Saturday, September 18, 2010

Relentless Propaganda by Cindy Sheehan


Relentless Propaganda

“(Propaganda) proceeds by psychological manipulations, character modifications, by creation of stereotypes useful when the time comes - The two great routes that this sub-propaganda takes are the conditioned reflex and the myth”
Jacques Ellul

I can’t tell this story enough—and it fits into this piece:

On July 4th 2006, I, and dozens of other antiwar activists began what we called: “Troops Home Fast.” It was supposed to be a fast until the troops were coming home from Iraq (Note: After 39 days, I ended up in the hospital with another condition and I had to have two emergency surgeries and 2 blood transfusions, so I had to stop). So a few days after the fast began, I was invited to go on MSNBCs Hardball, and I was told I was invited so I could talk about our fast.

Well, instead of appearing with the juicy Chris Matthews, the guest host that day was neocon, Norah O’Donnell. She introduced me as the “woman who met with ‘communist dictator,’ Hugo Chavez of Venezuela.” We went to a phony break (because the show is taped) and I said: “You know, Norah, Chavez is neither a communist—he’s a socialist, nor a dictator. He’s been democratically elected several times and survived a coup attempt orchestrated and paid for by our own government.”

I will never, ever forget her answer: “We know, but we had a meeting and we decided to call him a ‘communist dictator’ anyway.” This is on MSNBC, the supposedly “liberal” cable news network.
Recently, on MSNBC, we saw establishment critic (oops, only when a Republican is in office), Keith Olbermann call Karl Marx a “lousy thinker,” when even the most anti-Marxist in the world would have to concede that Marx was one of the most brilliant thinkers and political/social philosophers in modern history—anyway, that’s a little off the subject.

Currently, I am making a documentary film about Venezuela and President Chavez and the people’s revolution there called, the Bolivarian Revolution—and what happened on September 17th, is one of the reasons I am doing so. Of course, in making this film, I am obsessed with all things Venezuelan and all the news from and about the country and its charismatic president and that’s how this “news” item crossed my path—the headline:


Well, we know in the past decade, that if the U.S. Military junta wants to invade a country, they start a demonization campaign that should have the requisite “nuclear component” in it—Iraq (WMD, “mushroom cloud”) and Iran are perfect current examples of nuclear-fear bullcrap.

Now look at that bold headline that appeared on CNN online on September 17th via the U.K. Guardian—if you were the average, casual consumer of the “news” and you had already had the stuffing propagandized out of you that Chavez is a “communist dictator” that "supports terrorism," what would you automatically think? You would think exactly what the headline wants you to think—that Venezuela is in the market to make nuclear weapons by purchasing secrets from the undisputed champion of the manufacture and usage of nuclear weaponry: the USA. (We're number one!)

If you had the perseverance and time, you would have to go to the final paragraph of the “news” piece to read this little tidbit: “The justice department statement was at pains to spell out that Venezuela was not involved: "The indictment does not allege that the government of Venezuela or anyone acting on its behalf sought or was passed any classified information, nor does it charge any Venezuelan government officials or anyone acting on their behalf with wrongdoing."

Jacques Ellul (French sociologist and philosopher in the 20th C) also said: “The goal of modern propaganda is no longer to transform opinion, but to arouse an active and mythical belief.”

Not only is the global media junta having a great success in demonizing all things Venezuelan, this targeted propaganda campaign is being partnered with an active “Plan Venezuela” to not just isolate Venezuela in public opinion, but to isolate it militarily from its allies and neighbors.
Being extremely frightened by what Noam Chomsky calls: “The threat of a good example,” the U.S. has staffed seven military bases in Colombia while spreading the lie that Chavez supports the FARC there. While rejoicing in the propaganda that Chavez is a “drug dealer,” the U.S. has placed 7,000 Marines in Costa Rica to ostensibly fight the phony War on Drugs—and only the U.S. Military junta knows why it reactivated the 4th Naval Fleet in the Bush years to send to the Caribbean.

The ultimate goal of our documentary about Venezuela called, Revolution, A Love Story is to show people in my own country of birth that a grassroots revolution to overthrow the entrenched, diseased U.S. system is possible because illiterate peasants in Venezuela were empowered by education and the “threat of a good example” to overthrow the U.S. corporate neo-liberalism that kept them impoverished and uneducated under colonialism (even if it eventually was “liberated,” either the Spanish or U.S. controlled it) for centuries.
Reject the relentless propaganda—my story illustrates how the media not only lies to us, but also holds meetings to figure out the best ways to propagandize us.

This was exposing just one small piece of the demonization of Vz, for a more extensive analysis, read:

US Media Intensifies Campaign Against Chavez

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