“Is our nation planning to build on political myth again, and then shore it up upon the power of a new violence? Somehow this madness must cease. We must stop now.”—Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in his April 4, 1967 “Beyond Vietnam” speech
BAYAN-USA upholds the unconditional right of the Syrian people to self-determination and stands in solidarity with them and the world’s people in rejecting any and all US intervention in Syria.
It is the ultimate hypocrisy that President Obama is making speeches in the name of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. today, while at the same time planning an illegal attack on the sovereign nation of Syria. Fifty years ago today, King led the historic March on Washington for jobs and justice, but King’s legacy shows that he did not take a stand for solely African Americans and the poor in America—he called for solidarity for all of the poor and oppressed worldwide. Obama hypocritically “talks the talk of” King but walks the line of Kissinger and Bush by calling for the use of brutal force on innocent people to uphold the interests of U.S. imperialism.
It is senseless to believe the pretext that an American military airstrike on Syria will put an end to the use of chemical weapons or save lives. U.S. intervention can never bring peace to Syria or any other country because it is only interested in protecting and advancing its own interests in the region: unleashing its neoliberal economic offensive for total control of oil reserves and other natural resources, unfettered access to geopolitically strategic lands and waterways, and ruling regimes who serve as loyal allies.
Decades later, U.S. imperialism persists in advancing the interests of those Dr. King identified in 1967 as “the wealthy and the secure, while [creating] hell for the poor.” Today, the global 1% includes the big banks and military, oil and energy multi-nations and the local reactionaries in the Middle East and beyond would be the only ones to benefit should the U.S. strike Syria, versus the 99% including the Arab people who are rising up to determine their own social, economic, political and cultural destinies.
Dr. King’s 1967 speech “Beyond Vietnam” rings as true today as it did 46 years ago. The history of U.S. intervention in other countries over the past 115 years proves that U.S. intervention can only lead to more death and human rights violations against innocent civilians, exacerbates conflicts, and does nothing to promote security or resolve internal conflicts. The long arm of U.S. intervention reaches far, as even thousands of Filipino migrants working in Syria are now fleeing the country, caught between the non-choice of possible injury or death in a U.S. bombing campaign, or the slow death of joblessness and poverty awaiting them in the Philippines.
Obama has sullied the legacy of the March on Washington, but we have the opportunity to honor the legacy of King’s “Beyond Vietnam” address by standing with the Syrian people against U.S. intervention and for self-determination of all oppressed people and nations.
Honor Dr. King’s Dream Truthfully!
Reject US Intervention in Syria!
Self-Determination for the Syrian People!
US and NATO OUT of the Arab World!