*hyperlinks live at source*
This article series explains what happened when I interacted with participants of a 9/11 event to welcome home US soldiers and honor the victims of 9/11, then provides the e-mail exchange with the sponsoring group’s leadership.
Consistent with my last two years of writing articles to explain, document, and prove current US wars aren’t even close to lawful and all based on lies, nobody at this event of mostly current and former US military could defend current US wars as lawful, even in subsequent e-mails and in their consultation with the group’s “Constitutionalist.” I challenge anyone to explain, document, and prove in the comments section below that US war in Afghanistan, Iraq, and/or Iran is legal (you can put what you say in more than one comment). I will likely demand anyone making such argument to refute my longer explanation of US war law that I will reference in my comment responses from my article, “Open proposal to US higher education.”
I encourage anyone with passion to end unlawful US wars to take my article’s “emperor has no clothes” obvious explanation and documentation of US war law to act with confidence to end US wars. Our soldiers’ response to their Oath of Enlistment to support and defend the US Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic, is to refuse all orders of unlawful wars.
This article series’ sections:
Part 1: Introduction, what happened at the event, and my first e-mail to the event sponsors.
Part 2: E-mails from group leaders, who I’ll name, “Tom,” “Dick,” and “Harry” (I’ll forward them the article; they can identify themselves if they choose). Tom and Dick go on the offensive.
Part 3: E-mail continuation: My response to Dick, their “Constitutionalist” says this issue is a waste of time. Tom responds.
Part 4: E-mail continuation: attempting to reach Tom with reason
Part 5: E-mail conclusion with Tom.
Part 6: An invitation and challenge to event organizers to respond to this article series.
Part 7: Possible article of e-mail exchanges with event organizers.
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This is Part 4: E-mail continuation: attempting to reach Tom with reason
(only to Tom as his message was only to me)
I very much appreciate your willingness to understand the facts. This is what separates a free human being from what Benjamin Franklin feared in his comments at the Constitutional Convention: a critical mass of Americans who cannot think for themselves and are only capable of dictatorship.
You are correct that you should not believe anything I say (or anyone), but verify the documentation to your satisfaction. As you know, honest people are willing to provide evidence for any controversial statement of fact, and care more for the facts than any hope or wish of one set of claims being right over another. Free people can indeed handle the truth; we are strong enough to respond.
The UN is compromised; I agree. It steals. It doesn’t act for peace. It’s an international tool. However, they aren’t the only global players pretending a smiley global neighborly face. The UN Charter is ignored, but a paper victory, Tom. In my academic paper, “Open proposal to US higher education,” I frame it as being just as ignored as the 14thAmendment for Blacks having equal protection under the law. It’s well-written; just lied-about and violated with Orwellian propaganda that Americans still fall for in the policy area of war.
The UN Charter absolutely allows for self-defense, so there is no sacrifice of our national security. The US invoked Article 51 for our wars, but lied about the legal meaning of self-defense in the attack on Afghanistan four weeks after 9/11 when there was no evidence and certainly no legal trigger of imminent threat of more attacks, nobody claimed Afghanistan’s government was involved, Afghanistan agreed to help arrest anyone upon presentation of evidence of involvement in a crime, and the UN Security Council explicitly resolved twice for such international cooperation..
So, you don’t have to obey the Security Council (UNSC) as long as you’re not attacking, invading, and killing people with your military. Afghanistan and Iraq didn’t attack the US and all 16 US intelligence agencies agreed there was/is no imminent threat of attack, but the opposite: lethal motivation to never anger the US. So there’s the bottom line: these wars were jumped-on by Republican and Democratic “leaders” who have other interests than the law.
The history of Saddam and alleged weapons has a long history of lies on all sides. Control of oil seems primary. If you want to read the details, I tried to lay them out here: http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/node/41708. The specific history is early in the paper. The US wanted private access to Saddam’s living quarters in “searches” at the same time US leading politicians were advocating for “someone” to assassinate Saddam. Saddam refused those searches, the US pulled-out inspectors, and bombed. Saddam complied for weapons inspections in the fall of 2002 right up to the start of the US attack in March 2003.
I agree with you, Tom, that we should not depend on our government or police, but be prepared to defend our families and ourselves. And yes, legal self-defense allows one to shoot-to-kill if under imminent threat of lethal attack. Believe me, my wife, my daughter, and I would disable or kill anyone instantly who was even a credible threat to our dog. Our family is armed. In your analogy, if the son were in my high school history or government class, he would have the benefit of my certainty of the law that allows him to take whatever force necessary to instantly stop a credible threat, including lethal force if that is the most efficient. I know that’s clear to you.
I have also repeatedly said that I honor our soldiers’ for their intention to serve. I’ve had soldiers write to me and explain they were never told the facts why they were sent to war, never taught the US Constitution (only trained to prevent War Crimes, like torture), and never taught the history of war that lead to the US-created treaty that clearly defines legal and illegal wars. I would only fault our soldiers if they rejected the facts when someone like me so clearly presents them in explanation, documentation, and openly invites confirmation of the objective data.
Being ignorant is not being wrong. Continuing unlawful behavior when informed, or support of it, is very wrong. Allowing soldiers to engage in unlawful war when one knows the difference between lawful and unlawful is literally anti-American, cowardly, murderous, and heartless.
As a teacher in this topic who knows the difference, I must act in good faith to respectfully serve our soldiers and nation through appropriate acts of public education. I do my best not to offend, but it's a tough act of balance to communicate strongly while not offending.
In closing, Tom, we agree on the use of self-defense when it’s legitimate. Where are you now in assessing that US wars were not even close to lawful responses to 9/11? If you feel comfortable, feel free to share this correspondence with others. Your openness will help others be willing to read one law for themselves to see what it means rather than trusting former oil executives in public office to do that for you when there are trillions of dollars of resources involved.
A fellow patriot,
9/14 from Tom:
Yeah, OK you are right and I am wrong.
I wonder though, why haven't you answered MY questions?
1. Would you have supported an attack on the Nazis prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor? You know, back when they were only torturing, murdering, and cooking people they did not like.
2. Would you want people telling your relatives how wrong they were to participate in WWII?
Either way, you DO realize that we will not allow you to demoralize the service persons at our events, right?
Thank you very much.
Me to Tom, 9/14:
Right and wrong about what exactly?
1. I teach history, so it's always difficult to find a starting point for my direct answer to make sense. I'll answer in context of this history: WW1 was not a "war to end all wars" or a "war to make the world safe for democracy." US national security was never threatened and Americans were sold into a war for "other interests" that leave us speculating similar to today's wars. We guess money as one motivation, and yes, the main players did make/are making huge sums of money. The US promised Germany a fair settlement and then abandoned that fight entirely as France and England divided-up the losers' colonies for their own empires while blaming Germany and giving them the war bill.
After German hyperinflation wiped-out their economy (short-selling and a private corporate banking model, not government over-printing, contrary to most peoples' belief) and the Depression took effect, Germans desperately looked to innovative solutions. What they got with Nazis was a brilliant economic beginning of government becoming the employer of last resort for public works paid with fiat currency (a solution the US could use today) along with government propaganda to unify the nation in both economic/moral work but also with fear-based smearing of "others" that were internal and external threats whereby the Nazis promised protection. Internal: Jewish monied-interests and Jews themselves branded with that concern that they were not patriotic to Germany but to their religion and money. External: communists. Nazis consolidated power through elimination of political opponents, ending free press, propaganda, having the most successful economy in the world (motivated in part to regain lost power and standing), and then gradually taking back the territory they lost in WW1 under a political philosophy to dominate Europe (similar to Napoleon's vision).
So, what would I have done? Going back to the slaughter of WW1, I would have offered all parties in WW1 an end to warfare and spin their war as the natural consequence of lust for empire. WW1 was insane, and European empires paid in blood for their colonial slave-taking of land, resources, and profits. If they accepted, negotiate for an end to colonialism and really make the world safe for democracy by inquiry and experimentation of development led by those nations for those nations rather than today's model of sophisticated debt-enslavement. In our world of the present, this can be done with less than 1% of developed nations' income, and Americans respond in polls they're willing to give multiples of that amount, so we're allowing developing nations to help themselves (this, of course, is a separate and lengthy topic). If Europe refused, allow them to keep killing each other and see what developed. This might have caused a different problem, but would have stopped the genesis of Hitler through direct US action that also would have saved 300,000 US casualties and billions of dollars.
2. Tom, I wouldn't tell my relatives they were wrong, but I don't mind if others want to ask if my relatives would want to give their attention to consider such a conversation. To be clear, Tom, I showed that you and I agree about defending our families and you were 180 degrees wrong about my position (you're welcome about empowering you to understand legal self-defense can be from imminent threat and lethal, btw). I would, and have discussed with my father who lost several friends in the Battle of the Bulge, that WW2 was a war for empire that the US could have framed as such, but didn't. I've never told my relatives they were wrong to fight. They all told their younger family members that what they knew was what they read in the papers and heard on the radio. They enlisted out of good faith patriotism, as I've repeated I observe happening today.
Did you see me at the event, Tom? I was the guy in the gray pants, white dress shirt, old-style US flag tie? I think I carry myself and engage in conversations with respect for our men and women in service just as I respect my father, uncle, father-in-law, and both grandfathers. As stated, I enjoyed the 9/11 event and applaud the welcoming of our men and women home. I don't interrupt conversations. I was invited to speak with Dick and did so. I respected his authority and time. I asked if he would like to read my flyer and offered it.
But please answer me this: explain which seems more demoralizing: a US soldier talking to me later (one who survived with possible physical and/or emotional wounds such as my father-in-law coming home crippled) and finding out later that I was absolutely knowledgeable that the war he/she was entering was unlawful and doing nothing for public education, OR providing that information up-front and respecting that soldiers' choice on how to proceed?
Also to remind you, you're saying I'm right about what exactly?
Although I found your writing interesting, I never found your response to my first question. I think I get the part where the US was only trying to make money and build an empire. Do you teach that to those impressionable kids? Sound to me like you are more of an opinion teacher than a history teacher. Do all history teachers teach the same thing? If not, is it because all the other history teachers are ignorant?
I do have 2 more questions:
1. Do you think there may even be an outside possibility that you may be wrong about anything and that somebody else may be right?
2. What is it exactly that I should be thanking you for? (you're welcome about empowering you to understand legal self-defense
The answer to your question of responding to Nazi Germany and Hitler, and after the historical context I said would precede it, begins with, “So what would I have done?”
No; the first two world wars were over European empires, not American. The US seemed satisfied with having stolen Hawaii in the 1890s, occupying the Philippines from 1898, having a “friendly government” in Cuba from the 1898 war, and actively using US military for operations in Central and South American nations in support of US corporations. The analysis of world wars being over European empires is a conclusion based on facts, a usual textbook analysis, and uncontroversial as far as I have read. The US info that follows is also conservative and as far as I know, uncontested history. In fact, the most decorated Marine in US history at the time, General Smedley Butler, wrote a book on the topic of US military operations in Central and South American for US corporate profits.
2 more responses:
1.Of course; my wife legitimately shows me areas continuously :). But when I make a professional claim of facts, such as current US wars are unlawful, I do so as prima facie argument of facts and law. That is, unless the evidence can be refuted, it stands as our best factual and legal understanding. That’s both the highest academic and legal standard for presenting factual claims. That means unless there’s a better documented argument, any opinion against my argument is recognized for what it literally is: unsubstantiated, groundless, and without evidence. You earlier stated, Tom, that you live in the “real world.” The real world, as you know, is “put-up or shut-up.” I have challenged your group and anyone else they care to enlist, and you: understand one law and either show me how my conclusion is wrong that US wars are as close to lawful as a baseball pitch throw over everyone’s head is to a strike, or admit that I’m correct. If I’m correct, change your stand and inform our soldiers that their duty is to refuse all orders to engage in unlawful combat. If you don’t change your stand, tell me how you’re not complicit in endangering our soldiers rather than supporting their service to the US and our laws.
2.You presented a hypothetical argument that showed uncertainty of what legal self-defense means for individual application that I clarified. If the example was your wrong and unsubstantiated assumption that I don’t know how self-defense applies, and you actually already understood, no thanks is necessary. You might want to apologize for your unsubstantiated and strawman description of how I would respond to protecting my family.
Your turn: what did you mean I was right? About what exactly?
From Tom, 9/16
I am guessing that you either are or were an attorney.
My analogy was more about how someone like you may be inclined to treat somebody for doing what they thought was right (by defending your family by, perhaps, killing the neighbor). In that analogy, my contention is that the last thing they would need is somebody telling them that what they did was illegal.
