Ready, Aim, Fear

I’m not surprised that North Korea’s resident nut has launched a series of short-range missiles, a medium range and a long-range TAEPODONG-2 missile. After all, our own resident nut, George Bush, ratcheted up the aggression when he spoke the words of his reckless speechwriter, Michael Gerson, the evangelical Christian, who wrote “axis of evil” to describe the rogue states of Iraq, Iran, and North Korea. Gerson also composed the message that Bush spoke after September 11: “Grief and tragedy and hatred are only for a time.”

How off the mark he was in his desire to inspire. Grief and tragedy aren’t transitory. Nor is hatred. America is despised globally for its hubris and self-righteous attitude. Even if we change the course of our actions to reverse the policies of the neocons, it will take years for other countries to trust us. In fact, it will take years for us to trust our own government. Michael Gerson must have been engaging in some serious apple biting from the tree of forbidden fruit when he was chosen to write moving sentences for the president. He was, after all, eventually, cast from the Rose Garden.

Why wouldn’t Kim Jong-il immediately shift his nuclear program into high gear after hearing Bush include North Korea among the “evil” threesome? The words were a direct threat, a challenge to North Korea’s leader. Breaking news? Yes, but no surprise. Not for those of us who have watched the unfolding of this very predictable flurry of activity from Jong-il, one among an axis of nuts.

Iran, too, has acted accordingly. Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is moving in defiance of the West to enrich uranium. So, now, we have three nuts-yes, three heads of state who are butting egos and causing people for peace who never believed this kind of irrational, earth shattering upheaval would ever again occur after Viet Nam to gasp in horror at what we are doing to this world, what we are bequeathing to our children-and to ponder if there will be anything at all left for them.

Condoleezza Rice scared us with images of “mushroom clouds” over our cities. Many were certain Saddam would be the button pusher. Turns out there were no WMD in Iraq. Perhaps, the most harmful weapons are Bush’s language, decisions, and an invasion that stimulated the other nuts in the world to stoke their own rhetoric and arms programs.

The beat goes on. The beat goes on. More and more “deciders” are dusting off their war drums. All made necessary by a nut from Texas. All made more frightening because there seems to be method to his madness.

Missy Beattie lives in New York City. She’s written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. An outspoken critic of the Bush Administration and the war in Iraq, she’s a member of Gold Star Families for Peace. She completed a novel last year, but since the death of her nephew, Marine Lance Cpl. Chase J. Comley, in Iraq on August 6,’05, she has been writing political articles. She can be reached at: Missybeat@aol.com



More articles by:

Missy Beattie has written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. She was an instructor of memoirs writing at Johns Hopkins’ Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in BaltimoreEmail: missybeat@gmail.com

March 19, 2018
Henry Heller
The Moment of Trump
John Davis
Pristine Buildings, Tarnished Architect
Uri Avnery
The Fake Enemy
Patrick Cockburn
The Fall of Afrin and the Next Phase of the Syrian War
Nick Pemberton
The Democrats Can’t Save Us
Nomi Prins 
Jared Kushner, RIP: a Political Obituary for the President’s Son-in-Law
Georgina Downs
The Double Standards and Hypocrisy of the UK Government Over the ‘Nerve Agent’ Spy Poisoning
Dean Baker
Trump and the Federal Reserve
Colin Todhunter
The Strategy of Tension Towards Russia and the Push to Nuclear War
Kevin Zeese - Margaret Flowers
US Empire on Decline
Ralph Nader
Ahoy America, Give Trump a Taste of His Own Medicine Starting on Trump Imitation Day
Robert Dodge
Eliminate Nuclear Weapons by Divesting from Them
Laura Finley
Shame on You, Katy Perry
Weekend Edition
March 16, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Michael Uhl
The Tip of the Iceberg: My Lai Fifty Years On
Bruce E. Levine
School Shootings: Who to Listen to Instead of Mainstream Shrinks
Mel Goodman
Caveat Emptor: MSNBC and CNN Use CIA Apologists for False Commentary
Paul Street
The Obama Presidency Gets Some Early High Historiography
Kathy Deacon
Me, My Parents and Red Scares Long Gone
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Rexless Abandon
Andrew Levine
Good Enemies Are Hard To Find: Therefore Worry
Jim Kavanagh
What to Expect From a Trump / Kim Summit
Ron Jacobs
Trump and His Tariffs
Joshua Frank
Drenched in Crude: It’s an Oil Free For All, But That’s Not a New Thing
Gary Leupp
What If There Was No Collusion?
Matthew Stevenson
Why Vietnam Still Matters: Bernard Fall Dies on the Street Without Joy
Robert Fantina
Bad to Worse: Tillerson, Pompeo and Haspel
Brian Cloughley
Be Prepared, Iran, Because They Want to Destroy You
Richard Moser
What is Organizing?
Scott McLarty
Working Americans Need Independent Politics
Rohullah Naderi
American Gun Violence From an Afghan Perspective
Sharmini Peries - Michael Hudson
Why Trump’s Tariff Travesty Will Not Re-Industrialize the US
Ted Rall
Democrats Should Run on Impeachment
Robert Fisk
Will We Ever See Al Jazeera’s Investigation Into the Israel Lobby?
Kristine Mattis
Superunknown: Scientific Integrity Within the Academic and Media Industrial Complexes
John W. Whitehead
Say No to “Hardening” the Schools with Zero Tolerance Policies and Gun-Toting Cops
Edward Hunt
UN: US Attack On Syrian Civilians Violated International Law
Barbara Nimri Aziz
Iraq Outside History
Wilfred Burchett
Vietnam Will Win: The Long Hard Road
Victor Grossman
Germany: New Faces, Old Policies
Medea Benjamin - Nicolas J. S. Davies
The Iraq Death Toll 15 Years After the US Invasion
Binoy Kampmark
Amazon’s Initiative: Digital Assistants, Home Surveillance and Data
Chuck Collins
Business Leaders Agree: Inequality Hurts The Bottom Line
Jill Richardson
What We Talk About When We Talk About “Free Trade”
Eric Lerner – Jay Arena
A Spark to a Wider Fire: Movement Against Immigrant Detention in New Jersey
Negin Owliaei
Teachers Deserve a Raise: Here’s How to Fund It