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Glenn Greenwald: Only Half Right about the Boston Marathon Bombings

by John Spritzler

April 16, 2013

I don't have any more knowledge about the Boston Marathon bombings than what everybody else has from the mass media reporting. I have only one thing to add to the sentiments expressed more eloquently than I am capable of by Glenn Greenwald in his column here about these bombings. Greenwald writes:

"The widespread compassion for yesterday's victims and the intense anger over the attacks was obviously authentic and thus good to witness. But it was really hard not to find oneself wishing that just a fraction of that compassion and anger be devoted to attacks that the US perpetrates rather than suffers. These are exactly the kinds of horrific, civilian-slaughtering attacks that the US has been bringing to countries in the Muslim world over and over and over again for the last decade, with very little attention paid."

How true! But Greenwald is only half right in what follows. He writes,

"The rush, one might say the eagerness, to conclude that the attackers were Muslim was palpable and unseemly, even without any real evidence. ... Obviously, it's possible that the perpetrator(s) will turn out to be Muslim, just like it's possible they will turn out to be extremist right-wing activists, or left-wing agitators, or Muslim-fearing Anders-Breivik types, or lone individuals driven by apolitical mental illness."

Greenwald's list of who the perpetrator(s) might possibly turn out to be conspicuously omits "members of the American ruling elite," who ought to be included in this list. The U.S. government routinely murders innocent people, as Greenwald himself mentions in this very article of his when he writes:

"But one wishes that the empathy for victims and outrage over the ending of innocent human life that instantly arises when the US is targeted by this sort of violence would at least translate into similar concern when the US is perpetrating it, as it so often does (far, far more often than it is targeted by such violence)."

Why, then, does Greenwald omit members of the U.S. ruling elite from his list of possible perpetrators of the Boston Marathon bombings? I believe it is because as angry as Greenwald is at the crimes committed by the U.S. ruling elite, he either does not understand why it commits these crimes or he is afraid (as any professional journalist might be) that if he says why it commits them he will suffer personal consequences in retaliation greater than he is willing to endure.

The U.S. ruling elite commits mass murder against innocent people for the purpose of strengthening its power over people. The evidence is overwhelming that U.S. rulers orchestrated 9/11 for the purpose of gettng the American public to obey them unquestioningly and to allow them to use "war on terror" rhetoric as a cover for invading parts of the world where Muslims live. Our rulers use drones to kill innocent people knowing full well that this makes far more enemies of the United States than it kills; making enemies is the prrecise purpose of the drones because an Orwellian war of social control like the War on Terror cannot be persuasive if it lacks a credible bogeyman enemy for all to see.

The 9/11 attack targetted Americans. It is not unreasonable, therefore, to suspect that the same culprits would target Americans again whenever they thought it was useful to maintain the "war mentality" that their control of Americans requires.

Glenn Greenwald, however, does not ever discuss this "social control" motivation for the crimes of U.S. rulers that he so eloquently condemns. But unless we know what we are really up against we will not know how to effectively deal with the problem. If, as people such as Greenwald say, our rulers (and the extremely wealthy class of people they represent) have no rational reason for doing the evil things they do, then it follows that the problem can be solved by a combination of a) explaining to our rulers why what they are doing is wrong and b) voting in new politicians (with our choice limited, of course, to those vetted by the same extremely wealthy class of people who vetted our current crop of politicians.)

But if the plutocracy that controls America has a very rational (though evil) reason for committing terrible crimes against innocent people at home and abroad, then the problem can only be solved by removing this plutocracy from power. And since the plutocracy was never elected, it cannot be unelected. We need to start Thinking about Revolution.

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