Letters from our readers

7 August 2008

The following is a selection of recent letters sent to the WSWS.

On “The arrest of Radovan Karadzic and the complicity of the West in Bosnia’s civil war”

Perhaps the most absurd statement issuing from Richard Holbrooke’s mouth was the comment he made that described Mr. Karadzic as “the Osama Bin Laden of Europe.” Holbrooke as well as everyone else in the Clinton administration at the time was well aware that the real Osama Bin Laden was freely traveling about Bosnia-Herzegovina, welcoming mujahedin extremists culled from across the Islamic world to arm and train their Bosnian Muslim brothers in arms—and the US State Department, using our tax dollars, funded this openly.

Alija Izetbegovic was imprisoned by Yugoslav Communist authorities in 1983 for his Islamic Declaration (published in 1970), which became his de facto political platform. How coincidental that the Declaration was reprinted in Sarajevo in 1990, the same year that Izetbegovic announced that Bosnia should also declare independence if Slovenia and Croatia secede. The Islamic Declaration contains language that is well familiar to Westerners after 30-plus years of exposure to the doings of militant jihadists worldwide. In addition to extolling Islamic unity, the document exhorts its readers to take up armed struggle for the creation of an Islamic polity—adhering to sharia law—in countries where Muslims represent the majority of the population.

The creation of an Islamic republic in the heart of Europe: that was the gift given to militant Islam by Clinton. The sad and very scary thing is that the same band of US war criminals who stained their hands with Balkan blood in the 1990s are now in the foreign policy clique of Senator Barack Obama. Rumors have been circulating that Gen. Wesley Clark, who orchestrated the cowardly bombardment of Serbian civilians for 78 days in 1999, could be chosen as Sen. Obama’s vice president. These are the bitter fruits of “liberal interventionism.”

Regards,

AA

Chicago, Illinois USA

31 July 2008

On “Knoxville, Tennessee: Unemployed man targets liberals in church shooting”

Regarding your article, I can only say thank you, thank you, thank you for putting my thoughts into writing for the world to read.

Poor, deluded Mr. Adkisson, much like my own dear and departed mother (who blamed all of her problems on what she bitterly called, through clenched teeth, “the Left”) seems to have lived in a world which, thanks a great deal to Faux News, has been turned on its head. “Liberals” rule the world, “liberals” are destroying the country, “liberals” are the proximate cause of all our problems. And the poor conservatives are powerless to stop it! One is tempted to ask, “What’s the Matter with Tennessee?”

The Adkisson rampage, like last year’s Virginia Tech shootings, is a teachable moment for socialists. I hope someone goes to work soon on a book or a film documentary about his life, with the aim of showing what went wrong for him. And why. And, step by step, how. Because it is evident that his is a dreadful case study of the nefarious effects of the dominance of rightism, capitalism, neoconservatism, militarism, and colonialism over human and humane values and concerns.

Some areas that our documentarist should look into: What early influences in Mr. Adkisson’s life led to his supposed racism? What kind of parents did he have and how was he raised as a child? What forms of support that he desperately needed were systematically denied him at every stage of his life? How did the system within which he lived deny, disguise, paper over, or not even notice the deficiencies of his physical, psychological, educational and moral development? Even more: In what ways were these deficiencies presented to him as positives to be admired and copied as models? (Your article touched on many of them, of course.)

Mightn’t an alternative society based on socialist principles have worked out better for Mr. Adkisson? Oh, the irony. All of the ills that Karl Marx wrote about in Capital 150 years ago are right there. You can go down the line point by point: Finance capital. Property relations. The reserve army of the unemployed. The escape of the factories to cheaper venues overseas. Isolation, alienation, and intellectual stultification of the working classes. A well-researched documentary could show how each of these items, and more, from Marx’s analysis of capital applies to Mr. Adkisson’s life.

Finally, I think that the hypothetical documentary story should extrapolate from Mr. Adkisson to the rest of our society, and back it up with summaries of other, similar stories that we see so often on the six o’clock news.

This story would seem to be right up Michael Moore’s alley. I hope he reads your article.

Sincerely,

CH

Houston, Texas

1 August 2008

On “Deep unease as Israel celebrates its 60th anniversary”

Thanks for this fine recap of history and the current situation. I refer to the May 8 article which I just read. Please write more on the new historians in Israel and the names of their books. And, of course, their new interpretations. Also yours?

Best wishes.

PS

New York City, New York, USA 2 August 2008

On “The making and marketing of Barack Obama: Image and identity in US politics”

For me the likelihood of Obama’s election reminds me of how Blacks began to win election to some of the most important cities in 1970s just as those cities headed into deep financial crisis as wealthy taxpayers moved into the suburbs. To my mind, Obama is less a betrayal of the struggle than a signal that the office of the president has passed its zenith. Like a Third World country, we now care more about what the military thinks.

TM

3 August 2008

On “California: Schwarzenegger slashes wages and social programs, fires state workers”

The World Federation of Trade Unions strongly condemns the dismissal of 22,000 part-time public employees in California and the cuts in the wages of most of the state’s 200,000 employees. We extend a message of support and solidarity with the thousands of Californians employees in public sector who are affected by the hard anti-labor policy of Californian governor and their rights are eliminated, worsening their living conditions.

The WFTU demands from the Governor of California the full re-establishment of employment and wages and to give the workers their legitimate rights.

We express our solidarity with the working class and with the public employees of California in their struggles and we stand on their side for full satisfaction of their demands.

WFTU

3 August 2008

On “Perle returns to the scene of the crime: Former Bush administration official seeks cut of Iraqi oil deal”

I’m grateful you are following the acts of Richard Perle, an unsavory character. He was finally kicked out of his influential government post, but not until he had done irreparable harm. Please build on your impressive knowledge to communicate to us more on his current schemes. Thanks.

VS

New York City, New York, USA

4 August 2008