Evil De Jour

Nothing in the entire world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.
— Martin Luther King Jr. (1929-1968)

Every now and then when some poor country is about to receive some American military attention, the American people are prepared by an intense and unceasing propaganda. They are bombarded day in and day out by what a threat the leader of that country is to the peace loving, civilized and democratic people of the United States. Newspapers, TVs, radios, blogs and anything else that can in anyway convey a message to the people are employed to present this person as the worst of the worst.

With the invasion of Panama in 1989, it was just the same then as it is now. Manuel Noriega the president of Panama, who incidentally for many years had worked for the CIA (for Bush Senior), was no longer following the orders from Washington. The US decided to replace him.

Overnight Mr. Noriega became the evilest man on the planet. He was the dictator and a drug lord that had to be dealt with. He was made responsible for the entire drug trafficking in the US. He was made the most dangerous man in the world. He was the cruellest dictator that ever existed. In addition we were told that people of Panama deserved “democracy.”

After a short while the American people started thinking that if Mr. Noriega was removed then the drug problem in the US would vanish as well. So in December 1989, 27,000 American soldiers invaded Panama. However, in order to keep the democratic tradition alive in Panama, a few hours prior to the invasion, the US military appointed Mr. Guillermo Endara as the new President of Panama. The ceremony took place inside a US military base in the Panama Canal Zone.

Well, the drug problem is still there. Mr. Noriega turned-out to be nothing but a CIA agent that wasn’t following the orders. After a few months people forgot all about it. Later it was Saddam Hussein that became the most evil person in the world. Once again the media started the same old song and dance routine. The Gulf War ensued and thousands of people were killed.

Now it is Iran’s turn; and the evil de jour is Mr. Ahmadinejad. He is described as anything from Hitler reincarnate to the most dangerous man on earth. Never mind that he is not the head of an army, or that he has no real power; the main thing is that he is EVIL. Never mind that there are no Iranian troops in Canada or Mexico; never mind that he does not possess thousands of nuclear missiles; he is still the most dangerous man alive and we have to do something about him.

It always amazes me to see that people, time and again, fall for the same old song and dance routine. Don’t you ever get a sense of déjà vu? Can’t people see that they are being, so openly, manipulated? Apparently not.

The very people who are preparing us for another war are the only ones that are going to benefit from it. The majority always loses and most likely you and I will be among the losers. We are the ones who have to pay for it, and we will. We are already doing it by having to work more just to make ends meet. But no amount of money can give one that joy of seeing “our boys” smashing those evil, backward people, right?

We may feel great for a while seeing all those smart bombs killing thousands of people, but the feeling of the superiority along with the entertainment that war footage provides will be fleeting. After a few months of the bloodshed and after a few leaks, one begins to question the wisdom of it all. But by then most people will have forgotten that they were also one of those that supported the war.

As you shake your head and hope for it all to end soon, you are presented with a surge. You hope that if more troops are poured in, things will cool down. But as soon as you begin to realise that this was a bad idea, another EVIL man is identified, and you begin to think that something has to be done about him otherwise the world as we know it will come to an end. And so things will just continue to deteriorate and, before you know it, the country is involved in a war that it no longer can extricate itself from.

Meanwhile, all these wars and threats of war are frightening people around the world. People are asking themselves who is going to be next? There is already a joke going around in the Muslim world about this huge bald eagle and the fox. It goes something like this: once a zebra saw a fox distraught and running wild in the jungle. The zebra stopped the fox and asked him what was wrong. The fox answered: “You know about the huge eagle don’t you?” The zebra answered, “Yes.” The fox said: “Well, she’s gone crazy. The eagle says that she has dreamt that there is an animal with three testicles that is going to destroy the jungle.” The zebra smiled and said: “Well none of us has three testicles, so why are you running?” The fox said: “Because the eagle first pulls out the testicles and then she counts them.” After hearing this, the zebra started running as well.

Well one might find this joke funny, but it depicts the feeling of the people other than the US and its allies. Fear breeds hatred and hatred leads to war. It is always easy to start a war, but extremely difficult to end one. As the journalists go around and pat themselves on the shoulder for coming-up with the best “evil…” title of the day, they should realise that they are unwittingly paving the road to another war.

Dr. Abbas Bakhtiar lives in Norway. He is a management consultant and a contributing writer for many online journals. He's a former associate professor of Nordland University, Norway and can be contacted at: Bakhtiarspace-articles@yahoo.no. Read other articles by Abbas.

8 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. Ceri Cat said on October 1st, 2007 at 5:29am #

    Just like the soup de jour today this leaves a foul taste in my mouth. Sadly I can’t argue with this since at least the end of WWII America seems to be selecting people to stamp on for whatever reason benefits the government most, which usually leads to the rest of us getting dragged along for the ride. Vietnam was a good example the US headed in and dragged in Australia and New Zealand with her, and when the boys returned home the reception was nearly universal, just like todays soup they left a foul taste in the mouth. Those who enlisted for patriotic reasons were ridiculed at best, ignored like the rest too. A part of Australian culture died that day, since then I’ve heard only a few old men say the word cobber, your best mate the guy who’d always have your back. What else are we losing whenever America flexes her muscles and drags us along for the ride? And what is America losing?

    We seem to have lost one of our greatest qualities as a nation, true mateship. I can’t imagine what innocence the others have lost as the evil du jour drags them forth.

  2. Deadbeat said on October 1st, 2007 at 2:02pm #

    This is a very deceptive article written by Dr. Bakhtiar. What is deceptive about the article is how it conflates the pretext for the invasion of Panama with the pretext of the invasion of Iran. Clearly there are similarity as their are in all invasion and that is the demonization process. Both Noriega and Ahmadinejad are being demonized by the media to whip up the drumbeat for war.

    However why didn’t Dr. Bakhtiar make the comparison using Saddam Huessian who was demonized far longer than Noreiga and since the left is fully convinced that the reason why the U.S. is engaged militarily in the Middle East is for oil? Panama is not known for having oil.

    The main reason giving for the invasion of Iraq was “weapons of mass destruction”. That is the very same reason that the U.S. is now giving to invade Iran — to prevent them from going nuclear.

    The invasion of Panama was swift. The U.S. military installed their puppet and got out. The American people on the other hand is being prepared for an “endless” occupation of Iraq and subsequently Iran.

    Also the U.S. did not destroy the Panamanian infrastructure however in Iraq, Lebanon, and presumably Iran with aerial bombardment these infrastructures will like be destroyed.

    There is also a difference of Administrations. Bush I had resisted any Zionist influences. It was an extension of the Reagan/Bush policies of intervention throughout Latin America to maintain neoliberal control.

    Bush II and his neocon allies are heavily influenced by Zionism and their desire to destroy the Arab states in the Middle East.

    If you want to obtain a better perspective of the Panama invasion try this link below:


  3. Shabnam said on October 1st, 2007 at 3:13pm #

    Thank you for this excellent article.

    Norman Podhoretz with his racist friends such as Daniel pipe who has coined the term Islamofascism and it has been used by the servant of the Zionist interest, George Bush, and associates to turn Americans against Muslims to massacre them and steal their resources. When Podhoretz was asked, on the air, “How about jedofaschism”? Podhoretz is so arrogant and thirsty for Iranian blood who refused to answer this guy and charged him with “Anti-Semite” where has become meaningless since it has been overused for political purposes and that’s why no one pays attention to this rubbish anymore because their behavior shows who wants to whip out whom.
    What kind of world is this? Do you want to live under this condition where life of Muslims becomes so cheap that any ignorant person such as podhoretz and his friends in white house reserve the right to commit NUCLEAR HOLOCAUST and get away with it?
    We held All American responsible and ask them to stand up and knock out these murderers out of influence and impeach their servants in white house and congress and the senate.
    The life of Iranians become so cheap that DEBRA CAGAN, a Zionist, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Coalition Affairs to Defense Secretary Robert Gates, dares to tell “I HATE ALL IRANIANS,” tells MP.
    Do Americans want to be represented by this hateful person because Israel wants? Ask for her resignation. Why has Ahmadi Nejad who asked for more research on a historical events become “Hiter” by the media yet DEBRA CAGAN reserves the right to hate all Iranians.
    Then shake up your behind before it is too late. Americans must stop funding the war. To do that: DO NOT WORK EVERY TUESDAY UNTIL
    THE UNITED STATES IS OUT OF IRAQ AND THE REGION. The Zionsits and their servants are united, then we should be united in order to bring their WAR MACHINE DOWN.


