The Year of Revolution: The “War on Tyranny” Replaces the “War on Terror”


Ten years ago, in July 2001, 200,000 protestors converged on Genova, Italy, to disrupt the 27th G8 Summit, at which the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, the UK and the US — plus the President of the European Commission — were meeting to discuss issues of global significance, including the debt burden of poor countries, world health issues, the environment and food security.

The 1990s in the West: The rise of the anti-globalization movement

For the protestors, gatherings of the world’s most powerful countries — or other organizations supporting the status quo on a global scale — were symbols of the dark forces of globalization, and meetings had been the focus of huge protests since June 18, 1999, when a Carnival Against Capital (also known as J18) was held in the City of London to coincide with a G8 summit in Köln, Germany. The J18 drew on a long tradition of protest dating back to the 1960s, but with particular reference to the anti-road protests, the Reclaim the Streets movement, and the protests against the Criminal Justice Act, which had galvanized dissenters in large numbers from the early 1990s, and which, in turn, were influenced by the travellers’ movement in the 1970s and the 1980s, and the anti-nuclear protests focused on Greenham Common and Molesworth.

While these movements had dealt with environmental issues, land reform, the seizure of public spaces and freedom from State oppression, they were largely national in focus. The J18, however, building on preliminary events in 1998 (an international meeting of grassroots activists in Geneva in February 1998, a Global Street Party in 20 different countries during the G8 summit in Birmingham in May, and an anti-World Trade Organization protest in Geneva that same month, when, elsewhere, 50,000 Brazilians participated in a “Cry of the Excluded” march, and 200,000 Indian farmers and fishermen took to the streets of Hyderabad demanding India’s withdrawal from the WTO), widened the scope of the protests, with actions taking place simultaneously in 43 countries around the world, and it crystallized into what became known as the anti-globalization movement, fundamentally challenging the unfettered transnational capitalism that underpinned State control and exploitation, and immediately becoming global in scale when protestors from all around the world converged on the World Trade Organization Ministerial Conference in Seattle, in November 1999.

Between November 1999 and July 2001, protestors from around the world took aim at a succession of international meetings, including protests at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January 2000, at an IMF and World Bank summit in Prague in September 2000, at the Summit of the Americas in Quebec City in April 2001, and in London on May Day 2001, when the British police first introduced “kettling.”

At Genova, however, the authorities fought back with lethal force. Three protestors had been shot and injured at protests outside a EU summit in Gothenburg in June 2001, but in Genova an Italian policeman shot and killed a 23-year-old activist, Carlo Giuliani, and the authorities’ determination to clamp down violently on the protests was also revealed through a series of nighttime raids on buildings housing protesters. At the Diaz Pascoli and Diaz Pertini schools, where protestors had established media centres that also provided medical and legal support, police raids left three activists, including British journalist Mark Covell, in comas. In total, over 60 people were severely injured, although a parliamentary inquiry later concluded that there had been no wrongdoing on the part of police.

However, elsewhere in the late 1990s and the start of the 21st century, the focus was not, as in the West, on an emerging youth movement challenging the financial status quo, and the continuing exploitation of the developing world by the world’s most powerful countries.

The 1990s in the Middle East: After the Communist “threat,” the West supports dictators against the Islamist “threat”

Across the Middle East, for example, a different narrative, with its roots in the colonial legacy and the Cold War, was developing. Fearful of socialist movements that would threaten their financial interests, the countries of the West had supported — or had helped install — brutal dictatorships whose continued oppression of their people prompted the rise of new resistance movements in which Communism gave way to militant offshoots of Islam. The West was particularly terrified by the Iranian revolution in 1979, which reinforced its determination to keep hardline Islamists at bay, but was generally less aware of how other factors were playing a major part in reshaping dissent throughout the Middle East.

Central to these new movements was the resistance to the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s (bankrolled, ironically, by the US, as well as by Saudi Arabia and other oil-rich Gulf countries), as battle-hardened mujahideen returned to their home countries and saw the appeal of overthrowing their own dictators. However, they were also reinforced by violent clampdowns — in Egypt, for example, during the same period, and in Algeria in the 1990s, where the West precipitated an almost unbelievably bloody civil war by backing the military when Islamists threatened to win electoral victory in 1991 — and were also fed by the ongoing oppression of the Palestinian people by Israel, and, from 1991 onwards, by the presence on Saudi soil of US forces who refused to leave after helping to liberate Kuwait from Saddam Hussein.

