The Young Turks: Hegemony and Global Due Process


The Young Turks speak on this shockingly candid, though scripted, response by President Obama on why he does not support the right of American victims of terrorism to sue the state sponsors of terrorism connected to their victimization.

His response was no surprise to those of us interested in confronting American hegemony. In essence, the President flat-out admits that allowing Americans to sue state sponsors of terrorism, many of whom are our allies, then opens up the possibility that citizens of other countries could then do the same to the United States. Since the United States is the worlds largest sponsor of terrorism, that means the there would be a disproportionate backlash against our own country. Think about all of those civilians killed by U.S. flying killer robots.

Then we have to consider the possible grandfather clauses that might be connected to such due process. What about Nicaraguan and Salvadoran victims of U.S. sponsored death squads? Do citizens of Guatemala, Chile, even Iran who watched the United States  overthrow their popularly supported governments in favor of brutal dictators have a case? Do their children or grandchildren?

The panel also brings up the awkward problem of the now infamous 28 pages missing from the 9/11 report. What happens when disclosure and investigations brought up in the process of suing, say, Saudi Arabia, reveal that the United States was complicit in covering up the criminal culpability of our allies? Do U.S. citizens themselves then have the right to sue the U.S. government for damages?

The bottom line is that the sinuous tentacles of U.S. hegemony must be protected at all costs. Any pretense to democratic principles of due process are fine, so long as they do not interfere with the American hegemonic program. If the expansion of U.S. military bases, flying killer robots and secret trade deals were not enough to convince you that Americans are the benefactors of the most complex, comprehensive imperial projects in history, try getting justice in the face of terrorism.

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