Which 9-11?

Dear editor,

One final observation, one final broadside against our balmy Benghazi! bellowers…  It is exceedingly curious that they fixate their wrath only upon the 9-11 of 2012, when four white Americans died in the violent anarchy of a civil war that we actively participated in.  No matter that it also killed tens of thousands of Libyans.  Libyans were neither white nor Christian.  To navel-gazing Americans, their deaths were inconsequential.

Curious that the 9-11 of 2001 is barely mentioned any more.  Almost 3,000 Americans died that day, but it seems that Dubya, good white Methodist Republican that he is, is beyond reproach.  Another 7,000 Americans died in the endless wars he and others spun up in that 9-11’s aftermath.  More than a million Iraqis and Afghans have also surely died, but then they were brown-skinned and few were Christian, so their deaths, too, were of little consequence.

That 9-11, and the thwarted “awakenings” after it triggered a tsunami of human migrations that are still roiling Europe.  They have died by the thousands trying to reach safety and the hope of new opportunities.  The Mediterranean’s sharks are well fed and dead babies routinely wash up on its glorious beaches, but these dead babies are usually Muslim, so it matters not.  The little heathens probably got what they deserved.

Curious that the 9-11 of 1973 is never mentioned.  Nixon’s CIA helped overthrow Chile’s first democratically elected (but tragically socialist) leader.  General Pinochet replaced Allende, who died on this particular 9-11.  Thousands were “disappeared” and it was common to see bodies along roadsides, or floating in Santiago’s Mapocho River.  Later investigations revealed more than 3,000 people killed and 32,000 tortured.  But then they were brown-skinned and did not speak English, and that was a long time ago.  We didn’t care then or now.  And besides, we’re cool with torture these days.

We could go on, and include the 9-11 of 1857, when Mormon zealots and their Paiute allies murdered 120 Missouri and Arkansas Americans trying to immigrate into Utah.  Let us pray they used machetes to expedite Trump’s hagiography.

America’s hands are hardly clean.  For more than a century, we have helped giant fruit corporations and anti-communist juntas turn tiny countries like Guatemala, Nicaragua, Honduras, and El Salvador into cesspools of violence and corruption.  Our “War on Drugs” is a losing proposition for everyone but gangs and governments.  We have sowed misery and we are reaping a whirlwind of desperate families at our borders.

“Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.  Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me…”  Such eloquence rings hollow when all we yearn for is a new wall to keep out suffering humans who are only guilty of having undertaken incredible, dangerous journeys for one last chance to start over.

No, we are much too busy hating Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama to even notice what we have allowed ourselves to become…

Jacques d’Nalgar
Hot Springs, Arkansas

Photograph of “Augusto Pinochet en una imagen del año 1988” (AP). http://blogs.elpais.com/fondo-de-armario/2013/09/golpe-de-estado-de-pinochet-en-chile.html

Permanent link to this article: https://levantium.com/2018/07/22/which-9-11/


  1. The line “Let us pray they used machetes to expedite Trump’s hagiography.” is an obtuse reference to the following letter to the editor published on July 19, 2018. In retrospect, I wish I had used “hasten” instead of “expedite” (to better sate my alliteration addiction). The emphasis on the last line is all mine…

    Deadly response

    Dear editor:

    The year was 1966, Cozumel was primitive and just being discovered by tourists. I was 21 years young and scuba diving on Palancar Reef, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, a scuba diver’s dream.

    As many gringos do, I fell victim to Montezuma’s Revenge. Unmentionable stomach problems that were so severe my wife called for the local doctor. He gave me a very powerful drug and I was so eager to get into my scuba gear and back into the water that I made a dive the next day. It was a bad idea! As a result, I spent the afternoon with my wife and my scuba buddy’s wife who had a reservation to tour the entire width of Cozumel and play in the surf on the Cuban side of the island.

    We arrived on the eastern side of the island, which had a surf and faced Cuba. The Jeep driver wanted us to inspect their military! The “soldiers” were called to attention and they lined up in front of their huts, wielding machetes and spiked killing devices. I asked why they needed a military on the Isle of Cozumel. The driver promptly informed me that they killed the Cubans who were trying to escape Cuba and the wrath of Castro. They did not want them on their Island paradise. “We cut them to pieces in the surf” was his reply.

    Kinda makes President Trump look like a saint, don’t you think?

    Darryl Foshee
    Hot Springs

  2. From a dear friend who must remain anonymous…

    Sent: Saturday, July 28, 2018 4:17 PM
    Subject: Thank you

    Your last SR letter is truly eloquent. Brought tears. I’m hard pressed to understand the dislike of Hillary Clinton, I can only guess about Barack Obama, after all skin color matters. Right? I’m concerned when the “pig” is brought down. What will his followers do then. Blame the “Not ever Trump” folks? I heard another stat on NPR that by 2040 the middle of the country will be picking the President and the Senate & House without any urban input due to the gerrymandering of the districts, which of course is already happening but will get worse. . That has got to change.