  4. Sam said on October 1st, 2007 at 7:32pm #

    Hey Bakhtiar, the pentagon hates you – no Kidding – check it out:

  5. Barbara said on October 1st, 2007 at 8:49pm #

    Sam Smith’s comments found at seemed worth adding:

    The reality of the world is that there are places where the Holocaust is denied, women are badly mistreated and gays abused, and then there are other places that have been responsible for the deaths of over a million Iraqi civilians and have caused much of the global ecological damage that threaten the lives of millions of other humans.

    The rational approach to ameliorating the damage . . . does not rest on the unilateral assessment of blame, unilateral admission of guilt, or on military action that increases the number of victims. It depends rather on incremental acceptance of new ways agreed upon because they work well for all parties . . . . Because the American elite, from the president of Columbia University to the Columbia Broadcasting System commentator, is so absorbed in a fantasy of its own perfection, it is constitutionally unable – save in rare moments – to step down from a self-constructed altar and make the successive small adjustments necessary for peace . . . and cooperation.

    Thus, if they had not been so obsessively narcissistic, those attacking Ahmadi Nejad might have noticed that the Iranian president was opening a door for discussion, negotiation, and perhaps even resolution. Would it work? We don’t know, but we know for certain that not taking the opportunity will not do a single thing for women or gays in Iraq, nor bring Ahmadi Nejad any closer to understanding the history of Nazism.

    Instead we could easily find ourselves in an even more disastrous war . . . .

    . . . . Nearly 20 years ago, game theorist Robert Axelrod conducted an experiment to figure out the best way to evolve cooperation [and] noted: “Words not backed by actions are so cheap as to be meaningless. The players can communicate with each other only through the sequence of their own behavior.”

    Where words are important, however, is when they suggest a shift in actions is possible. Ahmadi Nejad’s statements suggest just such a shift and we have reacted to them in precisely the wrong way.
    . . . .
    [Axelrod wrote about] the often unspoken cooperation that developed in WWI trenches and . . . the evolution of cooperation in biological systems
    . . . . evolved cooperation allowed troops to leave their trenches for food and water and to predict when shelling would occur. Said one soldier: “It would be child’s play to shell the road behind the enemy’s trenches, crowded as it must be with ration wagons and water carts, into a bloodstained wilderness . . . but on the whole there is silence. After all, if you prevent your enemy from drawing his rations, his remedy is simple: he will prevent you from drawing yours.” Axelrod uses the WWI example to show how cooperation can develop among antagonists [and] discusses the ability . . . to establish a foothold in even an unfriendly environment. His basic rules are:

    – Don’t be envious
    – Don’t be the first to defect
    – Reciprocate both cooperation and defection
    – Don’t be too clever.

    In one conclusion, he states: “In a non-zero-sum world you do not have to do better than the other player to do well for yourself. This is especially true when you are interacting with many different players. . . . the other’s success is virtually a prerequisite of your doing well for yourself.”

    Axelrod’s book is a reminder of how much effort we expend on the strategy of non-cooperation and how seldom we study, with the diligence of a military planner, the strategy of settling disputes. Instead, America continues to stumble on its downward path from its brief moment of empire, clinging to the belief that cooperation is weakness and bullying a sign of strength.

    Even a computer knows better than that.

  6. Ceri Cat said on October 1st, 2007 at 9:39pm #

    It’s pretty disgusting hearing about people like Podheretz, particularly because it almost makes you yearn for the final solution. Note I said almost (don’t think I’m serious I’d be going to the ovens for several reasons myself just trying to express how contemptible this sort of person is to me). Racism however it chooses to hide itself is pretty damn disgusting particularly minority groups who use it to manipulate the powers that be, it was this perception of the Jewish people that got Hitler so much support so quickly. History has a bad habit of repeating itself, and I can’t say I blame it, I’d vomit up this sort of crap too.
    America is making all the mistakes Britain did in her colonial era with interest.

    Ahmadi Nejad was right to want more research done on the holocaust if that is what he asked for (never saw the original blow up for this one and as you’ve seen I don’t trust the mainstream media too much because they like to twist things), most of the research is hopelessly focused on the Jewish aspect, one of the most common misconceptions I’ve come across besides the “didn’t happen” scenario is people who think it was focused purely against the Jewish people, are you gay, not of pure racial stock, Jehovah’s Witness or otherwise considered a drain on society (I’m not putting in the full list of targetted groups I know)? You too can become ashes.

  7. Mike McNiven said on October 2nd, 2007 at 5:28pm #

    Iran, before an imperialist invasion


  8. Mike McNiven said on October 2nd, 2007 at 5:32pm #

    See no Evil: