Low-hanging fruit: Antiwar organizer hates the troops, America

posted at 10:05 am on March 13, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

Of course, Kenneth J. Theisen’s column appears in the Berkeley (CA) Daily Planet, where the city council declared war on the Marine Corps earlier this year. The activist with World Can’t Wait, a group that organizes anti-war protests around the country, explains why those who claim to oppose the war cannot possibly also “support the troops”. In fact, Theisen goes farther, comparing the American military to the Nazi war machine and claiming that our “occupation” of over 130 countries intends on maintaining the US as the sole empire on the planet:

In the recent political battle around the Marine recruiting station in Berkeley there has been much confusion around the concept or slogan of “supporting the troops,” but opposing the unjust wars of the Bush regime. Many who oppose the Bush regime wars also say they “support the troops.” Let me say it straight out—I do not support the troops and neither should you. It is objectively impossible to support the troops of the imperialist military forces of the U.S. and at the same time oppose the wars in which they fight.

The United States has over 700 military bases or sites located in over 130 foreign countries. The hundreds of thousands of troops stationed in these countries are not there to preserve or foster freedom and democracy as the Bush regime would like to claim, but to maintain U.S. imperialist domination of the world. The United States now spends more on its military than all the other nations of the world combined. ….

We need to expose that those in the U.S. military are trained to be part of a “killing machine.” While not every member of the military is an individual murderer, they are all part of a system that commits war crimes, including aggressive wars, massacres, rape, and other crimes against humanity, all in the service of U.S. imperialism. The bottom line is that even if these people are relatives or friends, you can not support the troops without also supporting the objective role that these troops play in the imperialist system. …

But to decide whether U.S. troops deserve support you must analyze what they actually do in countries occupied by the U.S. The wars these troops are engaged in have the goal of maintaining and extending U.S. hegemony throughout the world. They are unjust, illegal, and immoral wars. Can you support the troops in these wars? Why is this any different from a German in World War II saying, “I oppose the wars launched by Hitler, but I support the troops of the German army which are making these wars possible.” When the Marines in Haditha massacred Iraqis, including women and children, would it have been correct to say I supported the Marines who killed those people, but not the massacre? This would be ridiculous, but no more so than supporting the troops engaged in the war that made the Haditha massacre possible in the first place.

Granted, this kind of lunacy speaks for itself, and it usually comes with this much misinformation or more. We spend more than any other country on defense, partly because we have taken responsibility for securing much of the world’s sea trade routes. That requires us to maintain naval bases around the world. The argument that we spend more than the rest of the world combined relies on official reports of spending, but in the case of Russia and China, those figures are much lower than their actual expenditures.

As far as occupation goes, the only country where that description could rationally apply would be Iraq, and even that’s a stretch. Theisen fails to mention that we remain in Iraq under a UN mandate, and we have now begun to negotiate with the Iraqi government for a bilateral security arrangement where we will remain at their request. In the rest of the countries in which we have bases, they do not contribute in any way to the governing of these nations. We remain in Germany, Japan, Italy, South Korea, and other places at the request and approval of their elected governments — and we would leave if requested.

But Theisen doesn’t want a rational debate. He has written a hate screed against the military and the American government that funds it. He tries to limit the latter to the Bush administration, but his Smedley Butler quote about being a “gangster for capitalism” reveals the political cast of Theisen and his organization. If all they wanted was the end of the “Bush regime”, that will come on its own in ten months. What they want is the end of the American system of government, replaced by another that will end what they see as the scourge of free markets and the free elections that have created this so-called empire.

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He’s compensating for something. Hmmmmm….

SouthernGent on March 13, 2008 at 6:25 PM

Hhhmmm… at last, an intellectually honest consistent lefty who doesn’t hide behind the hate the mission, love the troops, love America lie.

Amendment X on March 13, 2008 at 6:58 PM

He was tired of bottling it all up inside, so he let his true feelings out.

Capitana on March 13, 2008 at 8:11 PM

THIS folks is the Democratic Party. Don’t think Obama, or Hillary, or Bill Clinton, or Dukakis, or Carter, or Richardson, or any of them think any different.

They don’t. This is what they really think. They hate America.

They want us to lose. And they hate Americans. They want us to lose as well.

whiskey_199 on March 13, 2008 at 8:25 PM

Good. Glad they’re wiping off the candy coating [coming out of the shadows] and declaring themselves for who they actually are.

Claire on March 13, 2008 at 8:57 PM

The gutless wonders come out again. I would bet that any vets that are involved in this were never in actual combat.

Johan Klaus on March 13, 2008 at 9:58 PM

Professor Blather on March 13, 2008 at 11:31 AM

Professor, I have always enjoyed reading your posts, I hope you’ll continue when you’re over there fighting for us. May God bless you and keep you safe and sound.

4shoes on March 13, 2008 at 10:10 PM

Professor Blather, (You’re to young to be a prof.!) Thank you and God Bless you and keep you safe. You said it so well in your post….there is much to be proud of in America, most of all the brave young men and women that sign up in time of war. We are also lucky to have men like you that know what’s coming and still sign up! I for one would love to go with you but my time is long past. So, instead, I’ll stay home and do my best to combat the leftist drival with truth!

Proudvet on March 13, 2008 at 11:03 PM

At least he exposes the left’s hypocrisy in claiming that you can support the troops but not the mission. Trouble is it’s included in a completely looney rant and thus gives the lefties a convenient out. They can say he’s looney… oh wait, they can’t because they all really agree with everything this loon had to say.

mikelikesit on March 13, 2008 at 11:52 PM

Professor Blather: keep posting semper fi!

maverick muse on March 14, 2008 at 7:16 AM

Berkeley is endemic of what the entitlement mentality can breed…people who have nothing productive to contribute to society but their, large, overfed mouths and the puerile egos to go with them. Without any purpose they become quixotic, looking for windmills to joust with. Their rants based on the realization of their own insignificance.

Since they don’t seem to need the right of common defense provided by the preamble of the Constitution, lets start a non-profit, and solicit funds to send these people anywhere else in the world they choose to live (assuming any other country would have these brain dead drones).

PatriotPete on March 14, 2008 at 10:28 AM

lets start a non-profit, and solicit funds to send these people anywhere else in the world they choose to live (assuming any other country would have these brain dead drones).

PatriotPete on March 14, 2008 at 10:28 AM

Excellent idea.

However, they won’t go. No matter how easy you make it for them. They already know that the best place for them is right here in the good old US of A.

Et tu Brute on March 14, 2008 at 10:12 PM

My favorite rhetorical devise these moonbats use is in decrying the war is the term “aggressive war” Oh my gosh really, it’s an “aggressive” war?! I thought it was that other kind of war, you know, the non-aggressive type. I can’t support the war now that it’s been pointed out that it is of the aggressive variety. Thank you Mr. Moonbat for enlightening me because I only support wars that use non-aggressive tactics like handing out teddy bears and bottled water to the enemy.

pleaseandthankyou on March 15, 2008 at 4:34 AM