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Author Topic: Key Historical Events ...THAT YOU MAY HAVE NEVER HEARD OF  (Read 3871 times)

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AGelbert

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American History for Truthdiggers: Tragic Dawn of Overseas Imperialism 🦍

November 10, 2018 TD ORIGINALS

By Maj. Danny Sjursen

Quote

Maj. Danny Sjursen is a U.S. Army officer and former history instructor at West Point. He served tours with reconnaissance units in Iraq and Afghanistan...

Quote
Editor’s note: The past is prologue. The stories we tell about ourselves and our forebears inform the sort of country we think we are and help determine public policy. As our current president promises to “make America great again,” this moment is an appropriate time to reconsider our past, look back at various eras of United States history and re-evaluate America’s origins. When, exactly, were we “great”?

SNIPPET:

According to the old historical narrative, the U.S. has always been a democratic republic and only briefly dabbled (from 1898 to 1904) with outright imperialism. And, indeed, even in that era—in which the U.S. seized Puerto Rico, Guam, Hawaii and the Philippines—the U.S. saw itself as “liberating” the locals from Spanish despotism. This wasn’t real imperialism but rather, to use a term from the day, “benevolent assimilation. Oh, what a gloriously American euphemism!

The truth, of course, is far more discomfiting. The U.S. was an empire before it had even gained its own independence. From the moment that Englishmen landed at Jamestown and Plymouth Rock, theirs was an imperial experiment. Native tribes were conquered and displaced westward, year in and year out, until there were no sovereign Indians left to fight. In 1848, the U.S. Army conquered northern Mexico and rechristened it the American Southwest. Yes, the U.S. was always an empire, what Thomas Jefferson self-consciously called an “Empire of Liberty.” Only the American Empire looked different from the British and Western European variety. Until 1898, the U.S. lacked the overseas possessions and expansive naval power that have come to define our contemporary image of empire. That was the British, French and Spanish model. No, the U.S. was a great land empire most similar (ironically) to that of Russia, but an empire nonetheless.

Still, there is something profound about 1898 and the years that followed.
For it was in this era that the American people—and their leaders—became sick with the disease of overseas imperialism. With no Indians left to fight and no Mexican lands worth conquering, Americans looked abroad for new monsters to destroy and new lands to occupy. Britain and France were far too powerful and were not to be trifled with; but Spain, the deteriorating Spanish Empire in the Caribbean and Pacific, proved a tempting target. And so it was, through a brief—“splendid,” as it was described—little war with Spain, that the United States would annex foreign territories and join the European race for colonies.

1898 is central to our understanding of the United States’ 🦍 contemporary role 🏴‍☠️💵🎩 in the world, for it was at that moment that the peculiar exceptional millenarianism of American idealism merged with the Western mission of “civilization.”

The result was a more overt, distant and expansive version of American Empire. And, though the U.S. no longer officially “annexes” foreign territories, its neo-imperial foreign policy is alive and well, with U.S. military forces ensconced in some 800 bases in more than 80 countries—numbers that by far exceed those of other nations. Furthermore, the remnants of America’s first overseas conquests are with us today, as the people of Puerto Rico, Guam and Samoa are still only partial Americans—citizens, yes, but citizens without congressional representation or a vote in presidential elections. How ironic, indeed, that a nation founded in opposition to “taxation without representation” should, for more than 100 years now, hold so many of its people in a situation remarkably similar to that of the American colonists before the Revolutionary War.

In retrospect, then, 1898 represents both continuity with America’s imperial past and a bridge to its contemporary neo-imperial future. This era is key because it stands as a moment of no return: a pivot point at which the United States became a global empire.

One can hardly understand contemporary interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan without a clear account of 1898 and what followed. The Spanish-American War and the occupation of the Philippines are two of America’s fundamental sins, and their consequences resonate in our ever uncertain present.

The Closing of the Frontier (1890)

Full IRREFUTABLE historical truth filled article:

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/american-history-for-truthdiggers-tragic-dawn-of-overseas-imperialism/

Agelbert RANT:

From the above article:
Quote
"...social Darwinism, the notion that “survival of the fittest” applied to man as well as beast, that certain races were scientifically superior to others. It was all snake oil, of course, but it was a predominant ideology..."

Social Darwinsim is, EVEN MORE SO TODAY,  the predominant CANCEROUS ideology destroying our biosphere. The Social Darwinsit cheerleaders 👹 for Profit Over People and Planet, BECAUSE THESE Empathy deficit disordered, might is right worshipping barbarians have NEVER been able to add and subtract in biosphere math, ARE the embodiment of the 'Perpetual Growth AND Greed is good' CANCER ☠️ destroying America. 😱

DEFINITION OF THE CANCER ☠️ destroying America AND most of the BIOSPHERE (that Human Civilization relies on to survive) ► Fervent Social Darwinsts ☠️ = CAPITALISTS ☠️ who believe that we must expand continually or "atrophy" from "non-manly = leftist, socialist, peaceful, environmentalist against polluting businesses, etc. you get the idea" behavior. 🤬

Religion is just the clever disingenuous 😇 😉 fig leaf these Consciense Free BASTARDS 😈 use. The CORE RELIGION of Social Darwinists is that MIGHT, no matter how irresponsible, no matter how unprincipled, no matter how unethical, no matter how destructive to the biosphere in general and fellow humans in particular, IS RIGHT. 🤬

 

« Last Edit: November 11, 2018, 03:41:06 pm by AGelbert »
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AGelbert

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Noam Chomsky - History of US Rule 🦍😈👹🍌🏴‍☠️ in Latin America



207,946 views

PHubb

Published on Dec 19, 2009

History of US Rule in Latin America; Elections and Resistance to the Coup in Honduras - Professor Noam Chomsky PhD.

Filmed by Paul Hubbard at Massachusetts Institute of Technology on 12-15-09

www.socialistworker.org
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AGelbert

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SNIPPET:

In 1508 Emperor Maximilian I attempted to force his bankers to invest in bonds to support another of his wars. Fugger was furious at this, and wrote a letter back to the Emperor. Steinmetz explains:

Quote
Fugger started with what he said was obvious. Companies like his benefitted every level of society, producing jobs and wealth for all. Business could only work its magic if the government left it alone. If politicians threw up roadblocks and killed the profit motive, business had no chance. Merchants and bankers were good citizens, he argued. They treated each other and their customers fairly. Sure, self-interest propelled them.  But they knew better than to cheat customers. Reputation was everything and the need for credibility checked the urge to lie, gouge and steal. Hinting at the allure of tax havens (the Swiss border was only sixty miles away), he declared that other countries show businessmen more respect.  He blasted those who condemned commerce and enterprise. They failed to understand that “it is for the common good that honourable, brave and honest companies are in the realm. For it is not disreputable but rather it is wonderful jewel that such companies are in the kingdom.” 
It is no surprise that when the German Peasants’ War broke out in 1524, that wealthy men like Jakob Fugger were accused by the people of corruption and stealing from the poor. At one point during that year Jakob had to flee his home in Augsburg because of the threats from protestors. Fugger did all that he could to support the nobles trying to put down the revolt, which would only end after 100,000 people were dead.

Read a LOT more and feast your eyes on some videos about the richest man that ever lived and his Castle with fountains, ovens and fireplaces in EVERY ROOM at a time whern most people NEVER got enough to eat in their ENTIRE LIVES. The influence 😈👹💵🎩🍌🏴‍☠️🚩 of this Oligarch and his CAPITALIST CHEERLEADING descendents to fund war and social repression continues to this day.



Great post !

I'd read about Fugger before.

The potantate's back in the day used to use court jesters & actors to form a barrier between "them" & the peasants, for this very reason. revolt or rage against the machine.

Fast fwd to today & the same practice is used. The Master's use politician's, actors & sports figures to keep the useless eaters busy while "they" do the fleecing of the sheep.

I LOVE websites like medievalists. Great stuff.

Quote
Jakob Fugger the Elder was the next person to handle the family business, but when he died in 1469, control went to his wife, Barbara Basinger.

One wonders if Ms. Basinger might fairly have been called, "Mother Fugger."

I hadn't read about the Mother Fugger before. ;D It was long after his time, of course, that Capitalism began to demonize Socialism with, oh so clever baloney like, "The trouble with Socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money" (credited to Margaret Thatcher 😈, but considering she was every bit as dumb as she was greedy, Reagan was probably the one who passed that on to her from a note Saint Milton Chicago School Fascist Friedman 👹 gave to Reagan 🐒).

