Saturday, December 17, 2016
[1941 - Admiral Chester W. Nimitz is named Commander in Chief, US Pacific Fleet,
to relieve Admiral Husband Kimmel]
[1991 - Russian President Boris Yeltsin and Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev agree to dissolve the Soviet Union by the new year]
In 2004, a failed national leader who permitted September 11, 2001, to live in infamy was rewarded with an additional four years in office so that he could pin medals on his pals. President Bush in his second term in office thus awarded the Medal of Freedom (the highest civilian honor this nation can bestow) to three individuals responsible for the Iraq War. In one ceremony he made heroes of George Tenent, the former CIA intelligence chief who failed to warn of 9-11 and whose junk information about WMD led to the disastrous war in Iraq, Tommy Franks, the former general who was rolled by the pentagon into accepting an inadequate force to secure that country after it was captured, and Paul Bremer, the US ambassador who bungled the occupation and allowed it to degenerate into chaos and insurgency. In the Bush-Cheney administration no good deed was unpunished, and no failure went unrewarded.
In 2010, a poor Tunisian fruit peddler named Mohamed Bouazizi, from Sidi Bouzid, was hustled and slapped by a municipal official while trying to sell his wares. He ran screaming to a government office but they wouldn't let him in, so he went to a gas station, filled up a canister, and then came back. In the middle of traffic he poured the gasoline over himself and lit a match. His desperate act of protest became a symbol to the local populace, then to the whole Middle East, and finally to the World, that human dignity cannot be ignored. Indeed this simple young man lit a fire (and fed it with his own flesh) that ultimately illuminated once again the absurdity of a world in which a fortunate few live like potentates at the expense of billions who toil in the midst of poverty, hunger, and disease. In our own country, the symbolic act of Mohamed Bouazizi gave rise to the occupy movement that may yet result in meaningful change to a 21st Century paradigm, away from a society that runs on consumerism and is ruled by a one percent power elite.
William's Whimsical Words:
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Last updated on December 17, 2014