Russia Germany USA Want Love But What About Oppression?
Yes, Russian wanted to be loved when they smashed Hungary, as did Germany when they
started their world wars, and too George Bush needs love, but what have we done?
From two books being read right now, a sharing….
Funny how coincidences occur. Iím reading two books now, ìDr. Faustusî by Thomas Mann, and ìIn Praise of Older Womenî by Stephen Vizinczey. Within two days, as I push through the latter half of both books there comes the commentary about both Germany and Russia, respectively in each work, when these nations were oppressing other nations.
Mann is describing his Germany from the viewpoint of the narrator who enlisted in the army for World War I:
ìWe were bursting with the consciousness that this was Germanyís century, that history was holding her hand over us; that after Spain, France, England, it was our turn to put our stamp on the world and be its leader; that the twentieth century was ours; that now, at the end of the bourgeois epoch begun some hundred and twenty years before, the world was to renew itself in our sign, in the sign of a never up to the end quite defined military socialism.
This picture, not to call it an idea, possessed all our heads, companionably side by side with another: the belief that we were forced into war, that sacred necessity called us to take our weapons – – those well-polished weapons whose readiness and excellence always induced a secret temptation to test them. Then there was the fear of being overrun from all sides, from which fate only our enormous strength protected us, our power of carrying the war straightway into other lands. Attack and defence were the same, in our case: together they made up the feeling of a providence, a calling, a great hour, a sacred necessity. The peoples beyond our borders might consider us disturbers of the peace if they chose, enemies of life and not to be borne with; but we had the means to knock the world on the head until it changed its mind and came not only to admire but to love us.î from page 301.
Comparably, in Chapter 14 of Vizinczeyís book, entitled ìOn Anxiety and Rebellion,î the Hungarian narrator moves toward a similar desire of a hated oppressive nation:
ìI cannot begin to tell you how we hated the Russians! My students donít like me to talk about this because they think Iím really arguing for more nuclear missiles. I am not, I donít believe in them, but just the same it is a fact that the Russians are the big imperialists of today, and within their colonies they are the most loathsome rulers; not content with robbing and bossing the natives, they want to be loved as well.î This was written or published in 1965; Mannís book was published first in 1947.
Amazing, isnít it? Terrible countries like these two, destroying towns and countries, killing and torturing people without humanity being a concern, wanting to be ìloved.î War being abstracted in the writings of the media of the times.
Then there is today, with our reprehensible leader, heading down to Latin America, belatedly dishing out pittances of aid after pushing corporatism and debt-lading privatization upon countries from Bolivia and Argentina to Guatemala and Mexico, nations that we primarily impoverished by our trade policies. After Rumsfeld tried to push the misguided policies we champion to fight the so-called ìWar on Terror.î
Perhaps some of us do not know that there was Project Condor, where the Pinochets and other murdering Latin American dictators, in cooperation with the United States, used the combined forces of the police and the military to arrest them dirty communists. Of course, many of those captured, tortured, murdered, and disappeared were innocent, not even communists, but that was incidental. Money and weapons flowed in, and power prospered, at the expense of freedom and democracy.
So what does the brilliant self-congratulatory bonehead Rumsfeld push? Why, you gotta combine the police and military you finally democratically separated, to fight the War on Terror. Latin American diplomats had to quietly passively receive this policy reversal suggestion and swallow their gum.
Meanwhile, as our President proceeds to ruin the world, deny global warming exists, push nuclear power around the globe, pretend America wants to altruistically help Latin America after
threatening the new left government democratically voted into power in Bolivia, he also has his henchpeople smear Venezuelaís Hugo Chavez in our Bush-facilitating media. But Chavez has thrown his countryís oil money to Argentina to help pay off their national debt. Chavez brazenly has the nerve to fight our embarrassment of a President by campaigning against globalization that impoverishes especially Latin America. He speaks against the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, warning nations not to accept loans that demand privatization and the ripping off of national treasures and industries, by allowing outside globalizing corporations ìnationalî access to these future sources of production and capital.
Bush wants to be loved. He wants America to be loved. Even while we act like Germany and Russia, uncompassionately attacking sovereign Latin American nations, not necessarily with the military weapons we long to test, but financially and politically with our corporate and financial power.
If you really love someone or some country, display your love with justice and true benevolence, not schizoid falsity and paranoid greed.
Can America right the wrongs of the Bush years? Remember, Latin America loved JFK when he visited the lower domain of this hemisphere. The USA WAS loved. Perhaps, not totally. But infinitely more than it is today. Time heals all wounds, it has been said. But it may take decades, if at all, to reverse the destructive policies we have followed in relation to Latin America during this decade.
We want to be loved. Let us learn how to love again. As we would want to be loved ourselves…..
C 2007 Conrad Miller M.D.