Our endless wars are nightmares. Few enough would disagree with that, even, I suspect, among the supportive 58% in that poll or the 54% who “approve of the president’s performance as commander-in-chief.” If only we could wake up.
I was reminded of our strange dream-state recently when I reread the article that sparked the creation of what became TomDispatch. I first stumbled across it in the fall of 2001, after the Towers came down in my hometown, after that acrid smell of burning made its way to my neighborhood and into everything, after I traveled to “Ground Zero” (as it was already being called) to view those vast otherworldly shards of destruction via nearby side streets, after I spent weeks reading the ever narrower, ever more war-oriented news coverage in this country, and after I watched George W. Bush and Company mainlining fear directly into the American bloodstream, selling the eternal terror of terror and the president’s Global War on Terror that so conveniently went with it.
It was obvious that war was on the way, and that the men (and woman) who were leading us into it had expansive dreams and gargantuan plans. Somewhere in that period, probably in late October 2001, a friend sent me a piece by an Afghan-American living in California that spurred me to modest action. [continued…]