Today is the 6th anniversary of the assault on the World Trade Center in New York City which killed thousands of people. It was a day that will be remembered throughout history no doubt. But not JUST for the incident itself. It was a day that began a dark chapter in U.S. history.
Normon Solomon, author of the newly released “Made Love, Got War: Close Encounters with America’s Warfare State”, has written the piece Six Years of 9/11 as a License to Kill.
It evokes a tragedy that marks an epoch. From the outset, the warfare state has exploited “9/11,” a label at once too facile and too laden with historic weight — giving further power to the tacit political axiom that perception is reality.
“Sept. 11 changed everything” became a sudden cliche in news media. Words are supposed to mean something, and those words were — and are — preposterous. They speak of a USA enthralled with itself while reducing the rest of the world (its oceans and valleys and mountains and peoples) to little more than an extensive mirror to help us reflect on our centrality to the world. In an individual, we call that narcissism. In the nexus of media and politics, all too often, it’s called “patriotism.”
What happened on Sept. 11, 2001, was extraordinary and horrible by any measure. And certainly a crime against humanity. At the same time, it was a grisly addition to a history of human experience that has often included many thousands killed, en masse, by inhuman human choice. It is simply and complexly a factual matter that the U.S. government has participated in outright mass murders directly — in, for example, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Panama, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq — and less directly, through aid to armies terrorizing civilians in Nicaragua, Angola, East Timor and many other countries.
Today should serve as a reminder that our world is not any safer than before September 11, 2001. The U.S. government has seen to that. “Safer” isn’t the word. “Dominated”, yes.