Ken Burns’ “The War”

Ken Burns’ new series about World War II is off to a good start although his stately pace can often be somewhat sleep inducing.  It’s one of those slightly bizarre situations where it’s worth your while to force yourself to stay awake.

Part of the first episode includes a run-down of what Americans were watching in the lead-up to the attack on Pearl Harbor:  they were watching three Axis powers, each of which considered its race superior to all others and each of which believed that its racial superiority justified its conquering lands and killing people.  It occurred to me that those who love the Bushitler analogy, and who constantly liken America’s current war to some imperialist Nazi act of aggression are missing something very fundamental.  Americans do have a superiority complex, but it’s not racial.  Instead, we believe that our values are superior.  But values, unlike race, are exportable.  We don’t need to murder to prove our superiority.  Our culture is what it is, and people who seek freedom inevitably drift in our direction.

In this regard, it’s worth comparing us to the Jihadists, who have taken a religion and elevated it to the same status as a race. They believe that they are so far superior to other people that it is totally okay to squash other people like flies, to murder them and their children, and to occupy their countries as if the native people were not there.  There is no moral equivalence between them and us.  In their outlook, they are precisely the same as the Nazis, and the World War II Japanese and Italians.  And we, in the 20th and 21st Centuries, have never changed:  our affirmative actions, when we’re not called upon to defend ourselves against attacks such as Pearl Harbor or 9/11, consist of exporting our freedom and our culture, and that is all.

8 Responses

  1. Evil doesn’t like people exporting such things as liberty and American empowerment. This limits the number of people that can be corroded with the acid of hate and exploitation. For example, where ever American power does not reach but UN subsidized power does, exploitation of girls and boys reign supreme.

  2. How ironic, America has a few lessons in their background in “ACID OF HATE”. Should I or Y elaborate. No need to , quite obvious. Not that there is anything wrong with that !! Moral eqivalence . GIVE ME A BREAK !!!!!!!!!

  3. As usual, Swampy, I am dazzled by the lucidity of your thought and the elegance of phrase.

  4. Who is evil ? What is evil ? Y please expand ! Are you evil ?

  5. I am here to be be profound not confound !! However there has never been a paragraph or should I say novel of writing that you didn’t like. Any sales yet ?. DOUBT IT !

  6. Brilliant rejoinder too.

  7. What ? I thought Conservataurs were black and white and SO RIGHT TO THE POINT ! Thanks for joining us Z !!

  8. Call Amanie, swamp. He is in charge of customer service.

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