If you didn’t catch Wolf Blitzer’s interview of Jesse Jackson and Jerry Falwell last Sunday, you should go read the transcript. Falwell’s particular brand of Christianity and his blindness to not only his own nature, but also to reality, makes me think humanity is f*cked. We’re f*cked if we keep marching around with attitudes like this. Absolutely, positively f*cked. I can’t believe this blood-thirsty moron can get an interview on national television.
Over and over, just like our administration has tried to do, he blurs the distinction between those who murdered over 3000 American citizens and the Arab nation we invaded afterwards who happened to have nothing to do with the attack. "I’d rather be killing them over there [Iraq] than fighting them over here," Jerry rants. Them, them, them.
JACKSON: I submit to you today that our going to Iraq was a misadventure. It has put America in isolation. We are losing lives, money and losing our character in that war. We deserve better leadership. And we need…
FALWELL: I’d rather be killing them over there than fighting them over here, Jesse. And I think you would…
JACKSON: Let’s stop the killing and choose peace. Let’s choose negotiation over confrontation.
FALWELL: Well, I’m for that too. But you’ve got to kill the terrorists before the killing stops. And I’m for the president to chase them all over the world. If it takes 10 years, blow them all away in the name of the Lord.
JACKSON: That does not sound Biblical to me. And that sounds ridiculous.
FALWELL: Well, when they kill my family and blow those towers down…
Did you catch that? Jesse states that going into Iraq was a “misadventure”, but Falwell justifies it as revenge for when “they” killed his family and knocked some buildings down with planes.
This is what happens when you see the world in black and white, us and them, Christians and barbarians. (Because, of course, the United States would never sponsor terrorism—not us.) Some rich Saudi kid trashed a few of our buildings and killed some of our innocent citizens in an attempt to strike at the military and economic centers of a government he believes has occupied the holiest of the holy lands.
So because of this, Falwell thinks we’re perfectly justified in invading another unrelated Arab nation, going around and bombing the buildings of people whose government we believe might have been thinking about restarting programs that would one day produce materials that might aid enemies who want to push their supposedly corrupt worldview on others. When they kill innocents at an attempt to strike at what they believe is a corrupt foreign government, they are murderous barbarians. When we rain death from the sky, killing innocents in an attempt to stop what we believe is a corrupt foreign government, we call it Shock and Awe(TM).
Sounds great, right? I mean, those silly Iraqis are scrambling over themselves to adopt our culture and government, greeting us with flowers and candies, because our worldview is obviously so advanced. So advanced that we are clearly a liberator by lending our worldview to them. And continuing to set up military bases in their Arab countries. They love it, right? We can provide them security, improve their standard of living, and give them elections! (Because the United States is so good at running elections.)
Falwell and so many other Americans out there need to wake up and realize that we invaded Iraq as a larger part of a geopolitical strategy involving our relationship with Russia, China, and to a lesser extent, Iran and the rest of the world in general. It is a way of imposing power on others. Be that strategy right or wrong, either morally or from a strategic view, we need to realize that our execution of that strategy has been a major catalyst of terrorism. Why do Bin Laden and others vow to attack us? Why would they throw away their lives to see us die? Largely because we dumped a bunch of bases in Saudi Arabia after the first Gulf War and because of our unending support of Israel. Some of the things we have done may have been necessary, but we need to admit that, at least in part, we brought this terrorist threat on ourselves through our actions. Perhaps terrorism was a trade off we were willing to make (or didn’t foresee), but it is now being used as a way of rallying this nation to do something much less obvious—to assert our power against the rest of the world, for good or evil.
And people like Jerry Falwell are cheering it on, screaming for blood in the name of their Lord.
All I can say is if there is a God (with a capital G), I can only hope that he saves us from this madness.