Fascism Is Not Just About Flag Waving and Making the Trains Run on Time
No, America is not “headed towards fascism.” It has been an essentially fascist country since August 6, 1945, when it dropped the atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima. According to the Wikipedia, between Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which was nuked three days later, the death toll in the two cities totaled at least 127,000 people. Historians are in agreement that the war in the Pacific was already won when the atomic bombs were unleashed and that the real purpose for the attacks was to stun the Soviet Union into halting their advance on China and Japan and to lay the cornerstone in the edifice of American world domination.
Dictionary.com says “fascism” is:
…a governmental system led by a dictator having complete power, forcibly suppressing opposition and criticism, regimenting all industry, commerce, etc., and emphasizing an aggressive nationalism and often racism.
This definition falls short for me, as it doesn’t mention the quintessential elements of violence, cruelty and racism, which have been at the center of all 20th-century fascism. As for “a dictator having complete power,” that wasn’t necessary for the United States at the time, as the country was already militarized, mentalized and mobilized thanks to the previous four years of World War II, during which Franklin D. Roosevelt had greatly extended the arbitrary powers of the President for making war. If he had known who was to follow him in the presidency and how they would misappropriate the powers he legitimized he might have been more prudent.
Roosevelt’s Death Was Providential
After Roosevelt died unexpectedly of a cerebral hemorrhage at his Warm Springs, Georgia, retreat on April 12, 1945, a weak and inexperienced vice president–a failed haberdasher–became President of the United States, responsible for the endgame of the Second World War. Harry S. Truman had been an underling in the Boss Tom Pendergast Democratic-party machine in Kansas City, Missouri, and in Washington was known as “the senator from Pendergast.” Confused and ineffectual, Truman had been vice president for just 82 days when Roosevelt died. According to the White House’s own website (whitehouse.gov):
During his few weeks as Vice President, Harry S. Truman scarcely saw President Roosevelt, and received no briefing on the development of the atomic bomb or the unfolding difficulties with Soviet Russia. Suddenly these and a host of other wartime problems became Truman’s to solve when, on April 12, 1945, he became President. He told reporters, “I felt like the moon, the stars, and all the planets had fallen on me.”
When Truman became President he sought more experienced counsel. As luck would have it his principal advisor was his colleague and mentor from the Senate, James F. Byrnes, who was less expert than Truman supposed. Considered a relative lightweight by Washington insiders he was also a diehard anti-Soviet, this after Roosevelt had established a robust respect-based relationship with Stalin with prospects for postwar cooperation between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. Byrnes was directly responsible for the firing of Henry Wallace, Roosevelt’s progressive Secretary of State and his earnest hope for the future of the United States.
With the new President firmly in the hands of hardline reactionaries like Byrnes and Averell Harriman, Ambassador to the Soviet Union since 1943, the collaborative postwar future foreseen by Roosevelt and Wallace, was quickly scrapped. Truman fired Wallace and dropped the bombs. Why two? Because war department wanted to see the effects of both models on densely-populated cities, the 16-kiloton, uranium-235-based “Little Boy” and the 21-kiloton plutonium device they called the “Fat Man.”
Immediately after the Second World War the Americans and the British turned their backs on their Soviet allies who had contributed massively more to winning the war than the US and UK combined. The comparative casualty figures are eloquent. According to the WW2 Museum, the total number of military and civilian dead, by country, were the following:
- The United Kingdom–450,700
- The United States–418,500
- The Soviet Union–24,000,000
The level of betrayal was monumental. At the end of the war the British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, actually goaded Truman and the president of the French provisional government, Charles DeGaulle, to turn their guns on the Soviet Union and get the Communists out of the way once and for all. That initiative didn’t prosper but other schemes to block and boycott the Soviet Union did. Truman, advised by the officers who created and ran Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the U.S. wartime intelligence service, oversaw the creation of the National Security Council and the CIA in 1947 and NATO in 1949. The stage was set for the Cold War, which was–and is–a classic, ongoing fascist response to any and all threats to American dominance worldwide.