Then there's that one Reagan liked about, "I'm here from the Government. I'm here to help.", delivered in his most professional actor sarcasm.

Ya know, these bastards seem to have studied Owellian discourse before Orwell invented it!

As far back as 1508, it was crystal clear to the casual observer that, THE TROUBLE WITH CAPITALISM, IS  THAT YOU EVENTUALLY RUN OUT OF OTHER PEOPLE'S MONEY. At that point you have to kill off a bunch of angry peasants who are starving or start a war (which you make peasants fight, of course) to find new sources of asset stripping plunder to put a bandaid on the cratering economy you destroyed with CAPITALISM.

Eventually you run out of people to kill and sources of EVERYTHING out there on the PLANET, that is plunderable, to plunder.

It's hard to fit all that in a sound bite but ya get the idea.

As to Reagan's favorte bit of clever BULLSHIT, it applies now quite well to the FIRE sector.

I'm here from the F.I.R.E. (Finance, Insurance, and Real Estate) sector . I'm here to help.

I just read this yesterday. It really gets to the heart of why people fall for all this Capitalist BULLSHIT. For the average person, it is hard to differentiate between socially beneficial freedoms and socially detrimental ones. The Capitalist CROOKS make sure to muddy the difference as much as possible with happy talk propaganda. This snippet from a recent Chris Hedges article pretty much exposes the CAPITALIST siren song CON.

Quote
The economist Karl Polanyi understood that there are two kinds of freedoms. There are the bad freedoms to exploit those around us and extract huge profits without regard to the common good, including what is done to the ecosystem and democratic institutions.

These bad freedoms see corporations monopolize technologies and scientific advances to make huge profits, even when, as with the pharmaceutical industry, a monopoly means lives of those who cannot pay exorbitant prices are put in jeopardy.

The good freedoms—freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, freedom of meeting, freedom of association, freedom to choose one’s job—
are eventually snuffed out by the primacy of the bad freedoms.
« Last Edit: December 04, 2018, 08:22:24 pm by AGelbert »
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AGelbert

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I Will Not Speak Kindly of the Dead. Bush Was Detestable.

BY Michael I. Niman, Truthout

PUBLISHED December 4, 2018

SNIPPET:

We’re supposed to speak kindly of the dead. And we’re supposed to bury our dead presidents with the type of fanfare and reverence that the colonial forebearers of this nation’s white settlers reserved for royalty. Today, as we prepare to bury the nation’s 41st president, George H.W. Bush, the American press corps is carrying on this tradition, eulogizing him primarily by celebrating his polite demeanor and his successful self-representation of civility. Yes, the 41st president presented as a nicer person than the 45th, or his son, the 43rd. But for the people whose countries or lives were destroyed by his violent actions, he’ll always be a monster. Sanitizing his story amounts to historical revisionism.

Below are just eight of the many reasons why, beneath the civility, George H.W. Bush was a detestable president.



https://truthout.org/articles/i-will-not-speak-kindly-of-the-dead-bush-was-detestable/
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AGelbert

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TheRealNews

Wilkerson on Cheney 22,604 views

Hyper-nationalist Cheney got rich at Halliburton 🦖 then "Co-President" with Bush


Published on Jun 7, 2010

Wilkerson: Cheney and far right lead Republicans over cliff

8,510 views


Published on Jun 11, 2010

Wilkerson on Cheney Pt.4: The greatest shift of wealth from the middle class to the top 1 percent





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AGelbert

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JAN 12, 2019 OPINION

By Maj. Danny Sjursen

Maj. Danny Sjursen is a U.S. Army officer and former history instructor at West Point. He served tours with reconnaissance units in Iraq and Afghanistan...



Agelbert COMMENT:   The author left out the AMERICAN FASCIST ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM represented partly by Prescott Bush and Henry Ford. The American business (and media SEE: NYT love affair with fascists from then until the PRESENT) community LIKED HITLER AND MUSSOLINI AND FRANCO.

THAT is the reason the USA was "neutral" in Spain. THAT is the reason for the Munich debacle.

Last, but certainly not least, is the FACT that the American Industrialists that made HUGE FORTUNES from U.S. involvement in WWI were SALIVATING at the prospect of MORE WAR in Europe.

Let's be clear here, shall we? The American public did not have ANY SAY in whether the USA went into WWI or WWII, PERIOD. It was the CAPITALIST (i.e. FASCIST) Profit Over People And Planet OLIGARCHS that made those decisions BEFORE the media propagandists were tasked to sell that CRAP (see: Bernays) to the American Public.

SHAME on the author for leaving all the above out of the historical reality of that time. 👎 😠

Unless you view that particular time period of history in the proper context, you cannot begin to understand how political 'business as usual' 😈💵🎩🍌🏴‍☠️🚩 in the USA has studiously ignored the will of we-the-people EVER SINCE!


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AGelbert

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JAN 11, 2019| BOOK REVIEW

By Paul Von Blum

Paul Von Blum is Senior Lecturer in African American Studies and Communication Studies at UCLA. He has taught at the University of California since 1968...

Dubious History

Purchase in the Truthdig Bazaar

Lies My Teacher Told Me,” new edition 2018

A book by James W. Loewen 👍👍👍

In the introduction to his magnificent critique of American historical education, James Loewen starts provocatively: “High school students hate history. When they list their favorite subjects, history always comes in last. They consider it ‘the most irrelevant’ of twenty-one school subjects commonly taught in high school. Bo-o-o-oring is the adjective most often applied.”

Since the initial publication of “Lies My Teacher Told Me” in 1995, I have regularly read this passage to my UCLA students in my course on the history of social protest. The overwhelming majority of my students have enthusiastically concurred with Loewen.

Many decades ago, I too sat in my high school history class, listening to Mr. Jones drearily reciting an unremittant litany of historical facts, mostly without context, intended to be memorized and regurgitated for future examinations. I also drifted off into my own world, thinking about things that teenage boys think about.

This book is subtitled “Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong.” In this third edition published last year, the text retains sociologist Loewen’s sharp critique of the 12 American history textbooks he surveyed in his first edition as well as the six books he examined for the second edition. He found, as he describes, “an embarrassing blend of bland optimism, blind nationalism, and plain misinformation, weighing in at an average of 888 pages and almost five pounds.” He showed persuasively how American history textbooks—these ponderous tomes—lied to millions of American students by sugarcoating historical events and persons, encouraging mindless patriotism and faith in unending American progress, and negated any serious critical thinking.

Most strikingly in his new preface, Loewen notes that more recent U.S. history texts merely promote the illusion of critical thinking. But they rarely encourage students to assemble real data to back up their opinions about historical controversies. Indeed, they actually promote the false notion that all historical opinions are somehow equal, and fully deserve respect.

Click here to read long excerpts from “Lies My Teacher Told Me” at Google Books.

As Loewen perceptively observes, the absence of useful historical textbooks augments the challenges for young people in the Trump 🦀 era. He pointedly identifies President Donald Trump and his pernicious White House minions as purveyors of lies and falsehoods: the age of “alternative facts.”


The preface shows the photographs of the inaugural crowds of President Barack Obama in 2009 and President Trump in 2017. Former press secretary Sean Spicer claimed that 2017 saw the largest audience to witness an inauguration. Kellyanne Conway defended this absurd assertion. The photographic evidence clearly revealed the falsehood of the claims. The insidious combination of inadequate and deceptive historical education and a national administration that denigrates the free press represents a grave threat to democracy.

Some of the chief things that American history textbooks get wrong are their lies by omission. As Loewen repeatedly shows throughout the book, the focus is on those men (rarely women) in American history who have represented the dominant power centers of social, economic, and political life. Rarely do these textbooks mention the people who have resisted power and spent their lives fighting for structural change. And even when a few are mentioned, it is often in highly sanitized form.

For several years in my social protest class, I have done a brief exercise at the outset by identifying some major American agitators and asking students if they have ever heard of them. I often start with Ida B. Wells because about half or more of the 150-plus students have heard of her. Then, I move to the other figures on my list. Emma Goldman. Joe Hill. Eugene Debs. A. Philip Randolph. Mother Jones. Saul Alinsky. Paul Robeson. Harry Hay. Fred Korematsu. JoAnne Robinson. E.D. Nixon. Dorothy Day. Fannie Lou Hamer. Stokely Carmichael. Reies Tijerina. Dolores Huerta. Several others.

The results are strikingly similar each academic year. Three or four students, or fewer, can identify these figures. The rest have no clue. I note that they are rarely mentioned in historical textbooks and, for the large part, many history teachers are likewise unfamiliar with them and their radical social and political work.

I then provide my class with a dramatic example from the first chapter of Loewen’s book. He writes about the case of Helen Keller, whom every student knows. They all know about the blind and deaf girl who overcame her handicaps. They know the story of her teacher, Anne Sullivan, who helped her to read, write and speak. Almost no one, however, knows what Loewen writes in his book: Helen Keller was a radical socialist, a supporter of the IWW, of the ACLU, of Eugene Debs, of Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, and so forth. Keller’s commitment to socialism emerged from her personal disabilities and from her deep sympathies with all handicapped and oppressed people. This is missing from the textbooks and from historical education. Instead, students get the same warm and fuzzy stories that network news provides for a few minutes each day at the end of their broadcasts.

This lack of knowledge about America’s radical past cripples today’s students by failing to inform them of the long historical tradition and record of resistance to injustice, racism, sexism, homophobia and capitalism itself. “Lies My Teacher Told Me” is replete with examples throughout its pages. The book highlights how students learn distortions and inaccuracies in their texts and throughout their “educational” experiences.

Take the case of John Brown. The radical abolitionist who led the raid at Harpers Ferry in 1859 and was executed for his role is regularly portrayed in history textbooks as a religious fanatic who was likely deranged. Yet among African-Americans of the era, including Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman, John Brown was hardly thought of as crazy; rather, he was seen as a man of principle willing to go to the gallows for what he believed was morally right: eliminating the unspeakable evil of slavery. Loewen’s corrective about Brown is hugely important. Students should sympathize with Brown’s righteous fervor about racism instead of dismissing it as the ravings of a mad extremist.

Similarly, American history textbooks devote little if any space to the disgraceful persecution of civil rights figures, including Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., by the Federal Bureau of Investigation under J. Edgar Hoover. “Lies My Teacher Told Me” touches on how history texts follow the Hollywood approach to civil rights. Loewen cites the dishonest film “Mississippi Burning” as the exemplar of highlighting white people as the heroes of civil rights advances and progress. This romanticized and misleading information about civil rights in the United States does a profound disservice to students, and retards efforts to redress the virulent racism that continues to pervade the nation’s institutions.

Loewen’s treatment of such events as imperialist adventures and invasions of Cuba, Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic and other Latin America countries, the My Lai massacre in Vietnam, the Iraq War and other dubious American historical events throws into relief the propensity of traditional textbooks to see no evil. This propensity is disastrous for students. Without a comprehensive understanding of history, they are simply unprepared for a life of active public citizenship. “Lies My Teacher Told Me” is powerful; indeed, it is an essential complement to Howard Zinn’s iconic “A People’s History of the United States.” Like that remarkable work, it serves as a crucial counter-textbook to provide a more realistic and critical narrative about the American past.

Textbook publishers are integral parts of the American capitalist industrial apparatus.  They exist to make profits; they are, to be sure, not entirely indifferent to the truth, but that principle always gives way to the bottom line. High school history textbooks in particular are designed for mass sales and must conform to the specific requirements of state textbook selection committees and commissions, many of which are dominated by conservative forces and personnel. Bland, noncontroversial, patriotic language is the safe approach because that leads to the highest probability for adoption and sales.

Loewen reveals another disconcerting truth: Textbooks appear to be authored by major academic authorities with strong, even stellar reputations as historical scholars. But they are not the real authors of the texts. Freelance writers are paid to ghostwrite many or all chapters with the dull, fact-heavy material that students must digest in their perennial quest for high grades. Publishers merely “rent” academic names to go on the cover (some of whom are actually dead or long retired). This essentially fraudulent practice underscores the basic thesis of Loewen’s entire book.

Moreover, teachers for the most part are perfectly content to continue using these tomes. Burdened with multiple responsibilities, they reflect the same inertia of all institutional settings. They have used these textbooks for years and they are generally familiar and comfortable with them. Changes requiring them to institute and teach true critical thinking skills would take serious effort, time and emotional energy. Regrettably, not enough high school history teachers want to move in that direction.

Inadequate history courses supported by misleading and deceptive textbooks lead to adult citizens unable to make critical judgments and decisions in a complex society beset with multiple social, economic and political problems. This is especially troublesome in the Trump 😈 era of alternative facts. George Orwell put it all too well in “1984”: “Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.”

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/dubious-history/



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