Friday, July 25, 2014

note to democracy: please stop bringing so much joy to the world, thanks

(Crossposting from facebook, again. Two posts into one, actually.)

Hamas was democratically elected.* By western convention, this means it's totally cool if they have weapons of mass destruction, like say, Israel's or the U.S.'s nuke stockpiles, or simply, air-to-ground missiles (it's pretty massively destructive if it can blow up a wedding, no?). This because democracies are good and pure, whereas dictatorships and terrorists are evil. Because democracies never just invade countries on bogus premises. Democracies never blow up entire cities like Hiroshima or Nagasaki. So it's fine if democracies, exemplars of civilized decency that they are, have massive stockpiles of weapons. For example, the cutting edge weaponry amassed by the U.S. Defense (!) Department that accounts for half of the world's military spending. They've earned that by demonstrating their peacefulness over the past few centuries.

Think about that when you hear "Hamas is hiding weapons under schools!" I haven't researched whether thus is true because democratically elected governments, again, by convention, have weapons. They use force to control territory. (Where do you keep your toothbrush? I keep mine by the sink but I understand if you have different habits.) Mind you, this democracy isn't launching aggressive wars and you might find it understandable that they'd want to keep some weapons around when one of the world's top forces of destruction is right outside the building...whoa, wait, strike that, now they're inside. Where does Israel hide its weapons? Often in urban areas, for one thing (human shields!), but mainly, they don't resort to hiding them under schools because they're virtuous and...nah, because their giant badass weapons aren't vulnerable to attacks by Hamas' relatively weak-sauce weapons.

This article calls it "the radical Islamic movement Hamas." That's code for bad guys, if you were wondering. Whether they are or not is beside the point. You're meant to hate them. That's the point. Evidence is not required. You didn't even notice, they slipped it past you. Just root against them, like your most hated team. They say "terrorist" and show you a picture of a guy with a turban. Now you hate them. It's like the way you didn't notice how they make you walk to the back of the supermarket for the milk, and how you end up buying stuff you wouldn't have on the way. Or how you have positive associations with Ronald McDonald even though he's poisoning your kids. You don't even realize how it happened that you came to think Hamas = bad guys, Israel= good guys, but it did. That's how propaganda works.

You'll never come across the phrase "the radical Zionist Israeli government" in corporate-sponsored media, even when they've been the shot-callers, the aggressors, guilty of more terrorism, in the technical non-propagandistic sense of terrorizing civilian populations, by any objective measure, and when they're currently waging a holy war, if ever one has been waged.

No comments: