Friday, January 11, 2008

Loaded language

I keep running into this and it's bugging me. Everyone keeps using language like this, but it doesn't make any sense.

"Our troops are doing a great job defending our country."

How do you argue with that? They're not aggressive, they're not invading or occupying, they're defending our country, they're on the defense, they're being attacked.

But what's the reality? When was the last time our country was actually defended by our soldiers? World War II when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor was when it started, and Japan invaded Alaska. Japan was attacking us, and we defended against them successfully. Since then we have never been attacked by another nation. Our military action in Columbia isn't defending our nation. Our military action in Afghanistan isn't defending our country.

We were attacked on 9/11. I guess you can say we're defending against Al Qaeda now. But lets be clear, Iraq has nothing to do with this. No Iraqis were involved with 9/11. Al Qaeda wasn't in Iraq until we invaded that country.

I'm not actually sure if we're defending against Al Qaeda much actually, it seems like we're using the Marshall's job of rounding up bad guys to bring them to justice. We're also trying to stabilize regions in Persia which breed terrorists, but we don't use that terminology about our police forces. We don't say Marshalls or Detectives are "defending" the city when they track down a criminal. We don't say our police services are "defending" our cities when their presence deters crime.

I wouldn't say they're "defending" our nation, I would say they are "serving" the nation. I'm not sure whose interests they're always serving, mostly it seems like corporations' interests.

Now that I think of it, when corporations and governments merge like we see here, that's actually the definition of fascism.

No comments: