“You are always ticking inside of me and I dream of you more often than I don’t. My body is a dead language and you pronounce each word perfectly.”—Sierra DeMulder, Unrequited Love Poem (via human-thedeathdance)
“So far as the United States seems to be concerned, it is only a slight overstatement to say that Muslims and Arabs are essentially seen as either oil suppliers or potential terrorists. Very little of the detail, the human density, the passion of Arab-Muslim life has entered the awareness of even those people whose profession it is to report the Arab world. What we have instead is a series of crude, essentialized caricatures of the Islamic world presented in such a way as to make that world vulnerable to military aggression.”—Edward Said, Islam Through Western Eyes (via arielnietzsche)
Tom Morello:One of the more provocative statements of yours that I have read is that if the standards of the Nuremberg Trials were applied, then every post World War II American president would have been hanged as a war criminal. Take us briefly through the war crimes committed by each president.
Noam Chomsky:I've done that in print a couple of times. Well, with Truman you could start with, shortly after he entered office there was the bombing of Hiroshima, which maybe one could give an argument for -- well, I don't think so -- but it is almost impossible to give an argument for the bombing of Nagasaki. That was mostly just trying out a new weapon to see if it would work. Then there was an utterly gratuitous bombing, a one thousand plane raid at the end of the war -- right in fact after Japan surrendered -- called the "finale," the grand finale. Then comes, for example, the support for the brutal counter-insurgency campaign in Greece, which killed about 150,000 people to basically restore Nazi collaborators and demolish the resistance. And then we could go on from there.
Eisenhower. The Eisenhower administration, the Truman and Eisenhower administration, the bombings -- whatever you think about the Korean War, and there is a pretty complicated story when you really look at it, but nevertheless the bombings in North Korea in 1951 and 1952 was just an outright war crime. You can read in the Air Force history about how in the Eisenhower years they had nothing left to bomb, everything was flat, so they just bomb dams, which they exalt how wonderful it was to see the water flooding down and killing people and wiping out the crops and so on. Well people were hanged for that, for less than that. They were hanged for opening dikes in Nuremberg. And then again we can proceed with what happened in Guatemala and elsewhere where it was a terrible crime in the Eisenhower years.
Kennedy is not even worth discussing. The invasion in South Vietnam -- Kennedy attacked South Vietnam, outright. In 1961-1962 he sent Air Force to start bombing villages, authorized napalm. Also laid the basis for the huge wave of repression that spread over Latin America with the installation of Neo-Nazi gangsters that were always supported directly by the United States. That went on and in fact picked up under Johnson.
In the Nixon years, for example, the bombing of inner Cambodia in 1973 was a monstrous crime. It was just massacring peasants in inner Cambodia. It isn't much reported here because nobody paid attention, but it was quite a part in helping create the basis for the Khmer Rouge. Well, the CIA estimate is that 600,000 people were killed in the course of those US actions, either directed or actually carried out by the United States.
In the Carter years there were major crimes, for example the Indonesian invasion of East Timor, which happened to start under Ford and led to the nearest thing to genocide since the holocaust, maybe 1/3 or 1/4 of the population has been slaughtered. That was using 90% US arms. In the Carter years, when the Indonesians were actually running out of arms in their attack on this country, Carter actually increased the flow of arms in 1978, which was the worst peak of the slaughter. Carter was backing Somoza and his national guard, openly and with direct military and diplomatic support at a time when they had killed about 40,000 people in the terror of the last days of their regime. Again, that's a sample.
Going on to the Reagan years, its not even a question. In fact the US was condemned by the World Court during the Reagan years for its "unlawful use of force," meaning aggression in Nicaragua. In Central America alone, maybe 200,000 people or so were slaughtered in a very brutal fashion by US run programs. In southern Africa about 1.5 million people were killed and over $60 billion of damage were done according to the UN commission which reviewed it later from 1980 to 1988. That's from South African atrocities that the US was directly supporting. Then, again we could go on. Well Bush, we've already talked about him, but the invasion of Panama for example was simply outright aggression. It was condemned internationally -- the US was able to veto the security counsel condemnations, that doesn't change the fact that they were there.
When we move on to the Clinton years, one of his first acts within a few months was to send missiles to bomb Baghdad. Well, he didn't kill a huge amount of people, only I think 8 or so. But there was absolutely no pretext, there wasn't even a pretext. I mean it was to show what a tough guy he is. In fact the pretext was so ludicrous, it's embarrassing to repeat it. The pretext was that this was self defense against armed attack, because two months earlier there had been a failed attempt by someone who might or might not have been Iraqi, no one knew at the time, to kill Bush or something like that. I mean, it's just ridiculous. About half of military aid and training to Latin America under Clinton was going to Columbia, which has absolutely the worst human rights record in the hemisphere, killing thousands of people in a horrifying fashion. These are all crimes. I don't think it's hard to set up a bill of indictment if somebody wants to.
