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tv   On contact  RT  July 7, 2020 4:30pm-5:01pm EDT

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i got hit from behind in the head 3 or 4 times it was quite a switch quite pivotal on me questioning the narrative questioning donald trump's narrative and i was suddenly out of their good graces nationalists who claim to be patriots do not really venerate veterans they only venerate veterans who read from the approved patriotic script america's the greatest the most powerful country on earth those we fight are to preyed barbarians our enemies deserve death god is on our side victory is assured our soldiers and marines are heroes deviate from this can't no matter how many milli military tours you have served and you become despicable the vaunted patriotism of the right is about self adulation it is a raw lust for racism and violence it is blind subservience to the power of the state and it works to censor the reality of war and shut down the voices of true
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patriots such as fanning joining me to discuss the nature of patriotism is danny surgeon a former army major who did combat tours in iraq and afghanistan and is the author of the book patriotic descent so you break. patriotism down into 3 different forms but you lay those out for us yeah absolutely you know i like to litter a sion but they all start with p. and the 1st one the one that you just described that that you know rory fanning moment is the pageantry patriotism and the vast majority of americans especially on but not exclusively on the right if you're to this that's you know thank you for your service it's percenters it's maybe pick up your tab at t.g.i. friday's the airport on your way to the next appointment it does not really deal
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with the reality of the experience of war or why we're fighting them and what they're actually like then the 2nd type i call you know passive principle patriotism but really could just be called passive resistance this is the polite imperial stuff this is the obama m s n b c variety where maybe they're not quite as overt in their flag waving maybe they're not as quick to denigrate veterans who are against the war but they'll ignore them they produce hands to quote you know martin luther king but they sanitize and and so that he they too don't really dig into the realities of wars experience or why we're fighting them but the rarer form and there are folks out there who like yourself have been pushing this before it was cool if it's even goal is the participatory the proactive sort of asia it isn't which is to say i'm a patriot because i want my country to live up to its suppose that ask for you know aspirations regardless of our flight history i think it's a patriotism of dissent as i called it
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a willingness to follow for military folks. the constitution we don't take our oath to the president alone or our commanders alone but rather it's an enemies foreign and domestic so when your country when you're a public becomes an empire maybe it always has been it becomes a duty i think to patriotically dissent and so that's how i break the 3 down. start with the pageantry patriotism because i think that so much of that pageantry patriotism and this is the flag waving in the flyovers and singing the at the emirates it which hasn't fuse sports professional sports is really about self adulation it's about elevating ourselves through that disease of nationalism and the flipside of nationalism is always racism it has almost nothing to do with the veterans and you write about how because it's a volunteer force the rich don't serve you out
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a figure i think it was the what combined. figures of people entered the military from ivy league schools was like 6 or something so talk a little bit about the kind of cynicism and hypocrisy behind that 1st form of patriotism i do think that a lot of the pageantry patriotism is driven by personal insecurity this is the sort of the chicken hawks in durham there are veterans you know who are on the right who had on this but a lot of them are civilians who've never been near a shot fired in anger. another thing that's interesting about this is not only is it your my insecurity but it is driven by like hyper nationalism which really can border on fascism and you've written a lot about this for example your status as a veteran will not save you i've found that many have if you speak out and so because you're going against a narrative and really the veterans in a pageantry form are tools right there use their co-opted their hijacked and in
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fact i can't tell you how many times i've watched veterans be used to bolster one argument or the other in other words i must be right because this many general support me i mean only look at hillary clinton and donald trump you know bring their loads of generals on but it happens on a micro level on social media what's interesting finally is that the flag waving and the anthems. the flyovers there in kobe which i thought were obscene is you know the comedian dave chappelle said that he figured out why people's kryptonite is and it was you know kneeling during the anthem and it was funny but it's but it's also real because the minute you step outside of you know the pledge of allegiance or the anthem what many of which are actually relatively new creations you know from the cold war yeah you're denigrated this is i think it's more than symbolic i think it's actually destructive and dangerous that the vast majority of americans peddling this you know pageantry patriotism isn't there by engaging in that pageantry patriotism
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a kind of. sense of personal empowerment on the part of the quote unquote patriot even though they're not in the military it's that close it down a fixation with the military the ability of the military to deliver lethal force you even see it by these people who venerate you know police departments well it's sort of the disease of the caviar and what i mean is how many folks have you read on social media or even on the pages of the new york times who have to begin any discussion of the war or the protest by saying how good they are the veterans i mean almost list off their qualifications how many veterans they know how many times they've picked up a check so it's that it's the insecurity of that but it's also like you gather an army behind you of you know i stand with the troops therefore whatever i say must be truth and it has that weight even if i'm not my self a veteran and so i do think that what you're talking about here is there is
