Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
Keep CounterPunch ad free. Support our annual fund drive today!

There’s No Place Like CounterPunch

There's no place like CounterPunch, it's just that simple. And as the radical space within the "alternative media"(whatever that means) landscape continues to shrink, sanctuaries such as CounterPunch become all the more crucial for our political, intellectual, and moral survival. Add to that the fact that CounterPunch won't inundate you with ads and corporate propaganda. So it should be clear why CounterPunch needs your support: so it can keep doing what it's been doing for nearly 25 years. As CP Editor, Jeffrey St. Clair, succinctly explained, "We lure you in, and then punch you in the kidneys." Pleasant and true though that may be, the hard-working CP staff is more than just a few grunts greasing the gears of the status quo.

So come on, be a pal, make a tax deductible donation to CounterPunch today to support our annual fund drive, if you have already donated we thank you! If you haven't, do it because you want to. Do it because you know what CounterPunch is worth. Do it because CounterPunch needs you. Every dollar is tax-deductible. (PayPal accepted)

Thank you,
Eric Draitser

Innocence Exhumed


The image of a little boy sometimes appears unbeckoned in my mind, disturbing otherwise innocuous musings. A few years ago, his father–a man of grave composure, perhaps beyond grief–accompanied his child when he appeared on the “Democracy Now” TV program. The boy, perhaps four years old, sat on his father’s knee, fidgeting and anxious—perhaps because his arms had been blown off and prostheses filled the sockets where his eyes used to be. A little child—horribly dismembered by U.S. soldiers occupying Iraq. Whereas moral outrage over such war crimes may dwindle over time, such images linger on in one’s mind, as if ceaselessly calling out for retributive justice like the Ghost of Hamlet’s father.

Try to visualize, if you can, many such children—can you picture in your mind ten or 20 or 200 or 2000 or 20,000 or 100,000 such boys and girls?–mutilated, burned, traumatized by bullets and fiery bombs? Now single out one of these children, a boy or girl, perhaps a child who reminds you of your own child or your own childhood. Try to “feel-into” this child’s emotions: terrified bewilderment, a shocked sense of deep hurt and betrayal, lacerating physical torment, a despair beyond anguish.

What do I mean when I issue a clarion call on behalf of such outraged innocence? Little children, like all little children–their idle play and gentle imaginings suddenly pulverized by weapons of senseless malevolence and fiendish cruelty. Little children, awakened into a world they could never have imagined, a world in which bad people suddenly appear, bad people who want to shoot them, burn them, dismember them. Little children, crushed by a deep sadness and despair which knows no consolation except death.

Now what, we may ask, is the mentality of these bad people, these perpetrators who invade the child’s world, bringing horrors and torment in their wake? We were given a psychological clue recently, when Gen. David Petraeus claimed that Afghan parents were deliberating burning their own children in order to bring discredit to the U.S. military. I was reminded of another claim, that of Gen. William Westmoreland, that a Vietnamese child terribly burned and disfigured by napalm had actually been burned by a hibachi. This is the mentality we are dealing with: first declare innocent little children your “enemy,” then torture them unceasingly with weapons devised by scientific sadists, then claim that those you so horribly tortured really did it to themselves.

Our UNCEASING DEMAND FOR JUSTICE will not perish so long as we are able to IDENTIFY WITH the innocent victims, particularly with the curious, hopeful world of these children—a world crushed and trampled in an instant when soldiers and bomber pilots “just following orders” and mindlessly (or intentionally) impose the tortures of hell upon them.

Some final images? Look at Google Images, type in “cluster bomb” or “napalm” or “white phosphorus.” Now examine the photos of children that you see, children lying on the ground in shock, children whose arms are now bandaged stumps, children who stare unbelievingly into the void. Now scrutinize their faces: zoom in as close as you can and try to “feel-into” their hearts. Now: what do YOU feel? And what do your feelings tell you to do?

WILLIAM MANSON previously taught social science at Columbia and Rutgers universities.

