I have in the past been accused of being 'anti-American' and, while that was perhaps true, those sentiments were directed primarily to the US government and its agencies and not the people of the nation, on the grounds that, democracy notwithstanding, the people were not responsible for the atrocities of the psychopathic criminal enterprise acting as their government.
My stance has changed. Just as leaves cannot turn color and roots cannot wither without the silent knowledge of the whole tree, no government can commit centuries of unremitting wars and atrocities against other peoples and nations without the knowledge and approval of the great majority of its population.
In America, violence is a universal value, like democracy and pet food. This is how it was several hundred years ago, and not much has changed:
The truth of "The First Thanksgiving", if we can identify one such event as representative, is rather less harmonious than the mythical schoolbook narrative. (1) Here is one typical celebration reported by an eyewitness, when a group of White settlers trapped about 700 natives, mostly women and children, at the Mystic River near Boston. The Governor of the area, a Mr. William Bradford, wrote in his diary the following graphic description: "To see them frying in the fire, and the streams of their blood quenching the same, and the stench was horrible; but the victory seemed a sweet sacrifice and they Gave Praise Thereof to God". There were many more similar events, not to thank God for the harvest but to celebrate murderous victories over the natives. During some of these multi-ethnic Thanksgiving feasts in New York City, residents cut the heads off natives and made sport of kicking them through the streets of Manhattan like soccer balls.
A US Governor Joseph Dudley declared in 1704 a "General Thanksgiving for God's infinite goodness to extend His favors in defeating the expeditions of the [natives] against us, and the good success given us against them, by delivering so many of them into our hands". Another Christian, thankful for the invention of smallpox, wrote, "It pleased God to visite these Indeans with a great sickness, and such a mortalitie that of a 1000 and a half of them dyed, and many of them did rott above ground for want of burial."
For years, some of the best-paying jobs in America were of killing Indians, and The Boy Scouts of America was conceived to prepare small boys for this career. John Kozy wrote, "The United States of America was conceived and nurtured by violence. The Europeans who colonized America were neither tolerant or enlightened; they were the dregs of society, and they even despised each other." (2) America as a nation was spawned in a violence that has existed uninterrupted for 500 years. The guns and killings in society, the hundreds of wars initiated against innocent nations and peoples, the century-long history of torture, the constant daily violence on television, in childrens' games, and in the streets and schools, are all merely symptoms of a deeply-ingrained pathological violent nature of America. Karl Weiss observed that America today is "a society of force so shot through with violence that any other value has little or no meaning".
The US is the most heavily armed civilian society in the world, with only 4% of the world's population owning more guns than all other citizens in the entire rest of the world. American civilians own more firearms (about 400 million) than do all the police forces and military (about 225 million) in the world. The American Military News states, "US civilians own 400 million guns compared to military's 4.5 million." (3) (4) (5)
The US has hundreds of mass killings in schools, at least one per week. In one 6-month period from 2012, there were 40 of these at universities and 40 in kindergartens and elementary schools. American schools have armed officers and kindergarten children wear bulletproof backpacks. Many nations and provinces have their national flower or animal, but US States have a "State gun". In China, parents look for new homes near good schools but Americans use the number of killings by neighborhood as their main reference when buying a new home.
Let's turn to some foreign affairs examples and see how they relate to the people of the US.
We can recall the US military destroyed supplies of potable water in Iraq, resulting in more than 500,000 infant deaths, with US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright saying those deaths were "worth it" to teach Saddam a lesson. How did the American people react, to the fact of Albright's genocide and to her casual appreciation of her own handiwork? They didn't. I could find no trace anywhere of objection by the American people to this inhumanity.
The US military fired into Iraq millions of artillery rounds containing depleted uranium which vaporises and permeates everything including humans, with Iraq experiencing several hundred thousand hideously deformed births; babies with anywhere from no heads to three heads, babies born with their internal organs or brains entirely outside their body cavities or crania, babies with any number of limbs emanating from any and every part of their bodies, and a great many categorised by UN physicians as "unidentifiable lumps of flesh". How did Americans as a people react to this revelation? They didn't. Not a murmur that I could find anywhere.
One hospital in Iraq was cataloguing all the deformed births, preserving the fetuses, maintaining accurate records and photographs, evidence the US government did not want exposed. Their solution was to launch an airstrike, bombing the entire hospital to rubble, not only destroying all the records and evidence but killing all the victims along with the medical staff who were cataloguing it. This wasn't a secret. How did Americans as a people react to this unspeakable crime? They didn't. No complaints anywhere.
Still with Iraq, the US government was displeased with the foreign news emanating from the country during the invasion, providing evidence contrary to the official cone of silence desired. In response the US military ran a tank into downtown Baghdad, adjacent to the hotel where foreign journalists were encamped, and blew out the entire floor of the hotel. This wasn't a secret. The American people and their media were completely silent to this deliberate murder of many reporters, to say nothing of suppressing freedom of the press.
