A detailed checklist and commentary by an American academic here on
The author concludes that the presentation of many of these interventions to the American public has been at odds with the reality:
“First, they were explained to the
“Second, although nearly all the post-World War II interventions were carried out in the name of ‘freedom’ and ‘democracy’, nearly all of them in fact defended dictatorships controlled by pro-U.S. elites. Whether in
“One of the most dangerous ideas of the 20th century was that ‘people like us’ could not commit atrocities against civilians.
· German and Japanese citizens believed it, but their militaries slaughtered millions of people.
· British and French citizens believed it, but their militaries fought brutal colonial wars in Africa and
· Russian citizens believed it, but their armies murdered civilians in
· Israeli citizens believed it, but their army mowed down Palestinians and Lebanese.
· Arabs believed it, but suicide bombers and hijackers targeted
"Every country, every ethnicity, every religion, contains within it the capability for extreme violence. Every group contains a faction that is intolerant of other groups, and actively seeks to exclude or even kill them. War fever tends to encourage the intolerant faction, but the faction only succeeds in its goals if the rest of the group acquiesces or remains silent. The attacks of September 11 were not only a test for
What a pity that this last piece of advice wasn’t heeded!