From the October 2003 Idaho Observer:
Former Georgia Rep. Bob Barr explained to the mostly European audience at the 11th Annual Mut zur Ethik conference how post-9/11 legislation such as the Patriot Act treats all Americans as suspected terrorists. You can't quite appreciate how enslaved the American people really are until you hear one of your own describe our collective enslavement to people who live an ocean away.
U.S. aggression worldwide evokes anger, fear and accusations that Bush has imperialistic intentions
IO editor Don Harkins reports on the Mut zur Ethik conference held Sept 5-7 in Feldkirch, Austria
The U.S. lost the momentum it has been running on since it emerged as the superpower champion for human rights after helping the allies defeat the axis powers in WWI. Today, the world hates, fears and distrusts the U.S. government. Today, the world is on the brink of WW IV and it blames the U.S. government, the global corporations it represents and the U.S. military as it allows itself to be used in defense of the corporate elite's "right" to rape resources with slave labor.
It was my impression that the some 400 people who attended the Mut zur Ethik conference in Feldkirch, Austria, Sept 5-7, were also angry at the American people for believing the transparent lies their government uses to justify its imperialist agenda. But then former Georgia Rep. Bob Barr explained to the predominantly European audience how the federal government is using post-9/11 legislation such as the "Patriot" Act to monitor the movements, the communications and financial transactions of all Americans with the presumption they are terrorists. Though I will not report Rep. Barr's presentation in detail, suffice it to say he insightfully explained our national peril with honor and dignity. By the time he was done, the audience seemed to understand that Americans are those unfortunate people who happen to live on the same continent the worldwide global corporate elite government is headquartered.
While in Europe, I participated in and listened to hundreds of conversations about current events and global politics. It is important to note that all conversations, even ones about the internal workings of Czechoslovakia, come around to the U.S. and how its policies are adversely affecting world events.
Does peace have a chance?
The answer is, "Yes." However, just like Genghis Kahn, Caesar, Napoleon and Hitler had to be stopped before the years of perpetual war could come to an end, the U.S. government must also be stopped. Space prevents a thorough report on all 33 presentations and 10 lectures. Following is a short review of presentations and lectures that stand out for their timeliness within the framework of the current state of world affairs. Curiously, four Americans and a Palestinian set the tone for the entire weekend.
Col. Bob Maginnis (Ret.): As a West Point grad, U.S. military advisor and FOX News war analyst, he gave an insider account of the U.S. military agenda and the basis for its foreign policies. His presentation from the viewpoint of a U.S. military "insider" described an emerging American way of war that shocked and angered the audience.
Prof. Nafez Nassal: Both he and his wife Laila came from Ramallah to report the situation there. The story they told is not the one told on FOX News or CNN. The Palestinian people are being systematically exterminated by the Sharon-led Israeli government via the U.S.-sponsored lack of peace process. The impossibility of the situation in which they currently exist brought tears to many eyes. The Nassals stated that, if the U.S. government and the Israeli government would go away, the Israeli people and the Palestinian people would do what they have always done, live and work amongst each other peacefully.
Bob Barr: As a former Republican U.S. Rep. from Georgia, he was able to shine a very bright light on how the U.S. government has used the events of 9/11 to spring into being the most paranoid, invasive and oppressive technotyranny the world has ever seen.
Prof. Robert Hickson: A West Point grad and retired army colonel, he analyzed the U.S. declaration of war on terrorism. It is his position that the U.S. has fundamentally declared war on any nation or any person that publicly disagrees with it. He said tension and distrust is growing in America and it is quickly becoming a humorless surveillance society. Prof. Hickson, in a separate presentation, discussed how the road to peace will be built on the spiritual growth of people who are able to transform the angry world around them with the quiet strength of their decency.
Stephen Sneigoski: Gave an excellent and well-supported description of the neocon movement that has taken the lead role in U.S. foreign policy and is largely responsible for making war inevitable in the Middle East and elsewhere in the world.
F. William Engdahl: As an American writer, historian and global economic analyst living in Germany, he was able to illustrate the socio/economic events leading up to the present state of the world without his thoughts being clouded by actually living in the states and being distracted by the American experience. The implications of his work are staggering to Americans who know enough about post-WWII economic history to understand them.
Thomas Kaiser: Discussed the concepts of direct democracy -- the form of government that has been used successfully in Switzerland for 160 years. In Switzerland, the world's only armed neutrality of 7.8 million people, the people vote on everything. The process is cumbersome to government. Citizens grow up believing it is their duty to have an educated opinion on political issues and to participate and to cast informed and intelligent votes. "Such a system prevents a person from voting himself into a tyranny." His presentation was rich in historical facts about the Swiss form of government.
Jurgen Rose: A lieutenant-colonel in the German Air Force, he gave an impassioned lecture on the history of the misery and suffering of war and international and natural laws governing war. "Proponents of war openly admit violating international law and claim, therefore, that international law must be amended to reflect new realities." He also said "all attempts to prevent war have been ignored by the Americans."
Dr. Sebastian Pflugbeil: A dissident nuclear physicist, he explained the potential global ramifications of the use of nuclear weapons and how this is one hell no one has the right to unleash on the earth. He also discussed the widespread use of munitions that use radioactive materials such as depleted uranium (DU). In a later conversation, he thanked me for allowing Zeit Fragen to publish a translated version of Amy Worthington's article on U.S. military use of DU (The IO, April, 2003). The audience responded to his presentation with sustained applause.
Dr. Laila Nassal: As a teacher from Ramallah who has not been able to teach for two years due to the occupational environment within which Palestinians must live, Laila discussed the challenges of teaching children to be peaceful and loving when most believe they will be dead soon.
E. Michael Jones, Ph.D: Made reference to significant moments in history where men overcame their warrior status to assert their humanity. He made two comments that stand out: "There is no social progress outside moral laws," and, "If Christ came back he would bring peace and then be killed again."
Prof. Werner Gumpel: Discussed how Russia has lost influence in world politics via economic inviability. Putin wants that to change; others do not. His country is currently corrupt at all levels and not attractive to foreign investors.
Dr. P. Bachmeier: Discussion on how U.S. activities have been systematically destabilizing Europe and indicates a covert war between EU and U.S.
Dr. Bucyalimwe Mararo: Exiled in Belgium with Congolese intellectuals, he explained how the situation in southern Africa has been worsening steadily since 1990 and the end of the Cold War. Over 3 million have died as outside influences wrest for control of his nation's resources. U.S. has supported brutal dictators who puppet its corporate interests. Dr. Mararo explained conflicts all over the continent -- all coming from forces outside for control of resources and how he and other prominent Africans are working to unite the nations to throw off western exploitation.
Karl-Jung Muller: Excellent discussion on the history of peace treaties among peoples and not nations. He discussed the process of how governments fuel hatred through demonization to justify war and how people, left to themselves, prefer to tolerate each other's differences than experience the misery of war.
IO editor Don Harkins expounding the necessity of effective pamphleteering to rally public support behind just causes at the 11th annual Mut zur Ethik conference in Feldklrch, Austria. He used three modern publications to illustrate his point: The Citizens' Rule Book, Why a Bankrupt America and, pictured, Economic Solutions. Harkins explained that he began his journey to Feldkirch nine years ago when he read these three booklets and began his independent publishing career.
Home - Current Edition
Advertising Rate Sheet
About the Idaho Observer
Some recent articles
Some older articles
Why we're here
Corrections and Clarifications
Vaccination Liberation - vaclib.org
The Idaho Observer
P.O. Box 457
Spirit Lake, Idaho 83869