imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Response to Marc Cooper

by Houston Wednesday, Apr. 23, 2003 at 10:58 AM

Marc Cooper's cynical screed in last weeks LA Weekly is crushed by Carole LaFleme's analysis. This letter was rejected by LA Weekly. Cooper would rather attack those against the war rather than those perpetrating the crime.

To: Editor at LA Weekly

Sent 4-01-03

Marc Cooper's Steady Assault on the Peace Movement

While claiming to be against the assault on Iraq, it is

interesting how much of Marc Cooper's space and venom are directed to the peace movement, and how differently he treats the war-makers ('Therapy or Politics?,' LA Weekly, March 28-April 3).

He sneers at the notion 'that America is the 'greatest terrorist state in the world,' a 'facile' view spewed forth on KPFK, and he also cannot bring himself to state explicitly that the United States is committing blatant aggression in Iraq--you won't find him citing Nuremberg and Robert Jackson condemning this as the worst of all war crimes.

He leans over backwards to give Bush credit for initially carrying out a 'tightly targeted, if not restrained' attack on Baghdad. He does later mention he 'disaster we're currently seeing in Basra,' and that things can get much worse all around given the resistance unexpectedly encountered, but he skillfully puts this in the background by making the war and its victorious conclusion a given to which we must all adjust. He

doesn't discuss the U.S. mode of fighting to minimize U.S. casualties by the intensive use of firepower, which is sure to kill vast numbers, directly and indirectly.

Cooper didn't approve the work of the peace movement before the invasion and he doesn't like it now. For one thing, we allegedly can't stop the war, so protests along that line are futile. And 'more to the point' if we stopped the war Saddam Hussein would not be removed. Of course if we stopped the war, vast numbers of Iraqi civilians might not die, but in the Cooper tradeoff that loses out to the merit of ousting Saddam. In short, Cooper supports an important war objective, and weighs it heavily enough to conclude--

get on with it.

Cooper wants the war to be over quickly, with the desired victory and ouster of Saddam. So the peace movement is assailed for 'whining' about media bias, failing to urge Saddam to resign and to feature his responsibility for 'securing the peace,' 'rejectionism'--that is, rejecting the war in toto--and other crimes. What it should be doing is trying to shape the postwar

result--who will populate the Iraq government, getting more humanitarian relief, avoiding corruption in rebuilding, etc.

Funny thing is that Cooper ends his piece saying that 'The greatest threat we face is that after Iraq, the administration will spread the war elsewhere.' But won't a quick and relatively costless success encourage the administration to do just that?

Furthermore, why worry if only KPFK ideologues think this country is 'the greatest terrorist state in the world' and one that poses an ongoing threat of ad hoc attacks on other states? Cooper has been urging the peace movement to demobilize in the face of the

preparation and implementation of this war. If the public can be convinced that the next one is also meritorious, wouldn't whining and rejectionism still be objectionable? Isn't the function of whining and rejectionism now to constrain Bush in fighting this war

and the ones to follow?

Marc Cooper wants to have his wars and pretend that his hostility to the peace movement is based on their lack of anti-war nuance rather than their unfortunate 'rejectionism.' This shouldn't fool anybody at this juncture.

Carole LaFlamme

Los Angeles

for other analysis see ed herman's

"The Cruise Missile Left, Part 1" ZMag, Nov 2002 and Part 2, April 2003

cooper's original article:

MARCH 28 - APRIL 3, 2003


LA Weekly

Therapy or Politics?

Peace movement misses the point by marching now

by Marc Cooper

If only the Bush administration had political strategies and policies half as smart as its high-tech weaponry. Who was not transfixed, and at some level or another horrified, by that first seven-minute shock-and-awe barrage that turned the Baghdad night into an orange-hellish glow of mini-mushroom clouds and rivers of flame? And as similar bombardments continued through the week, any reasonable spectator could likely assume that the Iraqi capital was being decimated and that nothing less than mass carnage was being carried directly into our living rooms via CNN.

And yet, this same administration that bulldozed recklessly into this unnecessary war, and whose notion of diplomacy was to plow over both foes and allies with equal abandon, was conducting one of the most tightly targeted, if not restrained, wars in modern history.

The number of civilians killed remains in the dozens - too many, but far shy of the mass graves that could be imagined on the first night of the war.

So for those of us who had argued against the war, there was some solace. At least on one crucial point, the administration was telling the truth. Its military strategy was indeed attempting to force the surrender of Saddam Hussein's regime by scaring the wits out of it - and not, fortunately, by committing wanton destruction and indiscriminate massacres. Of course, that picture may change as the war intensifies and as more information becomes available. Outside of the tight focus of the camera lens fixed on the target of downtown government buildings, most of the rest of Baghdad was being spared, and the lights, the water, the phones, even the Internet lines, were still all up and running.

Of course, administration hopes for a three-day war were stopped cold by unexpected levels of Iraqi resistance in the southern part of the country. And as this column is being written, as American forces move northward, and Saddam Hussein concentrates his elite troops around his capital, the world prepares for the unpredictable horror of what may become the Battle of Baghdad.

Already, "progressive" anti-war Web sites like are more or less gloating over these troubles, running every report they can suggesting that George W. Bush is about to bog down in a quagmire. But this hope, if you can call it that, is radically ill-placed. Just as a dozen years of draconian American sanctions against Iraq battered everyone except Saddam Hussein, this war going off the tracks would devastate just about everyone except George Bush.

A prolonged siege of Baghdad would provoke a humanitarian crisis of biblical proportions, running the Iraqi civilian population through a meat grinder of hunger and death. Military casualties on both sides would soar. And the already inflamed passions of much of the Arab world - and not only Arabs - could explode. It would be much worse even than the disaster we're currently seeing in Basra. The consequences of a short war in Iraq are going to be bad enough. Only an idiot could hope for a prolonged conflict. That's why the best we can now hope for is a swift and definitive conclusion of the war.

Notice I did not say we should stop the war. First of all, we simply cannot. The war will, hopefully, be over soon enough on its own. Second, and more to the point, about the only silver lining in this American misadventure for the Iraqi people is that it does the spell the end of one of the most barbaric 30-year dictatorships on the face of the Earth. To call off the tanks at this juncture, thereby saving Saddam's skin, would be a double betrayal of the Iraqi people. With all the miscalculation, hubris, arrogance and imperial disdain that undergird this war, at least let its only saving grace be consummated by leveling Saddam's regime.

Maybe someone in the peace movement should figure out that not only Bush could stop this war. So could Saddam - by resigning his unelected post and saving his people any further sacrifice. Yet I've yet to see one anti-war placard allude to Saddam's responsibilities in securing the peace.

But talk about quagmires. The peace movement, which promises so much in its scope and energy, itself remains bogged down in a minimalist program of simply and only opposing U.S. military action. That's hardly enough. The movement suffers a malady similar to that of the Bushies, but in reverse: smart principles but dumb - no, make that stupid - operational politics. Pure rejectionism, since the outbreak of war makes the peace movement as blind and indiscriminate as a WWII-vintage iron-cast bomb, though considerably less dangerous and infinitely less powerful.

Blocking traffic when 74 percent of the American people support the war, or endlessly whining about CNN's coverage, or grandstanding as Michael Moore did at the Oscars telling America that a president who currently enjoys (for all the sordid reasons we know) stratospheric popularity ratings is "fictitious," has much more to do with personal therapy than with effective politics. Continue on that tack and you can pretty much count on another four years of Bush, no matter how ugly the war turns.

Protecting the Iraqi people, as the peace movement rightfully desires, is one helluva lot more complicated than merely shielding them from the collateral damage caused by U.S. bombs. (That is, unless you really believe that America is the "greatest terrorist state in the world," as is so often repeated on KPFK's drive-time shows. If your world-view is that facile, then indeed we have little more to discuss.)

Those who chant "U.S. out of Iraq" ought to be prepared, then, to offer themselves as human shields to protect the Kurds against threatening Turkish troops (a task currently in the hands of U.S. special forces). Or as shields to protect the southern marsh Arabs against occupation by the theocratic armed forces of Iran. Perhaps all those human shields, idle now after fleeing Baghdad when Saddam's government ordered them anchored to strategic military targets, could assume these new responsibilities.

The peace movement must also concern itself with humanitarian relief. The fight to directly include the U.N. in the administering of that relief (instead of the Bush administration's proposed reliance on private pork-barrel contractors) is our fight - one infinitely more important than impotently shaking our fists at the CNN building on Sunset Boulevard.

If you don't trust George Bush, as you should not, and you consider yourself part of the peace movement, then you also better start taking an active interest in who will populate a post-Saddam government. And accept it: Protests or not, there is going to be a new government in Iraq, and very, very soon. Better some of our friends and allies in that new regime than only those favored by Wolfowitz and Cheney. But the peace movement will have no anti-Saddam Iraqi allies if it continues to express no real solidarity with those Iraqis who stand in opposition to Saddam and who might - yes - be actively supporting the war.

For a solid week now, I've been arguing these points with a dear friend who says that while she very much wants to see the end of Saddam, she just cannot under any circumstances "support this war." But this isn't about supporting the war. It's about accepting the unfortunate fact that the war has been imposed upon us as an irrefutable reality. We can close our eyes and stamp our feet and hope that by chanting enough it will go away. Or we can truly assume our democratic responsibilities and try to influence the situation so that the outcome is as positive as possible. That's not much of a choice, admittedly. But it's all we have.

The greatest threat we face is that after Iraq, the administration will spread the war elsewhere. It will be imperative to block such a move. To do so, we will need politics, not therapy. Time for the peace movement to start thinking and proposing. Merely acting out just won't cut it.

Report this post as:

Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 1 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
Cooper is a fraud Meyer London Wednesday, Apr. 23, 2003 at 11:28 AM

Local News


lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 6:38PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights M01 6:28PM

What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It M01 3:30PM

Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down F14 2:44PM

Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29 F13 12:51PM

Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf F13 11:04AM

Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development F12 8:51AM

Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine F09 10:25PM

Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents F09 7:14PM

Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters F07 9:50AM

City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre F04 3:17PM

Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling F04 12:42PM

Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present F04 10:52AM

Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police F03 11:11PM

LA Times Homicide Report F03 1:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Doxa du lobby A25 2:03AM

Tech workers organize A24 6:24PM

Architect Stephen Francis Jones A24 3:01PM

UN Forum Wrestles with Economic Policies 10 Years After Financial Crisis Islands Call for A24 12:34PM

Xyloglossie attitudinale A23 8:07AM

Shadowgun Legends Hack and Cheats A23 7:24AM

What does the Quran Say About Islamic Dress?? A21 4:15PM

Biodiversité ou la nature privatisée A20 11:22AM

The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion A20 7:14AM

Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service A19 5:52PM

The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally! A19 4:01PM

The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder A19 11:48AM

Neurogenèse involutive A18 9:21AM

Paraphysique de la dictature étatique A16 10:13AM

Book Review: "The New Bonapartists" A16 3:45AM

The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia A14 12:25PM

Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine A14 3:30AM

The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally! A12 3:50PM

“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize! A12 3:48PM

The World Dependent on Central Banks A12 4:43AM

Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine A11 9:40PM

March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update A10 10:52PM

Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel A10 3:33PM

ICE contract with license plate reader company A10 1:14PM

Palimpseste sisyphéen A09 11:23PM

Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes A09 5:32AM

Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges A09 4:18AM

Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes A08 10:33PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy