JULY 27, 2020 (counterpunch.org)
by MIKE HASTIE
Photo: Mike Hastie.
Soon it will be 60 straight nights of demonstrations and ear-shattering protests in Portland, Oregon. There is a continuous drum corps that is beating hypnotic rhythms that gives thousands of Portlanders a reason to be alive.
The energy is electrifying, as people take turns chanting their built-up frustrations of what they see as utter failure in the U.S. Government. They are extremely angry at President Trump for sending in Federal police to make matters much worse. It is tear gas, pepper spray, flash-bang grenades, rubber bullets and cops hitting protesters with their batons.
The chant: “All Cops Are Bastards,” is becoming much louder since the Feds started kidnapping protesters off the street in unmarked vans, with police not identifying themselves. It has been swift and terrifying for those who have been arrested in this black ops fascist mentality. It is against the law, as people are being stolen without probable cause, which is a nice way of saying it is a crime being committed by people who took an oath not to do these kinds of things. But, then again, when I was in Viet Nam, the U.S. Government had absolutely no rules in warfare. Geneva Convention Rules were for fools. In a way, this is the tragedy of what is happening in Portland and all over the country. What is happening domestically in this country, especially involving police who have been militarized, is we are seeing the accumulation of terror that the United States Government commits all over the world. Since the end of World War II, the United States Government has bombed 30 countries. The reason most people don’t believe what I just wrote, is because whenever the truth threatens one’s core belief system, there is an urgent need to deny its reality.
People in Portland, Oregon have seen the truth, especially since this Heart of Darkness has been non-stop for almost 60 nights. How much longer is the United States Government going to live with the illusion that we are a country built on law and order? If I started talking about U.S. atrocities that were committed in Viet Nam, this current Heart of Darkness would get overwhelmingly much darker. If the American people knew what their country does in a time of manufactured war, they wouldn’t be able to go to work the next day.
So, how did I go from just writing this last sentence, to what is currently happening in Portland, Oregon? Everything is interconnected–everything! The big question that so many people are asking at these nightly demonstrations, based on the absolute turmoil that is going on in this country right now, can the U.S. Empire be stopped with a peace sign?
Our government is destroying this country, and I am tired of seeing so many veterans in this nation committing suicide. I had two veteran friends hang themselves, because of hopelessness, and others who died from Agent Orange.
It overruns my soul when I read about the U.S. Government killing innocent people in so many countries in the world.
I get the profound feeling that American corporations can’t make a killing off of peace.
Our Government belongs in a straitjacket!
The Pentagon is evil!
The United States represents 4% of the world’s population, yet we have the most powerful military force the world has ever seen. WHY!
This Heart of Darkness is destroying us!
Our government is overrun with cowards!
America– get out of your goddamn coma!
COVID-19 is not the only pandemic in America!
Mike Hastie served as an Army Medic in Vietnam.