ANALYST CRITICIZES U.S. POP CULTURE FOR FEEDING WAR VS PEACE
Dr. Michael D. Knox, a foremost US peace activist, has criticized US pop culture for waging a relentless war against peace by romanticizing the military and tagging US exceptionalism as the enemy of peace in his essay “American Pop Culture Feeds the War on Peace,” carried by Truthout.
“The US war culture is insidious. It has invaded not only our government, but our schools, police, universities, healthcare institutions, workplaces, sports, concerts, places of worship, industry, transportation, stores and media — all aspects of our lives and culture,” Knox argued.
“The US also uses contract mercenaries to further reduce the number of uniformed men and women reported dead or missing. A 2016 article in The Atlantic by foreign policy expert Sean McFate of the Atlantic Council think tank noted that, in recent years, “more contractors are killed in combat than soldiers” and since 2009, the ratio of contractors to troops in war zones has increased from 1:1 to about 3:1. In the 2014 fiscal year, the Pentagon paid $285 billion to federal contracts (to hire private mercenary operatives) — more money than all other government agencies received, combined.”
“The US is often portrayed as the only truly virtuous nation on Earth — the ‘shining city upon a hill’ a la Ronald Reagan. While pretending to have the mission of protecting the world, we actually foment war on foreign soil for our special corporate and ideological interests. We claim American exceptionalism, drop out of treaties meant to reduce wars and nuclear proliferation, and refuse to subject ourselves to the International Criminal Court (ICC) or even to join treaties to improve the environment or ban landmines and torture,” Knox stressed.
“Countless American lives have been unnecessarily and tragically lost in heartbreaking wars that were waged for global expansion and imperialism. Rather than recognizing these wars for what they are and considering who profits from them, our culture instead embraces military might, and all the nationalistic trappings that go along with it, under the banner of ‘patriotism,’” he concluded