A picture of former Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz appeared in the Aspen Daily News on Tuesday. It came a day late. It should have been in the April Fool’s Day edition. Not that I’m claiming that Mr. Wolfowitz is a fool — notwithstanding the similarity of his appearance to Howdy Doody. (Howdy was actually a dummy not a fool.) The fools are the millions of Americans that let themselves be propagandized into supporting wars in the Middle East. What did George W. Bush say: Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice — uh?
The only beneficiaries of those wars were the U.S. and British military-industrial complexes, the generals and other flag officers whose careers flourished, the media pundits and political advisors that hawked the war, Saudi Arabia whose oil export prices remained high when Iraq’s oil couldn’t get to market, and the Israeli hard right that survives on fear and brutality. And, let’s not forget, a second term for Bush and Cheney. He didn’t make the mistake his dad made by ending the first Gulf War too early.
The American people got a massive recession that has decimated the net worth of the working people. Trillions of dollars have been stolen in the form of foreclosures, reductions in social benefits (even ones already paid for), inflated prices for fuel and other staples and a debt-creating educational system. We are paying for the wars, if not directly in extra taxes.
One of the oddities of Mr. Wolfowitz, something he apparently shares with a number of the so called “neo-con” security advisors of the U.S., is dual citizenship with Israel. Dual citizenship can be complicated. It has only been allowed since a court decision in 1967. If you naturalize, you must give up your previous citizenship. Seeking foreign citizenship, working for a foreign government, or making an oath to a foreign state are grounds for forfeiting your U.S. citizenship.
By some reporting there may be 500,000 Israelis with U.S. passports living in the U.S. now. A headline in Haaretz, Israel’s oldest newspaper, claims “Fear is driving Israelis to obtain foreign passports.” There is a modern diaspora due to the constant tension of daily life in Israel. As in the U.S., constant threats of terrorism are very effective for controlling political power.
So why do you suppose that the Pitkin County Republicans thought he would be a suitable speaker on, of all days, the first of April?