Belafonte on King and Obama

Harry Belafonte interviewed on PBS:

Barack Obama is first and foremost a man. He is flawed. He has his contradictions. He has revealed those contradictions.

There is a question that we have: do we get behind him and push him to become what we know he should be? Or do we lay back, watch him drift, watch him capitulate to the enemy and then say, “Ah ha! We knew it all along.”

Is not his conclusion to be ours? Is not his fate also to be ours? What role do we as a people play in forcing the mission to go where we know it must go?

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1 thought on “Belafonte on King and Obama

  1. pabelmont

    I believe that his general motivations are better than George Bush’s were (from my perspectives). But he sits in the same chair, dominated by the same Military-Industrial-Congressional-Complex and the same “BIG” corporations and interest groups. His high hopes and fine statements vis-a-vis Israel and Palestine came to naught as he was faced down by Israeli intransigence and found that, in fact, the President of the United States of America, the “most powerful man in the world” is a mouse caught in a trap. The Supreme Court, apparently enmeshed in the same pro-corporatist ideology which traps us all, has recently made it even worse.

    In principle, the president could direct his UN representative to let it be known that the previously-automatic veto of anti-Israel resolutions will not be used again during his administration. In principle, the president could demand that Israel remove everything from the occupied territories which is there illegally, starting with the “apartheid wall” and the 500,000 settlers. If he did, he would be supporting the Rule of Law, something which would be like a breath off fresh air in modern imperial America.

    In practice, he will do none of these things, may cave in a bit more to the republicans — quite possibly without getting anything of value for doing so, and the opportunities will slip away.

    Scientists are now warning that methane trapped in arctic seabeds is seeping out (into the atmosphere) at a much quicker rate than anyone had hitherto imagined, greatly speeding up the process (and the emergency) og global warming. President Obama has a teaching moment here, too. I have no sense that he will use it.

    Yes, we should all help President Obama. But how is it to be done?

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