What happens when you merge a psychopath with a killer?
The United States is, indisputably, the world’s foremost killing entity, and it has been since its genocidal inception., The killing is relentless — in more recent times wreaking destruction in Iraq as well as being deeply involved in the current carnage in Syria.
In becoming the most prolific genocidaire in human history, the United States has assembled a colossal military-industrial-governmental complex. To facilitate its violence, the complex monopolizes the media, and uses propaganda, censorship, and disinformation; the latter was unanimously held by participants at the Halifax Symposium on Media and Disinformation as constituting a crime against humanity and a crime against peace. The US also seeks to ferret out and store all information vital to a global hegemon.
The protection of information and privacy of communications are crucial in times of war. Innovations in information-based technology are burgeoning, and the applications of such technology raises ethical considerations. Technology, however, is an abstract entity, and as such it is oblivious to ethical considerations, also as may apply to snooping, encryption busting, storing, and retrieving information.
Cognizant of the importance of being at the forefront of developing technology, United States defense [sic] secretary Ash Carter appointed former Google CEO Eric Schmidt to lead a “new Pentagon advisory board aimed at bringing Silicon Valley innovation and best practices to the US military.” One wonders: what does “best practices” mean when it comes to an entity devoted to killing?
Nonetheless, within the bowels of technology are the humans, beings with a conscience, who direct, invent, adapt, design, and repurpose technology to various ends.
Carter’s announcement at the annual RSA cyber security conference in San Francisco claimed the advisory board would provide “the brightest technical minds focused on innovation” to the Pentagon. However, is this not a case of overkill when it comes to technological innovation at the behest of the Pentagon? DARPA already provides the Pentagon with technological innovations, some of which are quite useful, such as the internet. And DARPA is heavily involved in developingcyber attack capability for the Pentagon.
One mega-corporation seemingly unbothered by the ethics of passing private information about its users to the US government is Google. Google, the world’s largest corporation, has as a motto “Don’t be evil.” But Google is open to criticism on many fronts for less than sterling deeds.
Wikileaks publisher Julian Assange, essentially a political prisoner for having exposed US war crimes and other perfidy agrees: “Google has grown big and bad…. Schmidt’s tenure as CEO saw Google integrate with the shadiest of US power structures…”
The Pentagon seeks to compel Wikileaks to turn over all material to be published and also to stop accessing material the US regime wants kept under wraps. Assange understands that the Pentagon can do this because they are beyond the law. Why the demand for secrecy? Clearly, because the public would be opposed if they knew.
Assange criticizes the hypocrisy of Google executives Schmidt and Jared Cohen and says both are “out to lunch.” If Assange’s assessment is correct, then what does having such men in leadership positions of behemoth corporations augur?
There exist certain people who have no compunction about spying on others and who are insouciant about using violence. According to one CIA recruiting officer, “We need people who are driven, people who are aggressive, manipulative – who can manipulate people to get them to do what they want them to do.” A former economic hitman in the service of the US establishment told of how the US props up compliant dictators and disposes of recalcitrant leaders who hinder Corporate America’s plundering of their countries.
That a corporation, such as Google, would be evil is unsurprising. UBC law professor Joel Bakan holds that the corporation is inherently psychopathic. This is intentionally so. Bakan points toübercapitalist Milton Friedman who posited that corporations practicing morality are immoral. Friedman also posited that government is bad, corporations are good. Consequently a coupling between a psychopathic entity, the corporation, and a murderous entity, the military, should evoke the gravest concern in society.
Tapping innovation for the US military-technology nexus is, reports Reuters, necessary “to maintain the U.S. military’s competitive edge over Russia and China as they expand their militaries.” The rhetoric of maintaining a competitive edge is disingenuous. After all, the Pentagon’s wet dream is possessing full spectrum dominance — unchallenged dominance in all theaters of war: land, air, sea, and space, including cyberspace.
Halting the military-industrial-governmental complex
Pacifist scientist Albert Einstein stated, “You cannot simultaneously prevent and prepare for war.” He elaborated, “The very prevention of war requires more faith, courage and resolution than are needed to prepare for war. We must all do our share, that we may be equal to the task of peace.”
Einstein knows well of what he speaks since he is a scientist who wrote a letter to president Franklin Roosevelt that subsequently led to acts of genocide: dropping atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. In hindsight, Einstein expressed, what might be considered tepid, regret: “Had I known that the Germans would not succeed in producing an atomic bomb, I would not have lifted a finger.”
No one has been held accountable for the horrendous loss of life in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. As a superpower, the United States continues to violate international law and commit war crimes as if endowed with blanket immunity. This immunity must end, and Nuremberg Law must be applied without prejudice to all malefactors. The prosecution of war crimes, crimes against humanity, crimes against peace, aggression, and genocide must be demanded by the masses of humanity and must be supported without patriotic bias. Courage is called for because people would be confronting elitist power, power that controls the security apparatus: the police, jails, courts, spy agencies, and the military.
Successful prosecution and punishment of American war criminals would signal a revolution of the international justice system and international order. To succeed mass action is a sine qua non. In 2009, the brave warrior Splitting the Sky attempted a solo citizen’s arrest of George Bush Jr. Splitting the Sky wound up being arrested. Sadly, Splitting the Sky is no longer with us, but if one man can muster the gumption to take action against the injustice of the system, then it behooves the rest of us to, at the very least, have each other’s back.
Finally, if the unlawful use of military force will henceforth be prosecuted with requisite zeal, then a resort to warring should be deterred with war being discarded as a heinous historical tactic. Disarmament would, therefore, seem the next logical step. If a world of peace is what the masses of humanity desire, and surely they do, then disarmament must transpire, and the military industry must be repurposed: away from killing and toward creating prosperity for the living.
Peace would bring about a change in the economic landscape. Why stop there? The world and people would also be better off without psychopathic corporations reigning.
- Writes Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, “Somehow, even ‘genocide’ seems an inadequate description for what happened, yet rather than viewing it with horror, most Americans have conceived of it as their country’s manifest destiny.” An Indigenous People’s History of the United States, Beacon Press, 2014, p. 78.
- See Kieran Kelly, “The United States of Genocide,” Dissident Voice, 30 September 2013.
- Abdul Haq al-Ani and Tarik al-Ani, Genocide in Iraq: The Case against the UN Security Council and Member States, Clarity Press, 2013. See review.
- See Kim Petersen and B.J. Sabri, “The Imperialist Violence in Syria, Part 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5 – 6 – 7,” Information Clearing House, January 2016.
- Ben Bagdikian, The Media Monopoly, Beacon Press, 1983.
- Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky, Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media, Pantheon, 2002.
- Meanwhile, Google has subsumed itself under a parent company Alphabet. The new slogan is “Do the Right Thing.” The rebranding technique also is used in the world of killers, as departments of war become departments of defense, as the US Army School of the Americas (commonly referred to as the School of Assassins) now calls itself Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation, and the Blackwater mercenaries for hire now prefers to be called Academi.
- Assange, When Google Met Wikileaks, OR Books, 2014, location 378.
- Assange, 2390.
- Assange, 2242.
- Assange, 3171.
- Assange, 3185.
- See Ronald Kessler, Inside the CIA, Pocket Books, 1992, p. 206.
- John Perkins, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2004.
- See Joel Bakan, the corporation: The Pathological Pursuit of Power, Penguin, 2004.
- Bakan, p. 33-35.
- Message sent to Congressman Robert Hale on 4 December 1946. Quoted in Einstein on Peace edited by Otto Nathan and Heinz Norden, 1960, p. 397.
- From “Atoms: Einstein, the Man Who Started It All,” Newsweek, 10 March 1947.
- See Nils Andersson, Daniel Iagolnitzer, and Diana G. Collier (Eds), International Justice and Impunity: The Case of the United States, Clarity Press, 2008. Read review.