Three voices of sanity
by G.S.  <george.salzman@umb.edu>
May 24, 2005

this page is at http://site.www.umb.edu/faculty/salzman_g/Strate/Notz/2005-05-24.htm

1. George Wald, 99 (if he were still alive)
2. Joe Bageant, 50s, more or less (I'm guessing) <bageantjb@netsccape.net>
3. Misha Hadar, 19 <misha.seruv@gmail.com>

A. Three "gotta reads". Start with Joe Bageant. This guy cuts through all the sophistry, all the bullshit, all the intellectual masturbation. His latest thrust, "Carpooling with Adolph Eichmann" is another needed blow against insanity. Here's a bit:

      "...ole Eich would have easily made a respected member of American society today, probably as a Republican judicial nominee. He would have fit quite well into a nation of Americans going about its daily business caring for and protecting the homeland’s security and profitability. Eichmann slept well at nights, the same as most of us, unaffected in appetite. He would have made a good carpooler, telling us all about the kids and grandkids as we commute the monotonous asphalt strips to and from our jobs, creating the paper work and the information product, the plastics and the commerce of the fatherland, that great sprawling circuit board one sees from airplanes. Like Eichmann, we are efficient, productive, and most terribly of all, untroubled by guilt. Oblivious as gravestones. Sane."

Joe Bageant's piece is at
http://www.dissidentvoice.org/May05/Bageant0523.htm

B. George Wald's "A generation in search of a future", was an extemporaneous talk given in the midst of the "first" of America's Vietnam Wars. It's as timely now as it was in 1969. Here's a sample:

      "...I think the Vietnam War is the most shameful episode in the whole of American history. The concept of War Crimes is an American invention. We've committed many War Crimes in Vietnam; but I'll tell you something interesting about that. We were committing War Crimes in World War II, even before Nuremberg trials were held and the principle of war crimes started. The saturation bombing of German cities was a War Crime and if we had lost the war, some of our leaders might have had to answer for it."

George Wald's talk is at
http://site.www.umb.edu/faculty/salzman_g/SfHS/2005-05-23.htm

C. Misha Hadar is an Israeli who refuses ― in an act of courage and sanity ― to become part of the military. His heartfelt letter to the Israeli Minister of War stands as a symbol of humane passion and beauty, in the face of enormous pressure to "run with the dogs of war." Here's a bit:

      "...I remember stories my grandfather told me when I was little ...

      "I heard about ghettos, about soldiers harassing human beings. These ghettos were not built by the Nazi leadership itself, not by the ideologues of the party. It was the simple soldiers who did the job, who obeyed the orders. And similarly, the soldiers who committed the actual cruelties were not necessarily racists or anti-semites. They were soldiers who had learned to regard human life as something dispensable, soldiers who emerged from a state whose moral principles had lost grip. When I stood in Abu Dis I could not but think of the ghettos my grandfather used to tell me about ..."

Misha Hadar's letter is at
http://www.gcmhp.net/File_files/mishahadar.html


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Last update of this page: May 26, 2005