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a lot of like self identification that goes on with this and you don't even have to be in the military i've had full so our civilian chicken hawks who have basically told me that they're better patriots than me you know because they're good the veterans versus you know my own experience fighting the wars that they why i want to draw that line between people who. experienced combat as you did in people who didn't i once did an event with norman mailer in which it was quite obnoxious to everyone else in the room saying that he and i were the only real men in the room because we've been through combat and having been through combat that kind of bravado it just smelled wrong to me and it was only when i read is a bit sure that it turned out he'd been a cook. but combat veterans and it's only one out of 20 is that right of people within the military actually go into combat the rest are logistical which is
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extremely important but play would just kill roles but combat veterans how when they come back and i'm and regard less of what their political persuasion is how do most of them respond to that form of patriotism that jingoism i mean. it actually stick and a lot of them even though you know more you know politically conservative ones and there are lots you know some of it is it's easily dismissed we make fun of it in my experience you know like that the guy who comes over to your table on your way back afghanistan and he needs to tell you about how much he supports you and what he did when he was a cook you know in the peacetime army or something and the bravado of how great you are for spreading freedom when that person walks away i mean that there's there's laughing and there's a story i remember i don't know if it's awful it's in a memoir of you know john wayne shows up in the pacific and a wounded you know field hospital and he's dressed like a like
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a callous in her eighty's ospital in hawaii for marines that's right and then he basically you know he's wearing his like old west outfit right and of course he avoided service and then supposedly he's like kind of jeered out of the place now that may well padded well. that's fact they threw bedpans as they drove him out of the city that's one of my favorite stories of all time actually and i'm i'm glad that it's fully true but it would have been true in a way that fiction can be sure we invoke wasn't because that does happen a lot of us don't have a lot of time for that and i don't speak for all veterans and i'm always careful about that but in my pretty broad experience that's been the case even with the ones who agree with me disagree with me completely politically like many of my soldiers do so let's talk about the 2nd form of patriotism you write about the passively principle m s n b c style form of patriotism and remember boy they were pretty quick to get rid of
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. phil donahue and jesse ventura and anyone else who had jesse himself as the viet nam vet right and. they who didn't. matter how the appropriate narrative about the wars in iraq and afghanistan and so if there is a subtle difference. but let's look at it i mean that. you know you talk about it is you know it's also a surface level kind of patriotism and while that kind of patriotism may decry the excesses put on quote excesses of the military they also neal that for the shrine of american militarism absolutely this is the whole light sort of version of you know patriotism i fell for it a lot of folks did when when i was in iraq in late 2007 i was
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a big believer that say barack obama would be able to right the ship. you know i even supported him in some tangible ways out of uniform you know in southern indiana when i was stationed at fort knox after my deployment and the idea was and this is the disease of the you know the passive patriotism is that it's bad apples that are causing the miss you know them in your dreams or that misbehavior and so if we get rid of the george w. bush's of the world if we get some of the neo cons out of office then they will right the ship because it makes us great as our values they say right but they still will not question the systemic ills of those suppose about the use the structures that create it and when you do like you know jesse ventura phil donahue did it you are immediately immediately just gone you know yes the establishment have you anymore they will not bite you back as you know and this is almost in some ways more dangerous because i prefer plain language and i prefer to know sort of my
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enemy like it when they placed themselves out there in a way that you know the monster trump often does one of the ways you know finally that this passive patriotism is nefarious is to watch on m.s.m. you see in c.n.n. how fast the people they are denigrated so deeply from the bush administration are brought on as regular gas and sort of rehabilitated as born again american heroes in response to the more course imperial. we come back we'll continue our discussion about it which is a with danny sers. 'd
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no crime. no shots. actually helps. with the stress. is to. switch your thirst for action. 54 jets and more than 1300 military personnel are headed to heal some air force base in alaska where is that to say come on i'll show you what's the reason for any type of enhanced u.s. military presence in this area russia. what is it suddenly about the south china sea that makes it so that it 11000000000 barrels of oil.
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take a look at this map who were really owns what kind of says no it belongs to us india says no we claim that that belongs to us both of these countries have nuclear weapons capabilities there is reason for concern so that's why we're going to drill down on the story for you today right here on the news with rick sanchez where you know as we always like to say we do believe. by golly it's time to do news again. welcome back to on contact we continue our conversation about the nature of patriotism with danny surgeon so we were talking about these kind of passive innocent b.c. patriots. and you call them fearful patriots why well in there are fearful because like the democratic party that they often sort of are inflected with or related to they're terrified of being called un-american or on patriotic so
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they're constantly hedging couching they will only go so far in you know calling out you know this misbehavior or the wrong wars or wrong administration they have to make it about individual bad apples because if they push too far they know that they will pay at the ballot box for example which they worship as their own sacred cow because the worst thing you can be in american history we have found and i've written in the book and have a lot of evidence is to be antiwar it never pays politically in any long term sense just ask the waves or the democrats after vietnam or especially in 1988 right when reagan of course canonize is the good war in vietnam the just thought. about the liberals you know and i experienced this at the end cause to invade iraq it was primarily the m.s.m. b.c. the these passive patriots who are used to denigrate.