By 1996, Islamist dissent found its own almost unspeakably bloody reworking of the anti-globalization movement when al-Qaeda, a core movement of mujahideen, who, in the wake of the Afghan conflict, had become focused on the overthrow of regimes oppressing Muslims anywhere in the world, shifted its focus to the United States, under the leadershp of Osama bin Laden, and, perhaps most crucially, members of Egyptian Islamic Jihad, who, like Ayman al-Zawahiri, al-Qaeda’s second-in-command, seemed to have become unquenchably vengeful after being tortured in Egypt in the 1980s.

After attacking US interests in 1998 and 2000 (in the US embassy bombings in Nairobi and Dar-es-Salaam, and the attack on the USS Cole), al-Qaeda achieved its aim of drawing the US into a global war through the terrorist attacks on the US mainland on September 11, 2001.

The 2000s: The “War on Terror” and the complete demonization of Islamists — and of Islam

Overnight, the global landscape changed. Terrorism became the obsession of the first decade of the 21st century, an ill-defined war was launched in Afghanistan, another entirely illegal war followed in Iraq, and the US drew on the vilest detention policies of its brutal allies in the Middle East by establishing a global network of secret torture prisons, specifically utilizing the expertise of Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Syria and Uzbekistan, and also establishing its own torture prisons in Thailand, Poland, Romania and Lithuania, and in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Ironically, the US appears only to have fulfilled bin Laden’s aims, establishing a “clash of civilizations” that suited al-Qaeda’s global jihadists, with all their talk of infidel crusaders and Jews, and that also played on the worst instincts of supposedly Christian nations, who found that their old bogeyman — the Soviet Union — could effortlessly be replaced with a new one — fundamenalist Islam, or, more generally, Islam itself, with a timeline stretching back to the Crusades for those inclined to revel in a Manichean struggle between two branches of the Abrahamic religious tradition.

This has been a disaster for relations between Christians and Muslims worldwide, leading to widespread Islamophobia in Western countries and a rewriting of history, in which liberation struggles in Bosnia and Chechnya, for example, have been recast as terrorism, and any opposition to the dictators of the Middle East has also been regarded as terrorism — even when, as with Libya, for example, opponents of Gaddafi’s regime used to be considered as victims of oppression until Gaddafi strategically decided to become an ally in the “War on Terror.”

The impact of the “War on Terror” has been no less ruinous in Muslim countries, where there has been widespread anger and indignation, and untold numbers of Muslims have, correctly, perceived that the hundreds of thousands of civilians killed in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the thousands of people brutalized in Guantánamo, Abu Ghraib and elsewhere are — or were — all Muslims, and that, therefore, something akin to a modern Crusade must indeed be taking place.

2011: The “War Against Tyranny”; People Power banishes the Islamist threat, anti-globalization returns, and the West and the Middle East have a common enemy

Suddenly, however, the landscape has changed again, as popular uprisings across the Middle East fundamentally challenge the assumptions of the “War on Terror” — that dictators are needed more than ever to restrain the fundamentalists who, otherwise, would be establishing their own barbarous regimes and, of course, threatening Western interests.

In Tunisia and Egypt, where the dictators Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali and Hosni Mubarak were deposed, and in other countries where the people are rising up against their long-established dictators — primarily Libya, where Gaddafi has responded with typical brutality, and Algeria and Yemen, plus Iran, where the regime may not technically be a dictatorship, although it exhibits all the brutality associated with unaccountable authoritarian regimes — the movements that were triggered by the single self-immolation of a Tunisian man, Mohamed Bouazizi, on December 19 last year, are driven not by Islamist groups, but by the people, who are demonstrating that dictatorships can be toppled by sheer numbers.

Throughout the region, young people, who have known nothing but dictatorship, are rising up, forming alliances with trade unionists and disgruntled professionals, while the Islamists have either been content to stay in the background (as with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt) or, like Ennahdha in Tunisia, were largely imprisoned or in exile when the revolution that toppled Ben Ali took place.