    Which then provoked/inspired the following rant, less than an hour later…

    Thank you for the compliment, and I’m sorry it made you cry. Hillary has been a target of haters ever since she was the governor’s wife. And I’m unhappy to report that the birthers are still strident and unrepentant in their white (ironically)-hot hatred of Obama. I keep a few haters as online “pets” to track their pestilence. I, too, am worried about Trump’s base when their day of reckoning finally comes, whether via some behavior by the pompous ass so vile as to be inexcusable, or whether by the remnant wheels of justice grinding towards their inevitable conclusions about his obvious corruption and likely treasonous activities.

    When that day comes, his disillusioned supporters are going to be very angry, even more unhinged and illogical than usual, and very, very dangerous. Until then, the rest of the GOP are frolicking in Trump’s shadows, rigging the game for generations to come. This is not hyperbole – democracy in America is truly threatened. Fascism is on the march around the world, even in once-progressive nations like Sweden and Norway.

    I know this sounds radical, but the time to resist is at hand. You’re right about the effects of gerrymandering and a relentless campaign to restrict voting rights for the poor and minorities. We can’t fight these bastards the traditional way – they’ve hoarded far too much wealth for us to compete for traditional media – print and television. I wish I had the perfect solution, but I do know it has to be an asymmetrical effort that flies “under the radar” (or bypasses it completely). Organizing, mobilizing, communicating via unexpected meetings and technologies (like this email and social media) seem to hint at the way forward. Others, smarter and younger, will have to figure this out, but I’m damned ready to help any way I can! We only have a few months left and we need the mother of all voter turnouts this fall!

    I despaired once before, several years ago, when the situation in my beloved Middle East was again spiraling out of control. A retired CIA agent (with family roots in the region going back as far as Lincoln) gave me this advice – keep your powder dry and wait for the Night of the Long Knives. That day is here, and the only powder we have left to us is the moral determination to stand up for those who cannot stand for themselves, to scream and shout and stomp that we’re mad as hell and we’re not going to take it any more, to ridicule and shame the hypocrites and thieves and moneylenders in the New Jerusalem temple we call Evangelical Christianity.

    These blind zealots, every one itching for Armageddon asap, are the source of Trump’s power, and he is the MAGA smoke screen that is letting an old, white, fantastically rich GOP advance their agenda of racial supremacy and privilege for only their own, an agenda that will rape and pillage the planet for centuries to come, with no regard for the generations that follow. (After all, if the End of the World is just around the corner, what does it matter?) Bad theology, built on a crumbling foundation of really bad, stupid exegesis has deadly real-world consequences…

    Frère Jacques

  3. Ah well, I suppose it was just a matter of time before regressives responded. Apparently my letter was nonsensical other than to qualify this odd fellow to opine about my obsessions with skin color. He apparently knows very little about the history of the last 500 years of this side of the globe. It is steeped in an obsession with skin color and the pervasive (and repugnant) notion that systemic privilege should be reserved for those of us with the least melanin. Anyway, enjoy this latest ramble of profound erudition, published today on July 30, 2018.

    Obsessed with skin tones

    Well, I tried to make some sense out of [Jacques d’Nalgar’s] diatribe, but couldn’t find an ounce of it. He does seem obsessed with skin tone. Kaddafi wasn’t a good guy by any stretch, but when he saw Saddam pulled out of his hole in the ground, he thought that could be me and he said come get my WMDs, I don’t want to be next. The international authorities obliged him and hauled them away.

    Then, for some reason, the first brown president and his corrupt secretary of state decided to bomb Libya, got rid of Kaddafi, but left a complete mess behind. In the chaos not only got our ambassador and his bodyguards killed but caused tens of thousands of Libyans to get on derelict boats to flee across the Mediterranean Sea, many of which drowned, fed the sharks according to [Jacques]. Then his inaction in Syria caused the same problems there and because of this someone I didn’t vote for, I’m a racist.

    Putin and whatever fat Korean relative is the frontman for NK saw what happened to Kaddafi and it is one reason we’ve been having trouble with them both worried they might be next. It was stupid from the get-go to bomb Libya.

    Then he goes on about 9/11 and with more nonsense because the terrorist that flew the planes into the WTC were brown-skinned Muslims. I guess we should just turn our heads the other way, because evidently following [Jacque’s] convoluted logic, we can’t defend ourselves against them because we don’t want to appear racist? Let’s see, that means that about half the world can take shots at us and we should just look the other way, because by all means, let’s not appear racist. It’s all right to criticize what Bush did, but get it all mixed up with skin tone makes no sense.

    At the height of the Cold War, JFK took us close to the brink when he demanded the Soviets get their missiles and nukes out of communist Castro’s Cuba. A few years later, probably with Soviet help, a communist Allende gained power in Chile. Not wanting another Soviet puppet to the south that means defending from two directions, Nixon probably used the CIA to help overthrow Allende, who had made the usual mess of Chile that socialism makes. Very similar to what we see in Venezuela today. I remember people hauling wheelbarrows full of money to get a loaf of bread in Chile then.

    Remember when you could count on Democrats to be anti-communist and not actually be communist? I’m sure when Obama went down to watch baseball with Raul it was a lifetime fond memory for both of them, too bad Raul’s brother couldn’t have been there, may he rest in hell. Are the Castros brown?

    Larry Bauer
    Hot Springs Village

    PS …good to know the “Village” (Hot Springs Village) is still cranking out its fair share of village idiots.

    Frère Jacques

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