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Jaks View from Vancouver

Tuesday, September 24, 2002

The End of the World Is Coming To A Town Near You

So, whoever is the occupant of the United States' White House can now, according to the shrub's new strategic doctrine, unilaterally decide who has been good and who has been bad. Based on that assessment -- and that assessment alone -- the bully-boys on Pennsylvania Avenue will decide whether or not to slap you around with a nuke or two.

This has actually been true for two generations or more. The difference now is that Bush and his future counterparts don't even need to pretend that anyone else agrees with them and the use of nukes as a first strike option has, for the very first time, been declared as policy. Sinister indeed.

Moreover, the arrogance of the United States government has been revealed to all. The United States "will not allow" any state -- friendly or otherwise -- to match it in military strength. In other words, if Europe, say, decided to become an independent global superpower, the United States claims the right to say "No!" In this case, democracy doesn't count. What the people of Europe -- or anywhere else for that matter -- want is of no account. Only American interests matter.

I'm in my fifties now. I can't be bothered to fight this fight any more. If the younger people of the world would ever get their faces out of fashion magazines and fast food wrappers maybe they could put some pressure on to change things. If they don't, they'll find themselves as slaves to the interests, deprived of rights one by one, forced to go along as the price for continued survival. That's their future, may their Gods help them.

Mine? I'm going back to my poetry and my storytelling and my family. I'll be watching hockey, soccer and the America's Cup preliminaries. I'll be taking a lot more pictures and making a lot more images. You'll find them at Jak's Place if you're at all interested.

I'll be turning back on the comments here (when I cvan find the code, which I seem to have misplaced right now). Use it as a place to vent or whatever. I'll pop in from time to time and maybe post some more. We'll see.

Thursday, September 12, 2002

Why Chile?

After my piece yesterday, I was asked several times how on earth I could possibly choose to "celebrate" the anniversary of the 1973 coup in Chile rather than the anniversay of the events collectively called "9-11". I'll try to explain because I think it is important.

The attacks which took place on September 11th 2001 were the work of a gang. A highly organized, well-financed and fanatically-moitivated gang, it is true. But only a gang nonetheless. What that means is that they can be identified as individuals and -- given enough time, resources and intelligence -- they can be tracked down eventually and punished for their actions. Even the very act of a country such as the United States trying to track them down thoroughly disrupts their operations and severely inhibits their ability to launch major attacks again.

But what of the group that planned and directed the overthrow of a democratically elected government, the murder of its democratically elected leader, and put in train the events which led directly to the torture and death of thousands of Chilean men, women and children? That group was and is the only superpower. How do we punish that group? The answer is we can't. They inevitably get away with it. And do it again and again. That is why such events are so much more dangerous that the al-Qaida attacks of last year.

Moreover, the fact that these actions in Chile were taken not by some fanatical religious zealots, but, rather, by a supposedly civilized and allegedly democratic government; and the fact that events like Chile 1973 have been repeated over and over again -- in Indonesia and Cambodia, Iran and Iraq, Nicaragua, Dominica, Haiti, Greece, Lebanon, Vietnam, Panama, Sudan, Somalia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Colombia, etc., etc. -- by generations of U.S. policy makers; makes them even more reprehensible than the despical murders of September 11th, 2001.

So, memorials to September 11th, 1973 remind us that, while 9-11 was a despicable tragedy, the murderous interventionist policies of the United States government are no less tragic and just as unacceptable.

Wednesday, September 11, 2002

Change is a-coming ...

There's gonna be a few changes around here. Changes in content, changes in the look, changes in what I want this space to be used for.

And the first change is to get rid of comments on any page dealing with news and politics. I'm back one day and already I'm being called an "asshole" and a "liar." I don't need that, can't be bothered to deal with the know-nothings who think that is political debate (they deserve a high school dropout like Bush as their leader.) Anyone wants to chat, my email address is on the left.

As for content, the folks at Blog*Spot (our hosts here) have started an images hosting service and so there will be plenty more of my photographs and digital artwork in the weeks to come.

Stormy Mountain Sunset   c.2002 Jak King

Hopefully, there will be a few more fiction and memoir pieces, along with new poetry.

As for current affairs, I will most definitely be tracking the coming invasion of Iraq and I will continue monitoring the brutal occupation of Palestine. However, for the next few months at least, I will be aiming to concentrate on the mayoral election here in Vancouver; a contest that is more interesting this year than for many years past. Our beautiful city has a fistful of problems that need serious attention.

For Rent: Desperate   c.2002 Jak King

I doubt, though, I will be able to keep my mouth shut on other issues for very long.

Hope you all can stick around.

Today Is An Important Anniversary

On September 11th, 1973, the democratically elected government of the Republic of Chile was violently overthrown by the government of the United States of America and its vicious local thugs. That morning, September 11th, Salvador Allende, the democratically elected President of Chile, was murdered by those same U.S.-directed forces.

Over the next dreadful years, the military-business-backed dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet, supported, financed, armed and encouraged by Washington, killed and maimed thousands upon thousands of Chilean civilians; men, women and children. The degree of barbarity inflicted on these victims is hard to square with Chile's once-enviable repuation as a sophisticated nation.

Twenty-eight years later, more than 3,000 American families were made to reap the brutal harvest sown by this and countless other actions taken "in the American interest."

Salvador Allende's last words, broadcast over the radio on September 11th, 1973:
"Workers of my fatherland, have faith in Chile and her destiny. Others will overcome this grey, sad moment when treason strains to conquer. Go forward knowing that much more sooner than later, the great avenues will open anew to let pass free people to build a better society."
* * * *

Yes, September 11th should always be remembered.

Friday, September 06, 2002

Next week ...

Enough of the summer re-runs already! Just like the networks, it's time for the new season.

I have decided to re-launch Jak's View with an anniversary special on September 11th ..... but you won't like it!