If the Islamists had been centre-stage, I have no doubt that the West’s response to the popular revolutionary movements spreading throughout the Middle East would have been very different, as Western leaders would have been able to insert them into their tired “War on Terror” narrative. As it is, however, Western leaders have generally had to mouth platitudes about democracy and the will of the people, while refusing to become too engaged, as they are presumably aware that, for decades, their actions have actually demonstrated that they have no interest whatsoever in the welfare of the people of the Middle East, and that they have, instead, supported the very dictators who have either fallen or are now clinging onto power.

Moreover, the revolutionary zeal in the Middle East, which is inspired by economic desperation and the enduring misery of living in police states run by Western-backed torturers, is also reflected in the stirrings of popular dissent in the West. Just as an economic tipping point may have been reached in the Middle East through the manipulation of global food prices by Western speculators, protestors in the West are also beginning to revolt against the criminals of the unfettered financial markets, who have been allowed to continue their disgraceful global pillaging, despite causing the economic meltdown of 2008, and despite being bailed out by taxpayers. In some ways, the revolt in the West has involved young people picking up the baton of the anti-globalization movement, which has only sporadically made its presence felt in the last ten years.

Leading the way is the UK, prompted in particular by the activities of the Tory-led coalition government, which, despite having no mandate (with the Tories obliged to forge an aliance with the Liberal Democrats) and despite both parties having lied or omitted to mention their policies on the election trail, is now pampering the financial markets to an unprecedented degree, aiming to make the UK into the world’s largest tax haven, while introducing swingeing cuts to government spending, using the financial crisis as an excuse.

In its attacks on welfare, on university funding, on the NHS, and on almost every aspect of the British state that has not been privatized in the last 30 years, the government seems to delight in its plans to make as many people unemployed as possible, while cushioning its friends — and funders — in the City and in big business. However, although the response so far has generally been muted (with the exception of the students and schoolchildren who took to the streets last November and December), a widespread anger is just below the surface, and the rise of new protest groups — in particular UK Uncut, a direct action group that is focused unerringly on corporate tax avoiders and the banking sector, and that has just spawned a rapidly spreading offshoot in the US — indicates that the British government’s vile, ideological assault on the British people (with the exception of the rich and the super-rich) is likely to meet with increasing resistance.

I don’t mean to suggest that there will be revolutions in the West — as I think citizens of Western countries are too self-absorbed or diverted from the truth to notice what is happening until it is too late — but I do believe that, perhaps for the first time in living memory (or at least since 1990’s Poll Tax Riot), a substantial number of people believe that the government should be forced from power rather than be allowed to pursue its destructive agenda until the next election in 2015.

Moreover, with variations on the British story taking place throughout the West — with bankers unpunished, corporations systematically avoiding tax, austerity measures introduced that will only impact on those who had nothing to do with the economic crisis, and the gap between the rich and the poor widening still further from its current historic levels — all the elements are in place for the people of the West and the Middle East — and wherever else popular dissent erupts — to find that they share a common narrative, one which involves resistance to the relentless exploitation by the few, to enrich themselves still further at everyone else’s expense, and, when these forces are challenged, repression, be it through military means, arbitary detention and torture, or supposedly legitimate legislation, in which the magic words “choice” and “fairness” are meant to disguise the last push of a privatization agenda that seeks to destroy the final vestiges of the State’s responsibility for its people.

By now, with its lies and unaccountability exposed time and again, the push to privatize everything by playing on aging scare stories about the dangers of socialism ought to have been thoroughly discredited and replaced with new political movements that focus on the needs of society and of the people — a new socialism, if you like — and not on the further enrichment of Prime Ministers, Presidents, CEOs and dictators.

As the “War on Tyranny” undermines the tired clichés and distortions of the “War on Terror,” I hope for nothing less than a contagion of revolutionary impulses that spreads throughout the world, as without it, I fear, we are rapidly returning to the middle ages.

Andy Worthington is the author of The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison (published by Pluto Press, distributed by Macmillan in the US, and available from Amazon — click on the following for the US and the UK) and of two other books: Stonehenge: Celebration and Subversion and The Battle of the Beanfield. To receive new articles in your inbox, please subscribe to my RSS feed (and I can also be found on Facebook and Twitter). Also see my definitive Guantánamo prisoner list, updated in July 2010, details about the new documentary film, “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” (co-directed by Polly Nash and Andy Worthington, on tour in the UK throughout 2011, and available on DVD here), my definitive Guantánamo habeas list and the chronological list of all my articles, and, if you appreciate my work, feel free to make a donation.

38 Responses

  1. Tweets that mention The Year of Revolution: The “War on Tyranny” Replaces the “War on Terror” | Andy Worthington -- says...

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Andy Worthington, Andy Worthington. Andy Worthington said: The Year of #Revolution: The War on #Tyranny Replaces the War on #Terror – From the 90s to now via the GWOT distraction […]

  2. Andy Worthington says...

    On Facebook, Willy Bach wrote:

    Andy, I like this, but I always thought the ‘war on terror’ should have been ‘the criminal investigation of terror’, though that was always incompetent. The ‘war on tyranny’ will need to be ‘the struggle against tyranny’ (I don’t think the w word does it justice) since it will need to be an unarmed nonviolent struggle.

    Even as F-16 jets roared over Tahrir Square people waved and Mubarak’s gesture was useless. Qaddafi cannot trust Libyan troops so he gets Chadian mercenaries and still the people defy him. This is a useful lesson that we need to take all the way to Washington. What we need is courage, lose our fear. Their weapons (always bigger than ours) are useless if we refuse to fear them).

    US citizens should throw away their guns and join this movement. Can we declare that ‘the struggle against tyranny’ has begun and people need to catch up? I reckon. Wisconsin we are with you!

  3. Andy Worthington says...

    Imran Chaudhry wrote:

    there proxies in the middle east are wilting away , but im sure they will shift there disgusting operations elsewhere , what is interesting is silence from Syria in this whole situation. is the public completely devoid of whats going on

  4. Andy Worthington says...

    Mohammed Qasim wrote:

    wikileaks informed me just before tunisia kicked off that some fellars somewheres decided it was high time they brought some new puppets to scene

  5. Andy Worthington says...

    Imran Chaudhry wrote:

    something just seems too convenient that these regimes are falling suddenly , theres something going on behind the scenes , i suspect the globalists are trying to reshape the political landscape in the middle east by putting in fresh faces to replace old and tired ones

  6. Andy Worthington says...

    Mohammed Qasim wrote:

    exactly, and if u look at the expected recovery period for things to get just about better than before its at least 10 years, these r conditions that r just the type dictators thrive in or a long civil conflict endures

  7. Andy Worthington says...

    Imran Chaudhry wrote:

    When all the media chatter has died down , and when the people of these countries try and find normality after there struggle in blood and treasure they will start to realize that all there efforts would be for nothing due to those in control still bowing to there western paymasters.

  8. Andy Worthington says...

    Mohammed Qasim wrote:

    inshaAllah we pray the ppls efforts were nt in vain

  9. Andy Worthington says...

    Zeeshan Kureshi wrote:

    Well said Andy, I like your phrase “War of Tyranny”. This is what needs to be fought against repressive governments and merciless corporations but through peaceful means.

  10. Andy Worthington says...

    Mohammed Qasim wrote:

    ‎70 billion dollars is wat moobarak and his fammily is reckoned to have stolen
    70 billion dollars, wat did he expect to do wis all that money, subhanAllah

  11. Andy Worthington says...

    Imran Chaudhry wrote:

    its all been frozen in swiss

  12. Andy Worthington says...

    Esther Angel ‎wrote:

    70 billion, maybe he likes buying Swiss chocolates?
    Mubarak has stashed money in Britain, too. At least he owns some very expensive buildings in London. I don’t think he was after investing in Cadbury’s. Glad the Brits are finally investigating.
    On a global scale there is hope that the “War on Tyranny” can be combined with a “War on Greed” in the West. People power to unite ordinary citizens across the world would be the progress needed to shake off injustice and exploitation.
    Let’s hope the West wakes up and doesn’t miss the party!

  13. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks, everyone. Just back from a talk in Cambridge, getting an audience of 30 students fired up about how international pressure will be required to shame Obama into closing Guantanamo now that he’s given up, and is content to held the majority of the men still held — especially the Yemenis — as “political prisoners.”
    Willy, the “war” analogy was a bit of shorthand in the title — I certainly envisage it more as a struggle, and I like “the struggle against tyranny.”

  14. Andy Worthington says...

    Carol Anne Grayson wrote:

    Some of us have been protesting for many many years but the problem I have found in the UK is that generally people campaign very much on what they see as their “own” issues rather than seeing the wider picture and joining together in a collective spirit as we have seen recently in the Middle East. So for example you have environmental groups, students protesting cuts, pensioners protesting cuts, anti-war groups, my own group which has campaigned on govt lies,multi-nationals prioritising profit over safety, exploitation and corporate greed leading to 2,000 deaths in UK alone and rising… but as I have said for years people forget to look for common denominators, join together and see the wider picture so its much harder to get anywhere as its strength in numbers. Can’t tell you how many times I have marched outside Westminster, handed in letters, petitions in to Downing Street, given speeches on College Green. I have regularly joined other protests where I have seen injustice but not found others supporting us…they just can’t see the bigger picture and are in fact very ignorant of our issues… I do at least make an effort to inform myself regarding the issues of other groups and read the literature they produce… as I am reading your article now…and went to hear Moazzam at Newcastle Uni speak on Cageprisoners…

  15. Andy Worthington says...

    Carol Anne Grayson wrote:

    Here is part one and part two of one of my articles which details why I campaign… 2,000 dead to date and rising and no “unavoidable acccident” as govt tried to make out!!!

  16. Andy Worthington says...

    Imran Chaudhry wrote:

    i would have love to have attended the session at Cambridge

  17. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks for that, Carol. I know exactly what you mean, but I do think that the tide is turning slowly, now that we have such a vile bunch of executioners in charge …

  18. Andy Worthington says...

  19. Andy Worthington says...

    Barbi Montano wrote:

    What’s up Andy your moving around the globe quickly?

  20. Andy Worthington says...

    Michael Wade Douglass wrote:

  21. Andy Worthington says...

    Imran Chaudhry wrote:

    Thanks Andy
    Thursday March 3, 6 pm: Film screening – “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo.” Followed by Q&A with Andy Worthington.
    King’s College London, Stamford Street Residence Lecture Theatre, Franklin Wilkins Building, Stamford Street, London, SE1 8WA.

    look forward to that

  22. Andy Worthington says...

    Just busy, Barbi, trying to get the word out about the seemingly permanent injustice of Guantanamo.

  23. The Year of Revolution: The War on Tyranny Replaces the War on Terror « Dandelion Salad says...

    […] Andy Worthington Featured Writer Dandelion Salad 23 February, […]

  24. Andy Worthington says...

    Paul Christofersen wrote:

    And it will only grow larger…

  25. Andy Worthington says...

    Carol Anne Grayson wrote:

    Andy I have been asked to give evidence at a Public Inquiry …(Penrose Inquiry in Scotland) I have key evidence but I am refusing in writing now as a form of protest…because the wonderful UK has a Public Inquiries Act that says from the outset it is not in the remit to find wrongdoing/ negligence…so people pour their hearts out about human rights abuses (whatever their particular issue) and there is no mechanism for justice.. the govt escapes scott free…

    It is a way of them knowing what we have against them but we cannot act…if we go down a legal route then its “out of court” settlements with “silence” clauses… as happened to me and to those detained in Guantanamo and many more cases of injustice… why should we be silent… those we oppose broke many rules so why should they expect us to abide by a rule of silence… I will not do this and neither will I be part of a govt system that will never deal with injustice…!!! These are things which many groups could challenge together… sometime maybe I could meet you and Moazzam…

    What about the Public Inquiry into the detention of Guantanamo detainees…
    I have already been through the process of the Archer Inquiry (which had to be privately funded as the govt was so scared it refused a full and open public inquiry…there has not been a govt inquiry to date and never will be)…and to be honest Archer is not worth the paper its written on… victims were worse after testifying because there was no accountability…they were left depressed and frustrating with almost all recommendations ignored…

    I wish I lived nearer London so could get to more of your events/screenings… the govt tactics against campaigners from different groups are very similar if you look at different groups… there are also key things that we tend to have in common… injustice, human rights abuses,attempts to either bribe or silence, intimidation, attempts to discredit people, destroying evidence, lies and propaganda…there ought to be more cross referencing of govt tactics and sharing… they love that we don’t do this…it weakens us and gives them greater control…

  26. Andy Worthington says...

    Jason Leopold wrote:

    Great work Andy. You nailed it.

  27. Andy Worthington says...

    Thanks, Jason, and thanks also, Carol, for your sharp analysis of toothless inquiries and the need to create stronger bonds between groups.
    I notice that the planned torture inquiry is coming in for renewed criticism which is very apt:
    I also think that one answer to the problem of solidarity would be a website that pulls all this information together — even if it was just a news aggregator, it would be very useful. Wish I had the time to do it …

  28. Andy Worthington says...

    On Common Dreams, JohnSavage wrote:

    Amen to that, Andy. I too, am hoping for a ecumenical popular uprising against the feudal lords who want to erase any liberal institutions that have been established since the signing of the Magna Carta— who see the common people as nothing better than livestock. I am hoping that the young people are “hip” to how the world works and won’t fall for the traditional BS of governments and their rich compatriots. I’m hoping they can use the new technology to build networks—to become a “power that governments can’t suppress” (Howard Zinn).

  29. Andy Worthington says...

    glenn ford wrote:

    Andy, Kudos!

    My Placard this Saturday at the State House will be, War on Tyranny.

    Every State House, Every World Capital Noon Saturday 26, Bring the Global Oligarchy down.

  30. Andy Worthington says...

    Jill wrote:


    Kudos to Andy indeed. He really lays it out. I like your sign!!!

  31. Andy Worthington says...

    medmedude wrote:

    so these are heady days indeed when we flirt with emancipation and freedom vicariously through these arabs who are struggling to get free of their diktators/amerikan support for same/rothschild banking debt machine that is truly our slave masters

    i notice the brits who have now offically sunk to the level of sump pump scum and vermin have dispatched their prime minister to the region to negotiate arms deals with whoever’s got the money to buy some

    talk about throwing a match into a cinder block – the pm is travelling with four different arms manufacturers in his entourage – he is getting eviscerated in their papers but who gives a shit about public opinion in the body politik these days

    merry old england is a morass of debt and failure throughout the country with nwo reigning supreme at the pleasure of the evil shape shifter the old bag queen elizabeth

    soon to be joined the the good ship lollipop otherwise known as amerika

    but let’s not be too enthused at this moment

    the arabs have dumped a few amerikan backed scumbags like mubarak but soetero is working hard to make sure he controls the next layer of scum who hope to fill their swiss bank accounts as the new “leaders”

    mubarak salted away 80 billion

    from the council on foreign relations and brzezinski “At a recent Council on Foreign Relations speech in Montreal, co-founder with David Rockefeller of the Trilateral Commission and regular Bilderberg attendee Zbigniew Brzezinski warned that a “global political awakening,” in combination with infighting amongst the elite, was threatening to derail the move towards a one world government.

    Brzezinski explained that global political leadership had become “much more diversified unlike what it was until relatively recently,” noting the rise of China as a geopolitical power, and that global leadership in the context of the G20 was “lacking internal unity with many of its members in bilateral antagonisms”

    the arabs have three tasks
    1. get rid of the local diktators
    2. get rid of the amerikan oppressors
    3. get rid of the rothschild banking debt machine

    in amerika they say the arabs are not “ready” for democracy while they are in the midst of teaching amerika what democracy is all about

    as for amerika what can you say about a country that has no constitution, that is a torture state, that is a haven for terrorist banksters, that has an illegitmate president, that has every politician in the pocket of the real power brokers – the oligarchs

    what can you say about a country that has no healthcare for most of its citizens, rampant unemployment, a visibly decaying infrastructure, and a totally controlled and compliant corporate media

    what can you say – nothing much

    its pathetic

  32. Andy Worthington says...

    Siouxrose wrote:

    MED: Your rant is right on!

    And BTW, while Mr. Worthington’s historical analysis in most instances is apt, he apparently does buy the official 911 narrative. I think that’s the sole flaw in his argument.

    Just this morning I was thinking about the dark paradox of the world’s Western “free” powers making it their business to sell dangerous arms to unstable nations thus INSURING war (added to attacks on their own “disruptive” citizens). To the US elites, war IS their business… and it’s also seen in the war on workers (knee-capping unions), the war on women (eliminating reproductive self-determination), the war on nature (rampant ecocide, added to Monsanto’s lining nature’s elements up into slave-based new orders), the war on youth (gutting their access to a real education), and the war on the Middle Class (turning money into a completely eviscerated abstraction of increasing worthlessness). It’s pretty amazing when the main supporters of these anti-life policies happen to be those who make a lot of noise about “Right to Life.” I guess in “fetus heaven” things may be better?

