Sunday, December 10, 2006

De mortuis nil nisi bonum? Not for Jeane Kirkpatrick

Good riddance to Jeane Kirkpatrick, the Wicked Witch of the Reich. May the rest of her ilk follow her to the grave quickly. She and her neoconservative cohorts have wreaked decades of harm on this planet.

This image was found at Yes, THAT Scooter.

Just so we don't forget, let's take a look at the record of these monsters in Central America. NPR CHECK , in the post "Kirkpatrick Through a Kristol Ball", pointed to this archive in the National Catholic Reporter, that notorious ultra-left wing paper. Here is an excerpt:

The outrage in the United States over President Carter’s decision to approve military aid to El Salvador included criticism from U.S. bishops, legislators and scores of religious and human rights organizations. The NCCB president, Archbishop John R. Quinn of San Francisco, said the move “enhances the possibility of more violence from security forces, and [it] associates the United States with acts of oppression that can only alienate the majority of people in El Salvador.” The charge was reduced to its simplest terms when Americans in San Salvador picketed the U.S. Embassy, declaring that “U.S. guns kill U.S. nuns.” Ten Salvadoran Catholic agencies published a statement that supported the “right of legitimate insurrection” as a “last means to obtain justice and peace” in the country.

Conservative political and religious elements in the United States were quick to counterattack. The Reagan nominee for the State Department’s human rights bureau, Ernest Lefever, said the nuns “used religion as a garb for cloaking political activity” and “hiding guns for the insurgents,” a statement he later refuted; Jeane Kirkpatrick, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said, “The nuns were not just nuns, they were political activists, and we should be very clear about that.”[onymous guy: emphasis mine] The smear campaign against the Catholic church and U.S. religious in general, and the Maryknollers and Jesuits in particular, began early and was sustained.

Typical of the drumbeat being picked up in nongovernmental right-wing circles, the Council for Inter-American Security in a March press release fudged the issues in a manner that would be repeated in the years ahead. The council was a privately funded advocacy group that supported Reagan’s foreign policy. CIS said the religious women “may have been working with left-wing guerrillas to overthrow the government.” The council offered no proof for the charge except that “all but one of the murdered women were members of the Maryknoll Society, which has earned a reputation for championing radical politics and liberation theology.” Next, came the guilt by association: “Two of the nuns were killed when returning from Nicaragua, where another member of the Maryknoll Society, Sandinista Miguel D’Escoto, is foreign minister. It is unknown what the women were doing in Nicaragua at a time when vast quantities of arms were being sent through Nicaragua to the guerrillas in El Salvador.” (The activities of the women were not unknown. Two of them, Srs. Maura Clarke and Ita Ford had been at the sisters’ regional assembly in Managua.)

CIS continued that “the families of three of the women recently signed an ad in The New York Times soliciting contributions to the Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador, a group that supports a takeover by pro-Castro guerrillas.” Everyone had been tarred.

The State Department chose to see no evil. On March 24, Secretary of State Alexander Haig explained the churchwomen’s deaths to Congress as an accident caused by nervous soldiers who “misread the mere traveling down the road (of the nuns’ van) as an effort to run a roadblock.” Nonetheless, the U.S. Embassy in San Salvador was well ahead of the Salvadoran junta in investigating who had killed the American women.

It is so clear in hindsight that the Reagan administration was up to its eyeballs in the coverup of CIA involvement in the murder of Archbishop Romero. Its support of neofascist violence in Central America became the template for the current adminstration's foreign policy. Jeane Kirkpatrick was one of the first reichwingers. We are better off without her. Read the rest and weep.

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