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During the same week that President Barack Obama and the United States Government assassinated Anwar al
Awklaki, a U.S. born citizen suspected of having connections with al-Qaeda, they also assassinated Sgt. Andy Morales in Iraq. Morales left behind a two-month old daughter and a grieving wife. The U.S. Government also assassinated Lance Corporal Franklyn Watson, First Lt. Ivan Lechowich, Robert E. Dyas, Sean Ivey and several other U.S. citizens in Iraq and Afghanistan. They too leave behind saddened parents and grandparents, brothers and sisters, spouses and sons and daughters.
The official report for the "other" U.S. citizens that were assassinated, though, reads killed in action by roadside bombs and improvised explosives, or killed by small weapons fire from enemy insurgents. The state record will also claim they died fighting for national security purposes and for defending their nation, including protecting the freedoms and liberties found in the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights. But in reality, and like Anwar al Awklaki, they were all assassinated by the U.S. Government, as were thousands of others, that has redefined war, distorted reality and betrayed the very principles of democracy.
It seems absurd President Obama and the U.S. Government assassinates its citizens. But in the U.S., certain rulers have chosen to collectively assassinate their citizens by fighting needless and manufactured wars. They are Type 3 assassins, or people whose motives are ideological or religious.(1) Then-President George W. Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney, who refused the Taliban's offer to jointly capture Osama bin Laden and bring to justice, are type 3 assassins too. By committing preemptive and unilateral wars based on lies, along with lengthy military occupations, they cause collective assassinations, or wars.
The word "assassin" shares origins with the Arabic hashish, which originally meant dried herbs or fodder but came to refer to the drug now known in the West as hashish or hash. The name assassin was applied to any member of the religious sect, who, beginning in the late eleventh century, were thought to take the drug prior to committing their acts of mayhem and terrorism. Ideologies lived through institutions, like militarism, materialism, market economies, secular democracies, and American Exceptionalism, can become addictive. Like narcotics, they are taken before committing collective assassinations.
In limited or distorted democracies, assassins are not crazed lone gunmen, nor are they hired killers. In militant or secular democracies, government-sanctioned assassins, or political leaders, are revered, their murderous behaviors institutionalized. Assassinations are never the act of killing-up, or when a powerless person is seeking influence or control. Instead, and since power comes from below in a democracy, assassinations are always killing-down, or when a political leader places their fatal ideologies and grandiose schemes above the citizenry. An assassin then refers specifically to someone who kills "the people."
In perverse democracies, powerless politicians, or assassins, seize power through manipulation and deceit. They then start needless wars and useless military campaigns that deliberately kill others, including their own citizens. This distinguishes them from a murderer. Political assassins collectively assassinate their citizens through wars which give the establishment momentum. They are motivated by national security, resources and religious or secular ideologies. Since the people they assassinate have internalized their erroneous claims and are willing to die, state-sponsored assassins are difficult to identify.
However, some U.S. citizens, even citizen soldiers, are starting to wrestle with the abnormality of their democracy and their political assassins. A recent report showed that one-third of U.S. veterans of post-9-11 believe the wars, or collective assassinations, in Afghanistan and Iraq were not worth the carnage and death. Along with reevaluating if the deaths of their fellow soldiers were really worth it, perhaps veterans are starting to question why political leaders are not promoting ideals found in the Bill of Rights, such as due process, innocent until proven guilty, and a fair trial with a jury of one's peers.
But political assassins always disregard the natural and civil rights of others. In "The Prince" Nicolo Machiavelli admired Cesare Borgia, an illegitimate son of Pope Alexander and Venetian duke who became a political assassin during the Italian Renaissance. Through a combination of assassinations, strategic marriages, political alliances, and fear and terror, Borgia expanded his power and influence throughout Italy. It was said of Borgia: "Every night, four or five murdered men are discovered, bishops, prelates, and others. So that all Rome trembles for fear of being murdered by the duke."(3)
Regarding U.S. collective assassinations, or wars, can it be said that four or five men are murdered each day and the people tremble with fear of being either murdered or assassinated by their political leaders?
Dallas Darling (email@example.com)
(Dallas Darling is the author of Politics 501: An A-Z Reading on Conscientious Political Thought and Action, Some Nations Above God: 52 Weekly Reflections On Modern-Day Imperialism, Militarism, And Consumerism in the Context of John's Apocalyptic Vision, and The Other Side Of Christianity: Reflections on Faith, Politics, Spirituality, History, and Peace. He is a correspondent for www.worldnews.com. You can read more of Dallas' writings at www.beverlydarling.com and wn.com//dallasdarling.)
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