William Manson, a psychoanalytic anthropologist,  formerly taught social science at Rutgers and Columbia universities. He is the author of The Psychodynamics of Culture (Greenwood Press).

More articles by:

2016 Fund Drive
Smart. Fierce. Uncompromised. Support CounterPunch Now!

  • cp-store
  • donate paypal

CounterPunch Magazine


October 25, 2016
David Swanson
Halloween Is Coming, Vladimir Putin Isn’t
Hiroyuki Hamada
Fear Laundering: an Elaborate Psychological Diversion and Bid for Power
Priti Gulati Cox
President Obama: Before the Empire Falls, Free Leonard Peltier and Mumia Abu-Jamal
Kathy Deacon
Plus ça Change: Regime Change 1917-1920
Robin Goodman
Appetite for Destruction: America’s War Against Itself
Richard Moser
On Power, Privilege, and Passage: a Letter to My Nephew
Rev. William Alberts
The Epicenter of the Moral Universe is Our Common Humanity, Not Religion
Dan Bacher
Inspector General says Reclamation Wasted $32.2 Million on Klamath irrigators
David Mattson
A Recipe for Killing: the “Trust Us” Argument of State Grizzly Bear Managers
Derek Royden
The Tragedy in Yemen
Ralph Nader
Breaking Through Power: It’s Easier Than We Think
Norman Pollack
Centrist Fascism: Lurching Forward
Guillermo R. Gil
Cell to Cell Communication: On How to Become Governor of Puerto Rico
Mateo Pimentel
You, Me, and the Trolley Make Three
Cathy Breen
“Today Is One of the Heaviest Days of My Life”
October 24, 2016
John Steppling
The Unwoke: Sleepwalking into the Nightmare
Oscar Ortega
Clinton’s Troubling Silence on the Dakota Access Pipeline
Patrick Cockburn
Aleppo vs. Mosul: Media Biases
John Grant
Humanizing Our Militarized Border
Franklin Lamb
US-led Sanctions Targeting Syria Risk Adjudication as War Crimes
Paul Bentley
There Must Be Some Way Out of Here: the Silence of Dylan
Norman Pollack
Militarism: The Elephant in the Room
Patrick Bosold
Dakota Access Oil Pipeline: Invite CEO to Lunch, Go to Jail
Paul Craig Roberts
Was Russia’s Hesitation in Syria a Strategic Mistake?
David Swanson
Of All the Opinions I’ve Heard on Syria
Weekend Edition
October 21, 2016
Friday - Sunday
John Wight
Hillary Clinton and the Brutal Murder of Gaddafi
Diana Johnstone
Hillary Clinton’s Strategic Ambition in a Nutshell
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Trump’s Naked and Hillary’s Dead
John W. Whitehead
American Psycho: Sex, Lies and Politics Add Up to a Terrifying Election Season
Stephen Cooper
Hell on Earth in Alabama: Inside Holman Prison
Patrick Cockburn
13 Years of War: Mosul’s Frightening and Uncertain Future
Rob Urie
Name the Dangerous Candidate
Pepe Escobar
The Aleppo / Mosul Riddle
David Rosen
The War on Drugs is a Racket
Sami Siegelbaum
Once More, the Value of the Humanities
Cathy Breen
“Today Is One of the Heaviest Days of My Life”
Neve Gordon
Israel’s Boycott Hypocrisy
Mark Hand
Of Pipelines and Protest Pens: When the Press Loses Its Shield
Victor Wallis
On the Stealing of U.S. Elections
Michael Hudson
The Return of the Repressed Critique of Rentiers: Veblen in the 21st century Rentier Capitalism
Brian Cloughley
Drumbeats of Anti-Russia Confrontation From Washington to London
Howard Lisnoff
Still Licking Our Wounds and Hoping for Change
Brian Gruber
Iraq: There Is No State
Peter Lee
Trump: We Wish the Problem Was Fascism
Stanley L. Cohen
Equality and Justice for All, It Seems, But Palestinians