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Sexual Humiliation and Mother Murder in the War on Terror

The Perversions of the Bush Administration

by JENNIFER VAN BERGEN

Stories of sons murdering fathers or brothers (or fathers murdering sons who may steal the throne) are found throughout history and literature. Remember the story of Oedipus? He fulfills a prophecy by unknowingly killing his father and having children by his mother. Or think of Shakespeare’s plays, particularly King Richard, in which Richard has every potential heir to the throne murdered.

The Oedipal Complex has become a well-known concept relating to a son’s wish to get rid of the father.

War is sometimes viewed as father murder: the clashing on the phallic swords or discharging of the phallic guns until death.

But who has heard of mother murder?

Mother murder has, perhaps, not yet entered the story books or psychology treatises. (Or perhaps mother murderers killed the stories along with the mothers.) But we are experiencing a vivid enactment of this psychological phenomena through the policies of George W. Bush et al.

Bush is a man who not only butchers his mother tongue, but rapes and pillages Mother Earth to obtain her "oil," unlawfully penetrates other mother-lands, disseminates seed in them, committing heinous sexual crimes in the process, and views maternal (protective) rules of law as "quaint" and "obsolete."

The almost desperate and certainly determined effort to prove worth and importance through aggressive, "pre-emptive" measures is a hallmark of the Bush Administration. The Cheney/Wolfowitz/Rumsfeld doctrines of "forward presence," unilateral action, and military superiority mark the outlines of the aggressive approach which seeks to disregard, override, and undermine self-protective (maternal) state, government, or group systems.

War is manliness gone awry. It’s all about penetration, ejaculation, and domination. "Get in there (without warning or permission), discharge your weapons on anybody opposing you (and maybe even on those who don’t), and take control. "

War is rape and murder. Rape is always about gender, in some secret or not-so-secret way. While men can rape men, men rape women in far greater numbers. (Women don’t rape men.) Rape is a crime of opportunity. It is an act of hatred and aggression. Towards women.

So, war, which is about rape and murder, is an act of hatred and aggression towards women. It’s Mother Murder.

Mother murder is not only about mothers. It is about wives and daughters and sisters. Wife-beating has become epidemic, particularly among soldiers returning from war.

The unconscious recognition by mother murderers of their sickness is illustrated by their obsession with sexual perversity, often through claims that others are engaging in sexual misconduct.

Scott Horton noted the coincidence between Rumsfeld’s accusations of sexual misconduct against those who opposed him and the sexually humiliating torture tactics used under Rumsfeld’s command:

"To really understand what’s going on, these cases and the extreme sexual priggishness they reflect must be juxtaposed against a decision taken at or near the top of the chain of command and crammed down on investigators to jettison prior military doctrine requiring humane treatment of detainees. In introducing new, inhumane practices, the Pentagon leadership embraced sexual humiliation tactics with particular relish."[1]

Horton exhorts readers to

" consider the swing between the disgrace and ruin of highly valued career officers for consensual sexual relations and the officially sanctioned, grossly abusive sexual misconduct described above. It demonstrates a plasticity in moral values, that can only be called breathtaking. How are we to bridge this chasm? The most appealing explanation lies in the motives of those driving this ostensibly schizophrenic conduct. Plainly, they view sexual morals as something to be manipulated for the accomplishment of political objectives. Hence, lewd and offensive sexual conduct can be deliberately used as a tactic against detainees. On the other hand, officers who earn the leadership’s ire will be humiliated and disgraced using innuendo of sexual misconduct as a tactic."

The sexual humiliation of one’s enemy is another form of mother murder. It is why we see soldiers dressing captives in women’s panties, smearing supposed menstrual blood on them, setting women soldiers on them to seduce and embarrass them. Does anyone else wonder about the practice of officers calling soldiers "girls" or "ladies"? Does anyone else wonder about all these gender reversals? Or about why female-ness is so widely used to humiliate? Does it show an extreme underlying hatred of women?

A man who must sexually humiliate another is a man who is not sure of his own sexuality. And an Administration that widely uses sexual humiliation as a tactic of both business and war is made up of men who feel emasculated, who can only feel masculine through aggressive acts. An Administration that feels compelled to engage in aggressive wars of opportunity is one made up of men who feel their power waning. A President who must constantly claim and expand presidential authority through signing statements intended to bolster his power is one who doesn’t feel sure as a man. Indeed, this Administration has admitted that its efforts to strengthen the executive arise from the belief that presidential authority was undermined as a result of the impeachment of President Nixon. They view his impeachment as a disagreement between the Executive and Congress, rather than as the consequence of illegal acts.

This is where the nub is. A man who must humiliate others to attain a sense of his manhood is someone who has no moral values. Illegal acts are not illegal when he does them, he believes. This is a form of socio-pathology.

A system without moral values is doomed to ultimate failure. It cannot stand long, for it damages its own base. Such a system damages those who practice it as well as those subject to it. It damages the environment and resources it relies upon. It damages human institutions and relationships. Ultimately, it is life-destroying.

Reverence for mothers is nearly extinct. Women have a unique power that frightens many men. They grow children inside of them and give birth. Women are not encouraged to value these powers. That is the real cause of teenage pregnancy.

It takes a village to raise a child. But, American society has almost utterly failed women who must raise their children alone. Single women raising children in Europe do not have to worry whether they will have money to pay for the next meal. In the U.S., such women are maintained, if they’re lucky, by social services at or below the poverty level. Under Bush, even these services are endangered.

In Africa, older women are universally called "mother" as a sign of respect. Here, older women are viewed as has-beens, like used rags.

Viewed in this context, the rise of the Bush Administration is not surprising. It is one of the purest examples of mother murder in existence: a pure expression of the hatred and denial festering all over America.

Hatred of women is hatred of life. Women do not need to be shackled by anti-abortion laws, measured by male-determined discrimination laws or by male hierarchical structures of command or promotion. And certainly not by male-created rules of global dominance. It should be crystal clear by now that these male institutions are utterly failing. Life without respect for women’s power is crippled.

Token gestures of respect will not save our planet. This planet is dying and those who think America will last forever and the earth cannot be killed are committing great folly. The first step to saving our species and our home is to put mother murderers where they belong. Those who commit crimes against humanity should be put in jail. Those who have to humiliate others in order to feel safe and sound should be put into therapy. Neither of these should be ruling America.

This Administration is a failure because the Cheney/Bush/Rumsfeld plan for global dominance is at heart about warped masculinity. This Administration will continue to fail, no matter how many coups Bush effects electoral coups, coups against separation of powers, against the Bill of Rights or the Constitution, coups of the Supreme Court, coups against international laws and norms, and coups of other countries, politically, economically, or militarily. The more the plan for global dominance succeeds, the more this Administration or any administration that follows it will fail. Perhaps only another Ice Age will save us.

[1] http://balkin.blogspot.com/2005/10/