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Friday, January 28, 2005

Prince Harry's Eye for the Fascist Guy

Vice President Dick Cheney headed the U.S. delegation in Poland for the Auschwitz memorial service. If he were to be judged only by the words he spoke, no one in their right mind would take exception:

"The story of the camps shows that evil is real and must be called by its name and must be confronted.

"We are reminded that anti-Semitism may begin with words but rarely stops with words and the message of intolerance and hatred must be opposed before it turns into acts of horror."

Amen. Who doesn't see the wisdom in these words? However, if we consider the context of the quote, it's pretty hard to stomach. Consider the photo below and ask yourself: "What does Cheney's attire have to say about his attitude toward the Holocaust?

Cheney stood out in a sea of black-coated world leaders because he was wearing an olive drab parka with a fur-trimmed hood. It is embroidered with his name. It reminded one of the way in which children's clothes are inscribed with their names before they are sent away to camp. And indeed, the vice president looked like an awkward boy amid the well-dressed adults.

Like other attendees, the vice president was wearing a hat. But it was not a fedora or a Stetson or a fur hat or any kind of hat that one might wear to a memorial service as the representative of one's country. Instead, it was a knit ski cap, embroidered with the words "Staff 2001." It was the kind of hat a conventioneer might find in a goodie bag.

Staff 2001? Are you telling me the Vice President of the United States couldn't find more appropriate attire? At the very least, it's incredibly ironic. Don't try to tell me that it's justified by the fridgid weather...Wasn't he dressed properly at the President's Innaguration?

But that's not all folks...Cheney actually brought along a raving anti-semite in his delegation.

A delegation sent by President Bush to Ukraine's presidential inauguration last weekend included a Ukrainian-American activist who has accused Jews of manipulating the Holocaust for their gain and blamed them for Soviet-era atrocities in Ukraine.

"Big money drives the Holocaust industry," Myron B. Kuropas wrote in August 2000.

This was no accident. Cheney, like Bush, is full of high platitudes that cloak his contempt. Cheney is party to the dehumanization of the Iraqi people at this time (it makes it easier to kill them and steal their oil), and it takes unmitigated gall for him to go to a Nazi concentration camp while torture takes place at Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, and other "detention facilities" around the world. In his own, less eloquent words, Cheney can "Go Fu** Himself".

Cheney's words remind me of what Banquo told MacBeth after the witches prophesized that he would become king:

"And oftentimes, to win us to our harm,
The instruments of darkness tell us truths,
Win us with honest trifles, to betray us
In deepest consequence"

This isn't an awkard young man at a private costume party. This is another example of the right wing in the U.S. cowtowing to the racists in their rank, like the time when Reagan left a wreath on a Nazi tomb in Bitburg:

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