May 22, 2006

The true face of "democracy promotion"

From Noam Chomsky's newest book, Failed States:

In March 2004, concerned that elections in El Salvador might come out the wrong way, the democracy promotion misionaries warned that if Salvdorans made the wrong choice, the country's lifeline--remittences from the United States, a crucial pillar of the "economic miracle"--might be cut, among other consequences. They also clarified their mission by offering their achievements in El Salvador as a model for Iraq. In reaction to the favorable coverage of this audacious stand, one of the leading academic specialists on Central America, Thomas Walker, distrubuted an op-ed to newspapers around the country describing the "free elections" under US domination hailed by Cheney, Rumsfeld, and others...The candidates, moreover, were limited to "a narrow spectrum from center to far right"; voter abstention was threatened with murder, and votes were cast using sequentially numbered, identifiable ballots "deposited in clear plastic boxes in front of armed soldiers--so translucent that [the ballots] could be read even when dully folded."
(my emphasis)

Just the other day, it may have even been my last post, I challenged the notion that the Iraqi people are actually receiving the government that they desire. According to Thomas Walker, our government intended to use the Salvadoran election as a model for that of Iraq's. If so, my allegations were completely correct, and Chomsky goes on to say:

And no doubt [war planners] want to withdraw--but only once an obedient client state is firmly in place, the general preference of conquerors...

Which also goes along with what I said the other day, I think it was along the lines of, "the new government that we're helping to form will naturally comply with our interests". I refered to Failed States in the beginning of that post but I had not yet gotten to the part that I just now quoted. I say all that to say this: I'M AWESOME.

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