15 August 2008

Circle of Karma

Like many others (particularly in the blogosphere), I often fault the MSM (mainstream media) for their failure to report on stories that are odds with views and conventions dictated by "establishment" authorities, whether that means the Bush administration, the Pentagon, ExxonMobile or AIPAC. The purpose of my post today is not repeat or recount such failures, which have been adequately documented elsewhere. But what has not often been noted is that the MSM also frequently fails to note or recognise the connections between or broader implications of the stories they do report on.

Reading recent stories in the New York Times and elsewhere about the politicisation of the civil service by the Bush Administration, I wondered why none of the news analysts noted how this revelation fit into the broader historical framework; specifically, how the introduction of a Nomenklatura style approach to the recruitment of civil servants appears to be the final step in a natural progression, in which the ideology and methodology of the Soviet Union has been steadily and gradually incorporated into US policy since the end of the Cold War. The politicisation of the civil service was not by any means and isolated or exceptional development. A system of gulags for incarcerating American political enemies has been established (not so much an archipeligo as a constellation), complete with show trials run by kangaroo courts for putting a veneer of legitimacy on the system. Torture techniques used on prisoners held within this system were not merely inspired by Soviet methods, it has now emerged that in 2002 the C.I.A. actually reverse-engineered Soviet era torture manuals and trained "interrogators" to use the same techniques that American leaders and diplomats had spent decades criticising. Fox News now fills the role held by Pravda (Правда) under the Soviet system, complete with the demonisation and dehumanisation of political enemies and simplistic appeals to viewer emotions in place of objective fact gathering (both Fox and Pravda also of course share the Orwellian tradition of brazen assertion of obvious falsehood - "правда" is the Russian word for "truth," which was rarely found in the pages of Pravda, and Fox uses the tag-line "fair and balanced" for its blatantly partisan "news" casts).

But of course what the Americans are doing is nothing new. The Soviets themselves adopted these practices after defeating the Nazis, despite the fact they led this battle because they opposed everything the Nazis stood for. Similarly, the Americans spent blood and treasure in alliance with socialists such as Mao Tse-Tung, Ho Chi Minh and others because they obstensibly supported their anti-colonialist message of liberty and self-determination, yet promptly betrayed their former allies in favour of reactionary forces in China, Japan, Greece, Turkey and elsewhere as soon as the Axis powers had been defeated. And the Jews of course, have been busy for years exterminating and oppressing the Palestinians with Prussian efficiency and ruthlessness for decades now.

But you'll find no observations about these obvious historical paralells in any analysis published in an American-controlled publication or broadcast.

BlognDog
Doha
15 August 2008