On Tuesday, Americans marked the 11th anniversary of the September 11 attacks that left nearly 3,000 people dead and led to wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Reports coming from the US suggest that the day was marked with familiar ceremony, but also “a sense that it’s time for the Americans to move forward after a decade of remembrance.”
It’s also a sense evidently shared by American politicians, especially the presidential candidates. This is because for the first time in a decade, the September 11 attacks and the dismal wars that resulted are not the focus of the election campaigns for both President Barack Obama and his challenger Mitt Romney!
Unlike the other presidential elections following the attacks, polls show those issues are a low priority for voters now. A CBS News/New York Times survey has found “37 percent of voters called terrorism and security extremely important to their vote while 54 percent said the economy and jobs were that important.”
It was much different eight years ago, in the first presidential election after the attacks. Back then, about two-thirds of voters said, “Protecting the country was more important than creating jobs.” President George W. Bush convinced voters that he was the right man to keep the country safe, and the rest is history.
Fast forward to today.
The new poll results suggest the Americans want change again! This is because the twenty-first century has largely been an American riches-to-rags story and a fall from grace for its politicians. A journey from global support and solidarity (the life of 9/11 and the highpoint of Bush-era imperial self-celebration) to global condemnation and anti-American sentiment (the death of 9/11 and a hard-won trip into reality).
It was exactly for this that in the 2008, candidate Barack Obama had it easy. He had eight years of abject failure to run against, that included the launching of two dismal wars in Afghanistan (against Taliban and Al Qaeda) and Iraq, the creation of torture gulags, the ushering in of a program of drone assassination missions and secret spying programs, all presided over by a president who kept a list with mug shots of people he wanted “dead or alive”!
In 2008, the tired people of America wanted change, which was good news for the “change” candidate Barack Obama. Now after four years and in the run-up to the November election, the candidate who won the 2008 race has expanded the US war in Afghanistan, kept American troops in Iraq under diplomatic disguise, and oversaw escalating military interventions and proxy wars in Pakistan, Somalia, Libya, Yemen and Syria.
To make matters worse, the winning candidate didn’t close Guantanamo, expanded the drone assassination program and domestic surveillance, used the Espionage Act against more governmental whistleblowers, and kept his own extensive kill list, personally okaying assassinations. Now after four years of abject failures, the tired people of America once again want to know whether the next four years will be any different under a different president?
Well, Obama’s challenger is also talking about “change”. But his “change” includes the disappearance of even more civil liberties, even more profligate military spending and interventions, even more troops to send to war, and possibly the addition of a new war or two to Washington’s agenda in order to maintain America’s global hegemony, whatever the cost. So much change and yet so much remains the same for the American voters!
With so much “change” at stake, it is obvious that after 11 years of military actions abroad and shrinking civil liberties at home, the ultra-right think tank, Project For A New American Century (PNAC), is at it again; busy outlining yet another manifesto to ramp up the US military to unprecedented levels!
The US/NATO war actions are clearly visible though, especially when it comes to dealing with Iran and its nuclear program i.e., the loose talk of “all options are on the table” and the sanctions war. They have also been trying hard to hijack the Arab Awakening in order to create more client states throughout the Middle East.
Mixed in with the so-called US/NATO support for the populist uprisings, shockingly in coordination with elements of Al Qaeda (!), the international community is once again scratching their heads. Seeing the ongoing wars and carnage across the globe, they really want to know whether “the global war on terror” was just a fabrication designed to preserve America’s global domination well into the 21st century? The US presidential candidates are not willing to talk about it. The American voters are equally not in the mood to care about the 9/11 anymore – when they have no jobs and no incomes.
So what’s the bottom line? Well, Winston Churchill once said, “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.” Today, of course, any lie, no matter how big, circulates everywhere instantly. That’s why it’s only a matter of time for the truth about the September 11 attacks to get its pants on!
Source: Fars News Agency