Norman Solomon: Bipartisan Obsession with War

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Norman Solomon. Photo courtesy of The New Press

There is no rationality, logic or hope left in the U.S. government’s obsession with war. There is no complexity, awareness or nuance left in the U.S. media and its pundits’ perception of other nations as the enemy. There is only greed, jingoism, hypocrisy and belligerency left to define the current state of affairs, as the proxy war in Ukraine draws nearer to a dreaded nuclear confrontation. Norman Solomon joins host Robert Scheer for this episode of Scheer Intelligence to discuss his new book, War Made Invisible: How America Hides the Human Toll of Its Military Machine, and explain the bipartisan cheerleading for war that goes largely unnoticed.

As Scheer points out numerous times in previous episodes of SI, there has always been a precedent for the other side: a peace movement, rational politicians acting against nuclear escalation and simply a recognition of profiteering from war. “Even during World War II, when Harry Truman chaired a committee, they talked about in the Senate war profiteering. You can't even get that phrase anymore. So it's lucrative, but hardly mentioned in mass media that the billions and billions of dollars going to Ukraine are making extremely wealthy CEOs and major stockholders even more extremely wealthy,” Solomon explains.

Diplomacy, Solomon says, has now become a dirty word. Anything other than the complete commitment to funding and continuing the war effort is seen as a threat to the country and status quo. The loss of the ability to even talk about it, has infected both sides of the aisle. But it is the Democrats, as Scheer mentions, who have become the perpetrators of this new jingoism and xenophobia towards Russia. “What we've lost now is any sense of complexity and the Democrats are leading the charge of simplification. They did Russiagate. They are the ones who say you can't negotiate with Putin,” Scheer says.

This simplification exposes hypocrisy in the face of all these politicos and corporate pundits. Putin is a war criminal but Bush is not. “The de facto leader of Saudi Arabia leading that slaughter in Yemen, who got fist bumped a year ago by the president of the United States, Biden, and we're on a higher moral ground… Some even handed assessment of U.S. foreign policy says that we have no position or right in logical terms, to hold ourselves above Russians in terms of foreign policy,” Solomon says.



Joshua Scheer