The bright moon got Koko and me up and out early, walking in the cool, white light beneath a sky of ghostly, flying clouds that darted past Venus, Jupiter, Orion and numerous stars and constellations whose names are not known to me. The wheezing honk of first one Newell’s shearwater, and later, another, broke through the background chorus of crowing roosters, making me glad to know that they’re still nesting at Makaleha.
The wind clattered palm fronds, made the ironwoods sigh and whistled past my ears, carrying with it the smells of newly mown grass, mock orange and, from the car-kitten casualty that is quickly becoming a moldering patch of fur, death.
The death score, or at least, the reported one, was five to five in Afghanistan yesterday. They got five Marines and we got five of them, although it isn’t quite clear whether they were militants loading weapons, as the U.S. military claims, or farmers loading produce, as witnesses contend. What is clear is that most people don’t really give a rip, save for those to whom the dead are linked, and it’s that detachment that allows this senseless killing for unclear reasons to continue.
Actually, I can see why they’re killing us. They want us out of their country. But it still isn’t quite clear to me why we’re all the way over there, killing them. Especially since the Obama Administration just announced it’s scaling back Bush’s “war on terror” to a mere ”campaign against terrorism.” But wait:
[John] Brennan [Assistant for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism] has made it clear that the new doctrine will not mean the slowing down of the operations against Al Qaeda and other terrorists operating from the Af-Pak area. What he means is that while continued military operations are necessary, military operations alone cannot eradicate terrorism.
Which means, of course, you kill people and then throw billions at them. That way, it isn’t just the guys who make the killing machines who make a killing, but also the guys who come in to “rebuild” after the killing machines have wrought terror and destruction.
Imperialism, by any other name, is still imperialism, as is killing.
President Obama, meanwhile, has given his support to a plan — aka the Akaka Bill — aimed at killing the dream of an independent Hawaii and cementing America’s imperialistic coup in the Pacific.
Let’s see. Obama hasn’t delivered on his campaign promises to close Gitmo and ensure all Americans have health care. Nor has he delivered on his inaugural address promises to “harness the sun and the winds and the soil…work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the specter of a warming planet… [and] reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals….”
But as the Advertiser reports, the Obama Administration:
...came through on its promise to support Native Hawaiian self-governance yesterday with a powerful statement to a Senate panel, backing a bill that would give Native Hawaiians the same rights as Native Americans and Alaskans.
In testifying before the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, Sam Hirsch, deputy associate attorney general, to the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, went on to acknowledge, rather startlingly:
"The United States has recognized the Kingdom of Hawai'i as a sovereign power and dealt with it as such through much of the 19th century."
So how come, given that history and the 1993 presidential apology for America’s illegal overthrow of the monarchy a century before, the best we can do is (emphasis added):
Passage of the Akaka bill would provide for negotiations on the disposition of Native Hawaiian land, natural resources and other assets.
How long do you suppose such “negotiations” could be dragged out, as folks continue to make a killing on those Native Hawaiian assets, which have been kept quite conveniently “in limbo,” even as they steadily diminish?
Meanwhile, if you’re interested in reviewing primary documents — as opposed to opinion — that challenge the traditional statehood story, check out this thoughtful website. It’s doing a 21-day countdown to statehood that aims to sound the death knell on the fantasy that Hawaii became a state all fair and square.