us, not are they threatening our security. War is very cruel; I lost many brothers in Afghanistan. What we need here is a war against poverty.”

 After witnessing that protest and the courage shown by those men and women in facing the omnipotent established world order, we have the audacity to hope that the people of the United States have not lost their empathy: their ability to feel in their own flesh the pain of other human beings in other nations. I hope that the Congress hears their clamoring voices and votes NO to the attack. But, above all, I hope that President Obama, the Nobel Peace Prize winner, has the honesty to remain, at least this time, on the side of peace and the people, rather than on the side of the elites.






About Juan Carlos Zambrana Marchetti