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Is The Campaign To Delegitimize Global Warming Really About Melting The Polar Icecaps To Be Able To Drill For Oil?

June 21, 2011 Comments off
Photo credit: dsearls via Flickr/CC BY

For several years, I have been trying to figure out why there has been such a vigorous campaign by the right-wing to discredit Global Warming.  Well, today I found out why.  An Alternet posting on June 7 by Rania Khalek outlined five critical nuggets of information gleaned from the Wikileaks documents that have significant global implications – but which the Main Stream Media have virtually ignored.  The most eye opening for me was evidence that there are potentially some very lucrative side effects to global warming1) The opening up of a tremendous amount of oil and gas resources that are currently unexploitable because they lie beneath the Arctic ice cap, and 2) the very real possibility of having an actual “Northwest Passage” – allowing shipping to move from Europe and Asia to North America over the poles – open up to twelve months per year.  Other reports have indicated that these polar routes may become navigable for a few months as early as next year!

The Alternet report states the following:

WikiLeaks, with impeccable timing, published a new trove of cables highlighting a race to carve up the Arctic for resource exploitation. Nations battling to poison the arctic with oil drilling include Canada, the US, Russia, Norway, Denmark, and perhaps even China, which all have competing claims to the Arctic.  The leaks illustrate a frightening reality, where world leaders are greedily awaiting the opportunity to exploit the oil and natural gas that lie beneath the melting Arctic ice, even arming themselves for possible resource wars…A 2009 cable suggests US paranoia about Russia: ‘Behind Russia’s policy are two potential benefits accruing from global warming, the prospect for an [even seasonally] ice-free shipping route from Europe to Asia, and the estimated oil and gas wealth hidden beneath the Arctic sea floor.'”

The full article can be found here:  http://tinyurl.com/6ewjusw

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Tomdispatch Presents A Compelling Essay by Lt.Col.(Ret) William Astore About “The Militarization of America”

June 21, 2011 Comments off

TomDispatch, Tom Engelhart’s excellent blog of critical analysis of America’s global political and military activities, published Lt.Col. Astore’s essay which contrasts the founding principles of the United States – the Constitution, the Founding Fathers, and their concerns about the allure of military power – with the casual acceptance of military thinking within the political context in our current society.  His points can be summarized by the following passage:

It’s both sensible and logical to argue that our president and elected representatives must serve as a check on the military establishment, rather than issuing blank checks to them. It’s both sensible and logical to argue that all wars, as required by the Constitution, must have a Congressional declaration before American troops and treasure are committed. It’s both sensible and logical to argue that, as good as our military is, it ultimately can’t win someone else’s civil war (Iraq) or nation-build in a place where the concept of “nation” is little more than notional (Afghanistan).

Sensible and logical, yes, but such arguments have been made — and roundly ignored. They aren’t given the time of day among serious policy types in Washington, where to question the efficacy and legitimacy of the forces and tactics being used is simply not acceptable. Sharing one brain and one ethos means being incapable of grasping one’s own militarized rigidity or truly recognizing the perils that have been unleashed on this nation.”  [Emphasis added]

Obviously, this concept of the unacceptability of questions permeates American politics – on both sides of the aisle.  One’s opponents’ ideas not only aren’t worth the time of day – but they must be shouted down.  That in itself says something very telling about one’s own ideas.  If your ideas are good, you should not only allow them to be questioned – you should encourage the toughest of questions.  The conclusion has to be that those who fear opposing ideas, must have little faith in their own

Sadly, this concept can also be applied to most of the Major American Jewish Organizations who vehemently oppose debate when it comes to the topic of Israel.   The argument is that disagreements will give fuel to the enemies of Israel.  Undoubtedly, there is some truth that opponents of Israel will try to use whatever they can to delegitimize Israel.  But, there is a larger, more dangerous, truth:  lack of debate leads to bad (and in the case of Israel, perhaps fatal) decisions.

The Militarization of America: How the Military Mindset Is Permeating Our Political Culture and Society | | AlterNet.

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