“Love is like a tree: it grows by itself, roots itself deeply in our being and continues to flourish over a heart in ruin. The inexplicable fact is that the blinder it is, the more tenacious it is. It is never stronger than when it is completely unreasonable.”—Victor Hugo, The Hunchback of Notre Dame (via errolivio)
“I may never be happy, but tonight I am content. Nothing more than an empty house, the warm hazy weariness from a day spent setting strawberry runners in the sun, a glass of cool sweet milk, and a shallow dish of blueberries bathed in cream. When one is so tired at the end of a day one must sleep, and at the next dawn there are more strawberry runners to set, and so one goes on living, near the earth. At times like this I’d call myself a fool to ask for more…”—Sylvia Plath (via myquotelibrary)
“For every side that is taken as right, an opposing side is someone else’s right. The day we understand absolutes to be false and embrace the relative nature of our own position as that which defines right and wrong, is the day we will understand our enemies as our brothers and sisters.”—Ravenspyre (via ravenspyre)
When I am among the trees, especially the willows and the honey locust, equally the beech, the oaks and the pines, they give off such hints of gladness, I would almost say that they save me, and daily.
I am so distant from the hope of myself, in which I have goodness, and…
“No, my soul is not asleep.
It is awake, wide awake.
It neither sleeps nor dreams, but watches,
its eyes wide open
far off things, and listens
at the shores of the great silence.”—Antonio Machado (via moreofamore)
I’m tired of monotheism. I, for one, for many, prefer the cockroach emerging from the ivy, reading the night with quivering antennae, the fat rattlesnake that turned me back out of the canyon’s rocky throat, presences in a hallway of willows. Yesterday we scrubbed slippery, clayish mud from the season’s first potatoes, their irregular roundnesses all the psalms my palms ever wanted. I traveled more than half a life to get here—just don’t ask me how. I left the cat sleeping beneath the morning table and walked out along the dry rain ditch that runs behind neighborhoods stunned by heat, past grass banks burnt the color of hay, faltering cinder-block walls, waves of orange trumpet and grape vines breaking over fences, a tree house rotting in the green branches of the mulberry, its tenant having long since descended. I walk toward mountains I will not reach, toward my death, but the mourning doves and sumacs walk their own stories. One minute I’m alone, and the next belongs to leaves and ghosts. How many voices have frequented that catalpa? Who is wandering my blood? I build a shrine in my feet for worlds to come through. I let the wind arrange the windows.
“Everything changes when you start to emit your own frequency rather than absorbing the frequencies around you, when you start imprinting your intent on the universe rather than receiving an imprint from existence.”—
I love desire, the state of want and thought of how to get; building a kingdom in a soul requires desire. I love the things I’ve sought- you in your beltless bathrobe, tongues of cash that loll from my billfold- and love what I want: clothes, houses, redemption. Can a new mauve suit equal God? Oh…
“We live together, we act on, and react to, one another; but always and in all circumstances we are by ourselves. The martyrs go hand in hand into the arena; they are crucified alone. Embraced, the lovers desperately try to fuse their insulated ecstasies into a single self-transcendence; in vain. By its very nature every embodied spirit is doomed to suffer and enjoy in solitude. Sensations, feelings, insights, fancies—all these are private and, except through symbols and at second hand, incommunicable. We can pool information about experiences, but never the experiences themselves. From family to nation, every human group is a society of island universes.”—Aldous Huxley, Brave New World (via sunrec)
“There’s only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that’s your own self. So you have to begin there, not outside, not on other people. That comes afterward, when you’ve worked on your own corner.”—
“Would you like to save the world from the degradation and destruction it seems destined for? Then step away from shallow mass movements and quietly go to work on your own self-awareness. If you want to awaken all of humanity, then awaken all of yourself. If you want to eliminate the suffering in the world, then eliminate all that is dark and negative in yourself. Truly, the greatest gift you have to give is that of your own self-transformation.”—
“And something started in my soul,
fever or forgotten wings,
and I made my own way,
and I wrote the first faint line,
faint, without substance, pure
of someone who knows nothing,
and I suddenly saw
and open.”—Pablo Neruda excerpted from Poetry (Poesía), in Memorial of Isla Negra(Memorial de Isla Negra), Selected Poems by Pablo Neruda (via growing-orbits)