There is quite an uproar in Punditry, USA right now because the Pastor of Barack Obama’s church, who was involved in Obama’s Presidential campaign, made some controversial comments regarding September 11, 2001. Rev. Jeremiah Wright essentially said that
America itself was to blame for the attacks of 9/11, and that racism is an endemic problem across our country.
What I have hard time wrapping my mind around is the fact that this is somehow still controversial. 9/11/2001 was more than 6 and half years ago, and somehow the fact that our government’s policies and actions in the Middle East are in fact to blame for the brutal al-Qaeda attacks of 9/11/2001 is still controversial. The U.S. government’s overtly racist response to Hurricane Katrina ravaging the blacks of the Gulf Coast was less than 3 years ago, and somehow this is still controversial?
Let me take this opportunity to state on thing quite clearly. Rev. Wright’s comments regarding 9/11/2001 and racism in America are not controversial – because they are absolutely correct. This is not even something that should be up for debate – it’s quite obvious.
Had our government not relished in the facts that the blacks of the Gulf Coast were bruised, battered and beaten down by the catastrophe of Hurricane Katrina, racism would still be an issue. Had the government not done everything in its power to practically ensure that New Orleans would be destroyed, racism would still be an issue. Had “old-fashioned justice” not been enacted in Jena, Louisiana, racism would still be an issue. Why? Because centuries of slavery and oppression are not forgiven overnight, especially when the race war is still going on underneath the pretty white surface that the media paints for us to see.
Had our government not turned the Middle East into a virtual U.S. military base, al-Qaeda would likely not exist. Had our government not economically, politically and militarily backed every single Israeli atrocity against Arabs, al-Qaeda would likely not exist. Had our government treated people of the Middle East with respect and dignity, instead of regarding them as pawns to be used in its own game of resource-grabbing, al-Qaeda would likely not exist. Had our government respected the sovereignty of third world nations and not beaten them down with economic and military domination, al-Qaeda would likely not exist. Had the U.S. government not built an empire seeking to encompass the entire planet, al-Qaeda would likely not exist.
Make no mistake – the 9/11/2001 attacks were atrocious, and to be condemned. But in light of decades of U.S. terrorism and aggression against the peoples of the Middle East and every other oppressed part of the planet, they are easy to understand and to be expected. Much in the same way that Iran would be logically insane to not at least be looking into building a nuclear bomb as a deterrent to U.S. threats of aggression, militant Muslims and Arabs in the Middle East would be insane to not be taking some sort of violent action to resist the U.S.’s imperialist hegemony. People can only take so much brutality; Were I a citizen of the Middle East that had watched as the U.S. turned my world into a theatre of imperialism, I might have strapped the bomb to my chest as well when it became apparent that my governments were going to bow down to U.S. demands.