Poor Mouthing America--The Views Of Al Martinez
Utter nonsense? Of course, it is. The U.S. may have made some mistakes in the War on Terror, but there is no question we are committed to Democracy and morally superior to the barbarians who enjoy chopping people's heads off.
But this kind of drivil is increasingly the case these days, as witnessed by statements made last week by L.A. Times columnist Al Martinez, and Hollywood movie producer Oliver Stone. Both suggested they were ashamed of America.
Here's an imaginary discussion with Martinez and Stone. I don't think it exaggerates their views too much. But, as for Martinez, I've now softened it a bit. Also, it should be noted, this is meant as a satire, and these are not direct quotes. But it is fair to say I'm annoyed with both Martinez and Stone.
Q--What would you have done after 9/11?
Martinez--I'm not fond of Osama bin Laden, but I wouldn't have confronted him in Iraq. Maybe, he'd be more pleasant if we were nicer to him.
Stone--Made a wonderful movie about Osama. I love foreign cutthroats.
Q--Now, historically, what would you have done when the British Army went to Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775?
Martinez--On reflection, Al says he would have fought on the side of the Minutemen.
Stone--Hung Samuel Adams and Paul Revere, and pledged everlasting allegiance to the British Crown.
Q--And what would you have done if you were Abraham Lincoln when the Confederates seized Fort Sumter on April 15, 1861?
Martinez--Al's not for slavery, so he would have fought then too.
Stone--Nothing, until the South had voluntarily given up slavery.
Q--And what would you have done on Dec. 7, 1941, when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor?
Martinez--Having fought in Korea, where he decided war was not usually a good idea, Al says he thinks World War II was justified and would have fought in it. Actually, it becomes clear that as far as the past is concerned, Martinez is not such a pacifist after all.
Stone--Court martialed the U.S. military men who fired on attacking Japanese planes. As a move to mollify the Japanese, he would have considered ceding Hawaii to Hirohito as a personal possession.
Q--Coming to the present day, what do you think of Saddam Hussein?
Martinez--I do not like him, personally. But I'm convinced, as Bob Woodward now apparently is, that the Iraq war was a mistake.
Stone--He tried his best. I agree with that judge who said he was not a dictator.
Q--What would you do now in Afghanistan?
Stone--Ask the Taliban to be nicer to its women in the future.
Q--If you had been Prime Minister Olmert when Arab guerrillas kidnapped Israeli soldiers, what would you have done?
Martinez--Sent the kidnapped soldiers food packages, but I wouldn't have gone to war over it.
Stone--Offered to withdraw from all cities that were subsequently rocketed. The Israelis are not the kind of foreign cutthroats I like.
Q--Are there any present circumstances in which you guys would fight?
Martinez--Presently, only if George W. Bush personally attacked me.
Stone--Only if my next movie were to get critical reviews. That's the only circumstance in which violence is required. Otherwise, I'm so ashamed of the United States for standing up on its own two feet.
And my own compliments to Neville Chamberlain for going to see Hitler three times and then giving him most of Czechoslovakia. And finally, for claiming he had brought the British people "peace in our time."
Labels: Reporters' Opinions