[sixties-l] Enough Already

From: Jvaron@aol.com
Date: 12/03/00

  • Next message: radman: "[sixties-l] Fwd: Letter to Julian Bond"

    Ms. Cox, 
    No need for this to degenerate.  So quickly, and to conclude, nothing I said 
    is apologia for the atrocities of our own nation, which I have spent much of 
    my adult life researching and protesting (Central Am, Gulf War, etc.).  Nor 
    did I deny that the US's military interventions in the Third World dwarfed 
    those of the Soviet Union, which had only a limited foray into Afghanistan 
    and which lent, thankfully (and whatever its motives) gave military, 
    economic, and political support to certain liberation struggles in conflict 
    with US imperialism. Why then impute either view to me?  The first is 
    particularly offensive in its presumption of my naivete as "an American who 
    cannot accept the harm done by his/her own nation" (or whatever its precise 
    phrase) and has no textual basis.
    The "body count" of all the victims of US foreign policy since WWII is indeed 
    shocking and something Americans must be made to confront, as you rightly 
    point out.  But these scales of destruction do not lend themselves to any 
    simple equatiion between the US state and the Nazi regime or the Holocaust 
    and AMerica's domestic and exported violence.  You've done nothing really to 
    defend your very tenuous comparison.  And you were mum on the means by which 
    Stalin and other Soviet leaders waged an effective war on vast segments of 
    the USSR's population, whose death toll is itself in the millions.   I have 
    never quite figured out why for some on the left radical criticisms of our 
    system seems to require apologia for the evils of other systems, along with 
    the short-fused response of equating efforts at making historical and 
    categorical distinctions with apologies for our system.  Being "radical" need 
    not entail the self-annihilation of the intellect.

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