Yes, there was a revealing moment at last night’s Democratic National Convention. No, it wasn’t President Obama’s soaring speech, or Joe Biden’s heartfelt appeal, or Tim Kaine’s “believe me” lampoon of Donald Trump. All these were scripted.
It was the anti-war protesters who spoke out against drone assassinations and war while former CIA Director and Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta spoke.
Good for them. This democratic convention has been at pains to please the military. Last night, Panetta called the U.S. military our greatest national treasure. Obama repeated his claim that the U.S. military is the finest fighting force since Cain slew Abel. Tim Kaine opened his remarks by mentioning the Marines and shouting Semper Fi.
The Democrats are the new Republicans: they’re going “all in” on military boosterism and ra-ra patriotism.
Which is why the anti-war protest was so refreshing. End the wars — end the killing — what’s wrong with these protesters for expressing such crazy sentiments at a Democratic political rally? (An aside: my favorite sign read “Fauxmocracy.”)
The DNC response was swift. Apparently, they cut the lights to the section where the main body of protesters sat (the Oregon delegation), but the protesters simply pulled out their Smart phones for light. Panetta, of course, ignored them, carrying on with his prepared speech that vilified Trump for his remarks about Vladimir Putin and hacking. (Pretty dumb by The Donald, but the man is an empty barrel, an Archie Bunker who loves to make lots of noise.)
Most interesting of all was media response. I was watching MSNBC (I think) when a commentator attacked the anti-war protesters for undercutting Panetta’s speech against Trump. Yes, it was the protesters who were TOTALLY in the wrong! How dare they chant “no more war” at a former CIA Director and secretary of war? How dare they challenge an olympian like Panetta while he’s on the stage? How dare they organize and exercise their first amendment rights?
Expect more unbounded praise of the U.S. military tonight by Hillary Clinton. Expect more talk of war. Just don’t expect any honest talk about the cost of America’s wars or any vows about ending them in our lifetimes.
I just endured General Allen’s jingoistic speech/scream and all the “USA! USA!” chants, followed by a short speech by a Medal of Honor recipient in favor of Clinton.
After which Brian Williams of MSNBC said, “Sadly,” you could still hear faintly the voices of protesters shouting “No more war.” Why is that so sad, Brian Williams? Why is it so sad for Democrats to be against war? Why must they shut up when a general speaks, a general who boasts of making the U.S. military stronger with even better weaponry with which to kill?
That’s the real “sad” part, Brian Williams: How the Democratic Party has become the war party.