by SHANE QUINN
Morning Star | 22 March, 2017
SOME anniversaries are respectfully observed annually in the West and widely reported by the obedient “free press” — International Holocaust Memorial Day, Victory in Europe Day, Remembrance Day and so on.
Yet the following are anniversaries suitably airbrushed from history books, the media, political rhetoric and polite conversation which serves the requirements of Western power.
1962: US president John F Kennedy invades Vietnam
The 50th anniversary of the worst level of post-World War II aggression passed by five years ago, and went entirely unreported in Western mainstream circles, almost as if it has disappeared from history.
Kennedy’s direct invasion left millions dead and destroyed large parts of the Vietnamese countryside and later brought death and destruction to much of South-east Asia.
The silent passing of this anniversary represents an astonishing level of historical forgetfulness.
The conflict has long been mislabelled “the Vietnam war,” when in reality the United States waged a war of aggression against a weaker nation, a prime example of what the Nuremberg trials held to be “the supreme international crime.”
Kennedy further initiated chemical warfare, used napalm to destroy vegetation and crops, starved the rebellious population of South Vietnam, later forcing them into concentration camps — or “strategic hamlets,” a tactic copied from the British.
1953: The Korean war
North Korea routinely behaves recklessly. Yet any wise physician would suggest there are usually tragic episodes leading up to a patient’s insanity.
Try to contemplate your country being completely obliterated by the world’s foremost military power; it certainly would leave a lingering impression.
The US dropped more bombs in this conflict than during their entire Pacific campaign during WWII.
Furthermore, the North Korean leadership were likely aware of the US public military accounts lauding the Asian country’s destruction.
By the end, the US Air Force could find nothing left to bomb, so they were sent to destroy North Korea’s dams that controlled their water supply — a classic Nuremberg war crime.
As the water gushed from the broken dams, it resulted in enormous rice crop failure and starvation.
1973: The US overthrows Salvador Allende in Chile
It is commonly known as “the first 9/11” in South America and dutifully excised from Western history.
On September 11 1973 the US under president Richard Nixon vigorously overthrew Salvador Allende’s democratically elected government.
The US’s aim was, as national security adviser Henry Kissinger said, to kill the “virus” of independent nationalism, so as to avoid further “contagion.”
Thousands of people lost their lives during the coup, including Allende himself. Much worse followed. General Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship was installed by the US in 1974, terrorising Chileans through murders and torture for over 15 years. Pinochet’s reign helped the US retain control of “our hemisphere,” as Kennedy once put it.
Meanwhile the September 11 2001 terrorist attacks are marked annually by the willing mainstream media in the West.
1953: The US and Britain overthrow Iran’s elected prime minister and reinstall an absolute monarchy
Noam Chomsky wrote recently: “Literally not a day has passed since 1953 when the US has not been torturing the people of Iran.” In 1953, the US and British overthrew Iran’s parliamentary government, led by prime minister Mohammad Mossadegh.
The coup reinstalled the Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, who would compile one of the world’s worst human rights records.
The Shah was supported to the bitter end by the West. It wasn’t until the Iranian Revolution in 1979 that he was finally overthrown.
In the decades since, the US has tirelessly undermined Iran.
President Jimmy Carter immediately tried to initiate another coup, while Roland Reagan strongly supported Saddam Hussein in the Iran-Iraq war, costing half a million lives.
US sanctions on Iran were long imposed, becoming yet more severe during the Bill Clinton and George W Bush years.
2003: The US-led invasion of Iraq
The most extreme crime of the 21st century has been referred to in elite circles, and with a straight face, as “the liberation of Iraq.”
In reality, the invasion of Iraq resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people, bolstered existing terrorist organisations, helped spawn Isis, instigated a continuing sectarian conflict, fostered the current refugee crisis and destabilised much of the Middle East.
Iraq was largely destroyed by the invasion, and its implications extendinto the future.
The 10th anniversary of the attack scarcely received recognition in Washington.
Bush was the driving force behind “the supreme international crime.”
However, Tony Blair’s Britain, hugely supported by the Conservative Party, tagged along as the “junior partner” in crime.
The invasion was perpetrated on the disingenuous pretexts of eliminating weapons of mass destruction and ousting Saddam Hussein — the same brutal dictator previously given ample support by presidents Carter, Reagan and George Bush Snr.