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antiwar people are speaking out about the war such as myself because purportedly they were good liberals with values so you know figures like michael is not was a friend of mine we were both on n.p.r. the day the war was launched arguing why we should go to war and we are going against it wasn't the hard right way although they were very angry and i got death threats from them and stuff but the more affective discrediting came from these passive patriots yeah that they will you know bring them out to denigrate folks who step outside those boundaries and it is more effective because if you have a polite liberal with a large following saying look look look i'm also you know sort of against what. russia's doing for example or what trump is doing now but but i stay within the bounds i'm not a radical ike noam chomsky or cornel west or chris hedges you know i'm not a radical like some of these conscientious objectors the few that there been in the
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volunteer force you know i was still believe that america is a force for good in the world and these folks are there and you know one of the things they'll throw at you all the time is that you're angry it's a very important the juror oh you're angry they're just angry they're there they're frustrated or they'll go to your character and say you didn't have the professional success you wanted and that's why you're speaking out is way more effective to have the polite liberal sort of a tack the n.c. war or the n.c. imperialism protest there then to put you know i'm on a hat wearing foot guy who's going to make you maybe look kind of rational they also couch necessity of war in foreign quote liberal values you know what some at the power call humanitarian intervention. and so you liberate the people of iraq george packer was selling this line or you liberate the women of afghanistan and yet you and i know that once you start dropping cruise missiles
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on people. and are hell fire missiles the whole idea of human rights is a joke. talk a little bit about how they re frame the argument for war yeah this is like the humanitarian as a more their responsibility to protect konar. both sides handling it for example when you know when there were no weapons the destruction weapons of mass starvation when there was no al-qaeda tie then it became about democracy it became about getting rid of the tyrant and so you saw the argument being at least on the right side was you have a saddam was bad we got rid of him in afghanistan that's taken on and i think an even more cynical tone when we say we can't leave ever apparently because of women's rights because of girls and schools but that of course misunderstands the context. and doesn't understand that we empower many of the folks who you know are against women's education throughout the 1980 s. that has been the case across the greater middle east and if one thinks that the
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war in afghanistan was ever about women's rights i mean that is so paltry intellectually that it's almost hard to imagine because why did we only go in for vengeance after we were attacked because women were being executed in stadiums long before that and we also have told our own soldiers to turn the other turn in iowa way from massive buggery right massive child rape of our allied militia and warlords so it is this this is this is a myth and this is a fiction it's dangerous as hell. since you brought it up but let's before we get the last form of patriotism. also talk about how women are treated within the military i talked to a woman officer she was actually canadian asked her she said she was in kandahar and i said what was the most you know what was the worst part of being there she said going to the port a potties and making trying to get raped by the hungry well obviously rape is a sexual assault of all forms is
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a massive problem military always has been it's particularly bad at the military academies a recent book by a law professor currently at west point a whistleblower federally protected whistleblower talks about how west point for example in the other economies have misled the public about the stats on sexual assault you know they've said it's the same as other colleges that's been true demonstrably false this you know and we also tokenized women you know will say you know we'll take the talk to afghan women you know because that's the culture and they only understand it then they'll go back to the base and have to look over their shoulder and be told or paternalistically but accurately that they need of a buddy everywhere they go in the dark on the base because they might get raped in their own camp and yet we say you're going once we talk to afghan women i mean it's so muddled that it's it's scale. every it's gross let's talk about the last form of patriotism which i think you crave just lee embody and that's. participatory principled patriotism or patriotic dissent this is rare.
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more rare than it should be especially among veterans in the all volunteer force its heart what it involves is saying that i am going to take the same sense of duty and urgency that i was told to within the military invasions and occupations and i'm going to apply it to protecting the values that i want to model in the united states our aspirations and making this a you know a better place and it's it's very cliched and it's very idealistic and it might even be futile but throughout american history i really try to demonstrate that i mean ultimately i'm a historian i try to demonstrate in the book at every major crisis of imperialism in american history there have been voices journalists artists and soldiers who have decided to step out and participate right and that's more than liking something on twitter and i think that it is the even the small numbers that push
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back have an enormous effect even if the tactical victories are slim he said you're right the 1st strand of dissent. is the prophetic well you mean well you know there's a lot of discussion about the role of religion and of course this is something that you have done so much work on. some folks who have descended have really been informed by faith of a variety of face right from you know almost like a secular humanist faith all the way up to organized religion and it really does inform them and so this is the the new testament non heretical christianity recently with the national guard and maybe the 82nd airborne being called out to american cities one of my organizations about face veterans against the war has put out a stand down or we're telling the soldiers you know you don't have to shoot folks in the street the 2nd tradition of dissent is the republican form of dissent what's that yes there these are the supposed libertarians these are the small are
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republicans types this is because the touche in crowd and i don't i don't and i'm not you know coming out hominum on this i mean it's an important one the idea that we have to feud to the suppose it values of the founding fathers of course they were so contested it's difficult but in general this is the idea that imperialism. races and that's you know just inherent sue it is somehow you know against the values of the republicans the loss of a republican many ways this is sort of a litigious version of dissent but i think it's an important one it all of these versions that we're talking about are often air lines but you see this and i think this is the reason why i write for as many libertarian websites and publications as i do liberal ones because in many cases this is sort of the libertarian dissent against imperialism where you write about the shays rebellion which was led by veterans of the revolutionary war who were screwed over by the oligarchy and there
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was quite a different if you want to talk about the founding fathers attitude toward the show as you as it comes from your book the shows rebellion between jefferson and washington washington why. to crush it and jefferson cerda not you know daniel shays in western massachusetts i mean just understand like you know he and the other veterans they were being basically taxed to death and they didn't any hard currency i'm not going to history but this guy had been a hero in the continental army and even given a sword by lafayette the marquis de lafayette in france and hero so many towns named after him he had upon his sword in order to try to pay some of the taxes to the oligarchy washington thought this was a major threat and we needed a more centralized federal constitution jefferson of course said you know that the tree of liberty must be refresh from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants and a little rebellion is a good thing we should have a continuous revolution jefferson's a flawed character but i tend to human his direction on this one the 3rd strand of paper patriotic dissent you call the nationalist what's that you know this in
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a very simplified and and i think misunderstood way this has some of the america 1st aspect to it it's been misunderstood the isolationists weren't quite as isolationist or anti semitic as most of them have made been made out to be but it's the idea that national interests that come 1st and that far flung wars and adventures in imperialism is alternately not in our interest one of the ways you see this and it does have a dark side as a positive side obviously but it also has a dark side during the spanish-american war in the past occasion the philippines there was even some racism that was in you know infused in this nationalist the senate where it was we can't we should be in the philippines we should bring the philippines into the empire or make it a state because there's too many brown people there and that's not in our interest as a nation so you know this is a this is a complicated version of the sample it it really does reflect i think some of the rhetoric and not only but some of the rhetoric from the campaign of donald trump let's close with the last the 4th and final tradition of dissent you call
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cosmopolitan yet you know broadly it's a citizen of the world platitude but it is i think really it's. it's a combination of all the others it's the idea that values legality constitutions national interests are all important but what's important and where it differs from the nationalists the sense is that it sort of is willing to reject nationalism in general it's willing to see the ills of nationalism the ills of the war going on i used borders that are often imaginary and understanding that like the prosthetic the sand there's there's a kinship to humanity and that we ought to be humble and provide some sort of apical foundation that really does infuse all of the other types this is the rarest form but it is out there and it's funny because it is one of the most quickly denigrated of the descents and folks will you know obviously make fun of people who
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think of themselves as citizens of humanity rather than a nation and in many cases it does not pick up the traction that the more honed in say republican or libertarian dissent gets but it's to see yourself in the face of those who are denigrated as the enemy this is the most important thing for me. eugene debs said that he knew that he was no better than the meanest among us right when he was sentenced to federal prison for being against world war one when i wrote those writers of baghdad my 1st book i fought long and hard not to have the marshall humvees on the cover the picture that's on the back is the one that i wanted on the front because i thought it best describes my book and it's a girl blowing a bubble in iraq a girl while a fully our soldier standing on the corner to me what changed my view was seeing myself and that iraqi girl and thousands of others. who do great work danny thank you very much that was danny certain. book patriotic.
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you cannot be both with the yeah you like. live from the world headquarters of the r.t. america in our nation's capital this is the news with rick sanchez and higher get everybody i'm rick sanchez and i want to welcome all of you who are watching us around the world on your regular t.v. providers as well of those as well as those of you who are watching us on your mobile device using the portable t.v. up at this very moment we're learning new insights about covert and it includes the remarkable discovery. may be new trading how long it likely will be with the newest and most startling data on how exactly it makes us severely sick or can even kill us so we're going to drill down on all of this and just a little bit.


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