For many decades, the US military employed no snipers. Military adventures were conducted with brute force, and snipers were universally depicted in books and movies asthe lowest form of cowards who avoided "a fair fight" by hiding in trees and bushes while killing people who didn't even know they were there. That changed. Now that the US has them, snipers are the highest level of hero; witness Chris Kyle, sniper extraordinaire who killed more than 100 people. Kyle was good at his job and loved it: "I loved killing. I only wish I could have done more of it." In one account he claimed his favorite kill was a 1,000-yard shot where he blew the brains out of an infant's head while it was cradled in its mother's arms. How did Americans as a people react to this event-ridden news? They celebrated it with movies and books, and they built bronze statues in commemoration of the man. The movie was directed by Clint Eastwood - "Dirty Harry" in more than name. Amazon included the film in "Best Sellers - TV Shows Kids & Family - Legend of the American Sniper". Kyle's memoir was the #1 New York Times bestselling book for nearly a year, and the movie was nominated for six academy awards, including best picture. San Antonio, Texas erected a 9-foot statue as "A fitting tribute to an American hero."
As to the interference in the governments of other nations, the US media have voiced no objections and aside from a few brave souls writing books that Amazon suppresses or refuses to sell, there is nothing from the American people. They seem happy they are being taught to hate Chinese, Russians and Iranians, and voice no objection to their government's current attempted destruction of Venezuela, the decades-long suppression of Cuba, nor the horrific misery and death toll their government has inflicted on the nations of South and Central America, Asia and Africa. Since Vietnam, the American people increasingly approve of their nation's criminal misadventures abroad, this approval transformed now into active praise.
The American people seem proud that their country has removed more than 50 legitimate governments and replaced them with brutal dictatorships. The same is true of the American record of assassinations of world leaders. Not a peep from Americans anywhere. Today these assassinations are so popular (Khadaffi, binLaden, Solemani) that the people party in the streets on the news that their President has killed someone in another country that he didn't like.
It was the same with the revelations of the immense torture regime established by Bush, Rumsfeld and Cheney. Not a murmur anywhere. Moreover, torture became embedded in the new definition of democracy for many Americans, Hollywood celebrating it with a popular TV series where the American hero tortures people in the name of Good. Congress was, if anything, worse than the American people. President Obama at first threatened to make public the entire photo and video record of the atrocities. Having been convinced otherwise, packages of the entire affair were prepared for each member of Congress and stored in a secure location for individual pick-up. Shortly thereafter, the CIA began having second thoughts and obtained an order for the repossession of those torture packages. But they needn't have worried; the packages were still in their original secure location. The Members of Congress didn't even care enough to pick them up.
The American people, as a people, raise no objection to the widely-known and undisputed fact that their government, military and CIA have interfered in virtually every election in every foreign country during the past 75 years. In total, of the 200 or so main countries in the world today, only three have not been either directly invaded, subjected to brutal military, diplomatic and/or financial pressures, been overwhelmed with American propaganda in their media, encountered huge interference in their national elections, and/or otherwise suffered massive interference from the US government. Results include poverty, misery, illiteracy, and tens of millions of deaths. While the American people may be unaware of the specifics and details in each case, almost no American is unaware of the circumstances of all these cases. And what is the response of the American people, as a people, to this litany of 100 years of unremittingbullying and abuse of all nations including so-called 'allies'? Only silence. There are no signs that Americans care of the damage their nation inflicts on the world on a daily basis.
Fidel Castro is in the Guinness Book of World Records as the person to have survived the most assassination attempts. In 2006, the BBC produced a documentary titled "638 Ways to Kill Castro". The US media dismissed it as a description of "the various ways people and governments have tried to assassinate Fidel Castro over the years". But it wasn't various "people and governments"; it was entirely the US government behind those plots. The media further dismissed this by categorising many of the attempts on Castro's life as "humorous", and average Americans appear to share that sentiment. For sixty years, no Americans have been unaware of any of this, and for sixty years no Americans have objected to any of it.
Cuba is of course only one of a great many nations the US government has destroyed or maintained in abject poverty. There are at least 100 of these, and still counting. Most of Latin America is in this position, with Venezuela today being driven into poverty and famine from a refusal to permit wholesale American looting of the country, as are Iran, Syria, and many others. Trump has, for four years, done his very best to ruin China's economy and major corporations. No Americans are unaware of this. Do Americans as a people object to this devastating bullying? Not that I'm aware of. If anything, they seem proud of it.
Are Americans as a people inherently evil? Yes, I would say so, for the most part. Are Americans as a people, and from their government down, criminally insane? I don't see how we could avoid answering in the affirmative.
Mr. Romanoff's writing has been translated into 28 languages and his articles posted on more than 150 foreign-language news and politics websites in more than 30 countries, as well as more than 100 English-language platforms. Larry Romanoff is a retired management consultant and businessman. He has held senior executive positions in international consulting firms, and owned an international import-export business. He has been a visiting professor at Shanghai's Fudan University, presenting case studies in international affairs to senior EMBA classes. Mr. Romanoff lives in Shanghai and is currently writing a series of ten books generally related to China and the West. He is one of the contributing authors to Cynthia McKinney's new anthology 'When China Sneezes'. His full archive can be seen at https://www.moonofshanghai.com/ and http://www.bluemoonofshanghai.com/
He can be contacted at: email@example.com