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Commentary Last Updated: Oct 26th, 2007 - 00:57:14

Arsonist Bush is torching the world, so why isn't he being punished?
By Dennis Rahkonen
Online Journal Contributing Writer

Oct 26, 2007, 00:20

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No criminal is as heinous as the serial killer who murders a number of individuals to fulfill his deranged desires.

But what about a nation that becomes a serial aggressor, invading one country after another to greedily gain their natural wealth, or to make them low-wage, sweatshop locales that profiteering corporations can run away to, closing unionized plants at home and killing good, domestic jobs in the exploitative process?

Isn't that what the Bush administration's foreign policy is really all about, behind the tawdry propaganda camouflage of waging a war on terror?

If current saber rattling comes to its ominous conclusion, America will soon attack Iran, the third victim of orchestrated mass murder militarily inflicted upon people who've done nothing to deserve our bombs and missiles explosively crashing into their humble hovels.

The latest British assessment of how many Iraqis have died since George Bush decided to "liberate" them through withering, indiscriminate Shock and Awe is 1.2 million souls. Among the dead, surely, are countless families that gathered around radios and TVs on 9/11 to be as horrified by what had happened as we ourselves were.

Little could they imagine that the injured United States, taken in a knowingly wrong direction by malevolent neocons, would soon blow them to bloody pieces in wildly misapplied retaliation.

Now Bush blithely talks of World War III, which would almost certainly never be triggered by some amorphous, exaggerated "threat" first emanating from Iran.

If and when this green planet is transformed by nuclear holocaust into a blackened cinder orbiting a saddened sun, it'll be because surpassingly reckless misleaders like Bush (and the deplorable Dick Cheney) played with matches too close to gasoline.

For the past several days, our news media have concentrated on raging brush fires that destroyed some of the most luxurious homes to be found anywhere.

FEMA has responded quickly to the disaster, ostensibly having learned its lesson from Hurricane Katrina's much-criticized aftermath.

I'm inclined to think, however, that the speed and vigor of its help has more to do with the fact that it's rich, white people's property in a Republican stronghold being affected this time, not the modest dwellings of poor blacks in New Orleans' Lower Ninth Ward.

The conflagration generated other controversy. Too many California National Guard personnel, along with their equipment, are stuck in Iraq. They definitely could have been used along the flaming ridgelines.

Arson is being blamed for at least some of the fires, with one alleged pyromaniac having been reportedly shot dead in a confrontation with police. You can bet that any others who are apprehended will do very long periods of prison time.

So why does George Bush get away with setting the world on fire?

Back in my freshman year of high school, civics was my favorite subject. I loved how it enabled me to learn about -- and be tremendously proud of -- my country's noble ideals, its high values, and our populist-democratic tradition.

If someone had told me then that America in the early 21st century would be universally despised for having become a virtually Hitlerian aggressor state that tortures innocents, spies upon its own citizenry, has abolished habeas corpus, and has a perhaps pathologically unbalanced president who seems to invite Armageddon, I'd have thought them crazy.

But all that has incredibly come to pass, and we'll be the ones judged insane -- or socially irresponsible to the ultimate extreme -- if we don't collectively act to stop this compounding, potentially cataclysmic madness.

While the endangered heart of democratic possibility still beats, albeit weakly, we must now do what's so urgently demanded of us.

We have to shed our fear and capitulationist pessimism, to unite, organize, and quite literally save ourselves and the rest of humankind from possible extinction.

That means timid Democrats in Congress must finally grow spines. Gloomy liberals writing despairing blogs must rise from their keyboards and rally in the streets with ordinary Americans, many of whom have been waging exemplary community struggles throughout the entire Bush reign.

Like those who fought for better tomorrows in the Rebel Thirties and Turbulent Sixties, let's appreciate, and fully utilize, the tremendous strength of People Power.

It takes a fight to win, and we're in the biggest, most critical fight ever.

All those unwilling to let serial killers/arsonists win, step forward.

Then defiantly march, together, as one, into the pages of redemptive history.

Dennis Rahkonen of Superior, Wisconsin, has been writing for various progressive outlets since the �60s. He can be reached at

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