Orwellian Newspeak and Pre-Emptive “Defence”

War is Peace.  Ignorance is Strength.

— George Orwell,  1984

A self-appointed vigilante, carrying a loaded gun, decides to look for “danger” in his neighborhood.  He begins to follow a 17-year-old boy, who is carrying candy and a soft drink.  The boy asks why he is being followed; words are exchanged.  The man aims his gun at the boy, fires, and kills the boy dead.  The man claims he acted in “self-defense.”

A vigilante Super-State, armed to the teeth with thousands of WMDs, claims to perceive a threat from a small country, still battered and tattered from a war lost over a decade ago.  However, international inspectors are allowed to scour the country and find no such threat (i.e., WMDs).  Even so, to “prevent” any possibility of such a threat, the vigilante Super-State launches an all-out War on the small country—which is quickly pulverized, incinerated and murdered on a mass scale.  Shortly thereafter, it is discovered that the small country was un-armed.  “But the small country might still have made war!” the mass-murdering Super-State proclaimed.  “We reserve the right to pre-emptively attack in the name of our security and interests!”

The vigilante Super-State, revealed to have lied about the existence of any threat posed by the small country, is chastised for exercising poor judgment—and its genocidal war-making is largely excused and “dis-appeared” into the dungeon of repressed-memory.

Yet, on the margins of collective consciousness, a disquieting sense of festering injustice still persists—and presses for the liberation of exiled Truth.

William Manson is the author of The Psychodynamics of Culture (Greenwood Press). Read other articles by William.