    Yeah, this is what our troops are being cajoled into dying for…

  33. Andy Worthington says...

    Crowsnest wrote:

    As a teenager I experienced the serious threat of a hunger epidemic in Amsterdam (The Netherlands) during the winter of 1944 and spring of 1945. Although we and most Dutch people did not applaud the hated German or Dutch authorities for arresting and executing black marketeers in food we thought that this was the right thing to be done; that these criminals deserved what they got.
    Because of that experience my hunch is that a Libyan mother or father with young children will no longer follow/support insurgents who demand freedom and democracy but anyone they believe will provide food and security in home and on the street even at the risk of supporting another dictator if and when hunger threatens the lives of their children. There is a distinct chance that the main issue in Libya will soon no longer be political but humanitarian. Anyone who toys with the idea of military intervention by the UN and/or NATO must clearly understand that such an intervention must not be for “regime change” but only and truly for saving Libya’s children.

  34. Andy Worthington says...

    medmedude wrote:

    crow: you are too kind to the motives of nato and the us

    first off, they don’t give a shit about the starving in the world – our current food crisis is manufactured on wall street to make money

    in the 70’s the war criminal kissinger made food an instrument of war – just google it

    nwo prefers to keep the citizens unemployed and hungry – less time to think or act politically if you are so – that is why we are broke and hungry now in the us – it is called a design

    its a political strategy

    the only sane thing to do is to stand down the armies – which nwo will never do

    so we need to do it for them

    they are nothing more than mad dogs, simple as that

    they put the tyrants into power, keep them there and then when they are no longer useful they dump them to their fate

    kind of like what they did to us

  35. ARTICLE: Andy Worthington on “How the Abu Salim Prison Massacre in 1996 Inspired the Revolution in Libya” ‹ Libyan Council of North America says...

    […] of revolution through overwhelming numbers — an example that continues to provide inspiration not only throughout the Middle East, but also globally — I believe that a symbolic trigger is needed to be the emotional heart of these revolutionary […]

  36. “Occupy Wall Street”: My Support For Protestors In “Financial Gomorrah Of … | Infobotz News says...

    […] on Adbusters‘ call, and began mobilizing, something different emerged — a movement that drew on the anti-globalization movement of the late 90s and early 2000s, which was snuffed out by the “War on Terror,” and, of course, […]

  37. Occupy London: Are We Free To Protest Or Is This A Police State? - OpEd says...

    […] with events taking place in 951 cities in 82 countries, inspired by the revolutionary movements in Tunisia and Egypt, the mass mobilization of citizens in Greece, and the indignados in Spain, which has taken off in […]

  38. UK Student-Led Demo Against University Fees And Austerity Cuts – OpEd | global university generation says...

    […] to £9,000 a year, but it was a sign of more fundamental unrest to come, as revolutionary impulses swept the Middle East, and movements for profound economic and political change in the West began in Madison, Wisconsin, […]

Leave a Reply

Back to the top

Back to home page

Andy Worthington

Investigative journalist, author, campaigner, commentator and public speaker. Recognized as an authority on Guantánamo and the “war on terror.” Co-founder, Close Guantánamo, co-director, We Stand With Shaker. Also, singer and songwriter (The Four Fathers) and photographer.
Email Andy Worthington

CD: Love and War

Love and War by The Four Fathers

The Guantánamo Files book cover

The Guantánamo Files

The Battle of the Beanfield book cover

The Battle of the Beanfield

Stonehenge: Celebration & Subversion book cover

Stonehenge: Celebration & Subversion

Outside The Law DVD cover

Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo


Posts & Comments

World Wide Web Consortium



Powered by WordPress

Designed by Josh King-Farlow

Please support Andy Worthington, independent journalist:


In Touch

Follow me on Facebook

Become a fan on Facebook

Subscribe to me on YouTubeSubscribe to me on YouTube

Andy's Flickr photos



Tag Cloud

Abu Zubaydah Afghans in Guantanamo Al-Qaeda Andy Worthington British prisoners Center for Constitutional Rights CIA torture prisons Clive Stafford Smith Close Guantanamo David Cameron Guantanamo Hunger strikes London Military Commission NHS NHS privatisation Periodic Review Boards Photos President Obama Reprieve Shaker Aamer Torture UK austerity UK protest US Congress US courts Video We Stand With Shaker WikiLeaks Yemenis in Guantanamo