The first steps in this fascist march on the future of the 20th century were taken by the British MI6 intelligence service even before World War II ended, with their creation of “stay behind” groups in almost all European countries. These were clandestine military units designed to offer resistance to possible Soviet invasions and were innocently accepted as such by their European “hosts.” Little did these welcoming countries suspect that the stay-behind units would soon morph into terrorist cells run by the CIA and MI6 and specialized in senseless, seemingly random false-flag attacks to instill fear of “communism” throughout Europe. The organization, commonly known as “Operation Gladio,” began operation in Italy near the end of the war and exercised a cruel and unusual influence there for decades. Gladio, partly financed by Marshall Plan funds, included right-wing elements and Nazi collaborators in most of the countries where it operated. I have recently discussed Operation Gladio at some length in a four-part article that you can access here.
Italian Fascism as Role Model
New Yorker writer Robin Wright has this to say in a review of Madeleine Albright’s recent book, Fascism: A Warning, written with Bill Woodward, about the rise of Mussolini, the quintessential fascist, in the Italy of the 20s, 30s and 40s, until he was executed by a firing squad of Italian partisans on April 28, 1945 in the village of Giulino di Mezzegra in northern Italy.
Mussolini called on his followers to believe in an Italy that would be “prosperous because it was self-sufficient and respected because it was feared,” Albright writes. “This was how twentieth-century fascism began: with a magnetic leader exploiting widespread dissatisfaction by promising all things.” Il Duce, who was Italy’s Prime Minister from 1922 until 1943, said that his mission was “to break the bones of the democrats and the sooner the better.” He used the term “drenare la palude,” or “drain the swamp.” He had a talent for theatre, Albright notes, and was a poor listener who disliked hearing other people talk. He discouraged cabinet members from “proposing any idea that might cause him to doubt his instincts,” which, he insisted, were always right. He also promoted the idea of national self-sufficiency “without ever grasping how unrealistic that ambition had become.”
If this sounds eerily familiar it’s because it is almost too accurate to be true. Wright makes it crystal clear: “The elephant rampaging through these pages is, of course, Donald Trump.”
Let’s Look at Some Clear Examples of Current American Fascism
The best and most recent case is that of illegal immigrant children, including babies, being forcibly separated from their parents at the US borders. Need I point out that this practice cries out to heaven? It’s still not clear what the future holds for these innocent young people. One European news medium summed it up: “The United States is the only country in the world with concentration camps for children.”
These heinous detention practices are not limited to immigrant children. They extend to both juvenile and adult prisoners all over the country. The Bradley (Chelsea) Manning case is the most high-profile example. He was submitted to almost seven years of a prison regime that amounted to torture. Just as horrific as the treatment of Manning was the Kids for Cash scandal in Pennsylvania, which saw kids “sold” by juvenile judges to private for-profit prisons. This case affected many more young people, most of whom will not go back to school nor be otherwise rehabilitated.
Is it not fascistic to punish the populations of whole countries over long periods for perceived affronts or egalitarian political leanings before the all-powerful USA, whether by means of embargoes, election tampering, assassination, regime change or outright invasion as in the cases of Cuba, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, Greece, Brazil, Chile, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Libya… Those peoples emphatically did not deserve the imposition of these gratuitous priorities of property rights over human rights. We’re not talking about idle ideology here; we’re talking about countless thousands–nay millions–of deaths of innocent people.
What Spawns a Fascist?
What spawns a fascist? What are the causes of this fascist degeneration of American society? There can be many causes starting with good-old-fashioned greed and will to power. But we can’t discount individual personality disorders, limited intelligence, inherited wealth and privilege, mob psychology, indoctrination of false notions of exceptionalism, imperfect adaptation to school and society, or the atmosphere in which the young fascist is reared. The Spanish would sum this all up neatly in two words: mala leche. “Mala leche” is the “bad milk” that one suckles from his mother, nourishment that also transmits low character and ignoble inclinations. It’s a metaphor for a person’s whole biological, cultural and social heritage. Mala leche is perhaps the most serious insult in the Spanish language, not one to be taken lightly. The operative question at this point is: what do you do when approximately half the country is afflicted with it.
Read more rantings in my ebook, The Turncoat Chronicles.
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