Online Journal
Front Page 
 Special Reports
 News Media
 Elections & Voting
 Social Security
 Editors' Blog
 Reclaiming America
 The Splendid Failure of Occupation
 The Lighter Side
 The Mailbag
 Online Journal Stores
 Official Merchandise
 Join Mailing List

Commentary Last Updated: Oct 9th, 2008 - 00:37:19

Attack of the attackers
By Mickey Z.
Online Journal Contributing Writer

Oct 9, 2008, 00:10

Email this article
 Printer friendly page

I�ve given some talks this year . . . talks that could accurately be described as �challenging� to those not part of a minute militant minority (see below link). One of the most predictable responses from the more mainstream of my listeners -- whether during Q&A or in follow-up conversations and e-mails -- is that some audience members feel attacked (by yours truly) for their lifestyle.


For the sake of clarity, I�d like to describe what I�d regard as an �attack.� Let�s say you�re a citizen in the most powerful nation on earth. You pay taxes and those taxes fund the most devastating military power the world has ever known. Your country uses this military power to intimidate, invade, and bomb with impunity. Most recently, some of those bombs you�ve help subsidize just might have landed in a residential area of Iraq and blown the limbs off a newborn baby, blinded his older sister, and wiped out the rest of the family. That, my friends, is what it�s like to be attacked. Sitting in a comfortable chair, sipping an overpriced latte in a local bar or bookstore, while an obscure writer opines that the America �way of life� is directly and indirectly responsible for the horrifying state of global affairs? Not an attack.

Sorry if that bursts your comfort bubble but as Henry Miller sez, �It isn�t the oceans which cut us off from the world; it�s the American way of looking at things.�

Another interesting reaction I�ve gotten is usually from more seasoned veterans . . . and it goes a little something like this: �I�ve been doing this for so long and nothing seems to change. It�s all so demoralizing and makes you want to quit.� Cue the goddamned violins. A bunch of pampered Americans are getting all weepy because their meager activist efforts have been essentially fruitless. You want demoralized? Try this on for size: You live in 1975 East Timor when Indonesia -- with permission and funding from the aforementioned most powerful nation on earth -- invades your land and slaughters one-third of your population. Yet, you continue to fight and organize and struggle and raise global awareness, fully cognizant that such actions are essentially suicidal. The US-supported invaders are ruthless and relentless. Somehow, these East Timorese humans managed to avoid getting bummed out and their efforts have resulted in some improvement.

I hope that doesn�t put you in a funk but as Noam Chomsky sez, �I�m not here to cheer you up.�

Samples of my talk: click here.

Mickey Z. is author of several books, including CPR for Dummies and No Innocent Bystanders. He can be found on the Web at

Copyright © 1998-2007 Online Journal
Email Online Journal Editor

Top of Page

Latest Headlines
Come now, Bush, it was no mistake
Two low-risk foreign policy decisions, one hopeful world
Olmert: Shame sans substance
Imperialists just don�t let you be
Zeitgeist: The withering away of Europe�s anti-war spirit
Obama conspiracy
It�s the Arabs, stupid
Human Rights Day celebration in Gaza
Rogue Bush regime: US government is above the law
Bag the Fed!
Washington�s arrogance has fomented a Muslim revolution
The mythology of the �War on Terrorism�
Obama�s familiar orbit
Torturous ambiguity
Woody Guthrie: A little recession music, please
Making smarter cars instead of stupid decisions
Vote first; ask questions later
Cassandra complex
Obama exploits liberal denial
Livni states that the targets in Mumbai were Jewish and Israeli (another codeword for �Western�?)