by Paul Craig Roberts
June 10, 2009
The power of irrational fear in the US
is extraordinary. It ranks up there with the Israel Lobby, the
military/security complex, and the financial gangsters. Indeed,
fear might be the most powerful force in America.
Americans are at ease with their country's
aggression against Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan, which has
resulted in a million dead Muslim civilians and several million
refugees, because the US government has filled Americans with
fear of terrorists. "We have to kill them over there before
they come over here."
Fearful of American citizens, the US government
is building concentration camps apparently all over the country.
According to news reports, a $385 million US government contract
was given by the Bush/Cheney Regime to Cheney's company, Halliburton,
to build "detention centers" in the US. The corporate
media never explained for whom the detention centers are intended.
Most Americans dismiss such reports. "It
can't happen here." However, In northeastern Florida not
far from Tallahassee, I have seen what might be one of these camps.
There is a building inside a huge open area fenced with razor
wire. There is no one there and no signs. The facility appears
new and unused and does not look like an abandoned prisoner work
What is it for?
Who spent all that money for what?
There are Americans who are so terrified
of their lives being taken by terrorists that they are hoping
the US government will use nuclear weapons to destroy "the
Muslim enemy." The justifications concocted for the use of
nuclear bombs against Japanese civilian populations have had their
effect. There are millions of Americans who wish "their"
government would kill everyone that "their" government
When I tell these people that they will
die of old age without ever seeing a terrorist, they think I am
insane. Don't I know that terrorists are everywhere in America?
That's why we have airport security and homeland security. That's
why the government is justified in breaking the law to spy on
citizens without warrants. That's why the government is justified
to torture people in violation of US law and the Geneva Conventions.
If we don't torture them, American cities will go up in mushroom
clouds. Dick Cheney tells us this every week.
Terrorists are everywhere. "They
hate us for our freedom and democracy." When I tell
America's alarmed citizens that the US has as many stolen elections
as any country and that our civil liberties have been eroded by
"the war on terror" they lump me into the terrorist
category. They automatically conflate factual truth with anti-Americanism.
The same mentality prevails with regard
to domestic crime. Most Americans, including, unfortunately, juries,
assume that if the police make a case against a person and a prosecutor
prosecutes it, the defendant is guilty. Most Americans are incapable
of believing that police or a prosecutor would frame an innocent
person for career or bureaucratic reasons or out of pure meanness.
Yet, it happens all the time. Indeed,
it is routine.
Frame-ups are so routine that 96% of the
criminally accused will not risk a "jury of their peers,"
preferring to negotiate a plea bargain agreement with the prosecutor.
The jury of their peers are a brainwashed lot, fearful of crime,
which they have never experienced but hear about all the time.
Criminals are everywhere, doing their evil deeds.
The US has a much higher percentage of
its population in prison than "authoritarian" countries,
such as China, a one-party state. An intelligent population might
wonder how a "freedom and democracy" country could have
incarceration rates far higher than a dictatorship, but Americans
fail this test. The more people that are put in prison, the safer
Lawrence Stratton and I describe frame-up
techniques in The Tyranny of Good Intentions. Police and prosecutors
even frame the guilty, as it is easier than convicting them on
One case that has been before us for years,
but is resolutely neglected by the corporate media, whose function
is to scare the people, is that of Troy Davis.
Troy Davis was convicted of killing a
police officer. The only evidence connecting him to the crime
is the testimony of "witnesses," the vast majority of
whom have withdrawn their testimony. The witnesses say they testified
falsely against Troy Davis because of police intimidation and
One would think that this would lead to
a new hearing and trial. But not in America. The Republican judicial
nazis have created the concept of "finality." Even if
the evidence shows that a wrongfully convicted person is innocent,
finality requires that we execute him. If the convicted person
is executed, we can assume he was guilty, because America has
a pure justice system and never punishes the innocent. Everyone
in prison and everyone executed is guilty. Otherwise, they they
wouldn't be in prison or executed.
It is all very simple if you are an American.
America is pure, but other countries, except for our allies, are
The same goes for our wars. Everyone we
kill, whether they are passengers on Serbian commuter trains or
attending weddings, funerals, or children playing soccer in Iraq,
is a terrorist, or we would not have killed them. So was the little
girl who was raped by our terrorist-fighting troops and then murdered,
brutally, along with her family.
America only kills terrorists. If we kill
you, you are a terrorist.
Americans are the salt of the earth. They
never do any wrong. Only those other people do. Not the Israelis,
And police, prosecutors, and juries never
make mistakes. Everyone accused is guilty.
Fear has made every American a suspect,
eroded our rights, and compromised our humanity.
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