Michael C. Ruppert
I want you to consider some quotes. Then I want you to decide for yourself whether or not the suffering of one class, race or group of people somehow trivializes or makes less painful the suffering of another, separate class.
In her book Kiss The Boys Goodbye, about the struggles to find and bring home Vietnam POWs, Emmy Award winning former 60 MINUTES Producer Monika Jensen-Stevenson tells of Henry Kissinger describing military personnel as “mindless beasts.” Later in the book her husband Bill, a veteran war correspondent and author, recounts the attitudes of French agents who financed wars in Indochina with opium. He said about the French, “They said that to save France, you had to destroy the human garbage. If the garbage sustained its drug addiction by spending huge amounts of money, and if that money financed wars in Indochina against communism – well, then you got some benefit from the human garbage!”
In 1972, while I was attending UCLA, my closest friend on campus, Craig Fuller, surprised me one day. I had been interning in the Office of LAPD Chief Ed Davis and was committed to a career in law enforcement. I had taken a special interest in narcotics. Craig said to me about drugs, “It’s just weeding out the gene pool.” I sat in Craig’s White House office in 1981 and complained of CIA drug dealing. Craig went on to become George Bush’s Chief of Staff in 1985.
Alexander Solzhenitsyn said, “To do evil a human being must first of all believe that what he is doing is goodÉ
“Ideology – that is what gives devildoing its long sought justification and gives the evildoer the necessary steadfastness and determination. That is the social theory which helps to make his acts seem good instead of bad in his own and others’ eyes, so that he won’t hear reproaches and curses but will receive praise and honors.”
I thank author and AIDS researcher Lenny Horowitz for bringing that quote into my life. I had been seeking it a long time.
Now take another quote from Stevenson’s book, which describes the condition of the body of Navy pilot Lars Van Rensaleer who had been taken prisoner in 1968 and knowingly left behind after the war. He came home in 1989.
“Lars’s finger and toes were missing. His body had been embalmed, and perhaps stored É his teeth were in far worse condition than when Diane had last seen him. The amputation of fingers and toes ‘is evidence of the tortures and punishment we tracked,’ said Jerry Mooney, the National Security Agency analyst. American prisoners who fought deep interrogation or repeatedly defied work orders had parts cut off, piece by piece.”
A high ranking CIA officer who had grown sick of his own government had earlier told Stevenson, “Men who were lost in a war they’d been required to fight can’t be discarded because of some higher national interestÉ There is no higher national interest.”
Now the hardest enemies of the U.S. government might say that the POWs got what they played for as instruments of a brutal war machine. But if they do that then they commit the same crime the devildoers commit. They dehumanize. Before the Africans were crammed into the holds of slave ships and their culture destroyed, before “niggers” were lynched and tortured, before Jewish “vermin” were gassed and before POWs, “Chosen by God to stay”, were abandoned to torture, they were all first turned into something inhuman, evil, different, expendable. If one calls U.S. Servicemen “capitalist tools” or “baby killers” then the first step has already been taken. The compounded tragedy of the POWs is that they believed in something that was not true – and they died for it.
I didn’t go to Vietnam. I had a student deferment my first year at UCLA and was 1A for the remaining three. After graduation I joined LAPD and immediately went to South Central Los Angeles. I was injured a few times. I was in two shootings. But I always went home to a warm bed and a shower. I have been homeless for a total of three years because of my opposition to CIA and I have gone hungry and been arrested but I know nothing of combat, torture or war.
In my dream I struggle as images of black slaves, Jewish shopkeepers and POWs float, merge and mingle. Images come into focus of inner city families grieving over children killed in drive-bys and Navy pilots with no toes and no eyes. I weep as I see the pilots and the inner city blacks, chained disfigured and weak, fight each other from centuries of taught and learned distrust. I scream. But no one listens. “You have been betrayed, abandoned, condemned by exactly the same people!” Their names fall from my lips, “Shackley! Secord! Armitage! Bush! – North! Singlaub! Clines! – Colby! Helms! Casey! -Kissinger! – Rockefeller! – Pepsi! – United Fruit!
My dream has no ending. I spend my time trying to make the victims see that they are natural allies, brothers and sisters – that we are all natural allies against a single enemy. I have no success.
I know the color of suffering and imprisonment, of exploitation and of grief. – It is gray. It is cold.