Monday, February 23, 2009

Fox News "war games" the coming civil war

From Glenn Greenwald's blog at Salon, courtesy of This Modern World:

But this Rush-Limbaugh/Fox-News/nationalistic movement isn't driven by anything noble or principled or even really anything political. If it were, they would have been extra angry and threatening and rebellious during the Bush years instead of complicit and meek and supportive to the point of cult-like adoration. Instead, they're just basically Republican dead-enders (at least what remains of the regional/extremist GOP), grounded in tribal allegiances that are fueled by their cultural, ethnic and religious identities and by perceived threats to past prerogatives -- now spiced with legitimate economic anxiety and an African-American President who, they were continuously warned for the last two years, is a Marxist, Terrorist-sympathizing black nationalist radical who wants to re-distribute their hard-earned money to welfare queens and illegal immigrants (and is now doing exactly that).

That's the context for this Glenn Beck "War Games" show on Fox News this week -- one promoted, with some mild and obligatory caveats, by Michelle Malkin's Hot Air. In the segment below, he convened a panel that includes former CIA officer Michael Scheuer and Ret. U.S. Army Sgt. Major Tim Strong. They discuss a coming "civil war" led by American "Bubba" militias -- Beck says he "believes we're on this road" -- and they contemplate whether the U.S. military would follow the President's orders to subdue civil unrest or would instead join with "the people" in defense of their Constitutional rights against the Government (they agree that the U.S. military would be with "the people")

More here.

Greenwald also contextualizes this frightening FOX discussion in terms of the right-wing militia movement of the 1990s, which makes this "War Games" thing all the more frightening. There really were, and probably still are, numerous hyper-paranoid "'Bubba' militias" out there ready to use their guns and bombs to "protect" what they believe is the American way of life--don't forget that the most famous individual in this movement was Timothy McVeigh, the man who blew up a federal building in Oklahoma, killing dozens, just to make some kind of point; what that point was, I'm still not sure, but make it he did.

Anyway, given this context, it strikes me that Beck's "War Games" show comes dangerously close to advocating the violent overthrow of the US government. Isn't that illegal? Shouldn't Beck and his TV guests be thrown in jail and charged with treason?

Just a thought.