This is what happened to so may soldiers returning from Vietnam. If you look into some of the human side of this, you may see our side of the argument. I suspect, however, this will not happen.
Our bottom line is not the celebration of war, but to honor those who have sacrificed for us--yes, even if you believe they they are criminals who acted out of ignorance. For that matter, even if you believe we are ignorant.
If you talk to psychologist who studies PTSD, one of the things they will tell you is how a soldier is accepted back into society effects how they can live with themselves later. For example, most WWII veterans were welcomed back. A lot of Vietnam veterans were constantly told them that what they did was wrong.
We, have promised not to allow that again.
Bottom line, we are not going to allow you to come to our events, with the equivalent intent of calling them "baby killers". I think they have enough on their minds without being told how ignorant they were for ruining the world and breaking the law.
I already know you will try to convince me that I am wrong and that you are better than me. I do not doubt you are smarter and better than me--you no longer have to prove that. Perhaps we can agree to disagree. Perhaps you could just spend your time convincing your own relatives that the sacrifices they made will always be held as illegal, immoral, and/or detrimental to the world/society. Perhaps they like that--as you seem to believe.
Anyway, I do not plan on devoting anymore time to discussing the "rightness" of America's involvement in any war.
We are a 2 issue group: Honor the victims of 9-11 and our troops. You, of course, insist that we should convince them what they did was wrong (in order to honor them). I, of course, disagree with that. Part of our honoring them is to try to offset things that people like you say to them or about them. Most of the supporters are veterans themselves. Many of them are Vietnam veterans. This is why they have devoted their lives to these issues.
Speaking of questions: Do all history teachers teach what you do? If not, are they all wrong?
We share the intent to honor our soldiers who serve in good faith. I honor them as I honor my father, father-in-law, uncle, and both grandfathers. You continue to state opposition to my position on this issue and attack a position I do not occupy.
I not only call, but document and prove that US political “leadership” and corporate media are “US soldier killers and War Criminals.” Those same killers refuse to honor 9/11 first responders with health care, I hope you know. My approach to healing is to end the unlawful wars and communicate to our soldiers, current and veteran, that they have been victims of Orwellian war lies. I’ve kept the focus on our soldiers harmed through unlawful wars and “emperor has no clothes” obvious lies; there is a larger conversation of the million foreign dead as direct consequence of unlawful US wars with all related damage and suffering.
Tom, I encourage you to move forward in all areas of life in good faith with your best sense of virtue. You do what seems best for you. If you do that, you are not wrong. As I’ve written, oh perhaps five or six times now, I enjoyed the 9/11 event and honor your welcoming home of our soldiers. My uncle came home with PTSD and needed a lot of love. My father-in-law came home crippled and lived the rest of his shortened life held in honor.
Acting in good faith is completely different from acting in knowledge that what one is doing is unlawful. “Leadership” has criminal intent and know the war laws they violate; our soldiers do not. Tom, you were ignorant of war laws; now you have received reasonable notice and cannot make that defense in good faith any longer.
Now you know the wars are unlawful. What you do with that knowledge is your business. I’ve done my job.
I know you support our soldiers. Do you still support this war?
Or do you see it as unlawful and thereby something to end?
I’m curious to your answer. Do you have the intellectual integrity and moral courage to answer, or will you dodge this question?
Here’s your answer to the question you asked me: collectively, US Government and History teachers, and citizens, are more ignorant than knowledgeable of US war law. Most have an inaccurate understanding of what the law means and are being played by psychopathic “leaders.” In one sense, yeah, they are soooo wrong because they should know better. History has taught them war lessons and our Founding Fathers warned this day would come.
At the same time, the history teacher in me also says that all people can do is act with the tools they have; if discerning lawful from unlawful war covered by propaganda is too much to ask for, then perhaps they’ll continue to have unlawful wars covered by propaganda until they learn. That’s up to individuals, not me. I’ll act in good faith to point to the law, facts, and history to build the future I want for my nation, family, and self.
I want the promises of unalienable rights and government under law realized, not violated with Orwellian lies from “leadership” and propagandized by corporate media.
So, Tom, I hope this conversation has been helpful for you.
Now, what are your answers:
I know you support our soldiers. Do you still support this war?
Or do you see it as unlawful and thereby something to end?
Part 5 next: E-mail conclusion with Tom.