muted tones

march 06

this entry is from march 06. click here for more information about the curator, and to hear the finished work if it's available.

War is a Force that Gives Us Meaning

april 05th, 2006

Thank you very much to Joshua, Mike and the good people of Tenseforms for providing a home for this.

The title is from a book by Chris Hodges. Source video is from “Le Vampires” and the usual internet places.

The audio started out as my guitar playing but got progressively worse the more I messed with it. I had some illusion that I’d lay this fingerstyle-mind-blowing-open-tuning bomb on the world, but then I listened to the playback.

Also: Norman Solomon: War Made Easy, Klaus Theweleit: Male Fantasies.

The U.S. Government has spent $1.62 billion dollars in PR to convince the American people that the war in Iraq was the right thing to do, that it’s going well, and that America is a safer place now. Long after the shooting war is over, forces will continue to fight this war in a comprehensive effort to control and shape the narrative.

If Viet Nam was the television war, Iraq II is the XBox war. It is a product of deep market research and the flashiest technology. The violence is not hidden, but it’s causes and consequences are. Embedded reporters bring us first-person views of chaos and panic, but there’s no analysis. Death is arbitrary, brought on by foes whose motivations are as inhuman and inscrutable as a million lines of source code. Understanding and fixing such matters are best left to experts. In the meantime, keep shooting and running.

In the end, rest assured that there will be memorials honoring the war’s heros and victims. It will be known as the Wrong War for the Right Reasons, or some other bit of verbal whitewash that encapsulates what we want to believe but fails to convey any truth.

There will be no statue honoring the people who spoke out against the war before it even started. There’s a Nobel Peace Prize, but there isn’t much reward for “I told you so.” So there will be no statue in Washington D.C. for Representative Barbara Lee of California, the lone dissenting vote on a resolution to grant the president unlimited authority to wage his war on terror. Nor will there ever be a statue for Dennis Kucinich, seemingly the only person in D.C. to notice that President Clinton had broken the law in ordering the continued bombing of Serbia. Nor will Wayne Morse and Ernest Gruening, the only two senators to vote against the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, get the monument they deserve.


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