As I noted at the time:
Fortunately for the UK government, Syria’s Bashar al-Assad decided to do something completely suicidal and entirely against his best interests in the immediate aftermath of the Skripal narrative falling apart. How incredibly convenient for those itching to get a war with Iran and Russia going.
So where do things stand? For those of us against imperial war, the current moment offers the best opportunity I can recall to build a real movement. The Syrian (and by extension Iran and Russia) war sales-pitch has become so clownish and desperate a significant percentage of people simply aren’t falling for it.
I’ve been extremely critical on these pages of Trump supporters I call “cheerleaders” who always make excuses for everything Trump does because they’ve become enamored with a cult politician and can’t admit they were wrong about him. The exact same thing happened with Obama’s cheerleaders, and their stubborn refusal to admit the obvious about his imperial, oligarch-coddling policies gave him the space he needed to further entrench the corrupt power structure in American political and economic life. Whether Obama or Trump, it’s always a President’s cult supporters who give them the needed space to push through the worst policies.
Interestingly, this latest push for war with Syria, Iran and Russia finally seems a bit much for many Trump supporters to stomach. I’ve seen considerable evidence that this is the case over the past 24 hours and I hope it continues. The following poll, conducted by Trump’s favorite show Fox and Friends, is particularly revealing.
As of the time of publication, over 50,000 people voted, with 68% against U.S. military action. This is encouraging and highlights how crucial the current moment is to build pressure against another idiotic and disastrous war.
*Important Note: Since this post was published the poll mentioned above took a bizarre and shady turn. At 190,000 votes now, 68% suddenly favor war. This implies nearly 100% of the last 140,000 votes were pro war. Highly implausible. We can now be certain Twitter polls can and will be rigged once they become high profile enough.
For more see:
Now back to the original article…
If Trump voters who claim to be anti-war provide Trump with cover to proceed with a neocon foreign policy, then that’s exactly what you’ll get, especially since that’s also what “the Resistance” and the D.C. bipartisan cadre of imperialists want. The only way to make Trump really sweat is if a unified front consisting of his base, the anti-war left, libertarians and others push back aggressively and simultaneously. I think the time is right for such a movement.
The biggest obstacle we face in achieving this end is ourselves since the American public is all too often its own worst enemy. Too much of the U.S. population is so polarized and convinced their team is right about everything, they’ll never unite to protest against something as monumentally significant as imperial war if they feel the “other side” is also against it. This attitude is extremely childish, but it’s also pervasive. The American public’s been so divided and conquered, so tribal and belligerent against those from the other political tribe, we can’t even come together to push back on an issue as existential as regime change war.
We have a great opportunity to do so now, but will we take the bull by the horns and unite, or will we once again be easily fragmented into tribes the moment the media decides to inflame some new wedge issue?
I don’t know the answer, but I do know that until Americans from various political ideologies can put other differences aside and unite on an extremely important issue, the public will continue to be easy prey for those who really run the show.
As I noted a few weeks ago:
I’m not naive enough to think an anti-war movement will prevent the next disastrous imperial war, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be a key strategic goal of the citizenry. Unless the American public learns to stop being so tribal, the imperialist oligarchy will continue to do whatever it wants. Forming an anti-war movement capable of crossing ideological lines would be one thing that could truly terrify the entrenched status quo and put them on notice.
Our real power as humans doesn’t come from voting for the latest false prophet who will inevitably betray us. Our real power will be discovered once we’re able to look beyond our differences, when we stop demanding ideological conformity on every issue and come together to oppose something meaningful that clearly goes against the best interests of 99.99% of us. One of those issues is imperial war, and the time to come together is now.
Will we accept the challenge?