FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

If We Are at War, Let’s Bring Back the Draft!

I served in the French military. Not by choice. Then it was mandatory for all young men to serve. France had a draft, and it should bring it back if the country is at war. I could have tried to dodge the draft with various shenanigans, but I did not want to do so because of the deep respect I had for my ancestors who had died or been seriously wounded in various conflicts. I also wanted to obverse, from within, the peculiar and mostly perverse institution that is an army. Military forces have always shared strangely similar traits and psychological tactics worldwide. During boot camps, the goal of the upper echelon is to break the individual will of the recruits and, within a few weeks, reprogram each one from being a civilian into what the military culture views as a superior human: a soldier. While civilians can say no and exercise their free will, soldiers must obey a strict top-down chain of command with zero tolerance for debate, no matter how absurd or even criminal the orders might be. Once you are in the military machine, it owns your person and controls the essentials of your life as a soldier. Armies, independently of geographical locations, never tolerate any form of dissent.

La Marseillaise, chicken hawks and Pétainistes

In the aftermath of the November 13, 2015 Paris attack, La Marseillaise has become a very popular song worldwide, and in France it is a rallying call for war. There is a lyric in this French revolutionary song that says: “Aux armes citoyens!” It is a call to war, and not one to be fought by mercenary professional soldiers. In the late 18th century, it was a call to ordinary French citizens to defend their revolution and newly formed republic against the professional armies of European kings. Against all odds, and to the kingdom’s dismay, France’s revolutionary troops defeated its enemies at the battle of Valmy on September 20, 1792. The French Revolution and its formidable army of peasants had changed the course of history and put on notice the European royals and their mercenaries. The victory at Valmy made me proud as a young man, and it still does. At the time, French people had no fear, and they fought bravely for the principles of liberty, equality and fraternity. La Marseillaise represents this: not the decreed state of emergency in France.

Many dark days would come to challenge France’s revolutionary heritage and national pride. One of them, perhaps the worst of all, was the humiliating defeat in 1940 that Germany inflicted on France. A large majority of French people accepted the defeat and supported the collaborator pro-German Vichy government headed by Pétain, but a few brave men and women did not. On June 18, 1940, Charles de Gaulle assumed their leadership from London, and he called on all French citizens, including those in France’s colonies in North Africa and West Africa to join him in the fight against the German occupation and its Vichy collaborators. De Gaulle was declared by Vichy to be a traitor and condemned to death. If Pétain and his Vichy government had a wide support among the French population in 1940, by May 1945 de Gaulle had saved the country’s honor, and all of France had become Gaulliste. One can easily extrapolate that, if General de Gaulle were alive today, he would be very upset, and he might forcefully denounce the state of emergency and its wide acceptance as being Pétainiste. The acceptance of defeat during World War II had come from fear, just like the current willingness of a majority of French people to lose most of their basic civil liberties from the imposition of a three-month state of emergency that could be extended. –

Patriot Act on steroids

France’s state-of-emergency law should be very seriously taken. It was first passed into law in 1955 during the war in Algeria. The last time it was used was 1961 when French police killed more than 200 French citizens of North African origin during a peaceful demonstration in Paris. The provisions of the state of emergency are even more repressive and Orwellian than the USA Patriot Act. They give French authorities the arbitrary power to search any home or business without a warrant (more than 500 searches have already been conducted in one week); conduct searches on all persons in public places, randomly and without probable cause; arrest anyone deemed to be suspicious or dangerous; ban all protests and public gatherings; and last but not least, in a provision that has not yet been used and that allows censorship by the French government, control and even shut down press organizations, including radio stations. To enforce its police-state policies, the French government has already mobilized, all combined, more than 100,000 police, gendarmes, and military. This will be a considerable expense for France’s taxpayers, and it will likely bring cuts to many social programs.

Paradoxically, within a week, the birthplace of the notion of human rights has become the justification for a global-police-state agenda. Many in France accept this shameful path as if they are cattle mooing joyfully on their way to the slaughterhouse. If this is not stopped, the mercenary police-state apparatus will take over, in a constant war from within against its own citizens: a war against the most sacred principles of the French republic for the illusion of security. The professional armies of the West, just like their jihadist counterpart in ISIS, are in essence mercenary forces that fight wars to profit the military-industrial complex. What has happened to my compatriots and my culture? Was Valmy won by our forefathers in vain? Let us bring back the draft! Only determined citizen’s armies can protect our nations from the mercenary forces of the Orwellian Empire.

More articles by:

Gilbert Mercier is the editor in chief of News Junkie Post and the author of  The Orwellian Empire.

Weekend Edition
September 21, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Laquan McDonald is Being Tried for His Own Racist Murder
Brad Evans
What Does It Mean to Celebrate International Peace Day?
Alexandra Isfahani-Hammond
Hurricane Florence and 9.7 Million Pigs
Nick Pemberton
With or Without Kavanaugh, The United States Is Anti-Choice
Andrew Levine
Israel’s Anti-Semitism Smear Campaign
Jim Kavanagh
“Taxpayer Money” Threatens Medicare-for-All (And Every Other Social Program)
Jonathan Cook
Palestine: The Testbed for Trump’s Plan to Tear up the Rules-Based International Order
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: the Chickenhawks Have Finally Come Back Home to Roost!
David Rosen
As the Capitalist World Turns: From Empire to Imperialism to Globalization?
Jonah Raskin
Green Capitalism Rears Its Head at Global Climate Action Summit
James Munson
On Climate, the Centrists are the Deplorables
Robert Hunziker
Is Paris 2015 Already Underwater?
Arshad Khan
Will Their Ever be Justice for Rohingya Muslims?
Jill Richardson
Why Women Don’t Report Sexual Assault
Dave Clennon
A Victory for Historical Accuracy and the Peace Movement: Not One Emmy for Ken Burns and “The Vietnam War”
W. T. Whitney
US Harasses Cuba Amid Mysterious Circumstances
Nathan Kalman-Lamb
Things That Make Sports Fans Uncomfortable
George Capaccio
Iran: “Snapping Back” Sanctions and the Threat of War
Kenneth Surin
Brexit is Coming, But Which Will It Be?
Louis Proyect
Moore’s “Fahrenheit 11/9”: Entertaining Film, Crappy Politics
Ramzy Baroud
Why Israel Demolishes: Khan Al-Ahmar as Representation of Greater Genocide
Ben Dangl
The Zapatistas’ Dignified Rage: Revolutionary Theories and Anticapitalist Dreams of Subcommandante Marcos
Ron Jacobs
Faith, Madness, or Death
Bill Glahn
Crime Comes Knocking
Terry Heaton
Pat Robertson’s Hurricane “Miracle”
Dave Lindorff
In Montgomery County PA, It’s Often a Jury of White People
Louis Yako
From Citizens to Customers: the Corporate Customer Service Culture in America 
William Boardman
The Shame of Dianne Feinstein, the Courage of Christine Blasey Ford 
Ernie Niemi
Logging and Climate Change: Oregon is Appalachia and Timber is Our Coal
Jessicah Pierre
Nike Says “Believe in Something,” But Can It Sacrifice Something, Too?
Paul Fitzgerald - Elizabeth Gould
Weaponized Dreams? The Curious Case of Robert Moss
Olivia Alperstein
An Environmental 9/11: the EPA’s Gutting of Methane Regulations
Ted Rall
Why Christine Ford vs. Brett Kavanaugh is a Train Wreck You Can’t Look Away From
Lauren Regan
The Day the Valves Turned: Defending the Pipeline Protesters
Ralph Nader
Questions, Questions Where are the Answers?
Binoy Kampmark
Deplatforming Germaine Greer
Raouf Halaby
It Should Not Be A He Said She Said Verdict
Robert Koehler
The Accusation That Wouldn’t Go Away
Jim Hightower
Amazon is Making Workers Tweet About How Great It is to Work There
Robby Sherwin
Rabbi, Rabbi, Where For Art Thou Rabbi?
Vern Loomis
Has Something Evil This Way Come?
Steve Baggarly
Disarm Trident Walk Ends in Georgia
Graham Peebles
Priorities of the Time: Peace
Michael Doliner
The Department of Demonization
David Yearsley
Bollocks to Brexit: the Plumber Sings
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail