Monday, April 21, 2008

Obama - Bringing The Weathermen Above Ground!

Let's get it straight from the get go. There is no such thing as a terrorist properly so called, the way, lets say, serial killers are murderers. Violent sexual psychopaths kill for the sake of killing. The death of their victims is of the essence of what they're about. Terrorists on the other hand are political cadres who choose violence as a means of advancing their cause.

Apart from some lunatics - not many for they are of very limited use - whom they attract simply because of the prospect of mayhem, they are dedicated, coherent, purposeful operatives as capable of strategic and tactical judgments as anybody else. And, for the most part, perfectly at ease with the moral choice - and they make a moral choice - that now defines their life.

Though they may, at times, succumb to what the old Irish heroic tales call confadh catha or 'battle frenzy' - a well known phenomenon - they are not foaming at the mouth caricatures, drinking in their victims screams and glorying in their inhuman blood-lust. If they were, the authorities would be frogmarching them all the way to the penitentiary by the baker's dozen every day of the week.

Nor are they obviously any different from the rest of us. They are not Lex Luthoresque masterminds or Hannibal Lecterish geniuses. If they were, they'd have far greater success, far more quickly and far more often. They are run of the mill folk who exhibit a run of the mill range of abilities and weaknesses. Some are highly intelligent, some middling, others semi-literate ignoramuses.

They are not part of some well-oiled, slick, utterly efficient death-dealing machine. Their organisations are like every other organisation, peppered with incompetence, blockheadedness, nepotism, petty jealousies and disloyalty, and kept going by the capable, overworked and frustrated 10% who actually know what must be done and know how to do it properly if they could only attract a better quality work force.

In other words when someone becomes a terrorist he doesn't undergo a weird form of confirmation where he is annointed with a Satanic chrism that transforms him into a ccombination of Dirty Harry, Adolf Hitler and Hercule Poirot. He's just another guy but one who's now been given a gun and a bomb and a transcendent reason to use them and is supported by a network of other guys as wonderful or as woeful as himself.

"One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter" is an aphorism that has many people reaching for Mitt Romney's varmint gun but it is half-true. Some terrorists are freedom fighters. The Mau Mau in Kenya, Umkhonto we Siswe (Spear of the Nation) in South Africa, the Mujahadeen in Afghanistan, ETA in Spain, the Irish Republican Army (the longest-lived of them all) in Ireland, the various separatist groups in Chechnya and elsewhere in the Caususus.

The aim of such groups is the overthrow of a foreign regime or a goverment imposed by non-native elements in order to achieve political freedom for the people of the nation i.e. they are physical force nationalists in orientation and principle. Though they may espouse some form of socialism that is always negotiable. In the end many of the more prominent terrorists and their fellow travelers become political leaders as part of a settlement: √Čamon de Valera, Michael Collins, Jomo Kenyatta, Nelson Mandela, Robert Mugabe, Gerry Adams, Martin McGuinness.

There is another kind of terrorist quite distinct from movements of national liberation and having little or nothing politically in common with them. These are groups who attack and seek to destroy the society in which they live on the grounds of ideology alone. In the West they took the form of far left urban guerrila groups. The Brigate Rossi in Italy. The Rote Armee Fraction/Bader-Meinhof Gang in West Germany. The Japanese Red Army which, despite its name, operated internationally.

Flourishing in the seventies and early eighties, they were small tightly organised highly motivated and very violent ideologues. Their strategic aim was nothing less than the destruction of capitalism and the capitalist way of life. Fully aware that they could not accomplish such a task on their own they sought to 'seed the revolution' through consciousness-raising acts of extreme violence - bombings, assassinations, the kidnapping and murder of prominent politicians, judges and businessmen and their families.

In this way they attempted to destabilize the state and goad 'the ruling class' into an oppressive over-reaction which would radicalize the 'masses' and bring about the Marxis/Leninist/StalinistMaoist/Trotskyist/ Anarchist Revolution about which they fantasized. The participants in this well-directed mayhem were invariably scions of the well-to-do bourgeoisie who were their prime targets. They were the children of the university educated academic and professional elite which ran the societies which they were seeking to destroy in the name of a proletariat whom they only knew as domestic servants in the homes of the hapless parents they so despised.

The Weather Underground was such a group and William Ayres and Bernardine Dorhn were such urban guerillas. This terror group wasn't just another tiny splinter from off the many radical left wing logs that were set rolling through Western society with such vehement fervor in the Sixties. Unlike the far more notorious Unabomber - a single, mentally ill 'crusader' - they did more than cause fitful disorder and fatalities. This was a serious network of very sane violent revolutionaries who mounted a sustained and viable campaign from within against their own society and people.

Weathermen leaders such as Mark Rudd were smuggled into Cuba where they were welcomed by KGB Colonel Vadim Kotchergine and whisked away to secret camps for advanced indoctrination and training in urban terrorist techniques. Calling for war against what they always termed "Amerikka" - sounds familiar, don't it? - Bernardine Dohrn - aka Mrs Bill Ayres - hailed the murderous Manson Family as the precursors of the coming revolution: "Dig it. They first killed those pigs, then ate dinner in the same room as them. They even shoved a fork into the victim's stomach. Wild."

Wild, indeed, sister!

Bernardine Dohrn

Lady Macbeth in
a purple mini-skirt

With such fingers on the trigger it is no wonder that the Weather Underground record of destruction and death is formidable, as the Chicago Daily Observer outlines:

7 October 1969 – Bombing of Haymarket Police Statue in Chicago, apparently as a “kickoff” for the “Days of Rage” riots in the city October 8–11, 1969. The Weathermen later claim credit for the bombing in their book, “Prairie Fire.”

8 October-11, 1969 – The “Days of Rage” riots occur in Chicago in which 287 Weatherman members from throughout the country were arrested and a large amount of property damage was done.

6 December 1969 – Bombing of several Chicago Police cars parked in a precinct parking lot at 3600 North Halsted Street, Chicago. The WUO stated in their book “Prairie Fire” that they had did the explosion.

27 December-31, 1969 – Weathermen hold a “War Council” meeting in Flint, MI, where they finalize their plans to submerge into an underground status from which they plan to commit strategic acts of sabotage against the government. Thereafter they are called the “Weather Underground Organization” (WUO).

13 February 1970 – Bo
mbing of several police vehicles of the Berkeley, California, Police Department .

16 February 1970 – Bombing of Golden Gate Park branch of the San Francisco Police Department, killing one officer and injuring a number of other policemen.

6 March 1970 – Bombing in the 13th Police District of the Detroit, Michigan. 34 sticks of dynamite are discovered. During February and early March, 1970, members of the WUO, led by Bill Ayers, are reported to be in De
troit, during that period, for the purpose of bombing a police facility.

6 March 1970 – “bomb factory” located in New York’s Greenwich Village accidentally explodes. WUO members Theodore die in t. The bomb was intended to be planted at a non-commissioned officer’s dance at Fort Dix, New Jersey. The bomb was packed with nails to inflict maximum casualties on detonation.

30 March 1970 – Ch
icago Police discover a WUO “bomb factory” on Chicago’s north side. A subsequent discovery of a WUO “weapons cache” in a south side Chicago apartment several days later ends WUO activity in the city.

10 May 1970 – Bombing of The National Guard Association building in Washington, D.C..

21 May 1970 – The
WUO under Bernardine Dohrn’s name releases its “Declaration of a State of War” communique.

6 June 1970 – The WUO sends a letter claiming credit for bombing of the San Francisco Hall of Justice; however, no explosion actually took place. Months later, workmen in this building located an unexploded device which had apparently been dormant for some time.

9 June 1970 – Bombing of The New York City Police Headquarters .

27 July 1970 – Bombi
ng of The Presidio army base in San Francisco. [NYT, 7/27/70]

12 September 1970 – The WUO helps Dr. Timothy Leary, break out and escape from the California Men’s Colony prison.

8 October 1970 – Bombing of Marin County courthouse. [NYT, 8/10/70]

10 October 1970 – Bombing of Queens traffic-court building . [NYT, 10/10/70, p. 12]

14 October 1970 – Bombing of The Harvard Center for International Affairs [NYT, 10/14/70, p. 30]

1 March 1971 – Bombi
ng of The United States Capitol . ” [NYT, 3/2/71]

April, 1971 – abandoned WUO “bomb factory” discovered in San Francisco, California.

29 August, 1971 – Bombing of the Office of California Prisons . [LAT, 8/29/71]

17 September 1971 – Bombing of The New York Department of Corrections in Albany, NY [NYT, 9/18/71]

15 October 1971 – Bombing of William Bundy’s office in the MIT research center. [NYT, 10/16/71]

19 May 1972 – Bombing of The Pentagon . [NYT, 5/19/72]

18 May 1973 – Bombing of the 103rd Police Precinct in New York

28 September 1973 – Bombing of ITT headquarters in New York and Rome, Italy . [NYT, 9/28/73]

6 March 1974 – Bo
mbing of the Dept. of Health, Education and Welfare offices in San Francisco

31 May 1974 – Bombing of The Office of the California Attorney General.

17 June 1974 – Bombing of Gulf Oil’s Pittsburgh headquarters .

11 September 1974 – Bombing of Anaconda Corporation (part of the Rockefeller Corporation).

29 January 1975 – Bombing of the State Department in (AP. “State Department Rattled by Blast,” The Daily Times-News, January 29 1975, p.1)

16 June 1975 – Bombing of Banco de Ponce (a Puerto Rican bank) in New York .

September, 1975 – Bombing of the Kennecott Corporation .

October 20, 1981 – Brinks robbery in which several members of the Weather Underground stole over $1 million from a Brinks armored car near Nyack, New York. The robbers murdered 2 police officers and 1 Brinks guard. Several others were wounded.

As late as 1984 two former Weathermen, Susan Rosenberg and Linda Evans were arrested with 740 lbs of explosives intended for further bombs. They received 58 and 40 year prison terms respectively but were pardoned by Bill Clinton just before he left office.

Pardoned by Bill!

Now works for Hill!!

Reviewing this sixteen year record, Ayers proclaimed, "I feel we didn't do enough" , enough shooting, enough bombing, enough armed robbing, enough killing! Note that here he is endorsing all the activities of the group, not just his own direct participation. He was indicted on three of the above 'actions' and God knows how many others he was involved in or helped to plan, approve or aid and abet as a member of the leadership. (His wife, Dohrn, was titular head of the organisation. Neither were they teenaged hotheads during these activities, being in their late twenties/early thirties at the time.)

"Memory is a motherf**ck*r."
-Professor William Ayres

Ain't it just!

Ayres is a criminal who escaped justice. "Guilty as hell," he crowed. "Free as a bird. America is a great country." He is now well feather-bedded in the elite that he and his fellow urban guerillas sought to overthrow by violence and death. He has not changed his views, he has merely ducked martyrdom for a snug professor's chair. The snake is still venomous. It simply chooses not to bare its fangs.

All terrorists are political animals. It is by their fundamental political motivations that they are ultimately judged, for some causes are worthy - a nation's freedom from occupation and oppression - while others are decidely otherwise. Bill Ayres' politics are that of the hard revolutionary left. His aim now, as in his bloody past, is the overthrow of the American way of life. Whether he ever primes another bomb or squeezes another trigger is quite beside the point. He is the same political creature now when he addresses an academic symposium as he was then lurking in the shadows with his ticking cargo.

This is Barack Obama's problem. It is not that Ayres and his femme fatale are unrepentant terrorists; the Senator isn't likely to don a balaclava and issue forth to kidnap Bill Gates anytime soon. It is rather that Ayres and Dohrn are unrepentant revolutionaries, a quintessentially political position.

Now politics is Obama's stock and trade and this is the couple who's rings he kissed in order to launch his own political career. But, we need to ask, how was the obeisance from such a weedy unknown as Barack so readily, indeed so spectacularly successful? Bill and Bernie are dedicated radicals. They risked life - their own and others - and liberty for their beliefs.

Such people, take it from me, do not lightly give their blessing to any vaguely leftish wannabe, fuzzy as fresh candy floss, least of all for the reasons his fans are now swooning over him. The Ayreses are hard-core and proud of it. it defines them. They are not going to waste their hard won political currency on woolly-headed idealists so naive as to believe that the evils of capitalism can be vanquished by uniting Blue States with, of all outlandish suggestions, Red States. For such revolutionaries politics is - must be (read your Lenin) - the continuation of war by other means.

But Ayres and Dohrn endorsed Obama handsomely and were able to open doors for him because of their revolutionary cachet, authenticated as it is by their terrorist history. They talked the talk and walked the walk, as it were. This in and of itself tells us an immense amount about the Democratic candidate's ideological orientation, the engine room, so to speak, of his politics.

True, Obama talks a very different political talk but, to judge by his sponsors and his own - to them - congenial record, the American people would be foolhardy in the extreme to give him sufficient votes to allow him to walk his ideological walk.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

thank you very much for this.